Weddings. Who doesn't like to contribute to the festivities? If you've got a magnificent voice, you'd want to sing for the newlyweds. A brilliant artisan? Perhaps you'd lend your skills to create unique (and pinterest worthy!) table centerpieces. If you're that guy, you'd plan the ultimate bachelor party weekend. I've got none of those gifts, but that didn't stop me from doing my small part for a friend's wedding. My contribution: the wedding day survival kit.
Step one: research. Poking around on the web I compiled a list of well over 50 items that could go in a kit designed to help with any emergency on the big day. There's no shortage of good ideas on the web. Which brought me to step two: figure out how big this kit is going to be.
If I wasn't careful I was going to hand the bride and groom a duffle bag full of stuff, which would no doubt sit gathering dust in a hotel room somewhere. No, I decided that the wedding planner and photographer would have their own bags of goodies ready to deal with common emergencies and that my contribution should be pocket sized. I went the classic route and used a pair of Altoids tins as the containers. They're nice and pocketable, yet still hold valuable essentials.
Here's the primary kit:
I made heavy use of straw containers, as they're neat and tidy and don't take up a whole lot of space.
While some of the items are obvious (thread, needles, pocket knife, Advil, safety pins, etc.), others are less so. The container makes use of a clamp made out of white duct tape. I've found reports of people using white duct tape to repair wedding dresses and such.
The gray and purple circles are silicone wedding rings, often marketed to cross-fitters. They're provided as backup wedding rings should the unthinkable happen and the real ones are misplaced.
The item marked 'chalk' is a section of plain white chalk, which again, the internet tells me is useful for quickly fixing stains on a white wedding dress. Hopefully a hack we won't need to try.
Floss is provided because floss is awesome. It can be used for anything from white thread, to hepling to cut cakes. Oh, and it can actually be used as floss, if need be. (Insert joke about joke about breaking out of prison here).
The candle is a lavender scented tea candle. When combined with the matches, it turns any space into a sea of tranquility.
Nestled in with the safety pins, needles and buttons are two extra earring backs. Again, this was an internet inspired suggestion.
Not shown, but included in the kit is a dose of Pepto Bismol, which should help with any tummy discomfort on the big day.
I was pleased with how neatly all the items fit in the kit, allowing it to close without any difficulty. It's one thing to deliver a pocket kit, it's another to deliver a kit that you can actually use and repack with ease.
Finally, if all of the above fails, I've provided a secondary emergency kit:
Yes, that's two packets of peanut butter and honey shoved into an Altoids-sized case. And yes, I believe all problems can be solved with peanut butter.
I hope the happy couple will have no need for my little contribution on the big day. Instead, they can look at is as a reminder of the road ahead: while things won't always go as planned, with a little preparation and improvisation, you can weather any storm. Oh, and peanut butter fixes everything.