As the big day approaches it is common for friends and family of the bride come together to celebrate the upcoming union. Many folks may mistake a bridal shower for a bachelorette party. However, there are some stark differences. The purpose of the bridal shower initially was to provide goods and financial services to ensure the wedding would take place. It later morphed into providing goods to start the matrimonial home, which is interesting because many gifts given at a wedding are for the same exact purpose. Whatever the purpose, bridal showers have become a rite of passage and an event on the checklist on the way to matrimony. At Elk Point we have hosted and witnessed numerous bridal showers over the years. Here are some tips to help you plan to host a bridal shower yourself.
It really does not seem to matter who hosts the bridal shower. We have seen Moms, grandmothers, friends, bridesmaids, sisters, you name it. Whomever it is that is hosting the shower just wants to create a special day and memory for the bride-to-be. There is sometimes friction between guests when it comes to family type events. It is important to remind everyone that the day is about the bride-to-be, not them, so to put their focus on ensuring she has an amazing, memorable experience.
The person that is hosting the bridal shower is often the one footing the bill for the bridal shower. Therefore, it is important to set your budget. Otherwise, things can get out of hand pretty quick, especially if everyone is given an opinion as to what should be happening at the shower.
It is important to have the bride-to-be’s input on the guest list, as well as both the bride and the groom’s mothers (if applicable). It is not common for men to be present at bridal showers. However, times they are a changing and having more events blending family and genders are happening.
Once you have your guest list together, it is time to book your venue. Although we are a little biased, there really is only one venue you should be considering. Keep in mind, many venues are traditionally already booked on Saturdays during prime wedding season. While Sundays may traditionally be a religious day, Sunday afternoons are often a great time to hold bridal showers. Although Sunday’s do not work for everyone, it is a day to strongly consider when looking at venues for bridal showers that likely do not have Saturdays available. The venue can also help with menu selections available.
To make things fun and consistent it is important to choose a theme for the shower. This makes decorating, invitations, food choices, gifts, etc. easier to think about for the bride-to-be. It helps gives guests an idea of what to expect on the day of the shower. Some ideas to consider include wine tasting, honeymoons, art, floral, etc. There is really nothing off the table when it comes to theme, but really should be something that the bride-to-be is interested in.
Once guests arrive at the bridal shower, they are going to need something to do. As project managers ourselves we always stress having an agenda or itinerary of how the day will flow. This will help those that arrive for setup, help keep guests engaged as the shower flows, and allows for adequate clean up time at the end of the event.
Planning games and activities for the guests goes a long way to keeping everyone entertained. Coming up with game ideas is as easy as jumping on Google and searching for them. Most have something to do with the wedding theme such as involving “rings” or “garters”. Other activities can involve crafts that may be of interest to the bride-to be or telling fun and embarrassing memories that guests have of experiences with her.
No party can end without a toast to the guest of honor. A salute to a strong, happy impending nuptial involves all guests and sets a good tone for the next several weeks. While not everyone partakes of alcohol, having some beverage choices available to guests is something to consider as you work with the venue on your menu selections.
Whenever someone books the Estate at Elk Point, they book more than a venue. They book an experienced resource to help plan their day and coordinate services available. Our staff is available to help and answer any questions along the way from small to large scale events.