So, your best friend, sister or close family member is getting married, and it's fallen on you to throw a bridal shower! It can feel like a daunting task, right? It can often feel as important as the wedding itself, and many details go into throwing a bridal shower. It falls to YOU, the host, to coordinate, make lists and make sure all the little details are complete, but if the thought of organizing such an event fills you with dread, then read on, we are going to tell you exactly how to throw a great bridal shower.
What is a Bridal Shower?
You've been asked to organize a bridal shower; at first, you are excited that it's fallen on you and then realize that you don't actually know the first thing about what goes into one.
A bridal shower is an event thrown for the upcoming bride, where invited guests bring along gifts and typically, these gifts would help with her transition into married life. It is a traditional and more elegant type of event. The gifts given at a bridal shower can range from cookware to vases to jewelry.
Traditionally a bridal shower should be given up to two months before the wedding, but it is a time-consuming process, so it is essential that you talk with the bride-to-be through your plans. She will want to know about themes, dates, confirm and approve the guest list and, most notably, the venue. This all needs to be addressed early on in the planning process, and our shower planner Union County understands how stressful planning a bridal shower can be, which is why we suggest using a checklist. You can go through each task ticking it off, and it keeps things in control.
What happens at a bridal shower?
Technically there is no right or wrong way to throw a bridal shower; however, there are still guidelines to follow. You don't accidentally want to throw a bachelorette party. So how do you throw a great bridal shower? With a lot of planning, that's how.
The general rule for bridal showers is food, drink and gifts for the bride, usually with her close friends and family. Traditionally, there would be games of bingo or toilet roll wedding dresses, but there has been a more elegant approach with spa days, cocktail making classes, dance lessons, and wine tasting in recent years.
10 Steps to Planning a Bridal Shower
If you want to plan an unforgettable bridal shower, take a look at our checklist.
1.Checklists & To-Do Lists
Event planning of any size is easily managed by making checklists and organizing an event schedule. However, don't feel because you have been asked to plan the bridal shower that all the jobs fall on you. You will need the help of others! Allocating jobs to people will make all of the tasks more manageable.
2.Create a budget
You can't plan anything without knowing how much everything will cost and what funds are available. Bridal showers do not have to cost that much. A simple lunch in a backyard or an affordable restaurant can feel just as elegant as a luxury hotel or a country club. A typical bridal shower will cost between $10 and over $100 per person. It's all about being smart with your planning.
3.Pick a date
One of the key considerations of any bridal shower is consulting with the bride and choosing a date that works for her—usually a couple of months before the wedding. Also, remember to be mindful of any other wedding type event like the bachelorette or bachelor party.
4.Create a guest list
The guest list can often be one of the least thought about do-to's. There will always be a must-invite from the bride and her close family, so it is worth double-checking with the bride and getting the list approved before sending out invites.
5.Choose a location
It is common for the host to offer their home to hold the bridal shower. If this isn't an option or the bride would prefer a different venue, often spas, wineries, restaurants, hotels or renting an Airbnb can feel like the better option.
6.Consider a theme
Bridal shower themes aren't for everyone, and some brides decide to opt-out of any theme altogether. Still, if the bride has a favorite hobby, color or flower, you might consider incorporating it slightly.
It is always a great idea to give guests as much notice as possible so they will be able to attend and purchase gifts. Invitations should be sent roughly four to six weeks before the bridal shower date, so any invitations you make, design or purchase will need to be ready a few weeks prior. It is also a good idea to note any dietary requirements and include details regarding RSVPs.
8.Consider food & drink
Depending on the venue will depend on the food and drink options. Hotels and other venues often have their own caterers or set menus, while if you are hosting at home, you could have more choice, and if your budget stretches, you could get it catered. The bride should agree with all final menu options, and all dietary requirements should be noted and catered for.
9.Choose event decor
If during the planning and budgeting process you decided to outsource some of the services. Mainly sourcing an event planning professional, then often they will take over from here. They add those little personal touches and will take the stress away from decorating yourself and tidying after. However, decorating yourself is arguably one of the most fun steps in the planning process.
10.Plan games and activities
Traditionally, games were used as a great way to break the ice when guests first arrived. More recently, bridal showers have moved towards more structured activities, like wine-tasting, cocktail making and even salsa dancing.
These are just a few tips to get started, as bridal showers can feel very hectic, but a lot of it has to do with how organized you are. First and foremost, please make sure you understand what the bride wants. Her input throughout the whole planning process is crucial for the success of the event. As you lead up the bridal shower, it is vital that you are constantly confirming details.
Lastly, as a planner of the bridal shower, you may feel overwhelmed or feel tons of pressure, so you mustn't be afraid to ask for help. These are our tips on how to throw a great bridal shower, remembering the most important part of the shower is and always will be the bride - celebrating her upcoming big day.