Are you ready for another Wedding Wednesday post? I know I am!
Did you know that it isn’t traditionally appropriate for family of the bride to throw a bridal shower?
This means that if you are the bride’s sister, even as the maid of honor you shouldn’t be throwing it? This is thought to be greedy, since you are soliciting gifts on the part of the bride. But, you don’t necessarily need to follow those rules anymore.
Just like a wedding, the bridal shower doesn’t need to be traditional if you don’t want it to. Typically the bridesmaids throw it in honor of the bride, but anyone can, really. There can be more than one shower, if you’d like, or you can even throw a couple’s shower, so both the bride and groom can attend. It’s completely up to them.
There are a few guidelines, however…
It’s best to schedule the bridal shower between six months to one week before the wedding itself. You don’t want it to be too early, but you also don’t want it to be too late. Exceptions can be made in certain circumstances, of course, such as in the instance of the couple or family coming in from out of town.
You can be as creative as you’d like with the location! Since a bridal shower is a smaller and more intimate affair, you may prefer to hold is somewhere quieter, such as a restaurant or tea house. Or, if you’re on a budget, in your backyard! The possibilities are only hindered by your own imagination.
You are in no way obligated to provide an entire four course meal for the bridal shower. But, please take into consideration the time of day. If you scheduled the party for noon, guests will probably expect lunch, and it’s appropriate to feed them accordingly. I’m speaking from experience on this one…when you don’t feed people when they are hungry, they will leave early. I promise.
Not everyone invited to the wedding needs to be invited to the bridal shower. Only close friends and family should attend, since it’s much more personal and intimate than the wedding itself.
On the other hand, however, only those invited to the wedding should be invited to the shower. That means that even if you’re only having 50 people at the wedding, your bridal shower guest list should only include those 50 people. I hope that makes sense…
Even if you are throwing the bride a shower as her bridesmaids, it’s still good manners to ask the mother of the bride for her input. She may want to contribute something to the shower, even if it’s to the guest list. But it would be polite if you asked her anyway.
Give the guests a room in the house for them to purchase gifts for. You can do just one room, such as the kitchen, or assign each guest a different room, such as the bathroom, kitchen, dining room, ad bedroom.
A lingerie shower is a great way to welcome a bride to married life, but please, make sure you ask her first! And this may not be the best idea if it’s her only bridal shower, especially if her grandmother is going to be there. If that’s the case, a lingerie shower might be better for a bachelorette party, or for a time when she’s with her closest friends.
Be there to support the bride! It’s her day, and you should be there for her. Make sure that the party represents the bride, and not those planning it. If she is more of a tea and cookies kind of girl, then a morning brunch might be better than a cocktail reception in her honor. And of course, when in doubt, ask her what she’d like!
It’s highly recommended that you register for gifts before any pre-wedding party, including an engagement party or bridal shower. Those throwing the party are more than welcome to include registry information with the invitation.
Please, appreciate what your friends and family do for your bridal shower. They may not have the means to throw you the huge party that you wanted, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less thoughtful or sincere.
And be sure to thank people for their gifts! You’ll want to send thank you notes as soon as you can, preferably within two weeks after receiving the gift. It’s okay to open it before the wedding, as long as you send a thank you!
Feel free to email me, or ask them in the comments!