The purpose of many pre-wedding soirees is to “shower” the bride (and as is becoming more popular these days, the groom too!) with gifts that will help ease their transition into married life. These events are meant to be relaxing, fun and full of your closest friends and family. While your job is to sit back and gratefully enjoy some pampering, the following tips will help you and your hosts prepare for an entertaining, organized and memorable celebration.
At a bridal shower, your loved ones come together to toast your soon-to-be-wed good fortune, bombard you with great gifts, make goo-goo eyes at your fabulous ring, and take all the pressures you may have about your wedding preparations away for a few hours. This is an equation for pure bridal Heaven. Historically, the bridal shower was a way to provide the bride-to-be with all the necessities that were essential for a woman to bring to her new home; however, today’s bride often already has most of these domestic basics. Even so, a shower is an opportunity for your inner circle to share the happiness you feel in anticipation of your new life.
Who should host the bridal shower?
Usually the maid or matron of honor, with help from the other bridesmaids, a sister, mother, daughter, or other close female family member, will coordinate the festivities. While traditional wedding etiquette holds that relatives should not throw showers, we now see many more aunts, cousins and even mothers involved in hosting these events.
Who should be invited?
A bridal shower guest list should be limited to the bridal party and the closest friends and family members of the bride and sometimes the groom. Only guests invited to the wedding should be invited to the shower to avoid the impression that you invited someone just to solicit a gift. The bride should be consulted about the guest list unless the shower is a surprise party. In such cases, the maid of honor or the bride’s mother will usually handle and edit the roster.
When should it be?
When scheduling the shower, consider the availability of your guests while also being sensitive to those who may need to travel. Secure your venue early, even if it’s a private home. A shower can take place six months or two weeks prior to the big day. Do not plan the shower for the week of the wedding, as there will likely be a lot stress during those last few days.
Who should do what?
The hostess should delegate jobs to other bridesmaids and willing friends. These tasks might include inviting guests, preparing a creative menu and planning decorations. Sending out formal invitations is not required, but it does help encourage important RSVPs.
During the shower, assign someone to record gifts received along with the gift-giver’s name to ease the bride’s task of writing thank you notes. To encourage guests to interact and socialize, plan a sufficient time where old friends can catch up and everyone can meet new people.
Most importantly, have fun and relax and your shower will be a raging success!