Girl, it’s your TIME TO SHINE! Bridal showers are at the top of the list of our favorite pre-wedding activities. Are you ready to learn how to have the best bridal shower of all time? First, let’s cover some basics!
What is a bridal shower? It’s essentially a party that’s thrown for the bride to celebrate her upcoming marriage. Usually, gifts for a bridal shower are going to be home-related with the goal of helping the couple set up their new space. These gifts may come from your registry or they may just come from the kindness of aunt Linda’s heart. You truly never know until you open them!
Next up, who plans the bridal shower? Traditionally, the Maid of Honor or one of the bride’s close female family members or friends will plan the bridal shower. PS: the whole women-only rule, is so old-school! Invite all of the bride’s closest friends to join!
Alright loves, now that we’ve covered bridal shower basics, let’s dive into how to make your bridal shower the best of all time.
Planning The Bridal Shower
When you’re planning the bridal shower, it’s important to consider the basics; what’s your budget, who’s invited, where & when will it be? Typically, bridal showers are a total surprise for the bride so she probably won’t help plan her own shower (brides, send this article to your bridesmaid group chat and let them iron out the details while you go take a nap!) However, it’s a good idea to ask the bride about possible themes, the guest list, and date conflicts just to make sure that everything is perfect for her.
Designating a Host
So, if the bride doesn’t plan the bridal shower, you may be wondering “who does?” Well, typically it will be a close female family member or friend. Perhaps the mother of the bride, an aunt, cousin, or even bridesmaid. To make sure that you’re throwing the best bridal shower of all time for your beloved bride, don’t be afraid to ask for help if you’re the designated shower host. Throwing a party is oftentimes more than just a one-gal gig, so to ensure that everything runs smoothly, enlist the help of bridesmaids or family members that don’t have any additional responsibilities!
Timeline and Guestlist
Ideally, the bridal shower will fall somewhere within 3 months to 2 weeks before the wedding. We recommend keeping the guest list small. Don’t invite anyone who isn’t invited to the wedding unless doing so makes sense for your bride’s situation (an elopement, family-only wedding, intimate destination wedding, etc). This will also ensure that all guests feel comfortable at the bridal shower because odds are if you keep it small, most guests will know each other.
If you want to make guests feel even more comfortable at the shower, consider using Guestie’s digital guestbook to introduce party guests virtually before the party! Then you’ll save time by skipping introductions and icebreaker activities altogether! How much do you love that!?
Don’t Forget The Theme and Decor
After you nail down all the details, it’s time for the fun part, the decor, and the design! You definitely don’t need a theme, but a theme can make the shower a lot more fun! You can pick an easy theme, like blush pink. Or go all-out with a Stranger Things, the 90s, or even Gatsby-themed bridal shower! Once you have the theme chosen, it’s time to send out invitations, create the menu, purchase the party decor, and start planning activities.
P.S. If you have any last-minute changes that you need to tell the guests about, don’t worry! Guestie makes it super easy to communicate last-minute changes with the Text Alert feature. Simply type your message, send it, and it’ll notify everyone via their phone notifications! Goodbye manually sent mass texts, we won’t miss you one bit!
During the Bridal Shower
It’s finally here, the guests are about to arrive, and you’re running around making sure everything looks perfect. Here are a few pointers for the day to help keep things running smoothly!
Snacks and Games
Make sure to keep the menu light and munchy unless you’re planning a dinner party or potluck-themed bridal shower. Keeping food light and munchy will ensure that guests are able to continue talking and mingling with everyone while enjoying yummy hors d’oeuvres rather than finding their place setting at that dining table. Keeping guests mingling with one another will keep the party open and receptive to the next step of the bridal shower: The games!
Games are a fun idea for any bridal party–they’re a great way to get everyone socializing. We suggest coming up with and planning a game beforehand; however, if you can’t find any that you’re super excited about, you can just set this time aside for even more socializing.
Once everyone is gathered and has had some time to mingle, organize a toast for the bride. A toast is a great way to show the bride how much you all love and care for her. It’s also a great opportunity for you and other guests to wish her well before her wedding. And after some snacks and light socializing is the perfect time for any toast because guests’ bellies will be full and they’ll be comfortable enough around everyone for a teeeeenie tiny bit of public speaking.
The last thing you want to do at the bridal shower is to complicate the bride’s life! So, to keep the gift opening streamlined and organized, be sure to designate a guest or co-host as the “gift manager.” The “gift manager” will write down what each guest gave the bride throughout the bridal shower. That way, whenever the bride opens up a gift, she won’t have to worry about doing it all herself AND will be able to easily write thank you notes later!
When to Say Goodbye
The length of a bridal shower really depends on a few things. Including the number of people invited, the time of day the shower starts, and how many activities are planned. We recommend keeping the shower between 2-3 hours long. This will give the bride plenty of one-on-one time with guests. Fortunately, you don’t need the bridal shower to be an all-day affair–we’re saving that for the big day!
This one isn’t a necessity, but if you have some extra room in your budget, it’s always a sweet addition to the bridal shower. Favors make guests feel appreciated and also serve as a small “thank you” from the bride for coming and bearing gifts. Favors will also make guests even more excited for the wedding to come! If you do choose to offer favors at the bridal shower, consider having the designated “gift manager” do this as well! It will help keep things organized and structured right to the very end!
We hope that these tips help you throw the BEST shower of all time for your oh-so-sweet bride-to-be. If your bride is still in the thick of planning, be sure to send her to our blog. On it, we share tons of great wedding planning & timeline ideas. Lastly, if you need some visual inspo for bridal shower planning or theme ideas, be sure to follow us on Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok!
We hope you have the BEST bridal shower ever!