Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wedding Wednesday: April (Bridal) Showers

"April Showers bring May Flowers," so...  what better subject to explore this month than bridal showers?  (Can you guess what I just might talk about next month?)

 courtesy of Lemsipmatt thru Flickr
Who should host the bridal shower?  
Nowadays, anyone that wants to.  Close friends, co-workers, family members...  It doesn't have to be the bridesmaids, and for that matter, it doesn't have to be just the girls.  Co-ed showers can be all kinds of fun.  After all, two people are getting married, not just one.  The only rule to follow is that anyone invited to a shower needs to also be invited to the wedding.  An exception to this is if you are having a small ceremony with only a few guests, or a destination wedding far away, and you have friends or co-workers that wish to honor you with a shower.  

If a co-ed shower isn't your thing, a cute ritual that I came across in my research is to have the groom show up with a bouquet of flowers just before the gifts are opened.  This is especially nice to do if a lot of your guests have not yet met your fiance.  Here's an even better idea- have your guy show up with a bouquet of individual stems and let him present one to each of your shower guests.  He'll look extra-dreamy to all of the other girls!!

When should a shower take place?
Generally showers are thrown 2 weeks - 2 months before the wedding.  By then the bride and groom have their guest list and gift registries finished.  You need both of those things to get your own invitations out.  

The first thing to do when picking a date is to make sure that the bride is available.  (Very important!!)  If you are having difficulty finding one date that works best for all of your friends, maybe a couple of different people can host showers.  Between the 2 (or more) dates everyone should be able to make it to at least one.  Multiple showers are the best way to go if you are wanting to include different groups of people at each, such as one for only family, or college buddies, or co-workers,...  This way you have the chance to try some wilder ideas without offending someone's grandmother.    

If anyone is invited to more than one shower for the same bride, please stress that they are not expected to bring a gift to each of them.  They weren't invited to increase the present pile, but because the bride wanted to include them.  There is a very good chance that the bridesmaids especially may fit into multiple categories in the bride's life.  

What is expected of the host?
The party is in honor of the bride (and maybe the groom), but the person (or people) throwing it is expected to act as host for the event.  You will be in charge of inviting guests (with a list from the couple), planning the decorations, food, & activities, helping the bride to keep track of who gives which gift for thank you note purposes, and cleaning up afterwards.  Make sure you greet each guest as they arrive and have a timeline planned out beforehand to keep the party flowing smoothly.  

If these things are not your strong suit, there are event planners out there (, ME!!) that have plenty of experience doing all of this.  If you use your bride's coordinator you may even be able to work out a discount on services. 

Today's post lists some of the basics for getting your shower planning under way.  (In other words, all facts and not a lot of fun.)  Throughout the month I will be getting into the good stuff:  games, themes, decor, food...  
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Keep an eye out for more every Wedding Wednesday!!

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