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My best friend is getting married next summer, and as I haven't ever been involved in a close friend's wedding, I am at a loss. I am one of the two bridesmaids, and I would like to throw some sort of bridal shower but I don't know any of the usual/classic things to do at one. In fact, I haven't even been to one! She is already very busy and stressed, and I want her bridal shower to be fun and happy for her...Does anyone have any ideas of what I should do or how I can get a crash course in weddings? Thanks! -where do i start?
My personal advice about showers: keep them short and sweet. Try 30 minutes of mingling, then food, then open the gifts, and keep things moving! Encourage the bride to make a guestlist on which everyone knows at least one other person. Be sure to assign someone to keep a list of gifts for the bride. I prefer those that avoid games, although one or two can be an icebreaker. Be sure to take pictures for the bride, and save the ribbons from the gifts. Tie them into a bouquet, using a paper plate, that the bride can carry at her rehearsal. Melissa T
Most brides prefer a dignified, sophisticated get-together over the silly games type of shower most people think of first. A brunch or lunch at a restaurant is great, or a gathering at someone's home with brunch or lunch served is great too. Some suggestions for food: bagels & fixings, quiches or frittatas, fruit salad, vegetable salads, chicken or shrimp salads, an assortment of cheeses & breads or crackers. For beverages, depending on time of day, coffee, tea, juice, iced tea, mineral water, wine or champagne (if brunch, mimosas are nice.)
There doesn't have to be a theme to the shower. Guests can bring gifts purchased from the bridal registry, just something on a smaller scale than a full-blown wedding gift.
The flow of a shower is generally 1/2 hour for everyone to arrive, with beverages and snacks available while people socialize. Then bring out the main lunch, let people serve themselves buffet-style, and everone sits with that in their laps & chats. Now you may want one game if the bride is OK with it. There are lots of games on the internet - try to focus on those that don't humiliate the bride or embarrass the mother & mother-in-law of the bride (sex jokes.) Games can seem corny but are good icebreakers to get the guests talking to each other. After games, it's gift time. The bride opens gifts and oohs and aahs and passes the gifts around. If you're a pal, you'll sit next to her and write down who gave her what to help with the thank you notes. Then bring out a cake or desserts, and coffee or tea.
To be the ultimate hostess, arm a couple of guests with disposable cameras and have them roam and take pictures of the the bride in a little photo album.
Roam the room during socializing & eating to refil guests' drinks. Pay particular attention to older guests & offer to get them food if they are sitting in a low chair or couch & would have difficulty rising.
One tradition most brides like is if someone makes a ''bouquet'' of ribbons and bows from the shower gifts. The bride uses this as her stand-in bouquet at the wedding rehearsal.
The important thing is to make the bride feel like the guest of honor, and that she is valued and loved by her friends. This should be a relaxing day for her, so the bridesmaids/hosts should not expect her to lift a finger. Have fun! hostess
Then you go to the bride and tell her you want to throw a shower for her. If she agrees, work with her on a date and an invite list. But remember that you are throwing a shower for her, so don't stress HER out with the details. Ideally she should show up and have a good time and not have to worry about anything.
Once the date and list are set. Find a location. Your house or (if its just a few people) a restaurant. If you do it in a restaurant, you and whoever is throwing it will traditionally pay the bill (you could get a set menu) unless you let the guests know otherwise. Showers normally are a luncheon (around noon) or tea/snacks (afternoon) or something. Get the invitation out at least 4 weeks in advance and make sure you let them know on the invitation whether it is lunch or snacks or whatever.
At the shower, you provide food. There is usually gift opening. And at some point its nice to have some sort of a ''mixing'' strategy esp if the guest list includes people who don't know each other. You could play a game or simply have the bride go around and introduce everyone. Or have everyone go around and introduce themselves and say one thing about the bride (where they met or their fondest memory or their wish for her marriage).
Basically a shower is a little day time get together so that the women of the wedding (it can also be a co-ed thing) can get to know each other and provide support for the bride. Other alternatives to the traditional luncheon shower are 1) if there are just a few people, everyone go to a spa for the day and get a pedicure or something then have lunch afterwards (The Clairmont is nice for this but pricy). You should still send out invitations and organize the whole thing.
2) You could do a hike in Tilden followed by a nice picnic (if its good weather).
The most important thing is that you are doing the shower out of love for your friend. Try to figure out what she would like best right down to the setting and the food (without asking her to choose). You are very nice to do this for her. She will leave feeling like she is so fortunate to have so many people who love and support her. A great feeling when you are about to get married. have fun
The other party game involved giving everyone a cheap wedding ring (round piece of metal) to wear. You had to give it up if you said the magic word, in our case ''marriage.'' whoever was the last one with a ring on was the winner. the rule they forgot to explain was that people could play dirty and try to get others to say the word; if the person did, the dirty-deeder got their ring. Whoever had the most rings at the end was the winner. though i kept my ring to the end, the winner had the rings of five other people -- and was clearly the Biggest Troublemaker in a room full of Troublemakers. ns
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