Bridal shower etiquette... all you want and need to know right here in one place! When planning a bridal shower, especially for the first time, so many questions come up. Based on our combined experience, we are here to help! We get questions weekly from our visitors and alot of them are the same, so we added an overview of what you need to know as you plan your wedding shower celebration! Take a look at the most frequent questions, and contact us if you have more!
Who plans the bridal shower? It is usually one of 3 people. The mother or mother-in-law of the bride or the Maid of Honor and the bridesmaids. They are in the best position to plan the celebration as they usually know the bride best. They know who will be invited to the wedding and what kind of a shower the bride would love! Usually the shower is planned by all three! Just be sure someone is the leader or too many cooks in the kitchen causes issues. Brides usually only have one traditional shower, unless they have family in another city who plan a second one. Always make sure lines of communication are good so everyone knows the date of the shower and there are no conflicts.
Who gets invited to the bridal shower? Friends, family, co-workers who will be invited to the wedding! The #1 Bridal shower etiquette rule is that you do not invite people that are not on the wedding guest list. The only exception to this is if you are planning a shower at work. Office showers are usually more casual and many times co-workers will join together to get a single large gift. You do not have to invite co-workers to the wedding even if they plan a work shower, unless they are close friends. The groom-to-be does not get invited to the shower, unless it is a "Couples Shower" also known as a "Jack and Jill" shower, like we did for our daughter using a Kentucky Derby theme! Common practice these days is that he may come at the end of the shower and usually bearing flowers! Young children do not come to the shower. It is no fun for the toddlers to be expected to sit quietly during the festivities and it is even a safety issue to have children running around while food and hot coffee is being served. Our bride loves her twin nephews and baby niece so our son brought them at the end of the shower so that it worked out beautifully.
When do the invitations go out? Bridal shower etiquette is that invitations should go out 6 weeks prior to the date of the bridal shower. RSVP responses should be received 2 weeks prior to the celebration. Invitations can be ordered online, purchased in a store or made by you! Wedding shower etiquette is that you do not email bridal shower invitations. They should go out via regular postal mail but email RSVP in addition to a phone number is good bridal shower etiquette.
Should we assign seats if the bridal shower is held at a venue? We are big proponents of assigning seats for our guests. It is more comfortable for them to arrive and have a table to sit at. This also precludes seating issues when groups of guests arrive just before the start and have to find a table with an empty chair, sitting with no one they know. So while there is no specific bridal shower etiquette, we vote Yes! have a seating plan.
Do we need to plan Bridal Shower games? This is a personal preference. It is up to those planning the shower. A couple of options in lieu of the toilet paper wrap may be the Wine Basket poem activity or the Couples Advice book that goes around the room with guests jotting down some advice for the new bride!
What else does we need to plan for? Usually there are decorations of some kind, like bridal shower centerpieces on the tables. Typically you need to also plan for a decorated sheetcake. We love mini-desserts and did a beautiful bridal shower dessert display with mini cupcakes and cake pops. They were so pretty they also served as our decorations! Bridal shower favors again are a preference. We love bridal shower favors to thank the guests for coming. You can see some of our bridal shower favor ideas here!
Gifts Brides are usually registered at a few places. Bridal shower etiquette allows you to choose a gift from the registry or buy them a gift of your choice. Group gifts from multiple friends are also perfectly acceptable and welcomed. Gift cards to one of the stores they are registered at are also fine. You can mail the gift direct to the address on the registry if you are not attending the shower, but you should bring the gift to the shower if you are going and it should be wrapped, unless otherwise stated. The bridesmaids usually save the bows to create a ribbon bouquet or hat that the bride brings to the rehearsal.
Thank you notes - Thank you notes should be written promptly, not emailed and go out in advance of the wedding. Bridal shower etiquette says you do NOT write a thank you note for both the wedding gift and the shower gift at the same time. A great gift idea from the hosts of the bridal shower is personalized Thank you notes, along with pre-printed return address labels and address labels for all the guests. Usually one bridesmaid is responsible for keeping a list during the gift opening of the gift description and the name of the gift giver. With that list and this awesome gift, thank you notes are quick and easy. The bride is usually very busy from the shower through the wedding and this thoughtful gift bridal shower gift idea is always greatly loved by the bride-to be!
Bridal shower etiquette is step one.. now visit our Creative Bridal Shower section to get ideas for all thing bridal shower: from invitations, homemade bridal shower favors, easy and inexpensive wedding shower decorations and desserts. It is a treasure chest of ideas from all our own and our visitors showers! We welcome submissions of your own ideas and would love to feature them. Just LIKE us on Facebook and message us. We will review and then post for all to see!
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