Brides Wanna Know

Shower Power

Check out our tips to make planning a breeze from start to finish.

February 28, 2012

Photo Credit :: Kris Labang Photography

You don't need to be a professional planner to host a party that will shower the bride-to-be with love and support... check out our tips to make planning a breeze from start to finish.

STEP ONE
It's a date! :: Bridesmaids often throw the bridal shower two months before the wedding, but check with the bride first to see what days she is available. Brides' schedules are jam packed with vendor meetings and preparations, so check with the guest of honor to make sure her calendar is free before setting a date.

STEP TWO
VIP's :: Create a guest list WITH the bride. Don't assume she wants her old roommate from college at her shower... especially if she wasn't invited to the wedding. NOTE: It's never, ever OK to invite anyone to the shower that was not invited to the wedding.... ever!

February 28, 2012

Photo Credit :: Kris Labang Photography

STEP THREE
Themes :: The shower theme should reflect the bride's style and personality. For example, plan a wine sampling party for the bride who loves Napa Valley, or a dessert bar affair for the bride who loves her sweets. For creative inspiration, use etsy.com to find unique party ideas and decor.

STEP FOUR
Leader of the pack :: Traditionally, the bridal shower is hosted by the Maid of Honor and Bridesmaids, so it's a good idea to plan who is available to commit to what responsibilities and divvy up the duties. If the bride's Mom or favorite Aunt wants to give a helping hand... let them! The more, the merrier. Don't forget to jot down everyones email and phone numbers, too. This will be good for group emails and communication, and also a life saver when you want to send a personal thank you for helping with the shower planning.

February 28, 2012

Photo Credit :: Kris Labang Photography

STEP FIVE
Check, please :: The shower hosts usually cover the tab and all costs associated with the shower, but it's not frowned upon to suggest a cost per head for each guest. If you don't want to ask every guest for their share, go simple and have a fun potluck or themed BBQ where everyone can bring their favorite dish or dessert to share. If you are going to ask attendees to pay a certain amount, make sure you specify that during RSVPs. You can slip a side note into the invitation or do this by word of mouth. Printing a “cost per head” directly on the invitation is a no-no!

STEP SIX
Around Town :: With your theme and budget in mind, pick a venue and get creative! Most restaurants will happily accommodate large parties and some even have private dining rooms - perfect for bridal shower games and gift opening! Start by making a list of the bride's favorite restaurants.

STEP SEVEN
BINGO! :: Keep your guests entertained with fun games that fit the theme throughout the shower. Think outside of the box and don't be afraid to make up your own activities. If the shower is going to be held at a restaurant, be sure to communicate with the wait staff what time you want the food served and the time you plan on playing games. This will keep your food hot and served exactly when you want it. Our tip? Instead of giving away prizes for the games, give away the centerpieces! 

February 28, 2012

Photo Credit :: Kris Labang Photography

STEP EIGHT
Early birds :: Be sure to be at the venue at least an hour before guests arrive to set up. Getting there early will allow you to decorate the tables, double check on parking validation, make sure you have the right amount of seats, notify the waitress who's paying and any other important details.

STEP NINE
Quite Gifted :: In Hawaii, people like to give gifts at the bridal shower so anticipate a mountain of presents and figure out where guests will put them and if the bride will have enough time to open them (most venues have a two hour limit). We suggest leaving about 45 minutes for gift-opening. And remember to have someone (read: Bridesmaid!) make a list of who gave what, one person (read: Bridesmaid!) escorting the gifts and one person (read: Bridesmaid!) collecting trash. Don't forget to keep the ribbon so you can make a paper bouquet for her wedding rehearsal!

February 28, 2012

Photo Credit :: Kris Labang Photography

STEP TEN
Give Thanks! :: Before everyone leaves, close the festivities by thanking everyone who had a helping hand in putting the bridal shower together. Make sure there's enough time for the bride to say a few words and thank all the guests and hard working gals for the shower help, too. 

A Few Tips

1. The shower should never upstage the reception so if the bride is keeping it simple, you should too!
2. Introduce people and explain how the bride knows everyone. Build friendly connections, it leads to conversation!
3. Strategically place talkative guests next to the quiet ones to keep the energy level up.
4. It's best to serve dessert during gift opening to give guests something to do while ooh-ing and aah-ing over the presents.

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1050 Ala Moana Blvd.
Honolulu, HI 96814

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