Bridal Showers Basics

Folklore says the bridal shower originated when a poor Dutch maiden fell in love with an impoverished miller. Her friends showered her with gifts to replace the missing dowry.

Today bridal showers are thrown for brides to be in many cultures. It is a party that will traditionally outfit the home. Dishes, towels and kitchen appliances are often-suggested gifts, though today circumstances are different for each individual couple. That is where the bridal registry comes in handy. If the couple has a registry it is best to buy something from that instead of trying to pick out a gift on your own.

The bridal shower is usually hosted by the maid of honor, another bridesmaid or a combination of any or all of the female bridal party. Any female that is invited to the wedding should be invited to the bridal shower unless, of course, they live far away or you are throwing a type of shower for certain people only, like a workplace party. Invitations should be sent out a couple weeks before the shower and the bridal shower should be at least two weeks before the wedding.

Depending on the bride-to-be's interests, hobbies and personal taste a theme shower might be fun. You could have casino night (play casino games), a book banquet (everyone brings a book for the bride to be), a garden party (everyone brings a plant, seeds or gardening supplies) or any other theme the bride may enjoy. Another option is throwing a co-ed party. More and more couples want to skip tradition and enjoy all the fun pre-wedding planning, parties and showers together. Some fun ideas for co-ed bridal showers are a back yard barbeque, pool party, ski weekend, luau or a picnic.

Plan a menu ahead of time depending on the type of party you are having. Finger foods are usually best so the guests can walk around and mingle. If you are having a theme party, coordinate food with the theme. For example, if you are having a luau you could have a fruit tray and serve fancy frozen drinks or fruity smoothies.

Plan to have several games and prizes available for the winner. When the bride opens her gifts, make sure someone records all the gifts and who they are from so she can send thank-you notes to everyone.

The bridal shower is a party to make the bride feel special and prepare her for the wedding. Make sure she doesn't have to do any cleanup. Let her enjoy the day. She'll surely thank you for it.

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