The bridal party has quite a few duties to carry out for the bride–and one of the most important is planning the bridal shower. To make sure that it’s a day she’ll always remember (for all the right reasons), be sure to avoid these eight common mistakes.
1. Forgetting to consult the bride. While you definitely don’t want to add to her planning stress, it’s still a good idea to at least ask the bride what she envisions for her shower. Does she want a casual Sunday brunch or Friday night cocktails? Are there certain people she doesn’t want on the guest list? Would she like a coed shower or ladies only? The MOH can have a brief discussion with her on what would make the bride happy.
2. Not setting a budget. Like any event, it’s crucial to set a budget for the bridal shower. And while you’re at it, figure out who is paying for what. Are the bride and groom’s moms chipping in, or is the bridal party covering the entire cost? Once you know, then sit down and have an honest conversation with your fellow bridesmaids about how much you can each afford to spend. You don’t want anyone getting into serious debt over a bridal shower.
3. Throwing together an event. While the shower is not as formal as the other wedding-related events, it’s not something you can just plan at the last minute. You need to secure a venue, decide on the menu, send out invites and come up with favors–all of which takes some time. The idea time for the shower is about two to three months before the wedding.
4. Taking on the entire to-do list. The MOH tends to have all of the planning chores placed on her shoulders–and that’s unfair. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, whether it’s mailing invites, putting together favors or ordering the cake.
5. Inviting people not invited to the wedding. It is bad etiquette to invite someone to the bridal shower who will not be included on the wedding day, which is another reason it’s a good idea to check with the bride about the guest list in advance.
6. Forgetting to include important details. The invite shouldn’t just include the time, date and place—you also need to include other pertinent info, such as the dress code (if any), if there’s a wishing well and if you’re asking guests to jot down advice or fill out recipe cards in advance, etc.
7. Putting registry info on the invite. This is another etiquette no-no. Details on where the bride is registered should be on a separate insert that will go into the envelope with the invitation (most stores will even provide them to you free of charge).
8. Not planning any activities. The shower should be more than watching the bride open her gifts–you want to make it fun for everyone there. So plan some games to keep everyone occupied during the event.
[Photo: Gal Meets Glam]