Find out the customary roles played by the family and friends of the bride and groom in funding the wedding shower. It’s important to keep in mind that there is no hard and fast rule on who should foot the bill for the wedding shower or any other part of the wedding festivities.
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Because the terms are sometimes used interchangeably, we will also cover all you need to know about planning and hosting a bridal shower. Also, just in case you’re confused, we’ll compare these two celebrations.
When it comes to discussing money for the wedding, the bride and groom should keep an open line of communication. Even down to the habit of the male paying for the wedding ring, couples have the option of following the norm.
Who Traditionally Pays?
Despite the fact that many contemporary couples shun age-old rituals, the wedding shower is a throwback to the days when the bride’s family would prepare a trousseau or hope chest full of household goods to help the newlyweds get settled in their new home. Jodi RR Smith of Mannersmith, an etiquette expert, says that traditionally, friends and neighbors of the bride would throw a shower to help pay for the expenses that the bride’s family could not.
Therefore, it was never customary for a member of the bride’s family to host the shower, as this could be misconstrued as an attempt to scrounge gifts. Instead, she believes that the bride’s aunts, cousins, and friends usually throw the shower.
Couples nowadays are increasingly veering away from tradition and opting instead for ceremonies that are meaningful to them personally, their loved ones, and their community. Although AJ Williams, founder and creative director of AJ Events, has observed an increase in the number of bridal showers handled by a male best friend or close friend of the couple who is not in the wedding party, the responsibility for hosting and paying for the bridal shower still typically falls on the maid of honor and bridal party. The maid of honor traditionally pays for and organizes many aspects of the wedding, although it is increasingly customary for other bridal party members and even the bride’s mother to contribute as well.
Here’s Who Pays For Wedding Shower
It is customary for the bridal shower’s host or hosts to foot the bill. It could be a member of the couple’s immediate family, a close friend, or even a member of the wedding party.
The mother of the bride or groom may also host a wedding shower for her daughter or son and pay for it as a present. Sometimes the maid of honor or matron of honor will host and pay for both a wedding shower and a bridal shower.
Expenses for a wedding shower hosted by more than one person might be divided however the hosts see fit. The bride and groom are not expected to help with the shower’s preparations or make any contributions other than showing up on the big day.
If you’re footing the bill for the bridal shower, there’s no need to go into debt doing so. To avoid hurting anyone’s feelings by ignoring their participation, hosts can discuss their contributions with the other hosts beforehand.
When Should a Bridal Shower Be Planned?
Plan the bridal shower no more than two months before the wedding. There will be plenty of time for the couple to return or exchange any unwanted gifts they receive at the shower and to register for any additional goods they may need.
In order to ensure that your wedding shower goes off without a hitch, here is a helpful checklist:
Learn the wishes of the bride. Is she interested in a shower with guys or women? Is she in the mood for a sit-down dinner, light fare, tea time, etc.? Where does she want it delivered? The list goes on, but you get the point.
Schedule something and book a table (if needed). The date, time, and location are required in order to send out invitations. Talk to the bride about setting a date and location for the shower. If you’d like to meet somewhere other than someone’s house, you’ll need to make a reservation in advance.
You must settle on the guest list. How many guests you can reasonably expect to attend depends greatly on the location. Everyone who is invited to the bridal shower should also be invited to the wedding.
Create a financial plan. It’s important to set a budget for the wedding shower before you start shopping.
Find out whether the future Mrs. has any health difficulties or allergies. The people closest to her might include people with special needs, such as those with food allergies or mobility issues. So, before deciding on a menu and location, make sure to consult with her.
Menu planning and supplier coordination (if needed). Find out from the bride what kind of food she wants and arrange for caterers and other providers. Finding someone to make a cake or other special dessert may be all that’s needed if the shower will be held at a restaurant.
Invite guests by buying and sending invites. Send out invitations around a month before the baby shower. Let them know when and where the wedding is, as well as when and where they can register for it.
Get the party favors and decorations from the store. Prepare for the baby shower by setting out all of the decorations, tablecloths, and game prizes in advance.
A party is in order! Prepare the food and decorations for the bridal shower. Make sure the maid of honor has a pen and paper ready to keep track of the gifts so that she may send out thank you notes after the party.
What Happens at a Bridal Shower?
Depending on the size of the venue, there could be anywhere from twenty to fifty people at the bridal shower.
It’s customary for guests to dress in white for a wedding shower, but the bride is not required to do so. Whatever makes her feel most like herself.
An abundance of food is expected. It may be a complete meal or a simple snack sort of food, depending on the shower’s plans.
As an added bonus, there will most certainly be a plethora of contests with enticing prizes up for grabs.
The maid of honor will keep track of all the gifts the bride receives within a designated gift-opening period. It will be easy to send out thank you notes following the shower.
Bridal Shower Themes
Hosting a bridal shower with a theme that reflects the bride’s interests is a lot of fun. Some excellent suggestions for wedding shower themes are as follows.
- Tea Party
- Garden Party
- Food Truck
- Crepes and Croissants
- White and Gold
- Autumn Rustic
- Scavenger Hunt
- Kentucky Derby
- Burlap and Lace
- Global Cuisine
- Vintage Antique
- Love in Paris
- Slumber Party
- Ice Cream Social
- Roller Disco
- Movie Night In
- Spa Night In
- Pool Float Party
- Winter Wonderland
- Downton Abby
- Country Western
- Cooking Class
- Recipe Swap
- All-White Shower
Bridal Shower Etiquette for the Bride
The blessing is already waiting for the bride at the altar. All she has to do is respond to any queries the host or hostess may have. You are not responsible for organizing the party. Allow the host or hosts to organize the shower. Just put your feet up and chill out.
She should make an effort to speak with each and every attendee at the real shower. Thank each guest individually for attending and bringing a gift.
She should act like it’s Christmas and tear into all the presents.
The bride may like to offer a toast to the hosts and express her gratitude to the guests for their generosity as the reception winds down.
Additionally, as a token of appreciation for organizing and hosting the event, the bride typically presents the hostess with a token of appreciation. Include a handwritten message of gratitude beside a small token of appreciation, such as jewelry, perfume, a book, a spa kit, a candle, etc. Whatever the host deems appropriate.
The bride should thank everyone who attended the shower via handwritten notes a few weeks after the event. The thank-you notes could be pre-addressed before the shower for convenience. Another idea for the wedding shower is to have each guest fill out an envelope with their address and leave it for the bride.
How Much Does a Bridal Shower Cost?
For brevity’s sake, it’s dependent. The catering and the location (if not hosted at someone’s house) will be the two largest expenses at a bridal shower, just as they would be at the wedding itself. The cost will also increase proportionally with the number of expected guests. Williams suggests setting aside a specific amount of money for booze purchases. She explains that while the cost of wine is likely to remain the same no matter the sort of shower you throw, the cost of food will change depending on whether it is a seated brunch, finger foods, or a light luncheon.
Whatever your preferred dining method, chances are good that the shower you’re attending will provide some form of bubbly and a selection of light refreshments.
In addition to planning ahead for expected expenses, wedding designer and author of Passport to Joy Jamie Chang advises hosts to keep an eye out for any hidden fees that may arise. Catering or holding the shower at a restaurant means that taxes and gratuities are often overlooked when planning a budget. The host is responsible for covering all party costs, including those associated with decorations, flowers, party favors, game items and prizes, and invites. Despite Chang’s assertion that games are a must at any bridal shower, she warns that it’s easy to overlook the need to provide funds to cover both the cost of the games and the prizes awarded to the winners.
Tips to Save Money on a Bridal Shower
Learn from our experts where and how to cut costs without skimping on the wedding shower of your dreams!
Know Your Bride
You probably know the bride-to-be very well if you are arranging her shower, but it is still crucial to find out exactly what she envisions for the event. According to Chang, you may discover that many of the customary components of a bridal shower (such as the related gifts, games, and food) are unnecessary. Maybe they would rather celebrate with just a small group of close friends at a favorite restaurant or a beachside picnic rather than hosting a big party with lots of guests. According to Chang, it’s important to acquire a sense of the bride’s preferences before planning the shower, as this can have a major impact on both the event and the budget.
Don’t Overthink Expectations
Keith Willard, owner of Keith Willard Events, thinks that event planners make the mistake of focusing too much on the experience they imagine attendees will have. A bottomless Bloody Mary station or an Instagram wall might rapidly destroy your cash if you’re not careful. Most guests at a gathering think nothing more complicated than, “I’m going to be fed, and perhaps they will give us wine.” Willard advises starting there and not torturing oneself with “What if?” scenarios.
He suggests the usual suspects: eggs, bacon, or another type of protein, breakfast bread, and fruit juices for a hearty brunch. A salad topped with protein and followed by small sweets is an ideal meal. A bottle or two of wine, or at least some bubbly, will do the work. Only include the Bloody Mary bar if you have more money to spare.
Know Your Flowers
Centerpieces made of flowers are never out of place, but according to Willard, you should know the difference in price between an orchid and hydrangea before ordering one. Flower arrangements with hydrangeas, for instance, can add both beauty and volume for relatively little money. Even in broad daylight, a flickering candle will create visual warmth that may make all the difference in your design, making them a terrific way to improve the mood without breaking the bank.
Hotel and event venues typically feature 72-inch circular, which is plenty of room for decorations. Willard claims that a table with a great deal of empty space looks cheap and unappealing. By selecting an appropriate table size, you can save money on decorations and yet have a beautiful table setting. The place where you hold the shower should be just as special.
What’s The Difference Between A Bridal Shower And A Wedding Shower?
There is a tendency to use the terms “bridal shower” and “wedding shower” interchangeably. It’s important to note the key distinctions between the two, though:
The maid of honor and best man are responsible for throwing a wedding shower to honor the happy couple. Since the bridal shower is usually planned as a surprise for the bride and her wedding party, the maid of honor usually takes on this task.
As implied by the event’s moniker, only the bride’s closest female friends and family members are invited to the shower. It’s up to the groom to invite anybody he’d like to the coed wedding shower.
As a result, a bridal shower typically has fewer attendees than a wedding shower. In addition, unlike a wedding shower, where both the bride and groom are invited, the groom won’t be present at the bridal shower.
What are the activities?
Some of the games and activities at a bridal shower may be similar to those at a wedding shower, but the focus will naturally be on the bride. The hosts of the bridal shower can organize games in which the bride’s side and the groom’s side compete against one another.
What gifts are given
Since a wedding shower is intended for the bride, the presents should be thoughtful tokens of appreciation. In contrast, wedding shower presents should be appropriate for the bride and husband.
Does The Mother Of The Bride Pay For The Bridal Shower?
If she so chooses, the bride’s mother can foot the bill for the bridal shower, but more often than not, it is the bridesmaids or the maid of honor who organize and fund the event. The host, like the bridesmaids at a shower, is expected to foot the bill for this celebration.
The mother of the bride is also welcome to make a gift to the bridal shower if she so chooses. Even so, she is welcome to come along, though moms are typically not invited at wedding showers.
Bridal shower vs. bachelorette party
A bridal shower is a party thrown in honor of the bride-to-be before her wedding day. A bachelorette party, on the other hand, is planned so that the bride can celebrate her single status before she gets married.
Should Guests Pay For Bridal Shower?
It is considered rude to insist that attendees chip in money for the wedding shower. You should expect to pay for the event as the host, as you invited everyone there.
If, as maid of honor, you find that you just cannot afford to provide a proper shower for the bride, you should consult with the other bridesmaids and make sure that the event is well planned. Then, fairly divide up the work and the costs, making sure everyone is satisfied with their share.
What Do Groom’s Parents Pay For?
The bride’s name, as expected, will appear at the top of the wedding invitation. This is understandable given that the bride’s family is footing the bill for most of the ceremony and reception expenses.
However, it is customary for the groom’s family to foot the bill for the wedding rings, the engagement party, the marriage license, the officiant’s charge, the bridal bouquet, the groom’s clothes, the rehearsal dinner, the reception price, and the honeymoon.
Are bridal shower gifts just for the bride?
Wedding shower presents can be given to the groom as well as the bride. A wedding registry is a list of gifts that can be given to the happy couple. Guests are asked to contribute something useful for the newlyweds’ new home.
What’s the difference between a bridal shower and a bachelorette party?
As the name implies, a bridal shower is intended to “shower” the bride-to-be with presents. Most bridal showers are held several months before the big day. A bachelorette party, on the other hand, is thrown for the bride a few days or weeks before the wedding to celebrate the end of her single life.
What do you think? We investigated this mystery, and found that the host of the bridal shower is responsible for covering all of the costs.
The maid of honor and best man usually foot the bill for the bridal shower. Still, it’s not just the bride and groom who can contribute to the honeymoon fund.
Leave a comment below and tell us who you believe should foot the bill for the wedding party.