The History of the Bridal Shower
In modern times we are past the dowry of marriage stage however many believe that is exactly where this tradition stems from. Way back when... a father would present his daughter when she had achieved the decent marrying age, he often would make it know that upon the marriage completion that he would pay a certain dowry. Some gave livestock, money, land, furniture, and even positions in family businesses where enough to reel in some decent suitors. However if a father was unable to fund such a dowry the mother of the daughter would invite women together to help build a dowry to entice the right man for their daughters… and thus the Bridal Shower tradition was born!
So where does the Shower portion of the title come from you might be asking, thank the Victorians because gifts came wrapped in fancy paper and were delivered to the Bride-to-Be in the gift givers best parasol. Why a parasol you are also asking, well it was considered the start of the bridal trousseau that the new wife would travel abroad on her honeymoon with. So why not shower your best friend with gifts to aid her in this new direction that her heart is taking her!
Our goal at Tin Sparrow Events is to make sure that you are able to celebrate this time with your best friend without any worry. Our help allows you to play the hostess without worrying about every little detail and it allows you to treasure each smiling moment. To make sure that you don’t forget a part of the planning we have put together a little list of each important detail to factor into your planning!
The Planning – Planning a party for a small group of 4 all the way to 50 requires help and remember this is for your best friend so this is kind of a big deal. It is important to make sure that you have assistance, whether it is another bridesmaid, a family member or even dare I say a planner! Sometimes life gets busy with work, kids, or your own relationship so there is nothing wrong with delegating roles and passing out requests for help.
The Guest List – Begin gathering the names and addresses/emails of everyone the Bride-to-Be wants to invite. This guest list will help you to decide or figure out the next major steps that planning a Bridal Shower includes, like…
Location/Time – Etiquette states that the Bridal Shower is to be held no earlier than 2 months prior to the wedding and no later than 2 weeks before the wedding. Now you might be asking yourself why and how did someone come up with these dates, well once you hear the answer to this question you will feel just silly for asking it… The Bride and Groom are looking forward to receiving wedding gifts to tare thru after their wedding right? Well if they stack gift receiving too closely together they will miss out on having items that they registered for. Early afternoon, late afternoon, over cocktails? Brunch, lunch, dinner party? The question of what time would be best goes on and on… Think about the guest of honor and what suits her best. At a restaurant, friend home, mother of the brides home? Even the list of possible locations to host the gather is endless, but if you just think of your friend and what location would lend itself providing a more relaxed and intimate atmosphere then you have found your spot.
Theme – Of course, your shower doesn’t have to have a theme! Simply put just saying Bridal Shower invokes the theme but it is really nice to have a little back up “detail” theme to set the tone thru invitations, décor and even to set the tone of gifts that the guests should bring to shower the Bride-to-Be with! When you meet with Tin Sparrow Events for your first Free Initial Planning Consultation we will provide you with a list of Themes for you to choose from which will aid you in all of the later details that planning a Bridal Shower entail… seriously the options are mind blowingly endless!!
Invitations – There are so many different routes that can be taken… Paperless invites, mailed invites, even text message invites are becoming a rising trend. But the true to tradition paper invitation still seems to be the favorite and we recommend using the same tone and even company that the Bride-to-Be has selected to order her Save the Date and Invitations thru. Think adorable, theme related and something that just sings with the Bride’s personality and the mood that you are wanting to put across to you soon to be guests.
Décor – This is where a theme comes in handy. If you have a specific feeling and/or vibe you are trying to create, decorate accordingly. Even if you don’t have a theme, pick a color scheme that matches your invitations to bring it all together. Keep in mind there are a few areas you will be decorating which includes: serving buffet, bar area, gift table, activities area, table for favors. A few of the other décor related things to keep in mind including: table centerpieces, string lights, hanging decorations, banners, dishware, bar ware, food markers.
Food/Drinks – Let’s talk food for your shower… Say you are planning on hosting a brunch; the menu doesn’t have to be complicated but can be straightforward! Vegetable Quiché, finger friendly French toast that is dip able with maple syrup, fruit shish kabobs, Cronuts or a Pastry Bar, Mimosas, and of course Coffee. It is extremely easy to plan your menu according to the theme of your party and to the time of day that you have planned to hold your merriment.
Activities –It is very often that Bridal Shower Activities are centered around the theme of the party… Take for instance that you are having a kitchen party where you have requested that each of the guest bring the bride to be a gift of their favorite and most used kitchen gadget and a well-loved recipe along with it… why not have a local chief come in and teach all of the guests how to cook something new and the new food experience becomes your food option for your meal. Why not make your party a bit more modern by setting up a Stop & Go for guests to pose in-front of or even set-up a photo booth with tons of fun items to dress up in… after a few Mimosas you will be surprised just how much fun this little addition to the party can be!
Favors – It isn’t a requirement but it is nice to send your guest off with something fun to remember the day. If you select to go with the photo booth idea there you are each guest could walk away with a copy of the photos that they were involved in… or possibly send your guests with wooden spoons with a recipe card attached to it which includes your personal favorite recipe tied to it. Really the possibilities are endless.
I realize that that was a lot of steps and options that you will have to be making decisions regarding but that is where Tin Sparrow Events comes in! We are here to help you along with these selection, to offer ideas that are budget conscious and are a perfect Bride-to-be personality match. You are meant to be creating a party to highlight this amazing time in your best friends life, you are trying to create a fun and friendly environment for your guests all while having fun yourself at the party. In the end we are here to make sure that this is what happens and to provide you and your guests with a memorable event!