When thinking of your responsibilities as maid-of-honor, it is sometimes easy to lose sight of the honor part of your title and only see a long list of to-do’s. And while we know that you couldn’t be happier for your best friend and start to tear up everytime you think about her walking down the aisle, maid-of-honor can be a stressful position. We are here to make your job a little easier with planning tips, ideas, and of course...BOXFOXes.
As we were writing this bridal shower guide, we began to wonder about the meaning behind these pre-wedding parties. Don’t get us wrong, we are 100% in for another party in honor of the blushing bride, but how did the tradition come about? With a quick google search, we found that bridal showers began when friends and relatives would come together and give gifts to the future bride if her family could not afford the dowry or if her father refused to pay it. While paying the groom or his family to marry you is an outdated custom (um your intelligence, winning personality, and ridiculously good looks are obviously enough), we found the tradition of friends coming together for the sake of true love and their friend’s happiness really beautiful. With that in mind, here are our tips on how to plan the most special and meaningful bridal shower for you best friend.
WWTBD (What Would the Bride Do?)
Before you start planning, sit down with the bride and talk to her about what she wants. Does she love the idea of mimosas and bloody marys at her favorite brunch spot? Or does she want a small backyard gathering at sunset? You know the bride better than anyone, hence your title as maid-of-honor, so make sure you think of her when making any and all decisions including catering, venue, drinks, and games.
Get an Early Start
Create a calendar for yourself. We recommend beginning your planning no later than 2 to 3 months before the shower. This will give you plenty of time to find a caterer, venue, and send out invitations. Your first order of business? Set a date. Bridal showers are typically anywhere between 1 to 2 months before the wedding.
Snail Mail Forever & Always
You may be sick of hearing this from us by now...but we honestly cannot stress it enough, there is just something so special about good ol’ fashioned snail mail. Knowing that someone took the time to send, seal, and deliver your invitation just makes it that much more personal. Take the time to find invitations that you love or opt to make them yourself. Physical invitations will give guests a sense of intimacy and closeness that will carry over to the actual shower.
Plan the Menu
Like all of you, we love good food, but we love instagrammable food just as much... if not more! Set up a bloody mary bar with different mixes and garnishes or a dessert table with endless pastries (we are talking cupcake war status). The bride loves Mexican? An elevated taco bar and pink lemonade margaritas could be the way to go. The menu is where you can (and should!) be creative and fun! Whatever cuisine you pick, style it to match the theme and create a beautiful spread.
Be a Little Sentimental
Unlike the bachelorette party (Psst we have a guide for those too!), the bridal shower is usually a little more sweet, sentimental, and...PG rated (*hint* the bride probably doesn’t want to open your sex toy gift in front of her grandmother). Make sure you capture all of the feelings through the decor, games, and activities.
Traditionally, a bridal shower is just the ladies, so we love the idea of having the future hubby contribute a little something without actually being there. Have the groom write a love letter for the bride that you can read outloud to the guests. BOXFOX tip: ask her hubby to talk about the first time he knew he was going to marry her and little anecdotes of how they fell in love. There are definitely going to be some tears so be prepared with tissues!
We love a good photo wall filled with pictures of the soon-to-be wedded couple throughout their relationship. This may sounds like a big to-do, but we've got you covered. For easy and quick online photo printing, check out Artifact Uprising. Once you receive your images, string several rows of them on a plain wall along with string lights. Not only will guests love to reminisce, looking at old pictures, but it will also serve as the perfect backdrop for their own pictures.
Bridal Shower Games
We are BIG fans of the newlywed game. As the host, create a list of “how well do you know me” questions and have the groom answer them about his soon-to-be wifey and himself. At the shower have the bride sit in the middle and test her knowledge. We love questions everywhere from “how does he like his eggs” to “what was your worst date as a couple.” Then ask the bride the questions and see how in sync the couple is! You are sure to get some funny stories out of it as well as some sweet ones.
You can always opt for more games if the party's just getting started, but if you are trying to keep it short and sweet, then move on to presents. Make sure you, or another bridesmaid is ready with a notebook and pen to jot down who gave the bride what. She will be glad that you did when it comes time to write thank you notes!
A Tip for the Bride
Show up to your bridal shower with a gorgeous and meaningful thank-you gift for your generous host. Bring a pamper box (which has just been REVAMPED) or your own personalized curation with a handwritten note to your bridal shower to let your maid of honor (or host) know how much you appreciate them working so hard to make your engagement and wedding so very special. They deserve an hour soaking in a bathtub of sea salts, surrounded by delicious smelling candles, enjoying each luxurious bite of a Compartes chocolate bar, so go ahead and give it to them ;)