Let’s be real: The archetype of a bridal shower is not super exciting. No matter how much you love someone, watching them open up gifts for hours at a time just isn’t all that fun. At times, it can even be a bit awkward—especially when duplicate gifts start getting unboxed. And what are you supposed to do when the happy (and gracious) couple asks that you donate to their favorite charity in lieu of bringing presents?!
The good news is, bridal showers don’t have to be this way. There can be so much more to these events beyond opening gifts! With the right ambiance, activities, food and drinks, bridal showers can actually align with the bride’s personal interests and provide a unique opportunity for family members and friends to not only get to know more about the couple getting hitched, but also to get to know one another ahead of the main event. That way, the wedding can be more of a reunion than a meet-and-greet.
If you're skeptical, that's okay. In fact, it's expected! To help anyone looking for more unique, personalized experience, here are seven bridal shower ideas that aren’t run-of-the-mill — or super done.
1. Decorate With Succulents
Flowers are beautiful, of course, but they don't last as long as you might like. Mix things up by using a collection of tiny succulents as table centerpieces instead of flowers. Not only will they add to the decor, but guest can choose their favorite and take it home!
2. Choose Lawn Games Over Clichés
Typical bridal shower games can feel forced, and honestly, sometimes they inspire more nervous giggles than real guffaws. Keep things casual and offer a mix of lawn games like cornhole, bocci ball, and even a giant Jenga set. Guests will be able to mingle naturally, and the bride will get a break from the spotlight.
3. Offer A Cupcake Decorating Station
For a fun and interactive (not to mention delicious!) spin on dessert, a cupcake decorating station is a literal treat. Sure to be a sweet success, guests can pick between a variety of different toppings and frostings, and choose to be as crafty or vanilla as they desire. Stock up on several cupcake decorating kits and add some of the bride's favorite candy options as toppings, and let your guests go to town!
4. Host A #Hashtag Competition
To me, most bridal shower games feel like tiny interrogations about how well someone knows their future life partner. Shouldn't they know these things before they've actually committed to each other? Instead, host a wedding hashtag contest between guests. Not only will it infuse some healthy competition into the event, but it will be super helpful for the bride in determining the best way to share the big day on social media!
5. Invite Everyone
Who says bridal showers needed to be all-women events, anyway? To mix things up, consider expanding the guest list. You know what they say: The more the merrier!
6. Concoct Signature Drinks
It's a special occasion, and that calls for champagne...and more! Concoct a signature drink or two for the occasion — think, the How They Met Mimosa — and display it in a chic mason jar pitcher. You can add an interactive element by asking guests to guess the exact ingredients. Whoever gets it right takes home a prize!
7. Do Something Totally Different
When it comes to your bridal shower, who says you need to go the traditional route? Ditch the typical catering hall, and opt for something more personalized, and more you. Maybe your bridal shower involves an aerial yoga flow followed by brunch and mimosas or an interactive pizza-making class with a professional chef. The options are endless!