Planning a bridal shower can be a big event for the bride-to-be.
It is the job of the hostess to make sure that the bride has a pleasant time and that they guests are taken care of.
Wedding etiquette can be confusing and some of that applies to the bridal shower, as well.
If you are responsible for planning a bridal shower or are invited to a shower and are not sure of proper gift etiquette, there are a few things you should know, when it comes to dealing with gifts.
Here are few things you should know, when dealing with bridal shower gifts:
Bridal showers are traditionally given to “shower” a bride-to-be with gifts for her new married life. In the past, it was tradition to give gifts that would help a woman with her new home. Now, things are changing. Bridal showers are given to include the men and gifts are becoming less traditional.
Some hostess may choose to set a theme and ask guests to bring a gift that relates to the theme. Some brides may not need a lot of items for their home and ask that gifts not be given.
If you are hosting a bridal shower, it is always a good idea to seek the opinion of your bride before sending out invitations.
Wedding gifts and bridal shower gifts are not the same thing. Wedding gifts are given at the wedding and shower gifts are given at the shower. Generally, wedding guests who do not attend the bridal shower will bring a gift to the wedding.
Guests who do attend the bridal shower are not expected to bring a gift to the wedding. In addition, it is not proper wedding etiquette to ask for or mention gifts in the invitation to the wedding.
It is improper to put the bride and groom’s registry location on the wedding invitation, but it is proper to include that information on the shower invitation.
When attending a bridal shower, it is important to know that gifts can be elaborate or casual. This might depend on the type of shower that is being given. As a host, you will set the tone of the shower and the wishes of the bride and groom will be included on the invitation.
If the bride and groom need many items for a new home, then guests may choose to buy gifts off the couple’s registry list. A registry list is a list of items that are pre-selected by the bride and groom. Generally, large department stores and retail stores have registry options.
The list will give guests a detailed list of what they couple needs and the price. When the item is purchased, it will be taken off the list.
It is not necessary for a guest to purchase off the registry list to attend a shower. Guest may choose to give gift cards, money, or other items that they know will be appreciated by the bride and groom.
In addition, it is perfectly acceptable for bridal shower guests to chip in to purchase a larger and more expensive item, such as a washer or dryer or even a television. Large gift purchases are a perfect way for guests to give the amount they feel is appropriate while still buying the couple a gift that is needed.
If you are a hostess and chose to buy a large item, include that information on the invitation. You might want to give the couple a gift card, so they can pick out the item. If this is the case, have each person send you the money before the shower and sign a card at the shower. You might find that you are low on the donations.
If this happens you can call those you feel might be willing to donate more money, such as the bride’s relatives. If you have more money than you need to for the item, use the leftover money to purchase items that relate to the big-ticket item.
When you are the hostess, it will also be your job to make sure the gifts are opened at the appropriate time during the shower. Usually this is done as the last activity. Also, appoint someone to write down each guest and the gift they give the bride, while she is opening the presents.
Make a copy for her, so she can make her thank you cards. You might even consider giving her a list of all of the addresses, so she will not be pressed for time right before the wedding.