If you’ve been following me for a while you’re probably wondering why I’m writing this post! No, I’m not walking down the aisle any time soon, but my bestfriend will be this fall. As her Maid of Honor it’s my job to plan her bridal shower. Although, this is my very first time planning a bridal shower I want to create a nice party for her that she will love, and also one that’s budget friendly. Looking back on some things that I purchased, I see where some of the items were not always budget friendly. I actually found other items that were similar for a fraction of the price. Hence why I decided to write this post to save you from some of the mistakes I made. First let’s start with the basics! Keep reading to learn the ins/ outs on how to plan a chic budget friendly bridal shower. Check out my helpful list below.
The most important thing about planning a bridal shower is asking the bride-to-be what she likes. What kind of theme does she want? I think this step is extremely important because you can’t impose your own personal theme for a bridal shower that’s not meant for you. This day is all about making the future bride happy and celebrating her upcoming union.
Step 1: CHOOSE A THEME!
I just stated above why choosing a theme is so important but consider different kinds of themes. Does the bride want old hollywood glamour, or a floral oasis? Google bridal shower themes and see what you can come up with. My bestfriend chose a more glamourous old school approach. Her theme is Breakfast at Tiffany’s with Tiffany & CO. inspired decor.
Step 2: MAKE A MOOD BOARD
Making a mood board is just as important as choosing a theme. The theme and mood board go together like peanut butter and jelly. Creating a mood board gives you an idea of what the setting will look like, along with what decor is needed in order to pull off your theme. Once the mood board is created start googling things on amazon or local stores to check for availability/ pricing.
Step 3: CREATE A BUDGET
I probably should have put this as the step first, but since I am a creative person I like to look at inspiration first, then create a budget. If you are more about establishing a budget first then by all means make this your first step. My goal was not to exceed $1,500 dollars. As of right now I am still within my budget. Consider all of the things you will need for this gathering such as food, decor, if you want a photo-booth, and prizes for people who win the games. Decor can become expensive try to cut corners as much as you can. On some of the decor for my bestfriends bridal shower I will be doing a lot of DIY projects just to cut cost. For example I am making my own centerpieces for the tables.
Step 4: SET A DATE
Now, it’s time to set a date. Setting the date for the bridal shower is very important. Make sure that it doesn’t fall on a holiday or someone’s birthday. Most people choose a Saturday or Sunday. Weekends are always more promising. People are more than likely to come to an event that’s on a weekend as opposed to a weekday.
Step 5: MAKE THE GUEST LIST
Figure out who you want to come and celebrate the bride-to-be. Get with the future bride and ask her the number of attendees she wants to have. If you are planning a bridal shower in the middle of Covid like myself, you may have to limit the number of guest. However, don’t let that get you down. I’m a fan of small intimate gatherings. If you are looking for a range, I would invite between 20-50 people. Remember the higher the guestlist the more the budget may increase.
Step 6: LET THE INVIATIONS GO OUT
You have two options you could either do a evite through text/email or do it the old fashioned way and mail them out. I personally prefer doing an evite. It’s quick, paperless, and less of a hassle. Try to find an evite that goes with your theme or simply create one yourself to save money. Use websites like picmoney, canva, and even Microsoft word if the other websites are too difficult. I chose to use Etsy and found a downloadable Tiffany and Co. inspired evite that was customizable for $6.00 dollars. This was one of the best purchases I’ve ever made.
Step 7: PICK A VENUE/ CONTACT A CATERER
Picking a venue can be extremely tricky. It has to hold your guest and it has to be enough space for food and all of your decor. Does the venue go with your theme? Will the bride-to-be like it? How is parking? Is the location easy to navigate? Do they have access to speakers, tables, chairs, etc? These are the types of questions you must ask yourself.
In terms of food it can get really pricey. Do you want a catering company to handle everything? Are you only having appetizers? Consider what might be better for your space and your guest. Start putting a menu together. Since the theme of my besties bridal shower is Breakfast At Tiffany’s I had to think about brunch food, like french toast , eggs, grits, chicken and waffles… the works!
Step 8: START PICKING OUT DECOR
Planning a bridal shower is like planning a mini wedding for one person. Think of things that are necessary but go with your theme. For instance since my best friends theme is breakfast at Tiffany’s, I have to think of the tiffany blue colors and boxes with ribbon, diamonds, lots of silver touches, and glamourous decor. Keep in mind you can save money by doing DIY projects and get the supplies from Michaels, Hobby Lobby, the Dollar Store, and Joann’s Fabric.
**P.S. Don’t forget about your welcome sign, balloons, flowers and candle holders.
Step 9: PICK OUT THE GAMES
I totally saved money in this area too. I found free printable games on google and literally printed them out on colored paper. The only thing I ordered was a scratch off game from Esty. Try googling games like “What’s in your purse, How well do you know the bride” and etc. If you don’t have time to print free printable games don’t worry Etsy is your bestfriend.
Step 10: PLAN OUT A MUSIC PLAYLIST
What’s a bridal shower without music? Music brings life to any event. Play some of the bride-to- be’s favorite jams. Mix up the playlist with up tempo tracks, love songs, and a few slow jams. Make sure the playlist is commercial free in order to keep the party going.
Step 11: HAVE A SPOT FOR BRIDAL SHOWER GIFTS
Unlike the wedding bridal shower gifts are a must. The bride should be showered with gifts just for her before the special day. Everyone is required to bring a gift. It can be a card, gift cards, or lingerie! Don’t forget to purchase a card box so none of her cards and gift cards get lost. Send out her lingerie/clothing sizes when you send out the invitations so guest will know. If she creates a bridal shower registry attach that to the evite or invitation as well.
Step 12: HAVE A TOAST & REMARKS
Give a special toast to the bride-to-be just to let her know how special she is and to show her how much you love her. Allow some guest to give her some special remarks and congratulate her. Keep the comments short! Some people get lengthy with remarks.
Step 13: GIVE OUT FAVORS TO GUEST
This step is simple. Each person attending should get a party favor. You can do favor boxes with candy, mini wine bottles, or hand sanitizer. Keep this part simple as well and think of cheap but useful gifts.
Step 14: MAKE A TO-DO LIST
Checking things off is so much easier that way you can stay organized and on track. Make sure you review your checklist again two weeks before the bridal shower so you can make some last minute touches and have everything in place.
Step 15: REMEMBER YOU ARE NOT ALONE
If you are the Maid of Honor like me then know that you have other bridesmaids to help you through the process. Don’t try to do everything by yourself. Split the cost and work together as a team. Create things in a to-do list app so everything can be a collaborative effort and share it with the other bridesmaids. If you have to assign duties, do just that! As the maid of honor it is your job to be a team player, but also delegate duties amongst everyone. Be open to new ideas and take notes. Happy planning!!!
Those were all of my steps to help you create a fun and memorable bridal shower. Please let me know in the comments if any of these tips were helpful or if you plan on using them.