It’s about time that we finally acknowledged the unsung heroes of any wedding: the bridesmaids. As a Wedding DJ & Master of Ceremonies based in Phoenix, Arizona, I’ve seen firsthand that being a bridesmaid—not to mention the Maid of Honor—isn’t the party many think it is.
Being a bridesmaid is a lot of work, and it’s expensive. In fact, I have a theory that the reason brides choose their closest friends and family for this task is because they’re the only ones who will put up with it for them…But I digress.
One of the most important aspects of the bridesmaid’s job is to plan the bridal shower. And let’s face it, expectations are always pretty high. At this point, the bride is a pro at planning events, so she’s going to notice if there’s something wrong with this one.
So, how is a bridesmaid supposed to throw a bridal shower on a budget? How does she throw a fun and memorable bridal shower without breaking the bank? Below I’ve attempted to lend a hand by brainstorming 7 suggestions on how to keep a bridal shower meaningful without going way over budget.
Make a Signature Cocktail
Instead of buying a bunch of different types of alcohol and mixers—let alone a professional bartender—try making a signature cocktail for the event. Maybe something to commemorate the bride and groom? Either way, by creating a signature cocktail, you only need the ingredient for that drink and can make pitchers of it. If you feel you need more variety, get some wine or soda. Easy peasy.
Send an Evite
Welcome to the world of technology. Yes, sending handwritten stationery, scented with lavender and sealed with the family crest has a certain je ne sais quoi, but evites can also be classy. And better yet? They’re free. It’s the perfect way to throw a bridal shower on a budget.
Besides, a bridal shower isn’t always a formal event, and it’s definitely less formal than the actual wedding. You can easily get away with an evite. There are a lot of elegant evite designs out there, and I recommend you don’t let them go to waste!
DIY Everything (Or as Much as Possible)
You know what you’re qualified to DIY, so I won’t tell you to hand-stitch everyone matching jackets or anything. But there are a lot of easy options. While it’s more geared towards the wedding reception, I have also written about DIY Do’s and Don’ts that you may want to look into.
You could look into making your own decorations, baking a cake or cupcakes instead of the traditional bakery-made item, and even coming up with your own games. If all else fails, there are free games online that you could utilize. There is simply no end to the list of items you could DIY at a bridal shower. And it’s a great way to add a personal touch to the event!
Find a Free Venue
And by free, I mean someone’s house. Between you and the other bridesmaids, someone has got to have access to a “venue”. If you or a family member have a larger house with enough room to entertain, give it a thought. Too often the people planning the bridal shower assume they have to rent out a restaurant or some other large venue, and they spend the budget before they even begin planning the details. Don’t fall into this trap!
Make the Food yourself
You don’t need a 5-star chef to make your bridal shower lunch. You just don’t. You don’t even need to have it catered, especially if budget is an issue. If you don’t want to have to cook an entire feast yourself, use the other bridesmaids. Each one of you can bring something to the party, and by the time everyone arrives, you’ll have a 3-course meal with dessert!
Skip the Game Prizes
No one really needs those little soaps and trinkets. Besides, the fun part is the game, right? So, just play the game. It’s not necessary for everything to have a prize attached to it, and I’m sure everyone will have just as much fun without it. If you still feel the need to provide a prize, wrap up some cookies for the winners of the bridal shower games.
Keep Things in Perspective
That’s right. This event is about friendship and fun, and everyone knows it. If you plan the event and give it your all, even if something goes wrong, no one will be angry. It’s all about the time you get to spend together, not fancy prizes and food. So take a deep breath, exhale, and focus on fun.
Did you find any of these suggestions useful? Have recommendations of your own? Comment below. I love learning new ways to keep events budget-friendly!