The goal: To throw a lovely, non-lame bridal shower on a budget, that could accommodate wedding guests ranging in age from 30-70+, and for a bride who doesn’t particularly care for bridal showers.
The location: A lot of bridal showers take place at restaurants and wineries and spas, and a whole bunch of other fancy (and costly) locations. We went with the classiest of classy locations: our parents’ house. They gave us a great deal on the price, and the seating was a lot more comfortable.
Step 1: Find a theme.
We brainstormed by asking the question: what does Holli like? We had a range of ideas, from traveling to running, to a classic tea party, but ultimately we settled on what Holli loves more than anything (except maybe her fiance): ice cream.
Step 2: Decorations
One word: bunting. Bunting is not expensive, but it makes a big impact. We bought multiple strands of bunting in pastel colors and strung them all over the dining room. To supplement the store-bought bunting, I crocheted ice cream bunting as well to go with our theme. The pattern is here. I crocheted only pastel-colored flavors. In real life, I would never, ever choose lemon sorbet over chocolate, but chocolate bunting just wasn’t as festive. A bouquet of spring tulips topped off the decorations.
Step 3: Food
Obviously, with a theme of ice cream, we already knew what our main course was going to be. But we also wanted to offer something that wasn’t sweet. We started the party with chicken salad and cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches, along with a veggie tray. The guests munched on those and mingled while we waited for all the guests to arrive. After we had taken care of the other shower business (see Step 4), we were ready for the main event: The Sundae bar. Chocolate and vanilla ice cream, and every topping you could possibly imagine: chocolate, caramel, and raspberry sauces, sprinkles (in every pastel color!), strawberries, pineapple, brownies, cookies (both homemade), whipped cream, and of course, cherries on top.
Step 4: Entertainment
One of the reasons we don’t particularly care for bridal showers are the shower games. To each his own, but since this shower was for Holli, we went back to the question: what does Holli like? And Holli likes to craft. So instead of games, we offered a craft project. We offered the bride advice and well-wishes in the form of book poetry. Using about-to-be-discarded library books, everyone cut words and phrases out of the text, then glue-sticked them onto recipe cards. Afterwards, Holli read them out loud, before opening the presents.
The shower was, by all account, not lame.