Bridal showers traditionally have a female-only guests list, but many of today's brides are tossing aside that outdated etiquette and hosting a co-ed event instead. The decision to mix sexes allows a bride to share the shower with her husband as well as female and male relatives and close friends. Like a traditional bridal shower, co-ed wedding showers still incorporate a meal and gift exchange, but they're more reminiscent of a friendly get-together or dinner party. The key to throwing a successful gender-neutral (or Jack and Jill) shower is choosing a theme that everyone will enjoy. Here are seven types of co-ed wedding showers, all of which are guaranteed to please everyone on your guest list.
Stock the Bar
At most showers, guests give the bride a home-related gift. But a co-ed shower creates the perfect opportunity to break the mold and host a "stock the bar" party instead. At these events, guests are asked to bring booze and barware, so the bride and groom can start their married life with a completely stocked bar. Of course, all stock-the-bar showers should have plenty of cocktails to go around.
After paying for travel, lodging, and activities, most newlywed couples return from their honeymoon with significantly less money in their bank account. If your house is already stocked with the necessities for daily life, ask your to throw you a "bon voyage shower" instead! Each guest will bring an item related to your honeymoon, whether it's sunglasses, luggage tags, travel guides, suitcases, or train tickets. Guests can also chip in for your airfare or honeymoon-related activities.
Moving into your first shared house after saying "I do?" Ease the financial burden of merging homes with a "honey-do shower," where guests to bring items necessary for maintaining a new house. Tools for home improvement, cookware, and cleaning products are all usually fair game in terms of gifts.
If the bride and groom are particularly outdoorsy, or if they simply like entertaining in the backyard, a lawn- and garden-centric shower is a good choice. The bride and groom will receive plenty of outdoor tools and equipment, as well as items that elevate backyard entertaining. Then, after the gift exchange, all shower guests can participate in a backyard event, such as a barbecue or bonfire.
Around the Clock
"Around the clock" showers work especially well for co-ed parties. Here's how they work: Each guest is assigned an hour of the day, be it 9 A.M. or midnight. The guest then chooses a gift that fits into the specific time frame. For example, a guest assigned to an early morning hour can bring a coffee maker or pancake griddle. Guests assigned to an evening time slot, on the other hand, may bring bed sheets or pajamas. In the event that the guest is closer to either the bride or groom, they have the flexibility to choose a gift that's more specific to either him or her.
Month of the Year
Much like an around the clock shower, guests at a "month of the year" party will bring a gift related to their assigned month. Beach towels and barbecue accessories work for June, while blankets and snow shovels are perfect for December.
Around the House
An "around the house" shower can work in one of two ways. All guests might be asked to focused their gifts on one room of the house, like the kitchen or bedroom, or each guest may be assigned to bring a gift for a particular room, including the kitchen, dining room, home office, bathroom, bedroom, living room, or basement.