15 Bridal Shower Alternatives That Guarantee a Good Time
We love a good bridal shower brunch, but let's face it: Not every bride is into sipping mimosas while publicly opening gifts—and that's perfectly okay. If traditional bridal showers, complete with a gift registry and games, just isn't your thing, it's important to know that you have options. Now more than ever, brides are opting for nontraditional bridal showers—some are even going coed and throwing a casual party with their fiancé at home. From backyard BBQs and a bridal "sprinkle" to a day at the spa or a group cooking class, there are so many ways to make your bridal shower specific to your personality, as opposed to throwing the same event that many-a-bride has had.
As far as alternative bridal shower ideas go, there are no rules as far as what's right or wrong. You've already decided to toss tradition aside just by forgoing a conventional party—why not see that contemporary approach through? Dig deep and think about what activities you and friends genuinely enjoy. Once you've made up your mind, think about how you can incorporate that experience into an overarching party theme.
Take this yoga-inspired shower, for example. It's an activity that allows each of your guests to go at their own pace, which is perfectly unintimidating. Get your girls excited for your practice with personalized yoga mats, candles, singing bowls, or essential oils. Specialty teas and gourmet salads after your class are ways of dining that feels cohesive with your day. No matter what details you sign off on, one thing is for certain: After your group class, you'll have forgotten about the stresses of planning a wedding altogether and will actually enjoy the personal time with friends.
If you're not quite sold on a yoga-themed shower, don't stress. Go ahead and explore even more bridal shower alternatives like this—one will surely resonate with your unique personality.
If you are all about self-care and getting glam, ask a makeup artist to give a master class for you and your closest girlfriends. There's another benefit to this pre-wedding party style: Come your big-day, everyone will be prepared to do their own makeup.
Take a Gardening Class
For the nature-loving bride-to-be with a major green thumb, a gardening party is an unexpected, yet appropriate alternative. Create a DIY station so guests can decorate pots—they will later double as favors. Once they're completed, have attendees pick from a selection of seasonal seeds and get to gardening! The finished product will serve as a beautiful reminder of the shower—especially when their arrangement sprouts weeks later.
If you plan on celebrating your bridal shower during the summer months, take the time to soak in the vitamin D. Don't have a pool at home? If you're urban-bound, you can likely purchase day passes at rooftop hotel pools for a day of lounging, cocktail drinking, and of course, swimming!
For the artistic bride who played a major role in designing her own stationery suite, a calligraphy class is a fun way to get her creative juices flowing. At the end of the evening, put together gift bags filled with calligraphy pens and beautiful notepads, so your friends can continue practicing their new skill.
If you're a self-proclaimed wine connoisseur, a wine tasting bridal shower might be the best way to celebrate your upcoming nuptials. While you and your friends brush up on your knowledge of vino and mingle—while enjoying delicious food pairings—you'll be thankful you opted out of a traditional celebration.
Another artsy alternative to a classic bridal shower? Gather your girls for an evening at a paint bar. Perfect for beginners, paint bars typically have an instructor who goes around to see if anyone needs guidance, or more importantly, a cocktail refill. If you want to wing it and go abstract, that's okay, too. A wine-filled afternoon will be a therapeutic time to enjoy one another's company, however you decide to interpret this party idea.
Whether you're making pizza or assembling a Momofuku funfetti cake, everyone can enjoy a fun cooking class. You can make it a coed get-together or just invite your bridal party. If you really want to get down with the DIY, have a cooking class in your own home. Set up a buffet of ingredients and go to town.
Looking for another summer soirée idea? Host a beach-inspired picnic featuring a delicious seafood spread. Create a comfortable environment with a low-to-the-ground table surrounded by floor pillows. String fairy lights and shovel out a large fire pit for added ambiance. (We suggest hosting an evening celebration to allow for the temperatures to cool off and the stars to come out.)
Floral Arrangement Class
Here's a fun party idea that plays right into your actual wedding day. Different from a gardening party, a floral arrangement class will teach you how to create the perfect centerpiece or bouquet. Ask your teacher to walk you through making your own flower crowns, so you all have fun accessories to wear as you learn.
Opt for an adventurous getaway that doesn't involve roughing it. Glamping is the best way to enjoy the serenity of nature with all the modern amenities you need. Your friends will love cozying up around a campfire for some authentic bonding time that includes plenty of wine and s'mores.
Most foodies agree that nothing compares to the excellence of a high-end cheese. Treat your loved ones to a cheese tasting experience that'll push them to explore new flavors and pairing combinations they never knew existed. Bonus points: Wine still comes with the territory.
Create custom tanks for your crew and invite them all to a private barre class. Just because you're exercising doesn't mean you aren't also celebrating, too. You and your guests will be having so much fun that you'll forget your working out—plus, it will be nice to shake out the stress of wedding planning.
Celebrate your wedding in the best way you know how—with sweets! Order personalized aprons embroidered with each one of your guests' names and place them at individual decorating stations (they work as place cards!). For a fun twist, host a bake-off (or decorate-off, if you will) to see who can create the most wedding-worthy confection.
A trip to a local farm can offer plenty of good-natured fun, especially if you're planning a fall celebration. Shop for fresh produce, like apples and pumpkins, take a hay ride around the property, and just enjoy the fresh air. Once you're done, retire to a more intimate setting, like the farm's in-house creamery or cider cellar for sweet treats and sips.