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Looking for that perfect bridal shower gift? Every bride needs a commonsense guide to the etiquette that really matters.  Let Wedding Etiquette Hell:  A Bride's Bible for Avoiding Everlasting Damnation by Jeanne Hamilton be your guide.

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Bridal Showers

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A close friend of mine was getting married to a woman I did not know well. "Bob" told me that all of her friends lived "out of town" and she had no one to do bridal things with. I said I'd pal around with her, anxious to become friends with my friend's intended. After a couple of weeks, "Anna" told me that no one was throwing her a bridal shower since the maid of honor would be flying in only a day before the wedding. I offered to host a shower for her, and I paid for the decorations, cake, and punch myself on my minimum wage salary. I even made sure to get samples of her wedding colors so that the decorations would match. She handed over her address book and I mailed invitations to about 20 people, all of whom lived in our city!

Now, my friend was in the Army and would be taking Anna back to South Korea with him even though she did not speak a word of Korean. I found a set of audio tapes "Korean for beginners", costing $75. In the invitations, I mentioned this gift and asked that each person send me $5...just $5.. because she already had an apartment and didn't need any of the usual wedding stuff. Sixteen of the guests wrote back saying they could not come to the shower, and would not be sending their $5 and would I please put their name on the card anyway? The nerve! 4 guests showed up for the shower, only two of them pitched in $5, but all 4 signed the card. Keep reading.

When the guest of honor arrived, everyone was gracious enough, except about the decorations. A couple of people approached me asking why I had chosen such intense shades of purple and fuchsia. I said that those colors were all the rage now, not wanting to embarrass Anna with her poor taste. I didn't like the garish colors either, but I was following tradition. Then Anna said something to me about the decorations and I reminded her that I used the exact color swatches she had given me and I showed her how closely the swatches matched the cake icing and other decorations. She didn't say anything more, though she looked like it was still my fault somehow. Did I mention that none of the guests brought gifts to the bridal shower? The only present she had was the set of Korean language tapes that almost no one helped pay for. Anna opened it and looked perplexed, "What's this for?" Everyone stared at me. "Because you're going to Korea with Bob, and he said you were going to live off-base. And you don't speak Korean." She looked at me for a few seconds and said, "I don't have to learn a foreign language, there are people who speak English there." Keep reading, there's more.

I was understandably annoyed about the whole bridal shower fiasco, and it was two days before the wedding. Anna invited me to the full dress rehearsal and asked me to stay afterward for the rehearsal dinner. I accepted of course, and I even brought my camera to take pictures of the rehearsal. Everything went smoothly, and it was time for dinner. Which was served in the church kitchen. Which consisted of those really cheap hot dogs that turn slightly green when they are done, and not even any catsup. Which was followed up by A BRIDAL SHOWER!!!! She must have gotten 50 presents, since most of the church congregation was there. All of her friends that couldn't make it to the bridal shower I held were there for the shower at the church. No cake, no decorations, no punch. Just green hot dogs and a pile of presents. Sometime after their wedding, I casually mentioned that I was surprised she had two bridal showers and she said that a few days after I offered to host a shower, the minister had offered the church hall for a bridal shower and she accepted both invitations so as to not insult me and because she knew my apartment was too small for everyone she really wanted to invite!

Shower 0116-03

One thing I find amusing about many of the "shower" stories is that they begin with "we gave my sister-in-law a shower" or "we gave my cousin a shower". These writers are obviously not aware that RELATIVES ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO GIVE SHOWERS. They were in breach of etiquette THEMSELVES. Read Miss Manners and Emily Post, if they are related to you, you cannot give a shower. Not a baby shower. Not a wedding shower. Anyway, here's mine....

I wanted to give a shower for a friend. So did another friend, so we decided to collaborate. She said she would get the party room at her apartment complex so we could accommodate the large numbers of guests. This ended up being the only thing she did. She didn't have time to order the cake and asked if I would do it. I said okay. I ordered a cake large enough for all 75 guests. It was, I thought, very tasteful, white with little silver wedding bells on it. She also called and said she'd bought the invitations, but didn't have time to address them. My husband and I had to do it, and while she provided the invites, we had to pay the postage. I arrived two hours early to start decorating the room, and found twenty OTHER uninvited guests there...teenaged girls from her soccer group! They had been "drafted" to help decorate and invited to stay for the party afterwards...even though they didn't know the bride or groom and hadn' t brought gifts. These girls took it upon themselves to move the furnishings around, add more ginger ale to the punch, whatever they felt like. I had to go to the store for more cups and plates (oh, yeah, my co-hostess didn't get those, either) and I came back to find the co-hostess and one of the teens "embroidering" the cake! They thought it was "too plain" and took it upon themselves to mix up some loud pink frosting and add ugly lumpy flowers to it. The shower itself went off fairly well, but my co-hostess made it look as if the whole thing wouldn't have happened without her and her "helpers." In fact she did NOTHING. The girls quickly began to disappear once the food was gone (and they ate like little pigs) and only four of them were there to help clean up afterwards. Yuck.   Bshower 0128-03

My friend "J" is a rather impulsive person, but he is a very loyal friend, so I accept his often ill-considered life decisions as just part of him, and I have never given him advice so strong as to strain our friendship, but his choice of wife really has tested my ability to bite my tongue.

J met "S" at an out-of-town wedding. She was living in the Northeast USA, and he and I live in the Southwest USA. He dated her long-distance by flying up for weekends for about 8 months, and then convinced her to move down to the Southwest and live with him. About a month later he proposed. They were living in a small 1-bedroom apartment but adopted a 75 pound dog, which cried all day when they were gone. A couple of months after the engagement, they moved into a house, and so the Sunday of the weekend they moved in I invited them over to my little 1-bedroom apartment for a home-cooked meal. They gladly accepted.

Remember, at this time, I really did not know the girl at all. She walked into my apartment, looked around, and said, "Are you bi(sexual)? I know you’re not gay, but are you bi? Because this place is too well decorated for a straight man." I am very heterosexual, and not even bi-curious, but I just laughed this off, even though I was taken aback. This was just one of many brazen and inappropriate comments she has made, without really knowing me well enough to joke like that.

J’s mother and my mother happen to be very good friends, and so my mother offered to have a wedding shower for J and S, even though she has only briefly met S. My mother decided to make it a couple’s bar items shower, and made the theme be that of the country J and S were planning to visit on their honeymoon. One Friday night J called me and asked me what I was doing Friday night. I said I was just staying in to watch some videos because I had come down with the flu. About 9 that night, J and S showed up at my door, with their 75 pound dog, who is very sweet, but just too big for a small apartment that is apparently so stylishly appointed that it looks like a gay man lives there. While J was in the bathroom, S said to me, "Am I going to get any say in the planning of this shower? Will you tell your mom to call me about it?" (My mother had offered, through J’s mother, to do whatever J and S wanted, and had already requested a guest list from them.)

It is certain to be an interesting wedding, for while I have been asked to be an usher, there will be no groomsmen, just a best man, and we ushers who do not stand with J at the altar, yet get to pay for tuxedo rental. The reason for this? S has not decided to have any bridesmaids, because she really doesn’t feel like she has any female friends she feels so close to that she can ask them to be bridesmaids – Gosh, I wonder why she doesn’t have friends?


I met my husband when I was in college. At the time, I was living about three hours away from my own family. When we became engaged, my mother-in-law decided that she was going to throw me a bridal shower.

My in-laws had a "camper" at a lake about an hour from where I was living at the time. This was where she decided to throw this "shower". She invited everyone that she worked with (we were working for the same company), her neighbors at the trailer park, both of my attendants (only one of which was living in the area, the other one was a friend from HS that was still living in my hometown,) the list went on and on. Of the few people that showed, I knew about three of them...and not very well I might add.

The only person that she DIDN'T invite was my mother. Yes folks, the MOB was left out of that one. About a week prior, I had called Mom and asked her what time to expect her for this "shower". Her reply? "What shower?" I was flabbergasted!!! Of all people NOT to invite! I asked my MIL if she just forgot to send the invite, and her response was that she didn't think my mother would show up so she just "didn't bother". Perhaps she might not have been able to make it, but an invite was still in order.

I give my mom a lot of credit, because when my mother wanted to host a small lunch for me (there were no gifts given) in my hometown, she still had the decency to send the MIL and invite.

The MIL did not RSVP, which was not a surprise to us.   Bshower0213-03

I know that Jack and Jill showers are becoming more popular but 5:30 on a Sunday evening? People have to work and get their kids off to school on Monday morning! However, it is the DRESS CODE stipulation in the invite that has me writing to you :

You are invited to a surprise MASK BALL

Wedding Shower for Kathy and Mike Sunday, February 23rd 5:30 in the evening

at Fancy Schmancy Restaurant

Gift Suggestions Kathy and Mike have wedding registry at the following stores: Store 1 Store 2 Store 3 Store 4

Dress Code Formal evening attire please (i.e. Ladies long gowns, Men suits). Eye masks are required!!! If you wish to wear a costume please wear one that suits a romantic Shakespearean/ Elizabethan setting.

Sorry, No Kids Only adults are being invited to this Mask Ball.



Note that each header on the invitation included a graphic. The Dress Code header was accompanied by a picture of a hand slamming down a judge's gavel. The No Kids heading included the word Kids in a circle with a slash through it, ala Ghostbusters.   Bshower0216-03

I work part time at a restaurant, one of the previous waitresses (quit about 8 months ago) is marrying the owner’s son. The owner’s daughter is giving her a shower at the restaurant on a Saturday. This girl, she has to be in her early 20’s, posted a flyer up inviting every one to the event. It is letter size paper with all the info and then folded at the bottom to make a pocket to hold the registry cards. It almost looks like the flyer was store bought just like that for this purpose. I do not plan to attend unless some one approaches me and ask. I do not need a paper invite, but would like to know that I am wanted, not my gift. Tacky, tacky, tacky.   Bshower0221-03

This story is about my husband's family and his sister's bridal shower. I agreed to be a bridesmaid in my sister-in-law's wedding, however, since we live in a different state than her, I wasn't going to able to attend any events other than the wedding. This didn't stop her aunt from informing me, after she took over the bridal shower arrangements from the MOH, that I needed to send her a check for my portion shower expenses. Of course I had a problem paying for a party I wasn't even going to be able to attend. I expressed this to my husband who decided to tell my MIL about my objections. She then informed me that I had insulted her and her entire family and since I refused to pay for "my part" of the shower, rather than the invitations stating the shower was given "by the bridesmaids" as planned, it would list all the bridesmaids names individually as hostesses with mine left off! Well, since I didn't want my sister-in-law to be hurt by all this, I sent a check. The wedding was 4 months ago and I still cannot believe the nerve of these people.    Bshower0228-03

I just found your site, and have had great fun reading all the stories - fortunately, most of the etiquette victims seem to have a great sense of humor! My husband and I had decided to get married at City Hall, and not have a wedding at all. We decided to get married on a Friday afternoon, have our two closest friends come along as witnesses (best man and MOH), and then go out for an outrageously expensive dinner afterwards (our treat) and head for our honeymoon. We're in our 30s, had been living together for several years, did not want to spend tens of thousands of our own dollars on a wedding (we live in NYC, where weddings are a fortune), and it never even crossed my mind to ask my parents to pay for a wedding at this stage of my life.

A few of my dearest girlfriends decided that they wanted to have a shower for me - even though they knew we weren't having a wedding. I was very touched, and made it clear that I would love to celebrate with my friends, but I didn't want it to be "shower-y" - no games, no decorations, no silliness - just some good friends having a few drinks and some snacks and hanging out. I also asked (quite seriously) for no gifts - a request my friends ignored, they all brought very thoughtful presents. One of my friends offered to host the party at her apartment, and invited 7 or 8 of my friends. One of these "friends" had been my roommate for years before I left to move in with my boyfriend (now husband). I considered her one of those "friends until the end of time" type people - one night when I got a call at 3am that my dad had had a heart attack, she sat up with me all night... we had been like sisters for close to 10 years at this point.

Now, she had never liked my husband - I never could figure out why, he's a great guy, and all my other friends adored him and still do. I never believed it when other people would suggest she was jealous - but it bothered me that she didn't like him and she made no secret of the fact. So we had been growing apart the whole time I'd been with him, but I still considered her one of my "lifetime" friends, so she was invited to the shower. She did come (an hour late), and immediately started complaining about how much she hated g%^&@#n bridal showers - out loud, to everyone at the party. She said that she was sick of buying all these gifts (I had specifically said not to bring me anything!). She also spent a good deal of time pointing our her $150 jeans, and discussing her plans to go to France in a few weeks with her boyfriend from work - all of this was fine (although she was certainly making every conversation about her), but her big problem with showers was that she couldn't afford to keep buying gifts. When I opened her envelope, it contained a $20 gift certificate to Williams Sonoma (I'm not even sure they HAVE anything that inexpensive). I would have so much preferred it if she'd given me nothing, or a nice card. She left early, too, and everyone else at the shower was horrified by her behavior. When I asked her later what she had been so angry about, she claimed that she was hurt that I hadn't asked her to be in my wedding party! I explained that it was on a weekday, I knew she could not take off time from work, and that she had repeatedly told me she HATED my husband and advised me not to marry him. It wasn't as if I had ten attendants and she'd been left out! I never really believed that was it - but never found out either, because after I got over her childish behavior, I made one or two more attempts to contact her, and she never responded.   Bshower0302-03

Showers are supposed to be a time for gathering and celebrating a joyous occasion with people you know and care about. Obviously, gifts are not the ‘reason’ for the shower, but intended to demonstrate celebration and kind thoughts. Food, drink, and other refreshments are served because it is appropriate and it makes guests feel welcome.

Ok, that being said……I hosted a shower for my sister’s wedding. Normally, this is not the proper etiquette; however, I co-hosted with a friend of the family and since my sister had recently moved out of state, it was decided that the best situation was for everyone to come to my home. We had plenty of space and a great entertaining home. The theme was Island Party and every guest was greeted at the door (someone assigned to greet), food was ready and fabulous, plenty of seating for everyone (I rented extra chairs for our great room); and there were about 30 people in attendance. Everything went well, and as a few people trickled out, my mother handed them the party favors we had custom made- in keeping with the theme, we had macadamia nuts and dried tropical fruits wrapped in tulle with bows and flowers, and Burt’s Bees SPF Lip Sticks with ribbons attached- for all guests.

I don’t know about you, but I never received favors like that at showers, and I would never dream of requesting extra items for my children, out of town guests or friends. BUT, some of our guests did. And after it was clear that the party was pretty much coming to a close, the guests started divvying up the expensive flower arrangements and other decorations amongst themselves, without even asking us or being told that they could take something home! I really couldn’t believe it; we had brought in tons of Hawaiian and other types of tropical flowers and arrangements for the theme, and people were saying to one another ‘I’ll take some pink ones, or ooohhhh, I want those, are you taking those? yada, yada,’. A few people asked me what they could take home. I thought this was incredibly rude, especially since I had also custom made a Bridal Bingo game and given out about 10 really nice prizes to those who had played and won. ( I didn’t ask for these back, haha). I have heard that for some people it is customary to divvy up flowers to the guests after a shower. I had never experienced this myself, but even if this is some kind of a custom, wouldn’t you wait to be asked first? You NEVER assume you are automatically entitled to someone else’s things just because you attended the function. Seriously, the end of the shower was like a big "grab bag", with guests even requesting plates and containers to take home the ‘extra food’, and carrying out flower vases and decorations by the handful. It’s as if they couldn’t carry enough out the door. The sad part is that many of these people were ‘upper class’ demographically, with very professional careers and ‘nice’ families and you’d think maybe their education would help guide their manners- NOT!! Bshower0511-03

One of my two best friends (Emme) got engaged at the beginning of our senior year of high school, and planned on getting married in June after we graduated. She has four sisters, and decided that they would be the bridesmaids, with her oldest sister as the MOH. Because the MOH was also part of her family, Emme asked me and Jay (the other close friend), to arrange a bridal shower. Because of the timing of the wedding (it would be right after our high school graduation), Jay and I decided to plan the shower for our spring break at the end of April. Now, we were only teens at the time, without any income of our own, but we managed to finance the entire shower ourselves. We sent out very nice invitations, purchased decorations, arranged to have food delivered, etc. Our shower date was April 30th. The bride obviously knew about it, since she had asked us to arrange it and we kept her up-to-date on the progress.

Well, the day of the shower arrives, and so do all the guests... But the Emme never shows up. Everyone at the shower was a bit worried about her, but they all left their gifts and asked me and Jay to let them know when we heard about the bride-to-be. The next day, we heard about her alright. Instead of going to the expense of the wedding they had planned for June, Emme and her fiancé decided to get married in a Civil ceremony... And they chose the day before her bridal shower to do it! When they got back from their honeymoon (the day before school was supposed to start again, of course), Emme came by my house, picked up the shower gifts, and left without even apologizing. No one every received thank-you cards. I'm not saying Emme should have waited to marry (though she probably should have... About 7 more years, that is), but perhaps she could have let us know before we invested so much time and money into her shower? And did she really have to take the gifts in that ungracious way? It is with no small amount of satisfaction that I tell you that Emme's marriage did not last... Bshower0523-03

Several years ago I was invited to a bridal shower for a college friend. The day before the shower I called the bride-to-be's home (she lived with several of our college friends) to speak with one of her roommates. Bride-to-be answered, we chatted briefly, and before she handed the phone to her roommate I said, "See you tomorrow". The next day at the shower we were milling around waiting for the bride to arrive, and the hostess makes an off-handed comment about hoping the bride-to-be would be surprised. Surprise!?! I went into the kitchen where the hostess was with her mother and apologized profusely, explaining that I had said something to the bride-to-be since I didn't know it was a surprise. The hostess looked at me with an "oh, no!" expression on her face. Again I apologized, and said, "It didn't say anything about a surprise on the invitation, I didn't know." The hostess' mother turned to her and asked "You didn't put 'surprise' anywhere on the invitation?" And the hostess replied, "There wasn't any place to put it, I figured everyone would know." And for the entire shower, the bride-to-be and other guests teased me about how I ruined the surprise that everyone else somehow knew about and hadn't bothered to clue me in on.  Bshower0403-03

Miss Jeanne will be delighted to know that I uphold her propriety about family giving showers and celebrate her last line of defense against this breach of etiquette. I have repeatedly told my grown sons how greedy this custom is - soaking your guests for two gifts instead of one - without much success. My oldest son is now getting married, although the wedding is some months off. Out of the blue, the mother of the bride called and announced that she was giving a shower for the bride and wanted to know if I wanted to "get in on it." I told her no, I didn't think it was appropriate for the parents of the bridal couple to be giving showers, but she didn't miss a beat and cheerily asked if I would bring food. The wedding invitations have not even been sent. bshower0418-03

 I went to a bridal shower a few years ago that has made me dread them ever since. My next door neighbor Rachel was getting married to her boyfriend of ten years. It was hosted by the bridesmaids at a nice Italian restaurant. It was held in a private room, which was nice. We were served drinks right away, but did not receive a menu, salad, or even bread to munch on for close to an hour because some of the guests were late. By the time they walked in and we finally received something to nibble on we were famished! I don't think it is polite to cater to rude guests and make the punctual ones wait so long. But, this gets better.

There were probably fifty people at this shower and we were seated at tables of four. After we finally ate, the matron of honor comes around to each table asking for each guest’s wedding date. At each table whoever was closest to Rachel and Bob's approaching wedding won a little prize. When she approached my table she just looked at me and the three women I was sitting with and goes "Oh yeah, you guys aren't married. I don't know what to do here..." Two of the girls (including myself) have never been married, one had been widowed only a month before, and the other (Julie) was the only one at the table married. So Julie just blurts out "I'm married, I'm married!" And the matron of honor goes "Oh, well, you win by default-ha ha ha!" And she walked away. That was the only game we played. What about the poor "spinsters" who aren't married? We don't count I guess. I've never been to any party where you play a game that half of the guests are excluded from playing.

I was ready to leave but Rachel still had to open her gifts. The only problem was, the children who were attending the shower congregated around her like it was Christmas morning and kept tearing into the gifts so fast no one could see what she got. And you should have seen the looks on their faces when she opened some adult toys and very lacy lingerie. One little girl of about five kept asking "Mommy, what's this, what's that?" I could not wait until the kids finished opening Rachel's gifts so I could get out of there!


I planned to throw a shower for my friend and together we picked a date months in advance. Since she was inviting 45 people, I ordered custom pre-printed invitations (she knew I was doing this), paid for the location she wanted to have the shower, order cake, bought decorations, etc., etc. AFTER I had made this substantial investment, she decided she wanted to CHANGE THE DATE, because three people she wanted there could not attend. First of all, if she had told the people the shower date when it was first selected several months before the shower, chances are they would have kept the date available. She changed the date to the following weekend knowing that I already had plans for that day. And that's not the worst part - she told me if I could not have the shower on that date to "just forget it" and let "someone else throw it". She then approached another friend to throw the party for her, irregardless of the time, money and energy I had put into this. She apologized, but it was very artificial and has had a cavalier attitude since then. Needless to say, we are no longer friends and will never be again. My advice to future brides, if you are lucky enough to have a friend throw a shower for you, don't be stupid enough to change a preset date after your friend has invested her time, money and energy. Remember, I'm sorry will not fix everything. Bshower0615-03

My husband and I were at one point (no longer) within a group of "friends" in which we and another couple were engaged within a month of each other. We were married in a small ceremony; the other couple had a much larger ceremony planned for 6 months later. A month before our wedding, one of his parents was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. In the months afterward, we were both working about 50 hours a week and trying to look after both his parents. All these friends were aware of this. I received an invitation to the shower for the bride. Although I did decide to go, our responsibilities were such that I could not stay more than a few hours (anyone who has ever seen a loved one through a major illness probably knows what I am talking about). There was simply too much to do at home. Since our funds were spread a little thin during this time due to medical bills, I selected a bath set and slippers. I arranged for my husband to pick me up a few hours into the shower, thinking I could leave without creating any distraction.

The shower day arrived and I went to the hall where the shower was held; I took my seat and watched the other guests arrive, including several male relatives of the bride. The bride herself arrived, wearing a tiara and stopped at our table to tell us how much she hated one of her bridesmaids and how her wedding would be more ornate than the bridesmaid’s recent nuptials. The food was served. An aunt of the bride stood at the table telling all the guests that she was the "food police" and was there to be sure no one took too much. I should have obeyed my sudden urge to run. The shower proceeded and the bride began opening her gifts. My husband arrived to pick me up and stood discreetly just inside the doorway so I would know he was there. We watched the bride open our gift and quietly left.

The next day my husband received an unspeakably vile email from another person in the group telling my husband that he had ruined the shower by waiting in the doorway for me and must apologize to the bride. Despite the fact that many men were there, apparently his male presence was offensive and he "looked like the maintenance man". (Oddly enough, many of the bride's family came in sweatpants). The email was full of scathing assaults on my husband's breeding; he was essentially called an ill-bred hick and told he had no "social graces". Ironically, my husband, (a consummate gentleman) had helped the emailer and spouse through innumerable crises from broken-down cars to multiple moves. He was utterly crushed. (Had any husbands come to pick up wives from my shower, I could not imagine doing anything more than making sure they got to the food table!). Needless to say, these people are no longer our friends. Just recently, my SIL noted that this bride and her fiancé had spent most of our reception dinner making sarcastic remarks about how lousy our wedding was. They had no idea they were sitting next to the groom's sister! Bshower0616-03

My best friend's wedding shower was held at her aunt's house. I had been told, not asked, to buy her wedding night ensemble. Knowing her well, I bought a tasteful silk nightshirt in her favorite color. Her aunt had pictured something entirely different, and seemed very disappointed with my choice. After the shower, but before most of the guests had left, she went to her bedroom and came back with an armful of her own used lingerie for my friend. I felt so mortified for her. Well. I guess someone with a millimeter more dignity decided that was awful, so another aunt hosted a lingerie party. My friend received the gamut of tacky. She is not shy, but also not a girl who would be comfortable dressed like a tramp. I bought long-sleeved, flannel baby dolls with teddy bears on them for her. I was told years later that my gifts got much more use! Bshower0624-03

My mother was recently invited to a bridal shower for the daughter of her friend. She saved the invitation to show me when I visited her, and as a newlywed, I was in utter disbelief. The shower was being called "A Personal Shower for Lucy." First of all, I have never heard of a personal shower. The front of the invitation listed the date, time, place, etc., which is fine. The back of the invitation is what made me cringe. A banner at the top proclaimed, "All About Lucy," or something along those lines. Underneath the heading "Lucy's Favorite Stores" was a list of popular clothing retailers (Old Navy, the Gap, American Eagle Outfitters, etc.). The next heading was "Lucy's Favorite Things," and listed bubble bath, books, candles, etc. There was another heading called "Lucy's Favorite Scents," listing rain, chocolate, cinnamon, etc. At the bottom of the invitation was a quote from the bride: "I haven't bought new clothes or underwear for myself since I bought my house!" The final touch was an asterisk, followed by, "Please note that Lucy does not use perfume or scented lotions." Are you kidding me? This is not Lucy's birthday. This is Lucy's bridal shower. Apparently Lucy and her fiancé did not need a lot of household items, which is understandable since they are both in their late 20s. If that is the case, don't have a shower. I was amazed that the ladies hosting the shower would think that the invitation was acceptable. The irony is that although Lucy apparently did not need the more traditional bridal shower gifts, she had a total of FOUR showers. Bshower0425-03

After reading your site for several hours (very amusing, I must say), I thought I would submit my story of my now SIL's bridal shower! It is common, I understand, for the groom's family to sometimes feel "left out" or taken advantage of, but I certainly did not expect this type of treatment from the bride's family! My brother and his fiancée (now his wife) live in several hours and states away from us but decided that they would get married in their hometown, where all of their relatives and close friends are living (a 13-14 hour drive). For them, a shower was a last minute detail, they weren't even sure they were going to get home for a weekend to hold this event. The bride's family was insisting that a shower was held, so they planned for Memorial Day Weekend, since they would be able to come home for a long weekend to visit with family. The catch is that neither the bride nor the groom fly, so this is a long weekend of DRIVING! Since this would be held on a holiday weekend, we were not sure if we would get a lot of responses, but knew it was our only option. I was asked to be a bridesmaid in the wedding, along with the bride's two Aunts and her brother's wife (the MOH).

Since we all have very busy schedules, we decided the easiest of communication would be via email. An email was sent by the MOH requesting suggestions and ideas for the shower, including time, place and activities. Since I had been a bridesmaid several times in the last year, I thought quickly of some really cute ideas for favors, gifts and places to hold the event. Some of the suggestions for a place to hold the event including my own home, the MOG's home as well as several fire halls in the area. After several emails and many great suggestions, I received and email stating the details, they were already planned! There was no room for suggestions at this point, the plans were already decided. Never mind that I was a bridesmaid and I wasn't included in the final planning, but we were to have this shower at a BOWLING ALLEY! Naturally, my reaction was shocked, but I let that go. Until I received an email with the breakdown of the pricing! I was to provide $80 towards a free hall with food catered from a grocery store! Never mind that I was also planning my own wedding (to occur later this year) and the idea was to "save cash", as requested by the MOH. Of course, I then spoke my mind...not only were we having this shower at a bowling alley - but there were only going to be 3 door prizes for the 3 games we were going to play with the guests!

Then the MOH asks if she can put MY number on the invites for the RSVPs. Well, MOB got wind of my discontent and attempted to diffuse the situation by explaining "why" the choices were made as they were. If I'm correct, as a bridesmaid, I should have been included in that decision making??? So, now we have to get together to make the favors (which actually were very cute - not what I had suggested, but cute anyway!) We met to make the favors and promptly ran out of material. I offered to run to the store and purchase more material. While I was there - I noticed a sale - and bought several other cute little items to use as favors. At this time, I bought gift bags, wrapping paper and bows to wrap the door prizes that the MOH neglected to purchase. I guess a shopping bag was appropriate enough for this ordeal! When I walked back into the house with these other gifts, the MOH's jaw dropped, as though I did some horrific act!

During a conversation with the MOB, we had agreed to make posters of each of the bride and groom, "through the years". I offered to make both posters, provided that the MOB met with me to give me some pictures to scan, size, print and post. I worked on the one of my brother for days! The day before the shower, I contacted the MOB and asked to meet with her to pick up the pictures. She was conveniently out of the area and unable to meet with me. So, I figured that she would handle the surprise....but, there was no poster of the bride! Naturally, the day of the shower arrived - most of the guests got lost - but made it to the bowling alley. The guys bowled (well, the ones who showed up) in the next room while we held the shower in the bar. (Yes, the bar). When the MOB arrived, I had asked her where she would like the poster of the groom. She then stated that since there were no pictures of the bride that she didn't WANT that poster hung and that I should put it back in the car. Of course, I decided to finally speak my mind and told her that I was hanging the poster regardless, if she had kept up her end of the bargain, this would not have been an issue. Her next comment was, "well, this is HER shower." I then reminded her that without a GROOM there is no BRIDE! The poster hung up at the entrance!

Many other little incidents happened along the way - but the wedding went off without a hitch - all of the problems were set aside for the day - so that both the BRIDE and GROOM had a good time! As far as I'm aware, they were never told of this whole thing, but I certainly keep it in mind now that I am planning my own wedding. I hope that my family would be more considerate to my fiancé's family!    bshower0711-03