When married people reminisce about their weddings, chances are that their memories aren’t just limited to the actual wedding itself, but all the events that lead up to the celebration as well. Special dates, family gatherings, the engagement… and of course, parties for the bride and groom before the big day.
In many parts of the world, one of the celebrations that brides look forward to the most is the bridal shower; an opportunity for her to get together with friends and family members and have some lighthearted fun. These showers—so named because they’re the perfect chance to “shower” the bride-to-be with gifts and attention—are usually ladies-only events, where everyone from the flower girl to the groom’s grandmother can take part in the festivities.
If you’ve ever been to a shower before, you’re probably familiar with some of the fun, sweetness, and silliness that can ensue during these parties. Games are common, especially those that allow attendees to win prizes, and are perfect opportunities for people to get to know one another. For many, the bridal shower is the first time that female members of both sides of the family, as well as close friends, will really have the chance to spend time together and chat. Playing games together in teams can help to form bonds that will last a lifetime, and there’s certainly a lot of stress alleviated from the wedding itself when most people already know each other and get along well!
Should you be planning a shower for someone special, remember that they don’t have to be all about gifts: if the bride isn’t a materialistic sort, or if it’s a second marriage and she already has all the housewares and such that she could possibly need, the celebration can be centered around countless other options. If it’s springtime, all the women can get together and plant a tree in honour of the upcoming nuptials, or the shower can be an occasion where everyone teams up to make favours and decorations for the wedding. You could arrange for all the attendees to take a chocolate-making class together, have henna tattoos done, or even have afternoon tea at a fancy hotel somewhere. Ultimately, the shower is whatever you’d like it to be; as long as it will make the bride smile, and give everyone a chance to socialize and make final plans for the celebration.
Taking pictures at wedding showers is an art unto itself, since the magic really happens in the candid shots, rather than the posed ones. There’s nothing quite like the laughter that breaks out when the bridemaids try to walk around while wrapped in toilet paper gowns, or the sweetness of tears when a great-grandmother passes a treasured family heirloom to the one getting wed. Silly games and flirty prizes are perfect photo ops, and any time the wedding party and guests look at those pictures in the future, they’ll be reminded of the amazing time they spent together.
Those photos can be also used to create a gorgeous display at the wedding reception. After vows are exchanged and people are milling around with appetizers and such, they can enjoy looking at images that lead up to the event. Ladies who attended the bridal shower may get a kick out of pictures snapped at the groom’s bachelor party, and out-of-town guests can get a chance to feel included in the preparations (and inside jokes) if they actually get a chance to see some of the fun that transpired in the preparation sessions.
Keep in mind that you can also use the pictures you take to inspire others for their parties: all of those images on Pinterest that people draw upon for their own celebrations were uploaded by someone, right? Just as you might look online for ideas about decor, gifts, prizes, food, and drinks, others are doing the exact same thing… so if the catered food is exquisite and the hand-made tiaras are a big hit, share them! You might end up helping another lady plan a spectacular shower for her sister or best friend in turn.
Author: Lana Winter-Hébert, Images credits: Creative commons (Flickr)