Want to know the secret to throwing one epic bridal shower? It’s all about originality. While following the traditional guidelines is a safe standard, being a modern maid of honor means you’re not afraid to mix it up. If basic and boring is what you’re looking for, you’ve come to the wrong place. If you’re looking to win the award for most kick-ass maid of honor ever, then stick around. Below we have six non-traditional bridal shower themes guaranteed to leave a long-lasting impression.

a full bar

1. Stock the Bar

Does your BFF already live with or own a home with her future hubby? Or maybe they just don’t see the need to register for a bunch of kitchen gadgets and bath towels? If that’s the case, this is the perfect theme for you to plan the wedding shower around! As newlyweds, the bride and groom will have plenty to celebrate and what better way to do so than with a fully stocked bar. The basics of this theme are simple: Send out invitations informing guests this is a stock the bar style shower, and that instead of a gift, they are encouraged to bring their favorite bottle of wine or liquor. The bride and groom may choose to register for barware or decor as well, in which case you would include the registry information on the invitation also. Remember, anything brought by the guests is considered a gift to the couple, so be sure to have a separate drink station set up for the shower itself. This theme also presents a great opportunity for the bridal party to split a large gift such as a bar cart or wine rack that can double as a decoration. P.S. If your bride is the type to want a coed or couples shower, this is the perfect means to do so!

two hands making a flower crown

2. Arts and Crafts

Is your bride the creative type who loves a good DIY project? If you answered yes, this one’s for you. Instead of spending time organizing and playing bridal shower games, set up a fun workshop for the bride and her guests to make a personalized craft that can double as a favor. This is a great way to get the guests interacting with one another while providing them with a keepsake they’ll cherish. Examples include painting wineglasses or making flower crowns . As maid of honor, it’s up to you whether or not you want to surprise the bride or include her in the party-planning process. Either way, arts and crafts is a guaranteed fun alternative to more traditional bridal shower themes. P.S. Worried about cost? Think again- not only does a DIY project double as a favor, but it also eliminates the need to spend money on bridal shower games and prizes.

a glass of red wine sitting on a railing

3. Winery Tour/Tasting

Can you think of a better way to shower your bride than with a trip to her favorite local winery? We can’t! If your bestie is a fan of the grown-up grape juice this is the choice for you. The first step in planning this type of shower is getting in contact with the vineyard/winery to determine their availability for the size of your party. Once you have selected a date and made a reservation (if necessary), it’s important to iron out the details. For instance, does this winery serve food or are you responsible for bringing your own? How much is each tasting? Are you able to purchase and drink their bottles on site? Trust us, the more details you have planned out beforehand the better! P.S. In lieu of gifts that must be unwrapped during the shower, save yourself the time and cleanup by encouraging guests to bring gift cards to the couple’s favorite stores and restaurants.

3 people attending a cooking class

4. Cooking Class

Is your bride someone who kills it in the kitchen? Or maybe it’s the opposite and she needs to brush up on her cooking skills before the wedding? Either way, this may be one of our bridal shower themes you should consider! There are two ways to go about planning such a shower and it’s up to you to decide which makes the most sense for your group. The first option would be the hire a private chef to come to you and teach a course. We recommend this if you already have a venue selected, especially if it has a large kitchen with plenty of room for everyone. The advantage to this is that you are able to continue the shower once the class is over, leaving time for the bride to socialize with her guests. The second option is to register for a class at a local restaurant or cooking school and have all the guests meet there. This is preferable for large groups who would be unable to fit into a standard kitchen or brides who are happy to forgo traditional activities such as gifts and games. P.S. Stick to the theme by putting together a homemade cookbook for your bride-complete with a variety of her guests’ favorite family recipes!

a heart drawn in the sand

5. Mini Honeymoon

What could possibly get your BFF more excited about her upcoming wedding than a bridal showed based around her honeymoon!? Give your bestie a fun glimpse of what’s in store by including decorations, gifts, food and drinks all inspired by her and her hubby’s dreamy destination. This is the ultimate theme for the bride who still wants a traditional shower but with a personal touch. Start by determining their honeymoon spot (DUH) and spend a little time researching the local culture. For instance, if they are going to somewhere in the Caribbean, figure out what food and drinks are most popular in that region. Or maybe they are going to Paris, the city of love, in which case these Eiffel Tower centerpieces would be essential to the decor. Tie the honeymoon theme into the gift by creating a scrapbook (aka honeypot) with the rest of the bridal party, where you all choose a local activity or meal at a restaurant that you want to purchase for the couple. P.S. Take it up a notch by putting together a playlist featuring artists from the area or songs about their destination!

three girls drinking cocktails poolside

6. Pool Party

Are you planning to throw the shower during the summer and want to take advantage of the beautiful weather? What better way than to party poolside! The trickiest part to planning this type of shower is choosing the venue, but if you know a friend of family member willing to offer their home then you’re all set. We love this theme because it’s so much fun to plan- from the frozen cocktails with mini umbrellas to the yummy bite-sized sweet treats perfect for a summer day. Go out all by bringing inflatable pool toys that can double as a decoration and gift (and are great to lounge around on after a few of those cocktails). P.S. This is another one of our wedding shower themes that makes for a great coed option!

 

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