Are you about to attend or host a wedding shower? Here are some of the most common wedding shower etiquette questions and some answers to help prepare you before the occasion.
Whether you’re planning on attending a wedding shower in the near future or you have taken on the responsibility to host one for a friend or family member, you may have many questions about common wedding shower etiquette. From the gift giving to the catering, there are plenty of traditional rules and practices that are frowned upon at wedding showers, and some that are simply expected. These traditions can cause some confusion amongst the guests and the hosts alike. Keep in mind, depending on the size and formality of the occasion, wedding shower etiquette can vary. Not all of these questions or answers will apply to every single shower, but they are good to know just in case.
Should the host get the bride a gift?—This is one of the first questions a host typically asks. Even if you are throwing the shower, it’s still considered proper etiquette to get the bride-to-be a gift. If funds are an issue after footing the bill for the shower, you can opt to give her a smaller, less extravagant gift, but do plan on gifting her with something either way.
When is the proper time to open gifts?—Ideally, the bride should open her gifts before or after the food is served, but never during the actual meal. It may be appropriate to open gifts if guests are seated and served small appetizers or finger foods, but keep in mind that the bride won’t have everyone’s full attention.
How do I know which gifts are appropriate?—Traditionally, appropriate gifts for a wedding shower include those that can be used for the couple’s new home. This is why it is wise to stick to the bride’s wedding registry and choose a gift based on the requests she’s listed.
Who should compile the guest list?—It is customary for the host to ask for a guest list from the bride. The bride should decide who and who doesn’t attend, especially since the event is being thrown in her honor! If you plan on surprising her, try to get one from a close relative or friend of the family. Do keep in mind that it is perfectly acceptable to host a co-ed wedding shower as well.