Last weekend, I had the blessing and honor of throwing a bridal shower for my sister, Steph. I love throwing a good party (see my 1920s 30th birthday party) but as this is my first time being a maid of honor, this was my virgin voyage holding the reigns for shower planning. After chatting with my sister, she decided that she didn’t want to be involved in the planning. She gave me a few rough ideas, some things she’d prefer to avoid, and from there the decisions were up to me. Given that my sister is a huge fan of champagne and also loves a good brunch, the perfect theme was born, Brunch and Bubbly. Thanks to my partner and co-host, my beautiful mother, and a stellar group of bridesmaids my vision came to beautiful life and I can’t wait to share it with you. Enjoy!
After many hours on Etsy, I found the perfect invitation for the shower. Actually, I should be more precise; I found the perfect designer. Finding this invite, I loved the look but wanted the invite to be landscape as well as to incorporate several other customizations. Let me tell you, Linda of Paper Invitations was phenomenal. Before I even purchased the invite she was off making adjustments for me to view. She changed orientation, font, sizing, wording, and even changed and added in different flowers. After emailing back and forth 5-6 times she created the invitation I was hoping for – I loved it. And so did our guests. I got so many compliments on how beautiful the invites were. If you’re in need, go to Paper Invitations on Etsy and hit up Linda. You’ll love her.
My sister loves champagne. If she’s having a bad day or a good day you can guarantee that her drink of choice is a glass of bubbly. So, of course I knew that this was something we had to incorporate into her bridal shower. With so many adorable Mimosa bar set-ups floating through Pinterest, I was off and running with ideas. My favorite aspects were the bubbly bar sign, crafted by one of the bridesmaids and the giant Champagne challis that I borrowed from a friend. The bubbly bar was an absolute hit!
Looking back at my own bridal shower, I have a hard time remembering every single person who was there. So, I knew that I wanted to come up with a way to document each person who attended my sister’s shower. And this Instax Camera guestbook was the perfect way to do that. As guests arrived at the shower we snapped their pic with the bride, waited for it to develop and stuck it in the book along with a note from each of the guests. The next day, my sister texted me saying she got a little teary eyed looking at the pictures and reading the notes; I’d consider that a success.
If I could get married all over again, I totes would’ve loved to have succulent favors. So I’m not going to lie, I was living vicariously through this one a little bit. But they turned out so adorable. I found an amazing website, The Succulent Source, where I ordered my succulents. As a smaller family business, they are all about customer service and made everything an incredibly smooth process. And, their prices were outstanding!! My box of 35 succulents arrived carefully packed and in one piece, and even packed with an extra succulent just in case. I highly recommend The Succulent Source.
Upon receiving the succulents, I re-potted them into 3” terracotta pots and got to work on the mini-signs I found on this blog. I spray painted a few sticks gold, bought gold polka dotted washi tape to attach the signs to the sticks, and strung the thank you signs with gold and white bakers twine; the favors were set. Guests were floored when they saw the favors and realized they each got to take home their own cute little succulent.
Creating the flower centerpieces was the most challenging and the most rewarding aspect for me. I had a pretty good idea of what I was hoping for but wasn’t sure where I was going to find the flowers without going ridiculously over budget. And Trader Joe’s came to my rescue. Seriously, I can’t recommend them enough for their flowers. They have a great selection, get new shipments in multiple times throughout the week, and their prices… Oh my goodness, their prices are about half of those anywhere else, and I swear the quality is better too. Believe it or not, I was able to put together 6 bigger centerpieces, and 2 smaller mason jar sized ones – all for 56.00. What? Seriously. Other places I looked quoted me $70.00 and over. Write that down, Trader Joe’s for the win.
After multiple trips to all the Trader Joe’s in the area, I had the right selection of flowers, popped in my headphones, listened to Spotify and started designing. I channeled my inner florist and these beautiful arrangements are what I came up with. I was pretty proud.
My main goal for the shower was for my sister to walk away feeling overwhelmed with love and joy. In order to make that happen I wanted to add some personal touches to the shower. Displaying engagement pictures in cork stands, playing some of her favorite music by Lauren Daigle and other artists softly in the background, and bringing in one of her all time favorite games, Catch Phrase – I made sure to give the shower the ultimate Steph feel. And I might've brought in a few things that I love too, like a bridal tassel garland (you can find the diy in my 1920s Birthday party post ) and giving myself the job of creating the bow bouquet. Call me crazy, but I love that job! I remember getting to create one for my older cousin when I was younger and loved it.
Being a maid of honor, I’ve realized how great a responsibility the role is, but beyond that I’ve realized its significance. This is the one time in my life where I can love on my sister in a superlatively tangible way, and I want to take that seriously. I want to overwhelm my sister with love, support, encouragement and as much stress-relief as I possibly can to nurture this time that she has to prepare for her marriage.
If you’re standing up in a wedding, can I encourage you to look past the stress, cost, and somewhat inconvenient side of being a bridesmaid and focus on the incredible opportunity you have to love on the bride? Throwing this shower was the epitome of this opportunity – putting all the details together, I got the immense joy of seeing my sister’s face light up when she walked in the room and hear her excitement and thankfulness as she walked away overcome with love.
Thanks again to the bridesmaids, and my friend Sondra who made food for the shower, and to Delores and Ron who hosted us at their community room. And an extra special thanks to my mom for being my partner in crime and co-hosting with me.