Latest "Wedding Etiquette" Posts

The Basics of Bridal Shower Etiquette

April 8, 2011

All your bridal shower etiquette questions answeredWith spring comes weddings, lots and lots of weddings. And if you know someone who is tying the knot in the next few months, you’re probably invited to a bridal shower (or two…or three). And if you’re the maid of honor—and it’s your first time with this honor—you probably have a few bridal shower etiquette questions.

Q: Who should host the bridal shower?
A: Traditionally, the maid or matron of honor hosts the wedding shower.

Q: When should a bridal shower be held?
A: At least 4 – 6 weeks before the wedding.

Q: Who should be invited to the shower?
A: Showers are intimate gatherings for people close to the bride—not a way to fill the kitchen cupboards! If you’re planning the shower, ask the bride for a guest list. Don’t invite anyone to the shower who is not invited to the wedding.

Q: Does the hostess traditionally bring a gift for the bride?
A: Yes. It is customary for the hostess to get the bride a gift for the shower, along with the guests.

Q: How much should I spend on a gift?
A: Appropriate gift etiquette is to give as much as you can afford. The average price range for a bridal shower gift is anywhere from $20 – $100.

Q: When does the bride open her gifts?
A: Gifts are opened at the bridal shower. The bridesmaids typically take notes during this time so that the bride has a reference of who gave her what, to use when writing her personal thank-you notes.

BONUS: Just For the Bride

During the bridal shower, be sure to personally thank each guest individually. Thank them not only for coming to the shower, but also for the gift.

Be sure to send thank-you notes to all the shower guests, as well as those who couldn’t attend, but sent a gift. Thank you notes should be sent out within 48 hours of the bridal shower. I know it sounds obvious, but please don’t email your thank-you notes. Even though weddings are becoming more and more casual, there are some things—like handwritten thank you notes—that will always be in style.

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Posted by Margaret in Wedding Etiquette and tagged , , , ,

Clashing Clichés: A Manners Maven in Las Vegas

February 16, 2010

Elvis weddingI recently traveled to Las Vegas for my daughter’s wedding – a real-life, Rock-n-Roll Elvis wedding.

My friends had to chuckle at the idea of an Etiquette Maven at an Elvis wedding, as if this was somehow a volatile combination. But the truth is, I was completely charmed by the whole event! “Elvis” was so engaging; he had the whole group singing and dancing. It was fun, light-hearted, full of music and spirit, and most certainly memorable.

When I returned home and expressed my delight, those chuckling friends were so surprised. “We never thought you’d enjoy something so tacky as a fat singer in a sequined, polyester jumpsuit – and at a wedding, no less!”

It was my turn to chuckle. Their idea of an etiquette maven was so cliché – prim and proper and restrained – and in their minds, an Elvis wedding was 180° the opposite!

So, for the record, I’ll say it again:

Etiquette is all about having a good time – and making sure others are too. It doesn’t matter if you’re wearing a velvet cape and crown or shiny gold polyester. If you make your guests feel welcome, comfortable and carefree, that’s social grace.

And in that light, it was a roaring success. In fact, at the end of the evening, I just couldn’t help myself… I took my exit with a curled lip and a jaunty little smile, saying, “Thank you, thank you very much…” because it truly was a lovely event.

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Posted by Margaret in Wedding Etiquette and tagged ,