Photo: Courtesy of Wedding Paper Divas
A bridal shower isn't a wedding, but that doesn't mean the invitations don't matter. While a bridal shower invitation is best when it's short and sweet, it's important that you follow a few rules to make sure all of the guests feel welcome and know what to expect at the party. One rule applies to every invitation: Give guests as much notice as possible, at a minimum four to six weeks.
However, a few things might change depending on the type of shower and who's hosting. If the shower you're throwing is hosted by the bridesmaids and for close friends of the bride only (we're talking no family here), it's okay to use an email invitation. But keep in mind, every part of the wedding experience is special to the bride, and a printed invitation goes a long way — especially when it comes to keeping mementos. If the shower includes family members, like grandmothers, older family, or older family friends, it's best to stick with a printed invitation — you never know what will get lost online.
The words on your invitation — along with the design — will indicate how formal or casual, how traditional or modern, this shower will be. More traditional showers may want to open the invitation with common phrases like: "Please join us for a bridal shower honoring [bride];" "Help us shower [bride] with love;" or "Come celebrate [bride] before she ties the knot." For alternative wording, try something more playful, such as "A toast to the soon-to-be Mrs;" "Let's help this Miss become a Mrs.;" or "Pop! Fizz! Clink! Twirl! Help us celebrate our favorite girl!"
No matter how formal or casual the party, there are a few essentials to include on any bridal shower invitation. They are:
The guest of honor's name. If you're hosting a co-ed shower, make sure to include the groom on the invitation so that people know this isn't a gals-only day. However, keep the groom's name off the invitation if the party is only for the bride — it's nice of you to want to include the groom as a way of celebrating the couple, but doing so will leave guests confused.
The date and time of the event, as well as location. Make sure these are in fonts people can read easily. To make sure the date is clear, spell out the month rather than use numerals, ie: July 15, 2016. And while you can include the address of the shower, in today's age of Google Maps, you can save space and just put the restaurant or venue's name. Of course, if the shower is being held at a hostess's house, addresses are required.
A way to RSVP and a date to RSVP by. You'd be surprised how many people forget this very important detail! Include the name of the person guests should contact, along with a phone number or email address. And to make sure you know how much food to order or wine to buy, include a RSVP-by date so you can get a head start on the planning.
The name of the host or hosts. While not required, it's always nice to include who is throwing the party, especially if it's multiple people. This way guests will know who to thank, as well as have more than just the RSVP contact to reach out to with any questions. You don't need to include contact information for each host, but if the hosts are relatives, it's nice to include that with their name. "Hosted by Aunt Linda, Aunt Ronda, and Aunt Leslie," for example. If all of the bridesmaids are hosting the shower, instead of naming names you can add a line at the bottom of your invitation that says "Hosted by her loving bridesmaids."
The registry information. There are two ways to include the bride's registry on the invitation. The first is by using the couple's wedding website. Phrase this option as "For registry information please visit [insert website here]. To follow a more traditional route, just name the stores the bride and groom are registered at: [Name] is registered at Bed Bath & Beyond and Crate & Barrel. Guests can do their homework either way.