The experts weigh in on everything from politely saying "no" to playing games to the right way to thank your hostess.

By Courtney Levia
February 18, 2020
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Courtesy of Tumbalina Studio

The bridal shower is a time when loved ones gather to celebrate the bride-to-be and the momentous upcoming occasion. However, whether you are the bride or a guest, navigating a bridal shower can be a bit awkward, especially if it's your first time attending one of these pre-wedding events. To get the scoop on these special parties, we spoke to Alicia Fritz, expert wedding planner and owner of A Day in May Events, and asked her to weigh in on some of the most common questions the bride and attendees may have about the bridal shower.

Question: Do I Have to Play the Toilet Paper Bride Game?

Fritz says that games are a fun way to break up eating, drinking, and present-opening activities at a bridal shower. However, she explains that games are optional and you most certainly can request to not play specific types of games, or you could even suggest some that you may like to play. "Games that include trivia about the happy couple are always fun because there are moments of surprise and delight," Fritz says. "It also gives relatives and close friends a chance to share their stories about the couple."

Question: How Do I Politely Tell the Hostess That the Guest List Isn't a Free-for-All?

"I strongly recommend that you only invite guests who are coming to the wedding," Fritz explains. This is extremely important to share with the host or hostess (especially if someone else is hosting your shower) so the guest list doesn't get out of control.

Question: Do I Have to Offer to Help with Set Up and Clean Up?

Fritz suggests that common courtesy applies here, and even though you may be the guest of honor, offering to assist is really the polite thing to do.

Question: What Should I Do to Thank the Hostess?

Fritz says there are many ways you can thank the host or hostess of your bridal shower. Some of her favorite (and not to mention thoughtful) gift ideas include a beautiful bouquet of fresh flowers or a basket filled with delicious artisan charcuterie that the hosts can enjoy once the festivities are over.

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