In The Emily Post Institute's latest book, Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette: 6th Edition, Emily's great-great-granddaughters Anna and Lizzie Post tackle modern-day wedding questions that the original etiquette expert never could've dreamed about, from how to use (wisely) use technology, the rules for same-sex weddings, and much more. Here, the fourth generation of Posts discuss the most common bridal shower games and traditions.
Party games for bridal showers are greeted with groans or giggles. It’s all in good fun, and even if party games aren’t your thing, as the guest of honor, be a good sport and go along with what your hosts have planned. Here are some of the more popular, time-tested traditions and entertainment.
The Ribbon Bouquet
The bridesmaids collect all the ribbons from the bride’s shower presents and gather them into a bouquet for the bride to carry at the wedding rehearsal. (My grandmother remembers doing this at her bridal showers!).
Arriving shower guests receive a clothespin or safety pin to attach to her clothing. If a guest mentions any of a list of words having to do with a wedding — church, marriage, bride, groom’s name — another quick-witted guest “steals” her pin. The guest with the most pins at the end of the party wins a prize.
Shower Gift Bingo
Each guest is given a bingo card, printed with a blank 5x5 grid, and a pencil. Guests fill in the blanks with gifts they think the bride will receive at her shower. The middle spot is “free” and of course a guest can fill in her own gift. As the bride opens her gifts, players cross them off the card. The first to have five in a row across, vertically, or diagonally, wins a prize.
What the Bride Said
Put a guest in charge of writing down all the comments the bride makes (shh…don’t tell her!) as she opens her gifts: “Oh, it’s adorable!” “My mom has one of those, and I always wanted one.” “How do you wear this?” After all the gifts are opened, have someone read them aloud (or take turns), telling the bride these are the comments she'll make on her wedding night.
The Bride and Me
Have each guest bring a photo of herself with the bride. Provide a blank album as each guest puts her photo in it, she tells the story behind the photo. A twist on this game is for guests to tell a story about the bride and/or groom, say something from childhood, or share something guests might not know about the bride and her fiancé.
Give guests recipe cards and ask them to write their recipe for a good marriage. The bride reads them aloud and tries to guess who wrote what.
Divide guests into two teams. Provide a large drawing pad, perhaps on an easel. One person draws while her team tries to guess a wedding-related word or phrase: “honeymoon,” “elope,” “pop the question.” Have prizes for the winning team.
Toilet Tissue Wedding Gown
Divide the group into two teams, and give each team four rolls of toilet tissue. Pick two people, say the mother of the bride and mother of the groom, to be “models.” Using only the tissue, the teams design and then dress the models in a wedding gown. The bride chooses the winning dress. Or forget the contest and just dress the bride.
—Anna Post and Lizzie Post, as seen in Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette: 6th Edition. Published with permission from It Books/HarperColilns Publishers. © 2014 The Emily Post Institute.
The Emily Post Institute has been answering etiquette questions for more than ninety years, and Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette, 6th Edition, written by Emily’s great-great-granddaughters, Anna Post and Lizzie Post, will provide you with everything you need to know from past traditions to modern updates so you can approach your wedding with grace and ease.