A bridal shower is one of those moments a bride looks forward to the second wedding planning begins, and with social distancing regulations still in place, so many brides-to-be are devastated that their showers are having to be cancelled. While a virtual bridal shower will never be the same as one held in person, there is one major silver lining to planning an online shower and that is more guests may be able to “attend”.
So where do you begin?
First you will need to officially decide on the date you want the shower held. Plan your virtual shower on the same day, if that is possible. If there is not enough time between now and then, schedule for a few weeks out. That way your loved ones have time to get their cards and gifts sent. By giving more time, they can plan out how they will access your virtual event!
Design Your Invitations
Now it is time to design and order your invitations! If you already have your bridal shower invites and have had to cancel your in-person celebrations, send a virtual invitation to let your guests know that the shower will now be held online only. There are so many virtual invites that can be sent via email or text, that can really create hype and excitement for everyone. We know that not every individual on your guest list will have access to the internet. If that is the case, give them a call during the shower or record the shower and show them after social distancing guidelines have been lifted.
Here a few beautiful designs created by Zazzle! Sign up and shop on Zazzle and receive 20% off your order.
Utilize Your Registry
Utilize what your wedding registry has to offer. They are free and easy to set up online and you can register for anything under the sun! Make sure to include the link to your registry on your virtual invite and allow an easy way for guests to shop without having to leave their home. Once your guest finds the perfect gift they want to send you, they can then have it sent directly to your house. This creates a safe and easy way for them to shop for their gift and still be able to be included in all of the bridal shower fun. Visit The Knot now to get started!
Set Up Your Video Chat Room
You are doing great! Now time choose your host! This individual can be a member in your bridal party, a friend, a relative, or really any one you decide on. They will be hosting your virtual shower from an online video chat room. As you may have heard, Zoom is the best place for this. It is free for up to 100 guests! If you decide to record the shower, you can on zoom for $14.99. Visit Zoom to learn more.
Don't Forget The Decorations
While you can’t actually all be in the same room, you can still create a very bridal inspired backdrop that showcases your theme! Get creative with it by using garland, balloons, flowers, etc.. See some ideas below and visit Etsy to shop the perfect decor styles for any bride.
If you would prefer a virtual background, you make customized backdrops on Canva for free. The ideas are unlimited with how creative you can be. Visit Canva and have some fun with it!
Virtual Game Time
Bridal shower games are quite easy to take virtual. Etsy has wonderful virtual game sheet downloads that you can purchase or create exciting budget friendly games such as scavenger hunts or “name that tune”. One example is to have all your guests grab their purse and have the bride call out different things that they might have inside. The one with the most items wins a prize. The prizes can be virtual gift cards or if you want to mail them little gift baskets, that is fun too!
Treats and Drinks
There are many unique ways to still enjoy celebratory toasts or delectable snacks. One way is to have a drive-by for your local guests. If they want to bring your gift and drop it off to you, still practicing social distancing of course, have a goodie bag and mini champagne bottle ready for them to take home. Schedule this for the day before or a few hours before your scheduled virtual start time. When you are ready to begin. Make sure each guest has their toast glass ready!
For the guest who cannot drive over and are mailing your gift. Give them the option to pick up some champagne and their favorite bridal shower snack to prepare for all the fun that is about to begin. Depending on your budget and the services around, you may also have alcohol and treats delivered to each guest.
Create Your Itinerary
Plan on your shower to be approximately 1-2 hours in length, you may have to allow more time if the bride is opening gifts on camera. If you have a group who LOVES to mingle, this may extend the shower duration. That is just fine, because there are NO RULES! Just have your host give mention to everyone when the official bridal shower festivities are over and any guests who may have other things to attend to can then sign off. This allows plenty of time to visit virtually with loved ones and more time to celebrate you.
Guests begin to “arrive”. Give them about 10-15 minutes to join. Have the chat started a little bit before scheduled start time.
WELCOME- Your host will then welcome all guest who have tuned in and introduce the bride. The bride (you) will say hello to guest and give thanks for them taking the time to virtually share excitement in celebrating with you.
WORDS FOR THE BRIDE- This is a great time for the host to ask all guests what advice or exciting words they wish to share with the bride. This could even be a fun memory or wonderful story.
Chat- This is a great time to allow your guests to prepare their snacks, get their toast glasses ready, or use the restroom. By giving time, this will allow your guests to be excited and prepared for the gift opening that is about to happen! *Remember to stay on schedule for there will be more mingling time at the end.*
Gifts- The bride will now open her gifts on camera, taking time to announce who each gift is from and open it slowly. She will then explain what it is, thank the loved one, and continue on. The host’s job here is to listen to the bride by writing down each guest and the gift they sent.
Games- View the game section above for ideas of unique and exciting games to share with your guests. There should be a good 30 minutes for games scheduled out of your duration time. When the games have come to a conclusion announce the winners and let them know what they have won.
Toast- When all the laughs and fun of the games have come to an end, it’s time to grab that drink and share a toast in celebration for the bride. The host, or anyone who wishes to, can say the toast to the bride. Each guest will join in and raise there glass to celebrate her and the most exciting time of her life. *Add some confetti at home to create more fun when everyone yells “CHEERS”!)
Closing Words- The host will now say thank you to each guest that tuned in to celebrate the bride and let the guests know that the shower festivities are complete. The guests will now have the option to mingle or send their love to the bride and sign off.
Thank You Cards
Just like any bridal shower, there should be thank you cards sent out. Whether they are virtually sent or mailed, you can personalize the message to each guest thanking them for their gift and if they were able to attend your celebration.
A fun way to get addresses is to have them sent during the video chat, or set up a virtual guestbook. There is no limit to what you can have at your shower.
Find stunning thank you cards on Minted to send your guests your love and appreciation.
Don’t forget your return address stamp, it will make life so much easier! If a trip to the post office doesn’t sound inviting to you right now, you can purchase your stamps online here and have them shipped directly to your door.
Happy planning and social distance partying!
Love and Celebration are not cancelled!
Your PBS Friends