There are so many events that will happen well in advance of your wedding day that we hope you will feel equally as excited about attending, and that includes your bridal shower. Whether you’re planning your own shower or your family and friends are planning one for you (the much more popular route!), we mentioned that the best place to start is to choose a shower theme. One of the themes we previously highlighted is the couple’s shower, and this post outlines everything you need to know about this unique shower format.
Couples’ showers are exactly what their name implies – a shower thrown in advance of the couple’s wedding that is attended by both partners rather than just the bride. So if you want to know all about how to plan a couple’s shower, this post is for you. We are in favor of couples’ showers for a complete variety of reasons, so we’re going to highlight the top five below. Plus, we’re sharing ideas for themes, games and activities, and gifts to give. Let’s dive in!
Want to plan a couple’s shower? Here’s a few reason why they’re awesome:
Celebrates the Couple
This is the idea that we come back to again and again when we think about couples’ showers. Most showers only celebrate the bride, which is wonderful in its own right. However, two people are getting married, so it’s important to include both partners in the festivities! Plus, the gifts that will be presented to the bride at her shower will be enjoyed by both partners as well. In some cases, he may even be the chef among them who has requested many of the kitchen gadgets. Shouldn’t both of the people getting married get to experience the fun of opening gifts from friends and family? We are in favor on all accounts!
Not (So) Steeped in Tradition
As we mentioned, bridal showers have always been hosted to honor the bride. They’re usually solely attended by the women closest to her, and the themes of the showers have women in mind (as they should!). Also, the games played and gifts presented are definitely more geared toward the gals. While this tradition is exciting for some, it can feel like too much for others. We love that couples’ showers offer a modern twist, a chance for both partners to share the spotlight (an important point for brides who don’t love attention or receiving lingerie in front of loved ones!), and a chance to dim the light on many decades old traditions.
Co-Ed Guest List
Outside of both partners being in attendance at the shower, the biggest shift that couples’ showers offer is a chance to broaden the guest list. Couples’ showers are typically attended by couples, so ladies and gents will both be on the guest list. You can still keep the circle of invitees limited to close friends and family (likely the same ladies who would attend a traditional bridal shower, plus their partners). The biggest plus of this type of shower is it allows everyone to bond in advance of the wedding together rather than the gents gathering separately during the bridal shower to hang out at a bar or play golf.
When you choose to plan a couple’s shower you open yourself up to a wider variety of styles, themes, and activities! You will want to keep the guest list in mind when choosing a theme for the couple’s shower, so think in broader terms! Consider opting for a backyard barbecue that will encourage everyone to relax and unwind. Gather at the beach for a day out together or spend the afternoon hanging by the pool. You could also create a smaller guest list and still indulge in a class that will allow the group to cook, bake, or create cocktails together. The key is to choose a theme that doesn’t lean too far in the direction of feminine (i.e: skip floral arranging or hosting a tea party).
Great Way to Gather
Outside of simply celebrating the couple, couples’ showers represent a wonderful opportunity for your closest friends and family to gather together in advance of your wedding. Families can meet, friends can put faces with names, and everyone will feel more at ease on your wedding day because they have already spent time together. A couple’s shower is also a great party to consider if you would like to skip an engagement party in favor of an event that will ask your guests to get together closer to your wedding day rather than days or weeks after you have gotten engaged.
Things to Keep in Mind when Planning a Couple’s Shower
Below are the items you’ll want to keep in mind if you want to plan a couple’s shower that’s fun and enjoyable for all who attend. We like to think of these as the “three Gs”!
Typically, bridal shower games are geared toward the gals, so we recommend skipping them altogether. But, you can definitely still inject friendly competition into a couple’s shower! In fact, we recommend it because games are a great way for guests to get to know each other. Think about playing game show style games, like Jeopardy or Family Feud, or plan a board game night with a plan to play party games, like Charades, Pictionary, or Heads Up. You can also choose backyard game classics, or plan a co-ed field day!
The hallmark of any shower is the gifts! When choosing what to give, be mindful of the audience (i.e.: ladies and gents will be in attendance!), so we recommend sticking with the couple’s registry that they created together. If you want to gift the bride (or groom!) something specific that you don’t want the entire group to see, pull her or him aside separately.
We’ve mentioned this many times now, but the key to planning a great couple’s shower is to invite couples! The mix of guests (and genders!) is what makes them fun. But, don’t shy away from inviting family and friends who are not married or in a relationship. Single guests can and should attend!
Are you planning to host a couple’s shower? Have you attended a couple’s shower? Let us know what makes you most excited about this type of party!
Editor’s note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more pandemic wedding resources here.