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Old 02-01-2003, 02:03 PM   #1
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Weddings

Does anyone know who is responsible for throwing a bridal shower and bachelorette party for a wedding? Is the opus on the maid of honor?

my friend is getting married this fall and she just informed me, her maid of honor, she is inviting 50 people to the bridal shower. This translates into at least $1000 for me.






I absolutely love my friend, but there is no way i can afford or justify this. I'm so upset and nervous, I have to call her (no answer right now) and tell her this isn't plausible for me. We were just notified last week at work that there are two rounds of layoffs coming up- one on this monday & another in March, and then another in September... so my financial status isn't even stable.

I'm just, very much in shock & upset. I love my friend a lot and I am NOT one to ever be stingy but ... this is incomprehensible to me. Anyone ever go through this before??

*upset*
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Old 02-01-2003, 02:43 PM   #2
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Hmm, haven't really had to deal with this from your position - but almost all the wedding showers I have been to have been given/hosted by extended family of either the bride or the groom, ie the aunts. Heck, I've even been to few where it's technically been put on (financed) by the mother of the bride of groom, but the invitations say 'hosted by Aunt Rose' or whatever - I'm still suspicious that that's what happened for my shower. It's supposed to be tacky if it's one of the mothers of the couple 'begging' for gifts for their kids.
Your friend may be getting this idea from one of those very traditional wedding planning books, but honestly pretty much anything goes nowadays. I would tell her about the $$/job situation and say that you'd love to do whatever physical help you can (ie writing out shower invitations, coming up with games, decorating the place it will be at, cleaning up, etc) but that you just can't financially take on doing the entire shower. If she's a true friend she won't get bent out of shape over tradition and understand where you're coming from
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Old 02-01-2003, 02:43 PM   #3
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The maid of honor usually throws one of the bridal showers. I threw the family shower for my sister-in-law and one of the other bridesmaids did the one for friends. Talk to your friend and see if maybe you could siplt up the showers. If you're still stuck with throwing one shower for 50 people, I don't think there's anything wrong with asking his and her family and other bridal party members to pitch in.
As for bachelorette parties, usually the maid of honor plans it but invited guests chip in.
Good luck with this and with your job!
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Old 02-01-2003, 02:56 PM   #4
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OOOoo yeah forgot about bachelorette party - yeah usually done by the girls in the bridal party - but you can do something like go out to eat, everyone buys their own dinner, then go to a club, everyone does their own cover/drinks etc. That's how they've gone at the few I've been to. You could also look into hosting a "Passion Party" aka a "Surprise Party" - these are like Tupperware parties but they sell, uh, 'romantic' items. You'd prolly have to do a search to find someone that does it in your area, maybe look online with 'Passion Party' + your city to see if anyone is a distributor in your area.
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Old 02-01-2003, 03:03 PM   #5
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Helping coordinate and hosting the bridal shower are two different things. From my recollection of wedding etiquete, you should contact the bride's Mom if the bride has a list of invitees.
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Old 02-01-2003, 03:32 PM   #6
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I'm confused. Why do you have to pay for anything? Arent you just supposed to help plan it?

I was a bridesmaid at my friends wedding and I dont recall the maid of honer paying for anything.

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Old 02-01-2003, 03:59 PM   #7
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I think the maid of honor is supposed to pay for the shower but my maid of honor and I split the cost between us. I think I bought the food and she bought the decorations and the invitations, etc. She was a student at the time I didn't feel right letting her pay for everything.

I have been to a few bridal showers held at restaurants and we were asked to pay a set amount to cover our meals and drinks, which I had no problem with.

I didn't have a bachelorette party but I have been to quite a few and we were always asked to pay for our own meals, drinks, hotel rooms, etc.

Don't be afraid to speak up and let the bride know your concerns...she should understand. In my opinion, spending $1000 for a bridal shower is not justified at all and I wouldn't do it, even if money wasn't a concern.
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Old 02-01-2003, 04:20 PM   #8
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Geez, $1000? You can get away with much less than that for a bridal shower.

First, I was a bride's maid and split the price of the shower with the maid of honor so if you're not the only member of the bridal party, split it with them.

Second, have the shower at your house or her house. Don't go rent something out somewhere. Find cheap decorations -- pink paper is cheaper than that crappy wedding printed stuff. You don't need a sit down dinner. appetizers are fine and much cheaper.

overall, you can share the price with someone else and you can make it cheap. 50 people does seem a bit excessive though. If she is invited extended family, you should talk to her parents and the fiance's parents about getting a little funding.
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Old 02-01-2003, 04:40 PM   #9
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I'm assuming I'm paying for it all as I'm planning it all.. that's just how it happened, I think my friend assumed the MOH does all that stuff. She told me what she wanted for her bachelorette party, etc.

For 50 people, even if it's $10 a head, that's $500. JUST for food. Not counting renting the room, invitations, center pieces, thank-you-for-coming gifts. For 50 people I'd be lucky to get it for under $800.

As for having it at my apartment, we can barely fit 20 people here.

As for having it at my parent's place, it is way to hot in the middle of August to have it at my parent's. There's not enough room inside for 50 people (plus no AC) and if we rent a tent (like my parents did for my graduation parties) that's starting off at $400.

I just don't see a feasible way to do this unless that number is cut down in half. I'm going to volunteer to host 25 people and maybe her mom can do another party for her relatives, but I can't do 50, I just can't justify that much money. I was thinking $3-400, not $1000.

I'm just so upset about having to call her, I don't want to seem cheap or offend her, but this is way, way unrealistic.
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Old 02-01-2003, 04:43 PM   #10
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Wedding costs are outrageous. I don't want to put any of my friends in that situation. I'm leaning towards an alternative marriage option that I whipped up.
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Old 02-01-2003, 05:45 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by oliveu2cm
I'm assuming I'm paying for it all as I'm planning it all.. that's just how it happened, I think my friend assumed the MOH does all that stuff. She told me what she wanted for her bachelorette party, etc.

For 50 people, even if it's $10 a head, that's $500. JUST for food. Not counting renting the room, invitations, center pieces, thank-you-for-coming gifts. For 50 people I'd be lucky to get it for under $800.

As for having it at my apartment, we can barely fit 20 people here.

As for having it at my parent's place, it is way to hot in the middle of August to have it at my parent's. There's not enough room inside for 50 people (plus no AC) and if we rent a tent (like my parents did for my graduation parties) that's starting off at $400.

I just don't see a feasible way to do this unless that number is cut down in half. I'm going to volunteer to host 25 people and maybe her mom can do another party for her relatives, but I can't do 50, I just can't justify that much money. I was thinking $3-400, not $1000.

I'm just so upset about having to call her, I don't want to seem cheap or offend her, but this is way, way unrealistic.

This is so WRONG. I have never heard of a maid of honor footing this kind of bill. A bridal shower is not planned by the bride, it's planned by the MOH, who generally gives a shower according to what she can afford. I don't know what else to tell you at this point except your idea about the splitting the guest list is a good one.

In my experience, the MOH gives a shower that inlcudes the bridal party and a close friends of the bride...the bride's family usually give one that involves extended family.

Tell your friend just what you've told us here...and don't worry about looking cheap or offending her...be honest now before things get out of hand.

<---you're gonna need plenty of these
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Old 02-01-2003, 08:37 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Bono's American Wife


Tell your friend just what you've told us here...and don't worry about looking cheap or offending her...be honest now before things get out of hand.

<---you're gonna need plenty of these
ditto that
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Old 02-02-2003, 12:24 AM   #13
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well of course I turned up in this thread, cause I love romance and weddings and all

but sweetheart, olive, they should be joyous and about love...
not causing you so much concern already and feeling obliged to spend your life.
You must be a dear friend of the bride-to-be for her to ask you to be part of the bridal party, especially maid of honour ( I was my best friend's only bridesmaid, I had to be MATRON of honour...at 26 y.o...... MATRON!!!!)
So be honest and tell her you love her, you wish the best for her in her marriage and what you can realistically afford. I hope she is open to some new/more economical ideas. The divide between rich and poor is ever increasing and no one should be made to feel they have to be up to other people's expectations.
The gals....and boys here( I'm thinking of how cool DrWho's ideas were about icelle's hair recently ) will enjoy helping you with this. We're all a bunch of lovers , not fighters, I feel, I hope.

I can't really relate to her expectations. Australia , especially rural Australia, where I grew up and live is very in to doing things with love , fun, style and what the circumstances allow.
The past couple of decades have seen a growing pressure on people to conform to a standard set by .....who I'd like to know. Head up girl, you won't seem cheap,that's not possible with a true friend, she may even thank you for teaching her about something about expectations. She is going to be a wife soon after all eh?
I feel for you and wish I could be more helpful...all I can do is wish you love and luck.
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Old 02-02-2003, 01:40 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by oliveu2cm
I'm assuming I'm paying for it all as I'm planning it all.. that's just how it happened, I think my friend assumed the MOH does all that stuff. She told me what she wanted for her bachelorette party, etc.

For 50 people, even if it's $10 a head, that's $500. JUST for food. Not counting renting the room, invitations, center pieces, thank-you-for-coming gifts. For 50 people I'd be lucky to get it for under $800.

As for having it at my apartment, we can barely fit 20 people here.

As for having it at my parent's place, it is way to hot in the middle of August to have it at my parent's. There's not enough room inside for 50 people (plus no AC) and if we rent a tent (like my parents did for my graduation parties) that's starting off at $400.

I just don't see a feasible way to do this unless that number is cut down in half. I'm going to volunteer to host 25 people and maybe her mom can do another party for her relatives, but I can't do 50, I just can't justify that much money. I was thinking $3-400, not $1000.

I'm just so upset about having to call her, I don't want to seem cheap or offend her, but this is way, way unrealistic.
Please don't make yourself sick over this! If you're planning on August, you have six months to get this together. You do seriously need to talk to your friend about this, though. Next, talk to her family and the other bridesmaids. When I threw my sister-in-law's shower, everyone was so nice and offered to bring stuff, help out, whatever. The day went really well, I didn't go bankrupt, we had like 20-something people there and I got it together in a couple of weeks. It can be done! You will make it!

Oh, and just because she wants to invite 50 people, that doesn't mean 50 people will show (silver lining).
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Old 02-02-2003, 06:25 AM   #15
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Crap girl, this sounds like more preparation than the actual wedding!

Best advice I can give you is to call the MOB. MOB's are a bride's nightmare, but the wedding party's best friend.
Tell her, if it is your jopb to do this arranging, that you are throwing the bridal party at HER house. Providing she A. has a house B. is into the MOB duties. Even if she isn't, the bride's mother has a duty. And usually loves doing all this anyway.
Then, arrange a simple bbq/smorgasboard lunch/dinner. Lots of easy to make and prepare food. For 50 people the cost should not escalate too much. MOB should volunteer to help you with costs anyway, as she will feel like the host and it is not rare for a MOB to host it anyway. Ask the rest of the female bridal party if they can contribute a few dollars. $50 from each or so will help enormously. Go to cheap shops for the gifts for the games etc if you are doing that, make them novelty fun things rather than quality when you are talking 50 people. It is not necessary. Thankyou for attending gifts are stupid and I reckon you should forget about them. For 50 people it is asking too much of you. Its not like this is the wedding itself, its only a party. One of many parties for a buildup to a 6 hour wedding. Hardly seems worth the fuss does it? I'm not scroogy either Olive, but I hate waste and unnecesary fuss. Your post is bringing back nightmares about my own wedding planning. My dearest mother and grandmother are traditionalists and could not believe the things I left out for mine. But I was paying for it, so they had to just swallow it.
Plan it carefully, be thrifty where you can (by this I mean no caterers, no hiring of a tent or jukebox or fancy party lights - instead decorate with ballons, streamers, scatter confetti around the floor where you will be inside), ask for financial help from others involved, like the bride's family. Its not rude and not really hard to do, go to them and during the visit start discussing the party and let them know you cant go overboard as you simply dont have the money. It will go from there. No one expects you to foot this entire bill. Planning such a 'Do' will and should be fun. it will be once you arrange the costs with people.
Good luck!
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