AUTHOR: NADIA OF 'THE RESIDENCES CENTENNIAL PARK'
Bridal Showers, Kitchen Teas or Hen’s Parties are a memorable girl-bonding event. The designated chief organiser is honoured (and probably secretly sweating it out to plan a perfect do). Nowadays, Bridal Showers are so much more than just small talk and opening presents. A great bridal shower reflects the bride’s personality, and has a plan to get everyone involved. They are a chance to chat intimately, share advice and laugh whilst sipping drinks with great table décor and styling... oh, and who can forget a traditional game or two?!
STEP 1: HAVE A D&M WITH THE BRIDE-TO-BE
Right up, have a quick chat with the blushing Bride. Find out what she wants and who’s on the guest list. The bride-to-be may be prescriptive or completely up for anything.
Now is the time to suss out if she is open to an outdoor venue with a seaview, or a private house with a courtyard and gardens.
Think in depth about who she is, her likes, and what she enjoys in her spare time. Decide whether she’s a party gal, a girly gal, a healthy gal, etc.
Once the recon is done, it’s time to start planning. The best bridal showers are personal and tailored to the Bride.
STEP 2: DISCOVER A SECRET GARDEN LOCATION
Outdoor garden venues for Bridal Showers are trending now. A change from the over-done high-teas or a night out on the town. Gone are the days of watching a strip-tease show in a club – now, the glamorous Drag Queen is invited to the private garden party!
Booking a private house and garden venue hits the spot and gives ample opportunity for bespoke styling and decor. It’s easy to play to the garden theme – arrange a ‘Make a Flower Crown’ course, plan a picnic basket, play some lawn games, or indulge in a private yoga and spring luncheon.
Use indoor furniture in the outdoors to create beautiful moments at a garden venue. For example, take a console and style it as a drinks station and place a few lounges under a shady tree for guests seating; creativity blossoms when planning a Bridal Shower outdoors.
STEP 3: HAVE A PLAN B
Ok, you’ve decided on the garden venue for the Bridal Shower. It’s a novel idea. No one has had a garden shower, plus the idea of theming it Alice in Wonderland is high on the list. The most important thing now is to plan for a ‘what if it rains?’ moment.
Be sure to book a wet weather alternative, or outline a contingency plan at your garden venue. It’s better to be safe than sorry for bad weather.
STEP 4: TIS THE SEASON TO BE PREPARED
Remember, there’s more than just rain to think about when planning an outdoor Bridal Shower. Imagine if we could send Mother Nature a text asking for no rain or wind on the day! While we wait for technology to catch up, the best thing to do is plan for all sorts of weather.
SUMMER BRIDAL SHOWER
Check the garden space has ample shade for your guests. Think about organising cute parasols for guests. Propose a bridal shower brunch before it gets hot, or invite guests when things cool down in the afternoon.
AUTUMN & SPRING SHOWER:
These months are a great time of year for garden Bridal Showers. Enjoy celebrating amongst burnt oranges and yellows of autumn leaves, or the bright colours of flowers in bloom at Spring.
WINTER BRIDAL SHOWER
This is a wonderful time to host a Bridal Shower. The winter months are usually considered ‘off-peak’ which means venues can offer special winter rates. Bonus – we say!
Cater with warm foods, velvet tones, and have dark floral for the tables. Have fun keeping the ladies’ toasty (no one wants to be cold!) with baskets of blankets and outdoor heating. Some outdoor venues even permit contained fires to huddle around while sipping on mulled wines.
STEP 5: HAVE FUN WITH THE GARDEN THEME
Magic arrives on your doorstep when you style a garden venue.
One of our favourite garden ideas is to theme it white. A simple idea that looks fabulous against the lush and leafy natural surrounds. Cater with white sweets, white iced cupcakes, white and gold macaroons, crust-off sandwiches, and strawberries dipped in white chocolate.
Hang white lanterns and ask guests to dress in white and light tones. Make flower ice-cubes to decorate the gussets of drinks and be a DIY genius.
STEP 6: EMBRACE SPACE & PLAN A GAME
Garden venues offer much more space than traditional indoor venues. Large lawns and/or courtyard space is useful when planning bridal shower games.
Garden venues lend themselves to outdoor activities such as a private yoga class for the healthy bride-to-be or giant lawn games like outdoor chess, Jenga, lawn bowls and croquet for the competitive hen.
STEP 7: INVITE THE VIP GUEST (YEP, WE MEAN... THE VERY IMPORTANT PET!)
Garden Bridal Showers are a rare chance to invite the fur-baby too. It’s unlikely that the pooch can roam the lobby of the Shangri-La, but often, they are very welcome at a garden party venue.
Private homes and garden locations are more flexible than traditional venues and love for the paw-some pet to scurry under tables and share in the fun.
Surprise the bride-to-be with an invitation for her pooch too!
Whatever you decide to do, we wish you many wonderful bridal shower vibes!
If you enjoyed the garden party inspiration in this article, you may also enjoy the following:
AUTHOR BIO - THE RESIDENCES CENTENNIAL PARK
BESPOKE GARDEN EVENTS
Two historic homes inside Sydney’s Centennial Park, ready for bespoke garden events and accommodation. Unfortunately this business has closed, however we've chosen to keep the article as it provides wonderful inspiration for those planning an outdoor garden party.