A bachelorette party can be a great way to celebrate with your friends, have some fun, and take a break from wedding planning before the big day. Whether you are all going on a trip together or are having a night on the town, here is a breakdown of planning dos and don’ts.
The event usually happens around two months before the wedding but can be thrown within weeks of it, too—just not the night before, unless you want to relive The Hangover.
Whether a cocktail party, a night at a club, or a weekend at the shore, the maid of honor is most often the party planner, but anyone can pull together this girls’ gathering. Everyone pays her own way, with the hostess covering the cost for the bride (unless ’maids or invitees are asked to chip in). The organizer should talk to attendees first about how much they can spend.
Whoever throws it will likely consult with you on the guest list, which should include the wedding party (minus junior ’maids), sisters, and close girlfriends. This is typically the final soirée that happens the closest to the wedding, so a relaxing escape, rather than a wild weekend, may be how you prefer to toast single life. Surprises are fun, but the host should keep your personality in mind. There’s no need to plan a raucous escapade if you would prefer an activity like relaxing at a friend’s cabin, taking a private cooking class led by a personal chef, or embarking on a ski retreat at nearby slopes.
Julia Lake, owner of Napa Valley Event Planning could not have said it better, “You primp, sip Champagne, then hit the town.”
Formal invites aren’t necessary for this event. A simple group message or email will get the job done perfectly! Lingerie is an expected bachelorette gift, says Lake. What’s not? “Something else that makes the bride feel pretty and pampered, like a gift card for a massage or a blowout,” she says. Dressing up in coordinated outfits or according to a theme can be a blast, but keep in mind any guest limitations. Not everyone can afford a planned elaborate costume for one evening. Instead try using dress code guidelines with flair like “beach babe” or “garden party goddess.”
Pen-and-paper notes—not e-mails, texts, posts, or tweets—are the only polite way to show appreciation for gifts. (Ask your MOH to help by keeping a list of who gave what.) If the hostess has been working with you on the theme, menu, and details, send her a thank-you gift in advance that could be used for the party, like a flower arrangement that can serve as a centerpiece.