Frugal Bridal Shower Games

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A bridal shower is a gift-giving party held for a bride-to-be in anticipation of her wedding. The custom originated in the 1890s and is today most common in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Even though tradition dictates that a bridal shower should be held two months to two weeks before the wedding, I don’t see any reason why it can’t be planned before the two-month mark. While having a shower six months before the wedding may not be improper, it does seem a bit early for practical reasons.

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Preparation

  1. Pick a date.

    Showers should be held about two weeks to two months before the wedding. Earlier is better.

  2. Compile a guest list.

    As the host, you should set the number of guests you’re comfortable inviting. If the shower isn’t a surprise, consult with the bride about whom to include.

  3. Choose a theme.

    But only if you wish.

  4. Determine the location.

    It could be your home or a nearby venue.

  5. Buy or make an invitation.

    Is the shower a surprise? Be sure to clearly state that. You may also want to include registry information.

Four to Six Weeks Before the Shower

  1. Send invitations.
  2. Decide on decorations and centerpieces.

    One idea: Fill Champagne glasses with jelly beans in complementary flavors (coconut and pineapple, lemon and lime)—edible proof that two together can be better than each alone.

  3. Plan a menu, if necessary.

    For a light lunch, try sweet pea soup, tea sandwiches, and lemon squares.

  4. Prepare an activity.

    You could assemble a “bow hat,” yes, but think about other options. Consider hiring a fortune-teller or a tarot card reader, or even giving everyone temporary tattoos.

The Week Before the Shower

  1. Buy a gift.

    A good rule of thumb: Spend no less than $30 and no more than $50.

The Week of the Shower

  1. Shop for and prepare food, if necessary.

The Day of the Shower

  1. Make a gift-opening area.

    Under the guest of honor’s seat, place scissors, large trash bags, a notebook and a pen to record gifts and their givers, and sticky labels to help keep similar gifts (like platters or glassware) straight.

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Here is a list of frugal bridal shower game ideas for the bridal shower you’re throwing!

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Cost-cutting Wedding Themes

Saturday is the most common day to have a wedding, therefore it’s the most expensive day. Normally, most of your guests will have jobs on weekdays, so mornings and afternoons on a weekday isn’t really an option if you want guests there at all. What can you do? Here are some fun and frugal ideas and days to throw your wedding where everyone can attend.

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Friday Night Glamorous Cocktail Wedding. Have your guests unwind after a long work week at a cocktail wedding. Drinks, hors d’oeuvres, dancing and music can help guests relax and get them into a good mood for the weekend. Not to mention, this leaves the entire weekend for your honeymoon!

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Sunday Champagne Brunch Wedding. Afternoons and evenings are the most popular reservation times, so why not do it in the morning? Start during the brunch hour so you don’t have to get up at the crack of dawn to get ready. Have a gorgeous breakfast feast for your guests along with mimosas to celebrate the occasion!

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Monday evening happy hour. Have guests wind down from those strenuous mondays at the office by enjoying a meal, a drink, cake and dancing at your wedding!

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Tuesday night fairy lights. Have your wedding in your backyard on a tuesday night and hang white christmas lights along any trees, fence, poles, etc. to illuminate your soiree. Your guests will believe they are in the presence of magic!

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Wednesday evening feast. Have a great hump-day by serving your dinner buffet-style. This saves on catering as guests self-serve, and you can be sure that guests will get exactly what they want. Donate the leftover food to homeless shelters, or bring it with you on the honeymoon so you never have to pay for room service!

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Thursday night under the stars. Have your reception at a public park on a clear night where you can dance the night away under the stars. Bonus if it’s in August, where shooting stars happen every year!

How to choose your wedding hashtag

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Wedding hashtags are used for when couples opt to have an app where guests can upload photos they take of the wedding. Here are steps you can take to help you decide on the best wedding hashtag for you!

Your first names. The most popular hashtag used for weddings are the first names, like #JohnandJanesWedding. It’s not always available, so switch it up like #JaneandJohnsWedding #WeddingofJaneandJohn or #WeddingofJohnandJane

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Last names. You can always include last names in your hashtag. #MrandMrSmithsWedding or #MrandMrSmithsWeddingDay #WeddingofMrandMrSmith #SmithWedding

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Wedding year. Use the year of the wedding to break it down easier, since there may already be wedded couples with your first names, even last names if they’re common enough. Examples: #JaneandJosephine2017 #JosephineandJane2017 #JandJwedding2017

Wedding date. This narrows it down pretty well so guests can find the posts easier. #20072017wedding #wedding20072017 #june20th2017wedding #june20th2017 #wedding20thjune2017

Quotes or saying. You can have a quote that you often use and use that as a hashtag. Examples: #rideordie #alwaysandforever #happilyeveraftermore #foreverandinfinity #toinfinityandbeyond #firstloves #truelovesforever #loveatfirstsight

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Initials. If Danielle and George Lautner are getting married, you can use #DLGWedding as a hashtag. Get creative!

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How to choose a budget-friendly suit

Brides aren’t the only ones who want to look sharp for their big day. Grooms also want to dress their best to look good for their bride. Not every couple is rolling around in cash, and less is more when it comes to wedding budgets. You’ve got everything down, the venue, the food, the dress….but what about the suit?

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Know your measurements. Have your wife, or someone who knows how to sew, take your measurements. The most important will be your waist and hips so you will be able to identify your proper size.

Know your wedding colors. Do you know the accents and bright colors you will incorporate into your wedding? Do you know the color of the bridesmaid’s dresses, the centerpieces, the floral bouquet? If you have wedding colors in mind, it’s a good idea to have at least your tie match up with one of the main colors.

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Check out the salvation army. Equipped with plenty of clothing for sale at a discounted price, the Salvation Army can be a good place to start. Browse the formal section, pick out the suits that you like, and go try them on in the changing room. It’s important to look for the one that you like best, but also one that fits you well.

Look into Goodwill. It’s always a great idea to browse the formal section of Goodwill to find affordable threads for your big day. You can even take your groomsmen shopping there with you to pick out affordable suits.

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Peek into classified ads. A lot of grooms, or even teenagers will sell their suits after it’s been hanging out in the closet for years. Check Craigslist, Kijiji, and more to find a suit that fits your style.

Ask relatives. Maybe you want to wear your father’s wedding suit to your big day. Maybe your brother, uncle, or first cousin has a suit that they never wear. Ask to borrow it for your big day. You can always make it your own with a different boutonniere, and a different tie or undershirt.

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Borrow from friends. If you have workout buddies, chances are they are close to the same size as you. Ask your friends if you can peek at their blazers and trousers. See if they are willing to lend you their duds for the day.

A blast from the past. If you can still fit into it, bust out your suit(s) that you wore on your prom night(s). High schools usually held a multitude of dances including semi-formal, homecoming, junior and senior proms.

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Go casual. Get a button-down shirt and a good pair of trousers. If you want to mix it up, you can add in suspenders and a bow-tie or regular tie. You can also use a blazer but not a tie. The options are endless! If you’re having a beach wedding, you can even go barefoot.

Mix and match. You can even mix-and-match, as long as they are in the same color palate such as pastel or earth tones. Black and white go with everything, so they are always safe bets. Have fun and create a unique look.

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Choosing your wedding website

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A way to save money on paper invitations, wedding programs and placing cards is to just go viral! Trust in technology and go with a wedding website. If you aren’t shy from the public eye, have one place to keep all of your wedding details, events, contacts and more.

So many wedding sites offer to make your own customized wedding website. How can you choose which one would make the best? Here’s how!

List what you want. Do you want a website that offers an RSVP option? Features photos of you? Lists the wedding party? Make a list so you can check off which different wedding websites offer which.

Content you want. What do you want to put on your website? Do you want to list the story of how you met? Your engagement photos? Your wedding budget and list of expenses? Make a list so you can break down which websites allow you to do which.

List your priorities. Make a list of the things you want on your website that take priority top to bottom. Example: 1. Photos, 2. Events, 3. RSVP, 4. Custom background, 5. Hotel & attractions details, 6. Backstory. That way, if you find a website that offers your first 3 choices, you will know to pick that one if other websites only offer numbers two and three.

Browse wedding websites. Look at the different options they offer you without cost. Some good options are TheKnot, Minted, MyWedding, WeddingWire, ewedding, and OffbeatBride.

Ask your married friends. They may have a specific wedding website that they use, and recommend. Having already been through it, they will have helpful advice on how to choose the right one for you.

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Original photo source here.

Second photo source here.

How to honor lost loved ones on a budget

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People pass away all the time. Perhaps your father couldn’t walk you down the aisle because he died. Perhaps your brother or sister couldn’t be in your wedding party due to an untimely passing. Perhaps your best friend won’t be able to make the wedding due to an accident. Either way, here are some frugal ways to honor a lost loved one during your ceremony or reception.

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Light a candle. During the ceremony, if you are lighting a unity candle, you can also have  a small candle next to the unity candle and light it after in honor of your departed loved one.

You can also have a candle lit, or light one, at the reception somewhere set aside just for that purpose. You can also put the candle on the buffet table or cake table.

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Reserve a chair. Put a photo of the departed guest in a chair where they would have sat, or a sign with their name, or something that belongs to them. Guests will respect the spot and leave it untouched. Are you a believer of spirits, souls or ghosts? Your loved ones will surely be present “in spirit”.

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Have a moment of silence. During the ceremony, you can always ask your officiant to include a moment of silence for your loved ones. The guests can bow their heads and think on the dearly departed.

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Dedicate a song to them. You can have a song play during the dancing part of the reception in memory of the dearly departed. The family members of these people can then dance in memory of them.

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Say a prayer. For those who are religious or spiritual, you can read a prayer in their memory. You can also have the officiant recite, “let us pray”, along with reciting a prayer picked out by the bridegroom in their memory.

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Got more ideas to share with us? Be sure to comment below this post and tell us all about it!

How to have a gluten-free wedding

Have a gluten allergy, or going gluten-free for health reasons? It’s perfectly reasonable and possible to have a wedding with gluten-free foods. How, you ask? Let me show you!

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Let the baker know. Let the people making your wedding cake that you want a gluten-free wedding cake and icing. It’s very important to mention that to the baker, because bakers usually make cakes with gluten.

Let your caterer know. If you hired a caterer or a restaurant or private cooks to make the food for your wedding, let them know that you want gluten-free treats for your wedding guests.

Look up recipes. It’s important to do your research when starting this diet in the first place. Bookmark your favorite recipes, informational websites, and substitutes you can use.

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Potluck. Let guests know that you are gluten-free. Give them a list of foods that aren’t gluten-free approved to make sure that there are no mishaps. Provide a list of drinks that are gluten-friendly as well.