A Guide to Hosting a Bridal Shower

Jacqueline Wells

After a long, hot summer season and a Facebook feed full of engagement announcements, it’s a good bet that you’ll be heading to (or hosting) your fair share of bridal showers in the not-so-distant future. But does the bride really need more hand towels and utensils? While her mother, in-laws or other family members will likely provide plenty of the more hum-drum and totally practical wedding gifts, a lingerie shower may be the perfect fun and flirty way to show your support as the big day approaches.

Here’s our guide to pulling off a steamy lingerie shower for your favorite bride-to-be:

Chat with the bride.

While lingerie is a common gift for the bride-to-be, your ultra-shy gal pal may quickly feel uncomfortable showing off her intimates to a group of friends or family members. A blushing bride is lovely, but a beet-red bride? Not so much. Take advantage of your pre-shower chat to nail down any other details you may need, like whether to include the groom’s sisters and what dates are best.

Choose the right place.

While many traditional showers are held at restaurants, tea rooms or spas, a lingerie shower is a bit more intimate. Find a private space, like your own home or that of a friend who will be attending, so you’re free to ooh and ahh over each sexy little number without the wait staff doing the same.

Save the date.

Whether you’re inviting a larger group with written invitations or you’re keeping things casual with a few close friends and an e-vite, get the word out early. As fall progresses and holidays approach, calendars are sure to book up quickly, and you wouldn’t want any key players missing. Aim to send invitations out about two months prior to the party.

Hash out the details.

After choosing the venue, editing the guest list, and nailing down a date, you’re down to the fun stuff. Peonies or poppies? Champagne or sangria? And what about a few cute bridal shower games? Consider about the bride’s tastes and add personal touches wherever you can. Is there a special cocktail she and her groom enjoyed on their first date? Make it at home. If you’re at a loss for what to do, consult those who have known her longest for a few ideas.

Choose your gift.

This is perhaps the most daunting task of them all. What the bride will wear during some of her most intimate moments depends on what she’s comfortable with, so consider her style and personality. A feminine but reserved girl might feel comfortable in a babydoll, while a sexy robe is a great addition to any lingerie collection. Corsets and thigh-highs are also great gifts that are a little more playful than a simple bra-and-panty set (although those are a fabulous option, too).

When it comes to planning a lingerie shower, the aim is to celebrate the bride, not embarrass her. Clear up any murky details before you make a commitment and enjoy celebrating her style, whatever that may be.