Co-ed wedding showers became popular in the early 1980s, and started out mostly as theme build-a-bar parties for the lucky couple. Each invitee was assigned a specific bottle of booze to bring, plus whatever other little nifty bar necessity they’d deemed invaluable on their own bar at home. Over the years, the themes have broadened and lots of his and hers pre-wedding events are celebrated with both the bride and groom present to open gifts together with all of their friends.
(main image are same sex wedding supplies from www.pinkandturquoise.co.uk)
I’m starting out this blog talking about co-ed showers because I think it might help gay couples who are wondering whether or not to have their showers together. There seem to be some unanswered etiquette questions and I’m here, as the self-appointed “Queen of Gay Wediquette” to demystify a couple common things that come up.
Here’s the deal. You’re either both brides, or you’re both grooms, and either way, your friends and family want to pre-celebrate you upcoming big day. How you go about doing so is entirely up to you, but whether you do everything together is something that you two can decide and that shouldn’t bother anybody else one way or the other. You might want to have some separate showers, and some together parties – it’s about what’s going to be the most fun for both of you. Of course, both of you should have some sort of celebration. Keep it fair. But you don’t have to celebrate everything together.
Perhaps a lesbian couple might want to have separate bridal showers if somebody wants to throw a lingerie shower for one of the brides. I had a really fun lingerie shower that wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun with my husband in the room to see what surprise lie in store for our honeymoon. So I think that gay couples ought to keep that aspect of things in mind too. Don’t you want there to be some surprises?
And whom to invite to which event is always a concern – same rules apply for gay weddings as straight weddings. You may have several events, but you can’t invite the same guest list to more than one shower. Looks like you’re gift hunting and we can’t have that! If several friends offer to give showers or parties, accept all offers and keep the guest counts low on the invite lists. That helps the hosts keep the costs under control too, and they’ll thank you for it. I cannot tell you how many times in my early 20s I cringed when I received a bridal shower guest list from a friend with 35-plus guests on it. Those parties are expensive to do properly and 15 to 20 is a far more appropriate number of invitees. For real.
In deciding whether to have shared events or special “just for you” events separately, consider what will be the most fun for you and your loved ones. And remember, a wedding event shouldn’t be hosted by the wedding couple or their immediately family, technically speaking. Let a family friend offer to host, or an extended family member. You and your parents are technically supposed to be the “guests of honor.”
Until next time, happy wedding planning from Weddings in Vieques (www.weddingsinvieques.com) and Weddings in Culebra (www.weddingsinculebra.com)!
Sandy Malone, guest blogger with Pridezillas.com, is the owner of Weddings in Vieques, a full-service destination wedding planning company based on Vieques Island, seven miles off the coast of Puerto Rico. She and her team have planned and executed almost 400 weddings and commitment ceremonies in the Spanish Virgin Islands. Sandy is a veteran event planner from Washington, DC, with years of experience planning large and small weddings, press conference, and corporate and political events. She has planned countless events on Vieques Island, beginning with her own wedding back in 2004. Since that time, her professional staff has executed large and small weddings of all styles, including elopements, vow renewals and fabulously posh events at multi-million dollar waterfront villas. She has also planned family reunions, destination baby showers, corporate retreats and a variety of other events for clients from all over the United States and Canada. Sandy is also the owner of Weddings in Culebra and Flowers in Vieques (a full service floral and décor firm). Visit her at www.weddingsinvieques.com.
For ideas or to find same sex shower decorations and cards, check out these favorite pridezillas.com pros: