Q: My mom has offered to host my bridal shower, but a friend recently told me that it would be considered bad etiquette if she did. Is my friend right? And if she is, WHO should be the one hosting my bridal shower? -Margaret
A: Technically your friend IS right. It used to be considered bad etiquette for immediate family members (such as mothers and sisters) to host bridal showers for fear that people would think the bride was trying to solicit gifts via her relatives. Sounds kind of crazy, right? Well, thankfully that old rule is becoming more and more passé these days. While traditionally your Maid of Honor is supposed to be the one to host your bridal shower (with the help of your bridesmaids), these days it’s not uncommon for family members to contribute or even host the event, especially considering that bridal shower gifts are totally commonplace now.
While technically your mother can host the bridal shower on her own, I personally think it’s better if your bridesmaids or a family friend can take over the traditional hosting duties (and keep in mind that if your bridesmaids are a relative, such as your sister, that is totally fine as well). With that being said, there’s absolutely no reason why your mother can’t be a co-host, or choose to contribute financially or in other ways. For instance, my sister and two sister-in-laws (who were also my bridesmaids) along with a family friend threw my shower. While they paid for the shower, my mom created and mailed out the shower invitations and made the restaurant reservations. Even though she wasn’t the technical host of the party, she was still very much a part of it, which was nice!
The bottom line? If your mom really wants to host your shower and nobody else is clamoring for the job, then it would absolutely be acceptable for her to host it. However, if your Maid of Honor or several of your other bridesmaids want to contribute to the planning or cost, then perhaps your mom could share the event with them as a co-host, or take the backseat and contribute in other ways that she can. I would ask her opinion on what she would like to do, and I would bring up the tradition of having a Maid of Honor or bridesmaids host the event and see if she has any ideas. The more you can include her–whether she’s hosting the event or not–the better!
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