An Open House bridal shower, as the name implies, is an event that is open for guests to attend during a certain time-frame. This is sometimes called a Come-and-Go, or a Drive-by shower. The area you're from, and personal opinion, will influence what you think of this type of party.
Some areas of the country, look at this style of event as a new take on an old idea. In other areas, this is a totally new concept. So, if you're thinking about this kind of gathering, the following are some things to consider:
• Guests who have to work that day, may be able to attend and stop by for a short time.
• If the couple is having a small destination wedding, there may be an extra large shower list. This may be a solution.
• Someone with a small home, who wants to invite a large number of guests, may feel this solves their problem.
• It may be necessary to plan the party around a major holiday, for instance Christmas. This would allow guests who have a busy schedule during that time, to make a visit.
• There may be more one-on-one time with the guest of honor.
• Some guests will consider this just a way to collect gifts.
• There will be people who feel this doesn't have the same meaning as a traditional shower.
• All guests may not see each other. This might be important if family members and friends from the two sides haven't met yet.
If you've decided this is the way to go, consider the following tips.
1. Explain in your invitation, that you are planning an Open House bridal shower.
The invitation should include:
• Guest of honor's name
• Time (at least four hours is recommended). Let guests know they are welcome to stay for all or any part of that time.
• Hostess name and phone number
• RSVP...it helps your plans to have a count. Specify whether you want a response from those who will be coming, or for regrets only. Also, give them a date by which to respond.
2. Keep your food and drinks simple. A buffet works well.
Have someone designated to check food items and make sure the punch bowl is refilled, often.
You want guests who arrive later to feel they are being treated as well as earlier guests.
3. Use Open House bridal shower paper goods to simplify your plans. Make sure to have plenty on hand. Guests often misplace a plate or cup, then grab a new one. Also, have someone clear the empty plates and cups every so often, to keep the place appealing to new guests.
4. Remember to have music playing.
5. Gifts may be opened as the guests arrive, then placed in a common area for all to see.
6. You may want to give an open house bridal shower favor.
Leave them by the door for guests to take as they are leaving.