Honestly, we know that we can put our bridesmaids through a lot in the run-up to the big day. Between bridal stress meltdowns to keeping the peace between family members to running interference between you and your in-laws, it can sometimes feel like a thankless task.

With that being said, it’s time we showed our best pals a bit of gratitude. What says thank you and I appreciate you like a glitzy, fun party, just for all of you? Think about it like a reverse bridal shower. It’s also a great way to kick back, relax and have a good time before the big day, and give your bridesmaids their gifts. It’s a small token of appreciation that’ll go a long, long way.

Not sure what should go into a pre-wedding bridesmaid party? Should it be a quiet afternoon at the spa or an outdoor event that goes on all night? Don’t worry we’ve got you covered. Let’s dive in!

Dresses

What’s a party without an awesome dress code? Get your friends in on the fun and get everyone to dress up. Whether that’s dressing up in a fancy, glitzy, glamorous way, or you get them to dress up in costumes, having an element of effort going into the outfits can be a fun way to kick off your party, and get everyone excited.

Of course, you can have any theme that you like. Maybe you want to have a good old fashioned slumber party, maybe you want an Instagram worthy, Oscars-style party. You know your bridesmaids, what they like and what they don’t. This part is all about them. What would they want?

Music

Let’s be honest here, there’s no party without a banging playlist. Whether you want to get your girls together and go out with a karaoke bang, want a throwback playlist that’s going to have you throwing some serious moves, or something more chilled and relaxing that you can hang out and chat over, music helps to set the mood.

As you’ll have probably found when organizing your wedding reception entertainment, music has a profound effect on different people. So think back to some of the best nights out, house parties, and holidays that you’ve had with your bridesmaids, and tailor a playlist around that. That way, you’re sure to have some nostalgic hits.

Games

Although you might just like to have a chat and catch up with your best friends, it might be an idea to have some party games on hand in case the conversation lulls. This is a particularly good idea if some of your bridesmaids don’t know each other very well. Of course, the majority of them will be familiar with each other through pre-wedding activities but they might not be super close or social.

Some of your friends might be from childhood, high school, college, work, or your spouse’s family, so getting some fun and easygoing activities can be a great ice breaker. From the notorious “never have I ever”, to quizzes, to card games, to drinking games, depending on your guests and the vibe of the party, there are a lot of options that you can choose from.

Catering

Okay, this is a big one: the food and drink can make or break any great party so you’re going to want to be prepared. Now, it’s unlikely that you’re going to have a huge sit down meal or anything, but if you’re having a bit of a rager or a prosecco-filled night, you’re going to want to have plenty of carbs and snacks on standby to stop the night from getting too messy.

Whether you’re ordering in pizza, having a few bowls of snacks like chips and dips or popcorn, or you’re going for the full sugar crash experience with cookies, cakes, pastries and chocolates, ensure that you have too much, not too little. Hungry party guests are not happy party guests. If you’re looking to keep costs down, ask your bridesmaids to bring their own drinks or provide a few bottles or cans and say if they want more they can get some more for themselves.

Gifts

Bridesmaids' gifts are a time honored tradition and a beautiful way of saying thank you for all their hard work, their loyalty and sticking with you through thick and thin. The go-to present when it comes to these kinds of favors is jewelry. From earrings or little necklaces that they can wear on the wedding day, to friendship bracelets and matching rings, there are a few options to choose from.

Alternatively, you can get more personal with your bridesmaids’ gifts. Think about the times you’ve shared with them, any in-jokes that you guys share, or anything fun and quirky that you can give them. A pro tip: edible or drinkable gifts always go down as an absolute treat, so if you’re stuck for ideas, that’s a great place to start.

Final Tips

Let’s round out this article with a final few tips for creating the best bridesmaid party ever:

  • Try and keep it cheap: chances are your bridesmaids have already had to fork out a fair amount for bridal showers, engagement parties, hen do, and traveling for bridal appointments. This event is to thank them so don’t make it seem like another expense.
  • Think about your audience: you might want a certain style of event or a certain set of activities, but if your bridesmaids don’t have the same taste as you, you need to keep that in mind. For example, if you want a wild party, but one of your bridesmaids is teetotal or not great in crowds, it’s not going to be a fun time for all involved.
  • Keep the focus on them: yes you’re the one who brought them all together and organized the party, but this is a thank you to them. Keep the focus on them and make them feel special. If you can keep it a surprise until the last possible minute, it’ll be even better. Just subtly make sure everyone’s schedules are free well ahead of time!

A Party For Your Bridesmaids

There’s no better way to celebrate your ladies than to throw a party – just for your bridesmaids, complete with gorgeous dresses, jewels galore, and sweet treats.

This inspiration shoot was designed by wedding planner and floral designer, Ivy Marie Weddings, who dreamt up a unique take on this beloved tradition for your best girlfriends. Favorite elements of this shoot included a moody palette, stunning dresses from Bella Bridesmaids, an intimately styled setting, and plenty of bling from Trumpet & Horn and Melànie D.

Bridesmaids Party | Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Mismatched bridesmaids dresses Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Gold cake pops Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Bridemaid's jewelry Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Melanie D jewelry Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Dessert and Champagne cart Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Bridesmaids celebration Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Bridesmaids dresses Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Pink macarons Marc and Anna Photo and Film

The Corner District is a vintage industrial wedding and event venue in the suburbs of Atlanta. Nestled in Ball Ground, Georgia on the city’s main street, The Corner District has all the charm of a city venue, but with the quaint ambiance of a small town.

The venue is known and loved for its speakeasy-esque parlor with exposed brick and plaster walls, original hardwood floors and ceilings, and the most dreamy lighting thanks to the huge windows in the front of the building and multiple chandeliers glimmering above. The lighting is truly what sets the mood for this inspiration shoot, and Marc & Anna Photo and Film captured the details beautifully!

Bridal shower bar Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Bridal shower bar Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Circular menu cards Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Glittering bridal shower Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Rose Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Bridesmaids with sparklers Marc and Anna Photo and Film
Bridesmaids with sparklers Marc and Anna Photo and Film

Credits: Photography: Marc and Anna Photo and Film // Planning, Design & Florals: Ivy Marie Weddings // Wedding PR: Something New for I Do // Bridesmaids & Party Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids // Wedding Cake, Cookies, and Cake Pops: Cakes by Carissa // Macarons: Sweet Cheats // Makeup and Hair: Melissa’s Hair Beauty and Health Salon // Props: Twigs and Lace // Custom Organic Makeup: Love Thistle // Rings: Trumpet and Horn // Luxury Jewelry Sets: Melànie D: Custom Jewelry Design // Venue: The Corner District in Georgia.

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