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Gracefully Dealing with Shower-Palooza

Special to OneWed by Kara Horner,

Soon after friends, family and co-workers hear the great news that you’re engaged, you’ll likely start receiving offers from people to host wedding showers for you. What’s not to love, right? But sometimes the number of offers can quickly grow from just a couple to many more. So what should you do when you hit your shower max? Here’s how to strike a balance.

First, there’s no rule that says you should have a specific number of wedding showers. If you can get away with one, that’s great. But if the offers keep coming in, you’ll likely need to set a limit so things don’t get out of hand. Having 12 showers is definitely overkill and can make you seem greedy, even if you’re just trying to be polite to those who offered to host them. 

So, what’s the best approach? While there’s no hard and fast rule, here are some suggestions. If you need to have multiple showers, try to narrow it down to a family shower (or two family showers, if necessary: one for your side of the family and one for your fiancé’s), a girlfriends shower (for childhood and adult friends, sorority sisters or other groups), a couples (co-ed) shower and a co-workers shower. Of course, you can always combine any of these groups of guests to reduce the overall number of showers when possible.

If your family, girlfriends and co-workers showers are already covered and someone offers to host a shower for you, suggest that he/she host a couple’s shower, where both male and female couples attend. These showers typically have a theme, such as “stock the bar,” “lawn and garden,” or “home improvement.” Of course, if this couple’s shower will incorporate some of the same guests as other showers, try to reduce overlap as much as possible. If you must overlap and are afraid that some guests may have a hard time budgeting for another round of gifts (including wedding gifts or serving as a member of your wedding party), consider letting them know that gifts aren’t required at the second shower or at all.

Another option is to turn a shower offer into a bridal luncheon. If you already have your wedding showers covered, ask the potential host if they’d like to host a light luncheon for your bridal party and/or close family the day before the wedding instead. This way, you can accept their kind offer while channeling it into an occasion that doesn’t require gift giving.

If you’ve truly hit your shower limit and receive another offer, politely decline and explain that someone has already offered to throw a shower, but that you’d love it if she/he attended. Then make sure to include the person in your guest list. They should understand and appreciate the chance to participate in the celebration.

Remember, you don’t have to accept every offer you receive just to avoid hurting someone’s feelings. Try some these tips and enjoy your engagement. What you’ve heard is true: It goes by quickly!

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