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5 Tasteful Bachelorette Parties That Won’t Break the Bridesmaids’ Budget

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Women have thrown parties to celebrate their friends’ weddings for centuries. But the modern idea of a bachelorette (or hen) party modeled on mens’ bachelor parties has only been around since the 1960’s. With the advent of the sexual revolution came the desire for men and women to have equally sodden and debauched parties to say farewell to the single life.

It isn’t too late to reclaim the older tradition—a happy, wholesome celebration of friendship that doesn’t leave the bride-to-be embarrassed or hung over just days before her wedding. These five tried-and-true ideas are all great ways to show a friend your love and joy.

A Tea Party

Send out handwritten invitations in your neatest handwriting. Request that guests wear dresses or skirts. Whip up a batch of traditional cream tea foods—or judiciously assign treats to different guests. Lay a beautiful table with flowers and your nicest dishes, or arrange enough seating around a low table for a more casual atmosphere. For the cost of food, you’ve prepared a classy, relaxed bridal shower your bride-to-be is unlikely to forget.

Not exciting enough? A good friend had a Mad Hatter’s tea party as a bachelorette party, complete with crazy hats. Offer a prize for the best headgear.

A Dance Class

Find a friend who can dance or, for slightly more, hire a professional. (Many dance studios offer in-home dance classes.) Provide pitchers of the bride-to-be’s favorite cocktails and yummy snacks to keep everyone going. Learn something useful for the wedding, burn calories, and celebrate the upcoming nuptials in a unique, exciting way.

Bummed by the idea of dancing without a partner? Look for a strip-tease aerobics class. These professional dance classes, often done in the home, are a more risque option, but not as tasteless as you might expect. They’re a great way to make a blushing bride more confident about her sensual side. Plus they’re great fun for everyone.

A Spa Day

Ask around for what different friends can do. Maybe one is great with nails, or another has a wonderful, homemade facial. If you want to do make-overs, your local Mary Kay rep would be happy to come and provide free samples and tips. (Be sure to encourage guests to buy and products they like to make it worth her time!) Ask guests to bring their own bathrobes. Find a CD or radio station of spa music. Provide light, healthy snacks and champagne. Make a no cell phone rule. Do whatever it takes to help the bride-to-be’s troubles melt away.

Looking for more intense relaxation? Hire a professional. Look on Craig’s List or call around to local spas and physical therapists for a masseuse who will come to your home. A 25-minute massage for each guest—and a longer one for the bride-to-be—is probably less expensive than you think.

A Scavenger Hunt

There are dozens of ideas on-line, but you may want to censor some of the more tasteless ideas and add a few of your own. Make sure each group has a digital camera and send them out on the town to take pictures of anything from the most hideous bridesmaid’s dress they can find to the place that reminds them the most of the bride-to-be. End with a nice lunch (cheaper) or dinner out.

Want to stay closer to home? Consider investing in a mystery dinner party kit. For less than $20, enjoy hours of Clue-style fun from the comfort and safety of your living room.

A Crafternoon

Drag out all the markers, watercolors, pastels, glue, and glitter you can find. Invite guests to express themselves to their hearts’ content. You can provide more structure with a topic—something light-hearted like “Make something to remind the bride-to-be of your happiest memory together” or something deeper and more personal like an art therapy assignment.

Not personal enough? Consider throwing a “window shopping” party. Guests cut pictures out of magazines to give presents to each other and the bride-to-be. Like a free shopping spree.

How do your friends celebrate marriages? Let us know in the comments.

4 responses »

  1. Awesome ideas – Makes me want to be a bachelorette again, but I guess I will keep John. 😉

  2. Fun! We got a local Zumba instructor to lead us in a striptease-type (without any stripping lol) class for my friend’s bachelorette. We all loved it and it was a little risque–but with a few best lady friends it was fun! Great ideas! Another good idea that a few people I know have done is going to a winery for a tasting. Classy and it can be really budget friendly.


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