Saturday, October 27, 2007

DIY: Naughty & Nice Bridal Shower

A couple of years ago, my bestest buddy honored me by asking me to be her maid-of-honor. Ask any woman knows, this is your last chance to thoroughly humiliate, embarrass, and torture your friend, all in the name of friendship and giving her a send off with all the best. I was up for the challenge!

When planning anything, it's first most important to know your audience. In this case, I knew that there would be a mix of women including co-workers, future in-laws, buddies from college (who knew the sordid stories), buddies since college (who only heard tamed down versions of the sordid stories), and family. Compounding the difficulty of audience spectrum is that I hadn't met most of these people and I knew that there'd be about 25-30 women there. Consequently, the activities planned needed to be fun, fast-paced, allow for multiple games to be played concurrently, and appropriate - not too staid, not too racy because the bride still needed to be able to look at these people in the eyes the next day...without shame!

The Invitations.

The theme for the bridal shower was "naughty & nice." With my meager graphic skills, I created the invitations (front side shown at right) to put the ladies in the mood. The teaser on the front is "Is Cecile Naughty or Nice?" The back side says, "Only John Knows for Sure! But we can still have fun at her naughty-or-nice themed bridal shower!" Apparently my friend was mildly mortified but trusting that this was the worst of it. Silly girl.

The Decorations.

We didn't do too much with decorations due to time and space. However, we did arrange the tables according to what would be there. Were I to do this again, I'd make simple decorating changes. For example, the naughty table (where naughty food, naughty beverages are found) would be draped in a red satin sheet or black lace (easily purchased at a craft store for just a couple of dollars) with a few strategically placed black and red licorice whips. The nice table would have a pink and white crepe table cloth, perhaps dusted with some opalescent glitter, cut-outs, rice, and decorative doves (also easily purchased at a craft store for a couple of dollars).

The Food.

Keeping with the theme, we had appropriately chosen the hors d'ouerves. Naturally, no matter what the theme, a house full of women need sustenance so we had the basics such as crackers and dips, a vegetable platter, and so forth. But we could definitely have fun with the dessert. For the nice dessert, we had white cupcakes with white frosting and sprinkles. For the naughty dessert, we had chocolate-dipped strawberries and erotic chocolates.

The beverages were likewise coordinated with the basic wine, spritzers, and non-alcoholic beverages holding up the nice side of the table, and champagne, Sex on the Beach, and shots (including the interestingly named Nipple Twister and Cock Sucker) at the naughty table.

The Games.

Ah, yes, the games. (Fingers tapping together evilly.)

The nice games were all the ones you'd expect. The naughty was really where all the fun was had.

Nice Games:

Clothespin Game. As each guest arrived, a clothespin was clipped to her clothing. When someone heard another person saying the bride's name specifically (e.g. Jane, not "the bride"), the person who heard it takes the clothespin from the person who said it. The player with the most "pins" at the end of the shower won a prize. In this case, it was a container of Downy liquid clothing softener to go with the nice (clean) and clothespin theme.

Safety Pins in Rice. A couple bags of small grain rice were dumped into a large container along with a package of about 25-30 safety pins. Blindfolded or with their eyes closed, women were invited to rake their hands through the bowl of rice and pull out as many safety pins as possible. After each woman finished her turn, the pins were counted, noted on a piece of paper, and returned to the bowl for the next woman to try. Whoever had the most won a prize which, in this case, was a 5-pound bag of (unused) rice (plus the very pretty crystal bowl the used rice had been placed into).

Pin the Bridal Bouquet. Get a large piece of poster paper or foam core board and paste a large outline of a woman wearing a bridal gown with the bride's face pasted at the top. Have available a cutout of a bouquet of flowers with plenty of double-sided tape on the back. Blindfold the guest (or have her close her eyes) and have her pin the bridal bouquet on the place where the bride's hands would be on the poster. The prize for winning is a small bottle of floral-scented lotion.

Naughty Games:

Guess That Lubricant. Go to the store of choice (I chose Spencer's, representing the first time I finally bought something at that store!) and purchase 3-4 different flavors of lubricant or erotic jellies. Also, at a craft or grocery store, buy a small package of stirrers or mini paint-mixing spatulas (about $1.99 for more than you'll need). Squirt a small amount of each flavored lubricant into a clear bowl/glass. Put a sticker on the side with a number. Keep a record of which number corresponds to which lubricant flavor and tuck it away. Invite women to taste, touch, smell the lubricants using their own personal sample (scooped out on the stirrer/spoon) and write down their best guesses for what each flavor is. Whoever has the most correct wins...the lubricant!

Pantie Decorating Contest. Go to Wal-Mart or your local outlet store and purchase whatever underwear you can find on clearance. Plain, tacky, gargantuan, small, it does not matter. Also buy some pom-poms, glue, lace, dried fruit, licorice whips, glitter, individually packaged candies, and so forth. Prepared with your supplies and some scissors, open everything and lay it out on the table. Invite your guests to enjoy the craft-making part of the evening by decorating a pair of underwear for the bride-to-be to wear her wedding night. Afterward, invite everyone to display their creations. No prize is needed for this game -- the experience and laughter is its own reward for all!

Grab the Snake. Purchase several of the liquid filled water snakes available at a party supply store. Instruct your guests to rub a little bit of vegetable oil, regular hand lotion, or water on their hands. Then, have them grab one of the water-filled snakes and, hand-over-hand, try to hold onto it as long as possible. Whoever holds onto it the longest wins the snake toy (hey, this could be good practice!).

The Party Favors.

Ingredients:

- Chinese food boxes (available at Michael's or similar)
- Salt or sugar body scrub (purchased at Trader Joe's)
- Lotion (purchased at Trader Joe's)
- Chocolate syrup (purchased at CostCo)
- Scent-infused body oil (made my own)
- Small jars or tight-lidded containers (available at Michael's, Wal-Mart, the Container Store, or similar)
- Avery labels and printer

This party favor can get a little pricey if you aren't careful, particularly with the body scrubs. I'm lucky because I had Trader Joe's nearby. If you haven't been there yet, let me assure you that there are some great finds at the store, high-quality and very reasonable prices. Among those great finds is a sea salt or raw sugar body scrub, equal in quality to what you might find at Origins or in a spa but for a mere $5.99 for a large container. This salt scrub, plus the lotion, comprised the nice gift.

The chocolate syrup, purchased in a 2-gallon container at CostCo, and some scent-infused oil made for the naughty gift.

Each person received four tight-lidded containers (you can also use recycled baby food jars or something a little larger if you have the time, advance notice, habits, and energy to collect them). Within each container was about 3- to 4-oz. of the chosen product (syrup, scrubbing salts, lotion, and oil). The containers were branded accordingly with custom-made labels (you can use evocative names, too, like "Cecile's Luscious Lotion" or "Cecile's Not-so-Sinful Salt Scrub"). The four mini-servings of products were placed in the Chinese food box with each person receiving one box of "naughty and nice" party favors.

By the way, to make your own scent-infused body oil, go to a health or drug supply store warehouse and purchase a large container of vitamin E oil. Then, go to a craft or candle-making store and purchase the fragrance of your choice (use the sort that would be used for soaps or candles that comes in oil form, not wax or anything that requires melting!). Add the fragrance to the oil until it reaches the desired potency. Other good oils are safflower or almond oils, and there are many fine recipes online for making a variety of fragrances.

Preparation.

Just for perspective, my friend lived about 800 miles from me so I had to put most of this together and home and get it to her location, doing only the final shopping (for lubricants, pantie decorating materials, rice, safety pins, etc.) in her city. I left about 95% of the food planning to the other bride's maid so I took care of games/entertainment, party favors, and invitations. All said, it probably took about 15 hours worth of preparation, shopping, and assembly.

Yes, that was a lot. But, if I do say so myself, the party was a smashing success, the bride was appropriately blushing, and the future in-laws had an unholy good time participating in the pantie decorating contest. It was totally worth it.

10 comments:

MaidofHonor said...

I abosolutely LOVE the invitation you created! Would it be possible to get an electronic copy so I can personalize it with my friend's information?

Faith said...

I love what you did!! I'm having two showers one for family put on by my Maid of Honor and then the naughty or nice for the girls (We also live in diff cities which is why more than one shower). Great ideas!

latonda said...

This seems really fun, I'm throwing a shower in Sept and plan to use this theme. May I have an electronic copy of your invitation?

E said...

I loved the invitations and games you suggested. Can I Please get an electronic copy of the invitation? I would really appreciate it.

Nicole said...

Could I also have an electronice copy of the invitation! I love it!

Jill of Many Trades said...

Wow - I never maintain this site any more and was astonished to see comments and requests for the artwork. Apologies for never supplying it to those who requested -- but for anyone in the future, I have it setup now to receive alerts so will happily send artwork in the future.

tee said...

Love the ideas and the invitation. I'm not too sure if you still check this site but could you pls send me an electronic copy?

Jill of Many Trades said...

Hi, tee: I'd be happy to send you (or anyone else) an electronic copy if you provide an e-mail address.

Anonymous said...

I love your ideas!!! Im throwing a naughty or nice lingerie themed bridal shower in april. Can I have an electronic copy of your invitation? My email is htown232004@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

If you still check this blog please (if you have no objection to sharing)can you send me an electronic copy of your wonderful invite - I am throwing a bridal shower for my future daughter-in-law in March and think this would be great fun ...
tricialouw@gmail.com