Must Shower Guests Be Invited to the Wedding?

Guests at Wedding / Bridal Shower

Shower Guest Etiquette:  Must Shower Guests Be Wedding Guests Too?

The bride has chosen to have a VERY small and intimate ceremony and wedding reception, inviting 50-75 guests total… Would it be appropriate to have a bridal shower inviting friends and relatives who haven’t been invited to the wedding ceremony and reception? Please respond ASAP – the wedding is two months away! Thank you
~  Barb

Answer:

It is highly improper to invite guests to the shower who will not be invited to attend the wedding. Put simply, this is a huge “no-no” and should never be done. The rules of wedding etiquette would render this to be in poor taste, but more importantly, such an approach could lead to some very hurt feelings. Shower guests may feel slighted if they do not receive an invitation to the wedding. An invitation to a shower usually implies that an invitation to the wedding will be forthcoming. Inviting people only to the shower may be construed as a bid for gifts, even though the very best of intentions may be behind it. Usually the ‘all or nothing’ approach prevails. There is an old expression that flies around in such scenarios – guests have been heard to mutter, “It was only my ‘presents’ which was desired, not my ‘presence'”, when invited to the shower, but excluded from the big day itself. It is always best to avoid the potential for such hard feelings.

The only time it is acceptable to invite people to a shower who will not be invited to the wedding is in the case of an office bridal shower. In other words, when you are throwing a shower for a co-worker, to be attended only by other co-workers.

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