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Pennsylvania-Pittsburgh

shower situation - PLEASE help!

My very best friend in the whole world has finally met The One and is getting married!  Of course I am super excited for her and want to do everything I can to make this experience perfect for her.  However . . .

She lives about 700 miles from me & her only other bridesmaid.  All of her family and most of her friends also live in other parts of the country.  Airfare / hotel / car rental alone for the wedding weekend will cost us about $1500, not including the obvious other expenses like the dress, gifts, etc., which is fine - weddings are expensive for everyone!  We originally wanted to fly in for another weekend and have a shower for her, but quickly realized that would be out of both of our budgets.  The bride agreed that for budget concerns & to have her OOT friends / family at the shower, a brunch the morning of her (evening) wedding would work out well.  The issue is that we can't seem to come up with any venues or ideas that won't cost each of us another $1000 since we are both OOT.  And that is for brunch, not a full meal!  (The wedding is in a major metropolitan area, so everything is more expensive, and none of her other friends or family have indicated any interest in co-hosting a shower for her.) 

To add to the problem, both of us BMs have had unexpected major medical issues lately, which has put a huge financial strain on our families already.  We are getting to the point where we are ready to not have any kind of pre-wedding party for her because we simply can't afford it.  BTW, the bride has said that all she needs is for her friends and family to be there to celebrate her marriage with her, everything else is extra.  This will be a very casual wedding (rehearsal bbq at the couple's house, hors d'oeuvres only at the reception) as the couple are on a very tight budget too.  She totally would not be devastated if we couldn't have a shower for her . . . but we would! 

Any suggestions??

Re: shower situation - PLEASE help!

  • pantherRNpantherRN member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    What about a brunch at the hotel you are staying at? They may be willing to offer you a deal since you are already staying there for the weeekend.
    [IMG]http://i46.tinypic.com/w0ml45.gif[/IMG]

    TTC #1 since 10/2012. BFP 11/28/12, EDD 8/10/13. MMC found 1/11/13, measured 5w6d
    Everyone is welcome.
  • needavacationneedavacation member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I thought of that too!  It would actually be about a dollar more per person at the hotel than the one venue I found, & we would get less (less food, paper table cloths, very basic).  And I don't know about you, but hotel food is just never that good.  I'd be willing to consider it if there were a savings involved, but not if it's going to be about the same or even more. 
  • mdphdmdphd member
    1000 Comments Third Anniversary
    edited December 2011

    It's a tough situation, but if you can't afford it you can't afford it.  Perhaps a nicer wedding gift would be something you both could do.  

    I think an affordable option could be to rent a small hall in the area for the shower and have a continental sort of breakfast - fruit, bagels, etc. that you guys bring in yourself.  But if that's still out of the price range, you shouldn't worry too much about the shower, just support the bride in other ways.
  • MRadsMRads member
    Fifth Anniversary 1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    I was in the same situation when my best friend got married...ultimately, we didn't have a shower.  However, her sister contacted all the invited ladies she knew and asked if they would share words of wisdom and a recipe.  We made a scrap book for her, so it wasn't the shower, but I know she really appreciated it.
    image

    Baby boy 7.10.13
  • pantherRNpantherRN member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Do they have a meeting room you could rent and provide your own food? Is there a local restaurant with a meeting or party room?

     Have you tried the Knot board for the city she is getting married in? They may know of little restaurants or cafes that have what you're looking for.
    [IMG]http://i46.tinypic.com/w0ml45.gif[/IMG]

    TTC #1 since 10/2012. BFP 11/28/12, EDD 8/10/13. MMC found 1/11/13, measured 5w6d
    Everyone is welcome.
  • edited December 2011
    What about having brunch at a restaurant with maybe a side room? That way, you don't have to worry about all of those extras. 

    On another note, not sure how many people you're expecting, but I really don't think bridesmaids should be expected to throw some lavish $2000 shower on top of all of the other cost obligations. Getting together for a small brunch with say 10 people might be more reasonable cost wise and just as meaningful (if not more so since she'll actually have time to talk with you) for the bride. If the bride wants all of the OOT guests there, then I think she should be expected to foot some of the bill for that/have her guests chip in for brunch. Guests shouldn't expect a free for all on top of the wedding reception. Also, it's not like at the traditional bachelorette party an extra 30 people get paid for or whatever by the BMs. Maybe it would be better to have the shower the day before the wedding so there's less on an expectation of a big crowd to feed.

    It would be helpful to know what city you're talking about to provide specific suggestions of places. 
    Married since May 12, 2012
  • needavacationneedavacation member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011

    Yes, I did check out her local boards & did find some lower-cost suggestions at some local restaurants . . . but "lower" isn't the same as "low".  We looked into renting a space & bringing in our own food (although no idea how we would find / prepare food with our limited time & not being familiar with the city) but there don't seem to be any options for that without driving outside of the city, which would be highly inconvenient for everyone, especially the bride.

    If she were getting married in Pittsburgh or where we grew up in Ohio, this wouldn't be a problem.  I've had several showers at my house and am well-versed on hosting a beautiful, (seemingly) extravagant shower on a limited budget.  We are now considering an extra / more extravagant wedding gift in lieu of the brunch but are still disappointed.  I hope we figure something out!  Thanks for all of the suggestions and support!! 

  • needavacationneedavacation member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    FYI - we are trying to find a venue in midtown Atlanta.
  • pantherRNpantherRN member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    I'm sure that whatever you and the other BM decide to do will be fantastic and she will love it all just the same :)

    I think it would be awesome for just the two of you to take her to breakfast on the morning of the wedding.
    [IMG]http://i46.tinypic.com/w0ml45.gif[/IMG]

    TTC #1 since 10/2012. BFP 11/28/12, EDD 8/10/13. MMC found 1/11/13, measured 5w6d
    Everyone is welcome.
  • carcrashheartcarcrashheart member
    Third Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    Exactly how many people is she insisting on inviting? Are there other people involved that might be willing to help host the brunch, so that there are more people to split the cost with? It seems like this is very doable, it's just a matter of working it out.
    [IMG]http://i47.tinypic.com/34qwget.jpg[/IMG]





    "You were a 2+ year project, bud. I hope you know how much your Mom & I wanted you here with us. We keep trying to tell you!"
  • edited December 2011
    I'm sorry this is stressing you out!

    Being brides, I know we are aware of how much money and/or times our BMs are spending on us so I'm sure she is aware too. I'm assuming she doesn't want you to break the bank for her and probably already feels guilty for how much you are spending on her wedding.

    Just remember that :-)
    [IMG]http://i52.tinypic.com/5cdsp0.jpg[/IMG]
  • edited December 2011
    I was in a wedding in October (in North Carolina) and all of us bridesmaids were living in different states, and even one was out of the country!  There was obviously no way we could have arranged a bridal shower a few months before the wedding, so it was actually the bride's and her sister's (the MOH) idea to have a little "shower" after the rehearsal dinner, at the same location.  Everyone was already there so it was really convenient.  After the rehearsal dinner, all the guys left for the "bachelor party", and the girls stayed for the shower.  And we we all back in our hotels before 10 or 11pm.  The guys, not so much ;)

    At the shower, it was really low key; we had drinks, played a few games, and the bride opened presents.  The only girls in attendance were the bridal party, the bride's mother and grandmother, and the groom's mom (i think there may have been an aunt or two).  But it was really intimate and the bride really enjoyed it.

    Do you think something like this would be an option?
  • needavacationneedavacation member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    The rehearsal dinner is at the couple's house, very casual.  Having a shower after the rehearsal dinner *might* work, if we can get the guys out of there & if the bride is okay with having it at her house.  The groom isn't what you might call "social" & isn't having a bachelor party, not sure where we would ship him off to. 

    Let me stress again that the bride is in NO way pressuring us about this, she is on a very tight budget herself.  It's just that with the guest list she gave us (50+) and the cost of the venues (average $25 per person FOR BRUNCH, can you believe it?), it's adding up very quickly.  We were hoping that some of her local friends would want to co-host but that isn't happening. 

    After these suggestions, we're now considering just giving her a more extravagant gift, having a spa morning (pedicures, massage) for the three of us the day of the wedding, drastically cutting the guest list (which she's resisted), having it after the rehearsal . . . or praying for a miracle, lol.  Thanks, ladies!
  • edited December 2011
    "After these suggestions, we're now considering just giving her a more extravagant gift, having a spa morning (pedicures, massage) for the three of us the day of the wedding."

    Do this.  It'll be meaningful, less expensive, and provide great memories plus some moments for the bride to pause the day of. No way should you guys be responsible for paying for 50+ guests for brunch. It's not like you're the bride's parents and even if you were it still shouldn't be expected - just appreciated.
    Married since May 12, 2012
  • needavacationneedavacation member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    In case anyone is dying to know what happened with this  . . .

    The bride finally admitted that she really, really wanted a shower and it didn't look like anyone else was going to have one for her.  After searching and searching, I FINALLY found a site that we can afford.  We are going to have to drastically cut the guest list and have a very limited continental breakfast instead of a brunch, but I think this way we will all be happy.  Thanks to everyone for all of your help!

    BTW, I really liked the idea of a spa day for the three of us too.  I could really use a massage, lol.
  • mdphdmdphd member
    1000 Comments Third Anniversary
    edited December 2011
    glad this worked out for you, and that the bride compromised on the guest list... 50+ from a person who is working with a limited budget herself and knows that your budgets are limited too would have just been unreasonable.


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