The Ultimate Bridal Shower Game Guide
Of course it's not required that you play games at the bridal shower, but consider this: You're going to have an all-ages group, and most of the guests have probably never met one another before the party. Mixing in a few of these classic bridal shower games is a perfect way to break the ice.
The Game: Bridal Shower Bingo
The Gist: It's bingo, bridal shower style.
What to Prep: Create bingo cards, but replace the word "bingo" with "bride" along the top margin. Provide pens to cross out squares with or wedding-themed "chips."
How to Play: Have guests fill in their squares with gifts they think the bride will receive. Then, start the game when she starts opening presents—make sure she calls out what each item is. Follow traditional bingo rules: The first guest to mark off a line horizontally, vertically or diagonally wins a prize.
Shop the Idea: These floral bridal shower bingo cards come with cute diamond ring-shaped markers (Hadley Designs, $15 for a set of 25 cards and chips, Amazon.com).
The Game: Purse Raid
The Gist: It's like a scavenger hunt using each guest's purse or bag.
What to Prep: Before the shower, create a list of standard items you might have in your purse—start with the basics (lip gloss, credit cards, keys) and work your way up to more random or risqué objects (condoms, dog treats). You'll also need to buy a few little gifts to be given out as prizes to the guests that win. Prizes could be anything from candy to coffee shop gift cards.
How to Play: The host calls out the items on the list and the first guest to pull the object from their purse wins a prize.
Shop the Idea: Continue the theme by rewarding winners with these fun tassel bag charms (BRUCEWANG, $7 each, Amazon.com).
The Game: Wedding Jeopardy
The Gist: Guests choose one of the wedding-related categories and then have to answer a question to win points.
What to Prep: Create a chart by labeling pieces of paper with the bride-to-be's name written across the top margin and then several categories down the left side (flowers, cities, restaurants, movies, colors). Come up with difficult questions that pertain to each category. For example, "What flower has to be flown in from Holland in the off-season?" (The answer is the peony.) Finally, you'll need to set out pens and note cards for each guest to use. If you want to give out a prize to the winner, buy that as well.
How to Play: Give each person a turn to pick a category. When a category is called, read out the question. Each guest then has two minutes to come up with the answer and write it down on her note card. When time is called, everyone has to put their pens down and show their answers. Give one point for every right answer, and the person at the end with the most correct answers is the winner.
Shop the Idea: Save paper and dole out these genius dry erase index cards (Apostrophe Games, $7 for a set of 48 cards, Amazon.com). Don't forget fine-tip dry erase pens too (Expo, $7 for a set of 8 markers, Amazon.com).
The Game: The Newlywed Game
The Gist: Just like the famous game show, put the to-be-wed in the hot seat to answer questions about their fiancé to see how their answers compare.
What to Prep: Before the bridal shower, interview the fiancé with questions about the bride and their relationship: "Where was your first kiss?" "What's her most annoying habit?"
How to Play: At the shower, ask the bride the same questions and see if she can answer correctly. To get the full effect, record a video of her partner's answers and play back the responses to each question for everyone to see and hear (allow a pause between each question or record each question and answer as separate videos).
The Game: Pass the Love Story
The Gist: Each guest gets their chance to exaggerate the "story" of how the couple met and fell in love.
What to Prep: All you need is pen and paper for this one.
How to Play: The host starts it off by writing a line at the top of the piece of paper about how the couple met. For example, "Tess and Toby met at the office." She then passes the piece of paper to the next player, who writes a line to follow that one. Once that player writes their line, their job is to fold the paper over so only their sentence is revealed to the next player. After everyone has contributed, the guest of honor should read the final piece aloud to the group.
The Game: Who Said It
The Gist: This is like the reverse version of The Newlywed Game—the guests are put to the test.
What to Prep: Before the shower, ask the couple to answer questions about their love story (how they met, their first date, the vacations they've taken together). Make a list of their answers, and mix up the responses so there's no way to know who said what. Take out any names or pronouns that would make it obvious who said what, like "The first thing that attracted me was (his/her) smile." Finally, print out copies of the list of quotes for all the guests.
How to Play: Pass out the list of quotes to each guest and have them draw a circle around the ones they think the guest of honor said. Whoever pairs the most statements correctly wins the game.
Shop the Idea: Want something a little less DIY? Buy these pretty pre-made sheets instead (Papery Pop, $12 for a set of 50 sheets, Amazon.com).
The Game: Two Truths and a Lie
The Gist: Guests try to decide what's fact or fiction while practicing their poker faces.
What to Prep: This one's super-simple—you don't need anything to play it.
How to Play: Each guest introduces herself and dishes three experiences she's had with the honoree—one of which isn't true. The person who correctly picks out the lie gets a point. The best part? The truths often turn out to be wackier than the lies (cue the hilarious story swapping).
The Game: Wedding Movie Charades
The Gist: It's the classic mime game—wedding-style.
What To Prep: Label note cards with wedding movies (include classics, chick flicks and obscure picks for a good challenge).
How to Play: Divvy the group up into two teams. Players pick a card from the pile and act out a scene from that film without speaking a word, while their team members try and guess the answers within a three-minute time limit.
The Game: The Couple's Roast (for a Couple's Shower!)
The Gist: The couple judges their guests as to how well they're able to act like them.
What to Prep: Cut paper into strips and write descriptions of scenarios from the couple's past or future on each one. For example, "John and Jane get lost in Ikea." You'll also need two sets of note cards, written with numbers 1 to 10 (these will be your scorecards).
How to Play: Guests break into two teams and then draw from the strips of paper, and designate two people from the team to be the actors. Each group gets five minutes to act out the scenario in front of the couple. Once the five minutes are up, the couple uses their scorecards to judge the act based on acting chops and accuracy. Hint: The key is to try to act out as many of the couple's mannerisms and quirks as you can.
Shop the Idea: Give the couple sporty, flippable scoreboards to rate each act from 1 to 10 with (BCP, $16 for a set of 2 scoreboards, Amazon.com).
The Game: Couple's Crossword
The Gist: A personal spin on the classic word puzzle.
What to Prep: Come up with 10 to 15 questions about the couple that can be answered in one word. Then, create a custom crossword puzzle using those words (look for free online sites for help). Print out the puzzles—one for each guest—and grab some pens.
How to Play: Pass out pens and a puzzle to each guest. Give them time to work on the puzzles and grade them toward the end of the party to find out who wins.
The Game: Wedding Trivia
The Gist: Exactly what it sounds like—a true test of each guest's wedding knowledge.
What to Prep: Look up interesting wedding facts and figures and write them out on separate pieces of paper. (Hint: The annual The Knot Real Weddings Study has plenty of data to use.)
How to Play: You can form two teams or just keep it simple and give points to each individual to yell out the right answer. As the host, you're in charge of asking all the questions, and the team or person who gets the most answers correct is the winner.
The Game: Bridal Pictionary
The Gist: Just like the original, only wedding-themed.
What to Prep: In a bowl, place slips of paper that have different wedding-related phrases on them (tossing the bouquet, going to the chapel, always a bridesmaid and so on). You'll also need a white board with markers or an easel to draw on.
How to Play: Divide the group into two teams. Nominate an artist on one of the teams. Have them pull a phrase from the bowl and then set the timer for them to draw it out. They get 60 seconds and if their team can't guess it right, then the other team gets a chance to guess. The winning team is the first to guess 10.
Shop the Idea: These convenient packs come with white boards, felt erasers and dry erase markers to use (Charles Leonard, $20 for 12 sets, Amazon.com).
The Game: Vow Collaboration
The Gist: Similar to the Pass the Love Story game above, except for this one, the group creates a silly set of wedding vows.
What to Prep: You'll need two clipboards, pens and paper.
How to play: Tell the group they're going to help write the couple's wedding vows. Circulate two clipboards: one with the header "I [insert name] take you [insert name] and promise to" and the other with the reverse. Give each clipboard to one guest and instruct them to write a vow phrase under the header. For example, "I promise to…not hog the shower in the morning." Once one guest has written their vow, they should fold it over so that it's hidden, and then pass it to the second player. Once everyone has contributed to both clipboards, read the vows aloud for all to hear.
Shop the Idea: These floral clipboards are so cute, you can gift them to the bride post-shower to use while she's wedding planning (Bloom Daily Planners, $13 each, Amazon.com).
The Game: Hot Gossip
The Gist: Think of it as a live game of clue.
What to Prep: For each of the guests attending the shower, write up a juicy question revealing how they know the bride or groom on index cards. (Example: "Who did Tim bring to the prom?")
How to Play: When everyone arrives, hand them a card and explain they have 30 to 40 minutes to come up with the answer to the question on their given card. After swapping info and mingling, each person reveals their relationship to the to-be-weds.
The Game: Celebrity Name Game
The Gist: It's the celebrity version of Catch Phrase.
What to Prep: Have everyone write the names of about 10 to 20 celebrities on small pieces of paper and throw them into a hat or bowl.
How to Play: Split guests into two teams. The first player from Team A draws a name, stands up and tries to explain the celebrity to her teammates without actually saying their name. If teammates guess correctly, the second player draws a new name and goes on as before. Each team has one minute to get through as many names as possible until all the names are out of the hat. Shake up the next round and only allow players to use one word to define the celeb.
Shop the Idea: Here's another prop that doubles as a sweet shower gift: Customize a sun hat for the guest of honor (with her initials, the word "bride" or her future "Mrs." title) and use it to store the celebrity names (The Native Bride, $29, Amazon.com). Once the game's finished, flip it over and surprise her with it.
The Game: Memory
The Gist: Try to stump your guests on the couple's "love story."
What to Prep: At the beginning of the shower, the bride should share her "love story" with the group, bringing up key events (where they met, how they proposed and so on).
How to Play: After opening presents, the host surprises guests by asking questions about the story. Throw in curveballs with questions like, "How many times was 'love' used in the story?" The person with the closest number gets a special prize.
The Game: Words of Wisdom
The Gist: Guests "shower" the bride with marriage and love advice.
What to Prep: Tuck a pretty blank card into the invitation for the shower and ask every guest to share their advice for a happy marriage.
How to Play: Guests' advice can range from recipes, a poem or funny story, and so on. At the party, guests take turns reading their words of wisdom to the group and everyone tries to guess who gave which words of wisdom. When the cards have all been read, the host can compile them in a scrapbook as a keepsake for the bride.
Shop the Idea: These fill-in advice cards are simple enough to suit a variety of bridal shower themes (Hadley Designs, $15 for a set of 50 cards, Amazon.com).
The Game: Memory Lane
The Gist: Everyone has to figure out what the bride and groom did with whom.
What to Prep: Hand out index cards and have each guest write a description of their favorite memory with the bride (the more adventurous, the better). The host will collect the cards.
How to Play: After the host collects the cards, she'll take the bride on a trip down memory lane, speaking them all out loud. Everyone will have to guess who did what with the bride. (Examples: Who snuck out of the house with the bride for a high school party, or who met a celebrity during a weekend in Miami with the bride.)
The Game: Taste the Cake
The Gist: You get to eat cake and guess the flavors.
What to Prep: Set up a "cake bar" complete with bite-size cake pieces (mini cupcakes, cake pops or cut-up pieces of regular cakes will do) and remember all the flavors. Write out the flavor of each type of cake on an index card and place it in an envelope behind the bite-size pieces.
How to Play: Each player is blindfolded and walks down the table with one of the hosts, who notes the player's flavor guess. The player takes sips of champagne between bites to cleanse the palate. (Of course, hosts can sip champagne at any point in the game!) Whoever guesses the most flavors correctly wins.
Shop the Idea: Swap basic blindfolds with stylish sleep masks that double as bridal shower favors (Alaska Bear, $10 each, Amazon.com.)
The Game: Etiquette 911
The Gist: Have guests answer extreme (read: hilarious) etiquette questions.
What to Prep: On index cards, write out a few wedding etiquette question—the more outrageous the better. Think of some nuptial nightmares, like what do you do if the best man sprays champagne all over the guests? Or if you accidentally knock into the wedding cake? Or if two bridesmaids get into a fight at the altar?
How to Play: Hand out one etiquette card to each guest and have her write down an honest response to the situation. Then, have the bridal party gather all the cards and read the questions and answers aloud.
The Game: The Lingerie Game
The Gist: Works best at a lingerie shower.
What to Prep: On the invitations, ask each guest to bring lingerie gifts that match their personality and style. While the bride isn't looking, hang them around the room.
How to Play: Once everything is set up, have the bride go around the room considering each item. Then, have her guess whom each gift is from. At the end of the day, she goes home with a new lingerie wardrobe (perfect to bring on the honeymoon!).
Shop the Idea: Don't let the game ruin your bridal shower's aesthetic—simply display the items on these romantic hangers (Home-it, $12 for a set of 30 hangers, Amazon.com).
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