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Frequent user February 2020 Ontario

Bridal Shower Gift Opening

Liarra, on September 10, 2019 at 15:29 Posted in Before the wedding 0 24
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Just curious as to what everyone is doing for their bridal shower gift situation. Most that I’ve been to the bride opens the gifts in front of the guests and someone jaunts down who gave what for thank you cards later on....

I don’t want anyone feeling uncomfortable or like they didn’t give “enough or as much as” another person so I’m considering doing the gift opening after everyone has left with just my mom and bridal party perhaps.

When I floated the idea to my mom she was not having any of it. She said she’d never seen that done and if people are bringing gifts they want to see you open them not just sit around and chat all day. I think it’s just a difference in “the times” older women are more traditional whereas I feel millennials aren’t.

What did everyone else do? If you didn’t open them what type of activities did you do to keep people entertained?

thanks !

24 Comments

Latest activity by Alyssa, on January 16, 2020 at 11:02
  • Alyssa
    Curious October 2021 Ontario
    Alyssa ·
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    I really like this.

    Just curious if you have had your shower yet? I would love to know how this played out and what your experience with this was.

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  • L
    Frequent user February 2020 Ontario
    Liarra ·
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    That is a great way to kind of ease the crowd after the opening so funny! And yes you’re right; most of my guest are 50+ and will probably have stories or want to see me open the gifts. Someone else mentioned doing it throughout the party as people presented them to you or as you spoke to people and then displaying it on a table so others can see. I may lean in that direction then it’s not such a show.
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  • Kate
    Newbie November 2019 Quebec
    Kate ·
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    As much as it felt awkward, I opened my gifts with everyone there- and everyone had stories about the gifts they bought me (that they have one, or they got one when they got married, etc) and wanted to share them. Also, my aunts played a game where they would write down my responses as I opened everything- and added "In the bedroom" after each quote.

    After all the gifts were opened, they read it back and everyone almost peed themselves laughing. That game helped remove some of the awkward feelings post gift opening and moved the shower forward.

    Game wise, all of the women had to write down their favourite/ first memory of me and then I had to guess who's story was who's (....there was a lot of laughter at this shower!)

    I think people like having their gifts opened- partly because showers were traditionally a way for women to share knowledge with the bride-to-be, and the gifts are a way of setting the Bride up materially and mentally for marriage.

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  • Rachael
    Super October 2019 Ontario
    Rachael ·
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    I second this. I’m not the type to want to open presents in front of everyone, but I had a small bridal shower so it wasn’t as awkward as it could’ve been. If you’d like to avoid it, speak with the person hosting your bridal shower ahead of time!
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  • Erin
    Super September 2019 Ontario
    Erin ·
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    I opened all my presents with everyone there. My guests all wanted to see what I got - especially my reaction when I opened their own gift. I know it's a bit awkward (I didn't LOVE it and I don't have problems being the centre of attention), but it is what it is, how it goes, and what people want. If you want to do it a different way, though, that's totally your call! You have to do what you're comfortable with! Find a compromise with your mom.

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  • Rayanne
    Featured June 2022 Ontario
    Rayanne ·
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    I personally would rather not go to a shower where everything is opened. I'd tell your bridal party to tell anyone who wanted to be there for opening their present you would do that with them before they leave. I think most people would be glad to not sit there, especially if you are having a large shower.
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  • Nadia
    Newbie September 2020 Ontario
    Nadia ·
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    My shower will be next spring/summer but we had quite a few weddings to attend this year and recently I have seen a couple people do the no wrapping paper gifts all just set on a long table. If you’re curious, go up and look at the card.
    I liked it because you could tell from your table that the bride-to-be got plenty of neat items on her list but saving paper and time and not a huge announcement made of every gift or who it’s from. Most people would rather enjoy their food and socialize than go up and snoop at who got what. I am really considering going this route for mine.
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  • Amanda
    Expert July 2022 Ontario
    Amanda ·
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    I completely agree with you on that! I am the type of person who would hate to open gifts in-front of everyone.

    If you are doing a shower with gifts that would be harder as you will have lots of gifts to open. Personally I am doing a monetary shower, so I will only be receiving envelops which of course I would not open in front of anyone.

    I would suggest to try and get your Mom to understand because if you feel uncomfortable for your guest, that means you will feel uncomfortable opening the gifts as well.

    I hope it all works out none the less!!

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  • Ashley
    VIP August 2020 Ontario
    Ashley ·
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    As a guest to MANY bridal showers i hate sitting there watching people open gifts..... i feel like the older people want that but the younger people (and im talking like 40 and less) want fun interactive shower games. i just hate sitting there for 2 hours watching someone open more plates and pretending theyre so excited. however this is just my opinion. do what YOU want to do and no one else. its your shower and your gonna be the only one who remembers it. you cant please everyone!

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  • L
    Frequent user February 2020 Ontario
    Liarra ·
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    That’s a great compromise!
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  • Tori
    Curious October 2020 Ontario
    Tori ·
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    I have had a similar debate with my mom. She doesn’t care personally but she thinks people will be put off by me not opening gifts. Whereas I find the gift opening the most boring part of the shower!

    I haven't had my shower yet but a family friend made a suggestion and I think we will do that instead. Essentially at the beginning of the shower my mom will announce that everyone is free to bring up their gift to me throughout the shower and I will open it with them and then place it on a “gift table” so everyone can see them. There won’t be an official sit down and open gifts time but at any point during the mingling/ eating times people can bring their gift to me. I feel like is sorta the middle ground to not opening them and the sit down and everyone stares are you opening them.
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  • Allison
    Master October 2019 Ontario
    Allison ·
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    We did a gift card bridal shower - meaning everyone got gift cards in lieu of actual gifts since I had to fly to and from my shower in my hometown. I ended up opening all the cards in front of people and kept the gift card with the greeting card so didn't have to track. The hosts (my mom and her friend) got my a physical gift each, so I had 2 gifts to open along with the gift cards.

    That being said, it felt awkward on my end to just be opening envelopes in front of people and most people just talked amongst themselves as I did. I feel like in my situation, it would've been better to open them later so there could be more me mingling with guests, but other than that, the day went smoothly.

    As a guest to bridal showers, I find the gift opening part the most boring IMO and I'm glad people at my shower continued mingling as I opened gifts. I'm definitely "pro-open gifts later" which I think is a generational issue, but maybe explain to your mom you want to spend more time with your guests at the shower over opening gifts then.

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  • Kelsie
    Master July 2021 Ontario
    Kelsie ·
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    I've never heard of a charity shower before! What a super cool concept! Thats an amazing idea Caitlyn!!

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  • Caitlyn
    Super January 2020 Ontario
    Caitlyn ·
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    We won't be opening gifts at my shower as I'm having a charity showerso if people want to give they will either donate ahead of time or give money in a card that I will pass along to the charity.

    I honestly find it boring to just sit around and watch someone open gifts, and as a gift giver it can be anxiety inducing when the bride opens one gift which is an expensive Dyson vacuum and then they open your's and it's say $25 worth of baking pans.

    One option I've heard of is a display shower. if you don't want to open gifts in front of everyone then ask each person to bring their gift unwrapped and they are placed on a table for people to see. That allows the gifts to be seen, but you don't take up time opening them and have everyone watching you.

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  • Stephanie
    Frequent user July 2021 Ontario
    Stephanie ·
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    I have seen it done both ways. As a guest it is pretty boring watching gifts/envelopes getting opened over and over.

    I suppose it could depend on how big your bridal shower is. A smaller guest count it might be more practical but if it's a large shower I would wait and do it after.

    People can also choose to stay around after to watch you open gifts if that's something they would like and or enjoy and then others can leave without feeling guilty like they left too soon.

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  • Michael
    Newbie October 2021 Alberta
    Michael ·
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    If I've travelled I'm not hanging around for you to open presents. That's boring as hell. We aren't having one. We are just doing a breakfast instead. Something everyone can enjoy
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  • K
    Frequent user September 2022 Ontario
    Katrine ·
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    I would rather open the gifts on my own, not at the bridal shower and as a guest, I hate watching brides open gifts. It’s not entertaining. I’d rather have fun and chat.
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  • L
    Frequent user February 2020 Ontario
    Liarra ·
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    Thanks everyone!!

    Around my area it is uncommon to gift money at the shower but rather a physical gift and money is almost always given as the wedding present instead. It seems like the consensus is if there are physical gift items to open them but if they are cards primarily to wait. I guess I will wait and see what people show up with and decide from there.

    I would feel super uncomfortable opening cards only infront of people. There is no way I could do that. Post wedding me and my hubby will do that in private.

    thanks for the help
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  • Bianca
    Master August 2019 Ontario
    Bianca ·
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    We never open gifts at bridal showers since most people usually bring an envelope. What we did was just games, food, and wine, and that kept people entertained plenty!

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  • Kelsie
    Master July 2021 Ontario
    Kelsie ·
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    I’m not going to be opening cards in front of people (I don’t have a registry and won’t be making one).

    ill take the cards home, open them and send out thank yous.

    my Bridal Shower will have two sit down meals (breakfast and lunch) to keep people occupied and a few games here and there. Usually at bridal showers I’ve gone to, gifts aren’t opened by the bride (because it’s usually cash only) and people just sit and happily chat.
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  • Casey
    Master October 2019 Ontario
    Casey ·
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    I have seen it done both ways. My cousin opened all her gifts, where as I just went to a baby shower (obv not the same as a bridal shower, but close enough) and she didn't open anything. There were 2 games and food and we left.

    So it really depends. Many people are used to everyone opening gifts and sitting through that. It's cool to see what the bride gets.

    I do not have a registry, so most likely the gifts are just going to be cards. I am leaving it up to the hosts what they want me to do, as for me opening money is more difficult than physical gifts!

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  • Tori
    Top October 2019 Manitoba
    Tori ·
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    I opened the gifts as well - it may be the older generation that wants to see them opened in front of everybody, but in the end majority of your guests WILL be old.

    Nobody complained and we made sure to split up the activities so that people could sneak out if they had to. In the end it really won't be any different than a birthday party and you open gifts in front of everybody there too.

    Had we not done the opening of gifts we just would have cut the shower short and only had the 3 activities with food. (He said, she said & how well do you know the bride. Oh, and guess the # of hershey kisses in he vase)

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  • Katelyn
    Super October 2019 Ontario
    Katelyn ·
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    I also opened gifts in front of everyone because we played gift bingo. But we also played what's in my purse and that game where there are words off limits and you have to steal necklaces. There was also a game called put a ring on it. Where everyone has 6 peach rings that you have to get onto a chopstick that you hold in your mouth. That one was super fun. Also we had a what would the bride say game where they wrote down my answers ahead of time and then during the game I would answer and people would give themselves a point if they got it right.
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  • Becky
    VIP September 2019 Ontario
    Becky ·
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    I opened the gifts in front of people- unfortunately due to loud children and them blocking me it was basically pointless. People couldn't see or hear anything so people didn't know who gave me what. We also did a few games- they had one with questions I had to answer about the groom infront of people and also they got a quiz about me- pick answers people should now about you. Most people didn't know any of my answers... which didn't realize. We also did the game of whats in your purse.

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