Who pays for the bridal shower?

posted 3 years ago in Parties
Post # 3
5460 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I think the host should discuss budget with anyone who is contributing PRIOR to planning anything, and then planning an event in accordance with what everyone’s budget will allow.

If the host decides to throw a grander affair than the contributors are able to afford, then she should cover the gap.

Post # 4
657 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

The wedding party pays and hosts the shower and bachelorette. The MOH should have had you guys more involved in the planning though


Post # 5
92 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

I agree with PP, however, I believe it is the responsibility of the entire bridal party to split the cost of the shower. I also agree that the planning should have been a joint effort, when other people’s money is involved all people SHOULD have a say in where things are held and how  much is comfortable for each person to spend.

Perhaps you should give what is comfortable for you and say “I’m sorry I’m not able to contribute more, I would have let you know what my limitations were if we had discussed this at an earlier point”.

It’s up to you how you handle it…you have to live with the decision you make. I wouldn’t make a decision out of spite or do what your sister-in-law did ESPECIALLY if you think she was in the wrong. IMHO if you decide to withold funds for her shower, you give up your right to hold it against her for not paying for your events because you will have done the same to her.

Post # 6
965 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

@lastlastfirst:  If she was expecting you to help pay for anything (as in, hand over cash and not just “you get the dessert”) then she should have asked what your budget was and worked within that.

We all know what the MOH should have done. As for what you should do…this is what I would do:

“HI Becky, I spent my entire budget for the shower on the decorations and other items you asked me to get. I didn’t realize that the cost of the venue and food was being split amongst everyone or I could have utilized my budget differently.”

If you are willing to spend a bit more money or the decorations are returnable, you could add something like:

“I spent all but $30 of my budget on the decorations, so I can contribute that to the venue/food.” or “The decorations are returnable if you think the money would be better used on the venue/food.”

Also, I would bring up the bachelorette party right away. Ask what the expected budget was so you could get an idea of how much you will need to save up. If they say $300 and you can only afford $100, then say that.

Bottom line:

No one can dictate how you spend your money but you.

Post # 9
657 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I have never been in a wedding party where the MOH just paid for everything, that would just be way too much money for one person. I think you should have just assumed you were sharing costs, and I don’t think itll be that much if there are 6 bridesmaids, 1 MOH and 2 mothers splitting it.


Post # 10
3596 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

MOH is out of line. If she planned on everyone chipping in she should have communicated that from the get go, she been spending what she wants and yet she doesn’t know other peoples budget.




I would consult with other bridesmaids and see if they know she planning on doing this, then I would send a poliltely worded email, let her know that you weren’t expecting this cost and that you made a budget for the wedding and would not be able to afford anything. Tell her those items you purchased are you contribution to the wedding shower and because you didn’t have notice you can’t afford to pay anymore.

If MOh was planning on splitting the cost she should have been dicussing budget and not making any final choices before talking to everyone.



Post # 11
8483 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

Yes, the host generally pays but typically the bridal party does split the costs.  But then again, that would be because they’re co-hosting it together.  However, you’re right in thinking that if you’re splitting costs you should have a say in the planning.  I’d be pretty ticked off in this situation.  She should have informed you from the beginning.  If people are putting in money, they need to be aware of and okay with the costs upfront.

I would maybe consider giving what you are comfortable with (whatever that $ amount is) and telling her since she didn’t include you in planning or give you any advance notice that is all you will be able to contribute.  I would tell her if she had bothered to include you in planning or discussed it earlier this whole situation could have been avoided.

Post # 12
1566 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@lastlastfirst:  generally, before plans are made, the host committee is decided and budget is discussed. Once you have those two decided, THEN you start making concrete plans. 

It is generally accepted in my circles that the bridesmaids are the hostesses, and hence contribute to the throwing of the party. However, I informed my sister/bridesmaid that I don’t want a party that people can’t afford, and that if she wants to throw something out of my other bridesmaids’ budgets, then to find other ways for them to contribute.

When I’ve been involved in hosting parties, there are times that I’ve been the go-getter and planned the whole thing paying for everything except the meal out myself. I’ve hosted showers with a group of people where we all contributed the same amount. I’ve hosted showers where we all said what we were comfortable contributing and then made plans from there with no judgement about who contributed more/less.

I’m still shocked that so many people on the Bee think that it’s okay to just plan and then inform the group how much they owe without gathering that information beforehand.

Post # 13
5697 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Sometimes the entire party hosts and splits and sometimes just the MOH does, it really depends. Her major faux pas here was as you said, doing whatever she wanted and then at the last moment dropping the bomb on you and the other girls (who may or may not even know yet) that she’s planning to have you all split the cost. If she had planned to do that then she should have been involving everyone from the get go and made sure the cost was affordable. 

For now I would wait and see what she says about the cost per person. If it’s outrageous, then I’d tactfully explain to her that you would have preferred to be involved in the planning as you and everyone else has a budget to stick to, etc etc… But I wouldn’t start anything before knowing what she’s going to come up withd. Frankly if it’s 40 bucks a person it’s reasonable to pay it. If it’s 100+, then that’s a bit out there.

ETA: The only time I ever did what I wanted and just gave the price to everyoe at the end, was when everyone said they were going to split the cost, but no one could bother to plan, give ideas, or even give opinions on plans I had already come up with! So then I just did whatever and gave them all the bill basically. Even then the total was 50 per person and that included some bachelorette party stuff too.

Post # 14
4959 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@lastlastfirst:  Obviously the MOH should have let you all know about splitting the cost of the shower, so you could have had more say budget wise. However, she didn’t. I would just wait and see what the price is that she says you “owe”. I know that I am the type that wouldn’t want to piss anyone off, so if she quotes you $50 or $100, is it really worth the potential drama? However, if its something extravagant, I would then say, “I didnt know we were splitting the costs, etc.”.

If it is 6 bridesmaids, plus MOH and 2 moms, thats 9 people. So even if the cost was $900, it would be $100 each. Again, I just wouldn’t want the drama that could potentially happen from the situation.

Post # 15
1902 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

I would simply tell them that you budgeted X amount of dollars to help out with the shower and that’s all you will be spending.  

Post # 16
1180 posts
Bumble bee

Bridesmaids are not required to pitch in with the costs of a wedding shower. The MOH decided to do it. If she wanted people to pay with her, she should have set that expectation in the beginning. At this point you can see what she comes back with after the costs have been split. If it works for you, fine. Otherwise tell her what you’re comfortable contributing, seeing how you weren’t made aware it would be an expectation, and be done. They can’t force more out of you. 

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