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Below are questions related to “Wedding Etiquette and Traditions” which have already been submitted and answered by Andi, our seasoned wedding pro. See if these answer your questions and spark some wedding inpspiration, too!

Click Here to view more “Ask Andi” questions and answers on a variety of wedding planning topics.

Wedding Etiquette and Timeless Traditions

My cousin now lives in California and is getting married this summer. She has chosen me to be her maid of honor. I want to give her a shower, but her work schedule prevents her from coming to Pittsburgh before the wedding. We have other friends and family, unable to make it to the wedding, who would also love to honor the bride and groom in some way. Is there anything wrong with throwing a shower for the bride and groom, even if they aren’t here?

That’s a great idea! This type of shower, given for a bride who cannot attend or lives far away, is called a proxy shower! It is a perfectly acceptable way of celebrating. The hostess is responsible for getting the gifts to the bride. Often times she will have the guests bring their gifts unwrapped, so that everyone can see them. She then provides wrapping paper and ribbons for the guests to wrap their gifts. Then, she can pack them in large cartons and ship them off to the bride.

A long distance telephone call to the bride is common also, so she can briefly join in the fun! Once the bride-to-be has received the gifts, thank you notes should be sent right away.

Best Regards,
Andi

I know rice throwing is a long time tradition at weddings when the couple is leaving the reception, but our reception hall won’t allow it. What else can we do?

There are several alternatives from which to choose. Blowing bubbles on the couple as they dash away is quite common. Tossing rose petals has also become a fragrant and colorful alternative.

The latest trend is a butterfly release. I haven’t been witness to one yet, but I can imagine how impressive it would be! All the beautiful colors of all those butterflies! Good weather is essential for this to happen, and there is some preparation required. However, for a real eye catching experience for your guests, this might be something to consider.

Best Regards,
Andi

My daughter will be married in Indiana, Pennsylvania next year. There seems to be a local custom about bringing cookies to the reception. We have never heard of this; do you know anything about it?

In this area of Pennsylvania, it is an ethnic tradition to have wedding cookies, as well as wedding cake at the reception! The cookies are the “ambassadors of hospitality”! They are served to the honored guests upon their arrival at the reception as they await the arrival of the bride and groom. They can also be given as wedding favors.

Often time’s small bags are provided for the guests to take them home. The bride and groom choose the type of cookie (or cookies) to be served. They can choose one kind or a variety. They might choose an old family recipe, or maybe they would like the cookies to reflect the color scheme of their wedding!

When ordering the wedding cake, discuss the possibility of having the wedding cookies made by the same bakery. This would be one less item on the to-do list! Pittsburghwedding.com has several bakers listed which offer wedding cake and cookie packages for your convenience!

Best Regards,
Andi

I am the mother of the bride. In planning for the bridal shower, who are the customary people to invite? I know that everyone invited to the shower should be invited to the wedding. If there are some folks on a limited budget that we'd like to invite to the shower, should we just invite them to the wedding instead so they don't have to pay for two gifts? The groom's mother will have a shower separately in the town they live in, since they live a few hours away.

A shower is a lighthearted event shared by the guest of honor, and only her closest of friends! The shower should be given by her friends, never by the bride, or her family! The gifts at a bridal shower are supposed to be small, so as not to put any financial strain on friends! I believe that inviting your friends on a limited budget to both the shower and wedding would be fine. This would guard against any hurt feelings, as well.

The shower can have a theme to it as well! Themes can range from a linen, lingerie, or stocking shower, to a book, garden, or even a canned good shower! It is all a matter of imagination! Have a wonderful time!

Best Regards,
Andi

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