Hosting a Stock-the-Bar Wedding Shower
These parties are based on the idea of filling the bride and groom’s home bar or liquor cabinet, but there are a few variations on stock-the-bar showers. The first thing you’ll need to do is decide which kind your party will be. After that, you can order invitations and make the rest of your arrangements.
Option 1: Guests are asked to bring two bottles – one for the couple and one for the party.
Option 2: Guests are only asked to bring a bottle for the couple and the host provides the alcohol for the party.
Stock the Bar Invitations. The chalkboard wash adds a cool texture that we incorporated into the rest of our plans.
Food: You don’t need to serve a full meal, but you should have plenty of finger foods and hors d’oeuvres available. You can create a beautiful display with on a table using platters, cutting boards, and trays. Include a few stands or risers to add height. We like the idea of labeling right on the table, as seen above. It’s unexpected and the calligraphy looks very elegant. The white-on-black color combination also complements the other chalkboard elements. If you don’t want to write directly on your table, you could cover it in black kraft paper first.
Drinks: Mixers are always in high demand at these kinds of parties. Make sure you have plenty available. Think about popular types of cocktails (or the bride and groom’s favorites!) and plan for those. You may also choose to include some unique or surprising options. And make sure you have non-alcoholic beverages available too.
Decor: Flowers can add a fresh pop of color to any party. If the bride and groom have already chosen their wedding colors, you could use them as inspiration for your floral arrangements. Custom cocktail napkins would also be a thoughtful addition to your decor. Consider personalizing them with the couple’s names, wedding date, or another special sentiment.
Serving Tray: The DIY Network has easy instructions for making a chalkboard serving tray. This is a great way to share the names of drinks and their recipes with guests. You could also incorporate chalkboard into other types of signage to carry the texture throughout the party.
Guest Book: Instead of a traditional guest book, have guests sign a bottle of wine or champagne. The couple can open the bottle on their first anniversary or another milestone occasion.
Party Favors: Miniature bottles of wine, champagne, or liquor make fun party favors for guests. Lovely Bits has a wonderful tutorial for dressing up the bottles. You could also purchase personalized or custom labels from a variety of sellers on Etsy.
Other Tips and Ideas
- Create a “signature cocktail” for the party. Name it after the couple, their beloved pet, the place they met, or something else of significance.
- Plan to have multiple “stations” for guests to prepare their drinks. This will prevent congestion around one area and encourage mingling. Similarly, you should consider offering multiple seating areas for the same reasons.
Stock-the-Bar Gift SuggestionsSome guests may be unsure of what to bring or would prefer to give something other than a bottle of alcohol. In case you’re asked, here are a few gift suggestions.
- Drinkware. Highball, old-fashioned, martini – there are a variety of types and styles of bar glasses. For an added touch, they can be etched or monogrammed.
- Bottle stoppers. These are practical accessories, but they can be decorative too.
- Bar tools. Muddlers, zesters, shakers, jiggers, ice buckets, and other tools would make wonderful additions to any home bar. Many of these items can be purchased in matching sets.
- Monogrammed or personalized coasters
- Personalized napkins
- Cocktail recipe books