How many people are too many for a Bridal Shower?

My brother is getting married and the MOH is the Bride’s sister. We have the venue (a friend of the Bride’s childhood home) and we have a fair idea about the food and seating options. We then asked the Bride and Groom to send us a guest list. We unfortunately didn’t give a limit in number, but we got back a guest list of over 90 ladies, and a “must include” a list of almost 80(30 being family of bride)

The MOH wants to trim down the list. I personally feel that even cost maybe not being the issue, that 70+ people at a Bridal Shower seems less personal, connected and almost gift greedy. What is your advice? As the sister of the groom I would much rather have 50 people invited to the Shower and then I will arrange a “Tea” with my mother’s friends and neighbors so the other people on the “Large List” can still be a part of the Bride and Grooms celebrations.

I guess I just wanted to know in a backyard Bridal Shower (if the weather is good)…What would you say is a good number, and what becomes too many or over the top? Are they logical reasons why? I was thinking at a Bride opening 60 gifts in one sitting could take a really long time, and be too crazy too. Advice please!!!

Is it wrong for me to ask my brother for a list of 50 people? The MOH is under financial stress, and the other friend/bridesmaid who is offering her house and family catering business to make the shower more affordable is saying that 80 invited is fine…but her family is not giving the shower (even if they do give us a good deal on the food and service)….is it still logical to want to trim back the guest list a little?

Deborah McCoy, President, American Academy of Wedding Professionals™


A bridal shower includes the female members of the bridal party, MOB, MOG, grandmothers, immediate female family members, extended family members (if applicable [in other words, they’re close to the bride]), and the bride’s CLOSEST friends. They are not gift orgies, which this obviously is…

Does the bride realize that all guests invited to pre-wedding festivities, like showers and “teas” must also be invited to the wedding?

Just the fact that this shower is a financial burden on the MOH says volumes! You need to have a talk with your brother and let him address these issues with his fiancee… You stay out of it :-).

Good Luck~


Thanks for your advice.

We already have many people putting their two sense in. The Bride’s Mom and the Bride’s friend (who is having the shower at her home) is trying to convince the MOH that the list of 80 is fine. The MOH does not feel comfortable with that, and I as the sister of the groom just feel that a large number of people takes away from the meaning of a Bridal Shower (I am a traditionalist though). The friend of the Bride told me that she was once at a Bridal Shower of 150 women and that the women were asked to bring the gifts unwrapped and with just a bow so that the Bride to Be didn’t have to spend time opening gifts. I really had a hard time getting my head around that idea. It seemed so impersonal, and greedy in my opinion. But again I am not a celebrity viewing/reality show type….I am more old fashion in my thinking I guess.

Is it up to the MOH to make the final decisions? Also what is your perspective on inviting second/third cousins of the groom that live about a 4 hour drive away? (The Groom does not have aunts, cousins in USA) They will not come I am sure…but should they be included? (Is that just asking for a gift to be sent in the mail?) The bride sees them maybe twice a year when they get together in the summer months and she keeps in touch with them on Facebook. (See Facebook makes people feel like they are best friends with people that they would normally not be in touch with otherwise)

It’s hard these days to plan simple events! Yikes!
Thanks for anymore feedback you can provide.

~Sister of the Groom

Jay Remer, The Etiquette Guy, International Protocol and Corporate & Social Etiquette

I concur with Deborah 100%.