The formula for a successful wedding party includes careful planning ahead of time, with consideration of the facilities the particular home offers and with regard to the expenditure that can be made. Extra assistance for service is more important than for any other type of entertaining, as the hostess should not be harried with supervision of this sort in addition to the many other demands that are bound to occur when a daughter marries.

Pre-wedding festivities may include a luncheon for the bridesmaids given by the bride’s mother or by a friend. If a wedding reception or breakfast is planned to take place at a club or hotel, a dinner or buffet supper for the bridal party may be planned at home to take place after the church rehearsal. The menus suggested in the chapters for “Buffet Suppers and Luncheons” and “Small Dinner Parties and Luncheons” will be appropriate for these. If the groom plans an ushers’ dinner or supper, the suggestions for the arrangements of “Stag Parties” may be followed. Other pre-wedding festivities will be planned for earlier dates.

The announcement of the engagement may take place at a luncheon given by the bride’s mother or by a close friend. For this, the menus suggested for “Small Dinner Parties and Luncheons” will, of course, be suitable. For the numerous shower parties, either the afternoon or evening may be chosen. Guests may be asked to drop in for tea or cocktails, or for coffee and dessert, after which the shower gifts will be opened. Instead, packages may be unwrapped soon after the guests arrive and afternoon or evening snacks served later. Sometimes, guests will be asked for the evening and late refreshments will take the form of ice cream and cake.

The latter may be a decorated miniature wedding cake carrying favors that will indicate the future of the recipient: a ring for the next bride-to-be, a piece of money for the financially successful, and a button for the spinster or bachelor. During the evening, a wine punch or wine and seltzer in which to drink the health of the bride-to-be may be offered.

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