The destination has been chosen and the accommodation and activities are booked in, but the responsibilities on the shoulders of a chief bridesmaid shouldn’t end there! Mark Booth, editor of Hen Heaven, leads us through the duties of the CBM during the bride’s big night and shares the ultimate guide to spoiling your bride-to-be on her hen weekend.
Make Like Spielberg
Make like Spielberg and get behind the camera where, if you’re feeling creative, you can produce a lasting memento for the hen. One simple option is to ask all of the attendees, as well as relatives and the groom-to-be, to record a short anecdote or something that they particularly appreciate about her to make her feel extra special. If you’re no technical whizz, there are several free-to-download pieces of software for video editing. If you have Windows Movie Maker, you can make something simple in there before burning it to DVD. Showing this before the hen night will probably mean that emotions will be running high by the time you head out, so make sure you have some tissues and face wipes on hand in the event of any mascara mishaps!
A problem that many hen parties suffer from is the potential that all of the party won’t know one another or perhaps there might even be some tension. Because of this, it’s important to cement the group early on so that no factions or cliques emerge. One way to do this is to create a quiz for everyone to have fun with before everyone leaves for the party. Alternatively, you could get your camera phone to film the groom-to-be answering questions about the bride-to-be a few days before and see if the bride can guess what he will answer. Your very own hen party version of Mr and Mrs is so easy to do and will put everyone in good humour before the big night.
Another route to go down, if you’d like to go the extra mile for the hen, is purchasing a scrapbook and asking each of the attendees to write a special message in it. Each invitee should be given at least a page in the book where she can put a photograph, write a story or just send some wishes for the wedding to the bride-to-be. This will be cherished for years to come.
One part of the hen weekend that has almost become an event in itself is getting ready. It’s almost compulsory to get ready to get ready these days, what with extensive make-up reigimes, all-important outfit choices and maybe a couple of glasses of wine to account for? Let’s face it, it’s almost impossible to get ready for a big night out without some great music, so why not create a personal CD for the bride-to-be with all of her favourite songs? Get her hubby-to-be to complete a stealthly spy mission onto her iPod library and Spotify playlists to unearth her very favourite songs and create a couple of CDs to sing along to while you get ready. You can even create a very special cover for the CD – an embarrassing collage of all of her ex-boyfriends, perhaps?
It’s All About Her
Most of all, just remember that this is her night and as chief bridesmaid it’s your responsibility to make sure she has the best night ever. Make sure that you have a plan before you leave the hotel and have researched the best bars in your chosen city, and told everyone where you ultimately want to end up – this will save any disagreements or split groups later on. Be on hand for bride-to-be should she need you during the night and try to link any separate groups of friends together as much as possible. Pull it off and you’ll be rewarded with a delighted best friend who will have lots to live up to when your own hen weekend comes around!
This article was written by Mark Booth, web editor at Hen Heaven, celebrating 10 years of sending thousands of women away on memorable hen weekends in the UK and EU since 2002.
There are more great hen party ideas in the Hen & Stag section!