Weddings

Bridal Shower Gag Gifts

Liven things up and help the bride loosen up with an off-the-wall gift

By Cynthia Myers

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Wedding planning can be so serious; sometimes, it's good to kick back and have a little fun. In the midst of unwrapping yet another blender or sheet set, the bride with a sense of humor will appreciate an appropriate gag gift. Choose a gift that's lighthearted and not mean-spirited, and make sure the bride will get the joke. Along with the gag gift, make sure you present her with a real gift that she'll treasure long after the laughter has subsided.

Inside joke

If you know the bride well, she might appreciate an inside joke. If she refers to her former boyfriends before Mr. Right came along as "toads," you might present her with a stuffed toad, for example. If she's confided to you that she's already received six toasters, give her yet another two-slicer. Or buy a better gift, but disguise it so that when she tears off the wrapping, the first thing she sees is yet another toaster box. If she's been longing for a set of luxurious cotton sheets, buy her a set---but in the most hideous color or pattern you can find. (Be sure to keep the receipt.)

Marriage Cliches

Play on the theme of marriage tying her down by gifting her with a giant plastic ball and chain. Give her a whip to keep the groom in line or a pair of boxing gloves. An apron depicting a barefoot and pregnant woman in curlers and labeled "The new bride" or a T-shirt labeled "Ms. Right" will force a laugh out of some brides.

Risque

Sex toys and "marital aids" are popular gag gifts, along with risqu lingerie. Or get a little more creative and track down vintage books of advice for brides or noticeably obsolete sex manuals. Keep other shower guests in mind when presenting this kind of gift, though. If the bride's grandmother and maiden aunts are attending and you don't know them very well, this kind of gift can backfire quickly. Save your naughty gag gifts for the bachelorette party instead.

Tacky

If you've decided to throw a gag-gift-themed shower where all the gifts are known to be gags, tacky gifts are good for a laugh. Think pillows with kitschy slogans; household "art," such as singing fish or velvet paintings of poker-playing dogs; or ugly statues of unknown fertility gods. Scour thrift stores and garage sales for your contribution to the evening.

About the Author

Cynthia James is a regular contributor to DexKnows.

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Plan bridal shower

The maid of honor will likely head this up, though some brides have multiple showers thrown by people from different walks of their life. Your hostess may request a list of invitees from the bride. Be sure to express any preferences you have -- from including the boys to game requests or omissions.

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