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19 Cheap Bridal Shower Ideas

Cheap Bridal Shower Ideas

Updated on: Feb 16, 2024

A bridal shower is a great way to celebrate the new bride by gifting her gifts and lots of fun; however, throwing a bridal shower on a budget can have its challenges! When you consider the menu, decorations, and drink menu, expenses can add up to be quite pricey. If you are the host of a bridal shower, refer to our cheap and ideal bridal shower ideas to help throw a cost-effective, yet super fun party. We want to help you make this the best event possible!

Follow our List of Cheap Bridal Shower Ideas

1. Co-host the event

Try and co-host the event with other bridesmaids or family members of the bride to be. This will allow you to split the cost of the party among other people who care for the bride. Asking for help will allow you to bond with the family of the bride and will aid you throughout the whole party planning process. You might not think of it now, but it will be a huge help in the end and a big load off your shoulders.

2. Change up the guest list

Cut the guest list if needed. Don’t over invite because the bigger the list gets, the more you are going to have to spend on food, decorations, etc. You truly don’t have to invite every single guest who is invited to the wedding. Definitely ask the bride who the must invites are on her list! Also, do not forget that everyone who you invite to the bridal shower MUST be invited to the wedding.

3. Change the venue to your backyard

If you have a spacy backyard you should host the shower there! Hosting a shower outdoors is a fun and inexpensive way to celebrate the bride to be. If you have the shower at home, you can control everything that goes on. Overall, hosting the event in the backyard saves money and can help you get creative with decorations!


4. Opt out on fancy favors

Although favors are a great way to thank guests for attending the shower, they do not have to be so intricate. There are some easy favors that you can make to help cut the costs. Edible favors would be perfect for a bridal shower. Try some homemade cookies or chocolate covered pretzels. If you cannot cook- do not worry! There are other handmade favors that you can make. Try and make a handmade love knot!

5. DIY Decor

Of course, it is easy to just go to the store or order decorations for the bridal shower. Making the decorations is so much cheaper though and this is the PERFECT opportunity to show off your crafty side. Host a craft night with all of the bridesmaids and put together some decorations. It may take a long time but it will be worth it when you save money through making your own decorations! Getting all your bridesmaids together can also be a fun bonding event.

6. DIY Centerpieces

Don’t buy flowers from the florist this year. Print out pictures of the bride and groom and buy some flowers from the grocery store. You will be able to put together a much better centerpiece than anything you would be able to buy.

7. Utilize the Dollar Store

The dollar store has great decorations that people often forget about. It is the hidden gem. Balloons, table cloths, plates, napkins should all be bought from the dollar store first. Although you may want more fancy decorations, you will never use all this decor again. So opt-in for cheap dollar store items!

8. Focus on Reusable Decorations

There are decorations from your bridal shower that the bride could use again for the wedding if you first focus on buying decor in neutral colors. You could also ask your friends if you can borrow decorations from past events of theirs. Lots of people are willing to help believe it or not! For drinks, maybe even consider a large metal tub to store all drinks for the party with plenty of ice!

Hanging lanterns from trees is a popular and classy idea. You can choose neutral colored ones and guests see the glow from the trees if your party is outdoors. Lanterns truly can be quite an enchanting look.

Utilizing chalkboards as signs is another idea for writing little messages to your guests like, "Welcome in" or "Gifts here". Chalkboards is an inexpensive and simple way to interact with your guests/add a little bit of decor.

9. Use E-vites

Everything we do today is electronic, so why not take this opportunity to save! Not only do e-vites save money, but guests actually prefer them over paper invites. E-vites also make RSVP-ing so much simpler with just a link to your phone number and are so easy to keep track of.


10. Take advantage of Free Online Games

There are plenty of games that you can offer guests to play throughout the party that are free online. If you have a printer, ink, and paper, the guests can play these creative games throughout the shower for basically no cost at all.

11. Less Entertainment

Bridal shower games that you can print online are the perfect entertainment. There isn't anything else that is necessary for the shower. Everyone will surely be happy to spend some fun, quality time with the bride. When it comes to music, plug your phone into a speaker with you or the bride's favorite playlist. Playing music is important because it will keep the party upbeat and keep all guests in a bubbly mood.

12. Be Thoughtful

Thoughtful gifts are much better than expensive ones. Even if your friend has a registry, she will appreciate the thoughtfulness behind a gift. If you spend a lot of money on the shower, choose to make her something that she will cherish rather than something she "wants". A scrapbook or a book for guests to sign will go more noticed than anything on her registry.


13. Don’t overdo the menu

Food is a valuable part of any party, but you do not have to have the fanciest food. Avoid a fancy sit-down meal to save as much money as you can; Finger foods and appetizers are great options for saving money. If you avoid sit-down foods, you won’t have to worry about expensive place settings. Serving finger foods will also allow guests to mingle more, keeping the party light and fun.

14. Have a signature drink

Instead of buying a handful of drinks for the wedding shower, consider having one signature drink that everyone can enjoy. You could even set up a mimosa bar with different fruit juices and cut up fruit. All you need for a mimosa bar is a few bottles of champagne! It doesn’t have to be expensive champagne either.

15. No fancy bakeries

Spending hundreds of dollars on a cake or cupcakes for a bridal shower is pointless. Consider making homemade desserts for this shower. You can even purchase a box mix from the store which will cut expenses. Sometimes cakes from grocery stores will even be cheaper than the fancy bakeries.

Food Ideas on a Budget

Bridal showers are a great way to celebrate a soon-to-be bride; however, can be stressful and expensive. If you are planning a bridal shower, but want to truly be sure you don't damage your wallet, get ready to find plenty of bridal shower food ideas, on a budget, that your guests will love!

16. Ask guests for their help with a potluck

If you have many guests attending your bridal shower and are worried about feeding them all, you should ask your guests for help. Ask your shower guests if they can bring a food item to the shower! Having a potluck helps save money, stress, and gives guests a large variety of food options. An easy way to be sure no-one makes or brings the same items is to create a sign-up genius for your shower! Visit to do this.

17. Get together easy foods

Shrimp platter

This is a great option if you want your party to seem classy, but you also want to stick to a budget. All you need for a shrimp platter is shrimp and a cocktail sauce. This is a popular option for any party and will not cost too much. You can buy a medium pack of shrimp for under $10.00. Whether you are throwing a small or large party, making a shrimp platter will save you time and money!

Caprese Salad Skewers

This is a fun way to make a normal salad more exciting! All you need are cherry tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella. Just stack these ingredients on a toothpick and you are ready to go. For even more flavor you can drizzle these skewers in oil and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Salad skewers are an easy way to take a classic salad and make it into finger food, easy to enjoy by everyone!

Cheese and Cracker board

Cheese and crackers are a go-to food for any occasion. You can make a platter with a variety so guests can choose whatever they like. A cheese and cracker board can be created in five minutes and is extremely simple. You can make your board as fancy as you like by adding nuts, fruit, chocolate, or tomatoes. Whether you are going for a simple, small party or a large, luxurious party, a cheese and cracker board is fit for any occasion and satisfies guests.

Vegetables and dips

This is a staple at any party! You can use any vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, and celery. These vegetables are relatively cheap from most grocery stores and can be used for any sized party. Varieties of dips can be put out such as french onion, ranch, and blue cheese. The vegetables and dips can be bought for just a few dollars each and do not need much preparation. Just put the vegetables on a platter alongside the dips!

Fruit salad bowls

Having a fruit salad bowl is a healthy and delicious option for any occasion. You can buy fruit relatively cheap, especially at a discount grocery store. You can get pineapple, grapes, watermelon, and berries for just a few dollars each. This option always looks elegant and will satisfy everyone's tastes!

18. Create food bars

Dip bar

Most people like eating a variety of food when at an event. If you have a dip bar, you can allow the guests to have more options as well as save food budget money! A bag of pita chips is around $4.00 and a bag of tortilla chips or pretzels is cheap too. All you have to do is buy as many chips as you need for the size of your event and buy or make a variety of dips. Examples of great dips for parties are guacamole, hummus, queso, salsa, and french onion dip. All the dips mentioned are all inexpensive to buy in most stores, but are also very simple to make yourself if you'd rather!

Pasta Bar

Pasta is cheap to make and simple. A single box of pasta can be as cheap as $0.85. One box serves about four so to cater to an entire party it would be uncostly. You could also allow the guests to decide what sauce they desire, from tomato sauce to Alfredo sauce. There are endless amounts of different types of pasta and sauces that could cater to all guests! A pasta bar is an affordable party food that can work for all guests.

Taco Bar

Taco bars are relatively easy and budget-friendly. All you need are tortillas or shells, and other countless options such as beef, shredded cheese, lettuce, guacamole, and more. Hosting a taco bar is a perfect option for guests because it can cater to most diets such as vegetarian and vegan depending on what you buy! A taco bar is a perfect way to include all guests and give them customization.

Smoothie Bar

A smoothie bar is a fantastic option to allow the guests to get exactly what they want in a smoothie. All you need for the perfect smoothie bar is a small blender, plenty of cups, straws or spoons, yogurt, and fruit. Bags of frozen fruit are available at most grocery stores for up to $5.00, and yogurt is only a few dollars as well. Having a smoothie bar is an easy way to let the guests decide what they want and takes the stress off of you to prepare and cook different meals. It truly is a unique and simple idea that will make your bridal shower the most fun it can be.

19. Make your own desserts

Chocolate covered Strawberries

This is a classic choice for any occasion. You can buy these pre-made so that all you need to do is unpackage them, but if you want a more affordable route all you need are strawberries and your preferred chocolate! This is a great dessert that is delicious and still makes you feel good.

Sherbert Punch

Sherbert Punch is a great drink choice for any occasion. Making the punch is very simple since it requires only three cheap ingredients: Hawaiian Punch, Sprite, and Sherbet. It will also only cost you under $10 and is very fast and easy to prepare! This punch is even better for a large party!

Cherry Cheesecake Dessert Cups

Cherry Cheesecake Dessert Cups are a bit more complicated than some other recipes; however, they do not require any baking whatsoever. All you need is graham crackers, cream cheese, heavy whipping cream, sugar, and cherry pie filling. First, mix the cream cheese, sugar, and heavy whipping cream until the ingredients are thoroughly combined. Then, fill the bottom of a cup 1/3 of the way with graham cracker crumbs, layering your cream cheese mixture to fill another 1/3 of the cup. Finally to finish off the recipe, add your cherry pie filling to the top of the cup and you are ready to go! These delicious Cherry Cheesecake Dessert Cups will certainly wow your guests!


Cupcakes are a great dessert for any party. At most grocery stores you can buy any cupcake mix for around $1-$2. Cupcake mix makes about 12 cupcakes per package, so even if you are having a large get-together, they are an inexpensive dessert. All grocery stores carry different flavors of cupcakes, so feel free to get creative with options for the guests!


Cookies are one of the most popular and classic desserts that are for any type of party. You can buy cookie packages at the store that are already made for about $3.00 for 12 cookies; or, you could buy a cookie mix so that you can have a variety of flavors for all of your guests. Baking cookies is definitely a cheaper option since one package of cookie mix is around $1.00; which is 12 servings. This way, you can have more customization overall with your cookies.

Cheap Bridal Shower Ideas: Conclusion

As you can see, planning a bridal shower doesn’t have to break the bank. It is up to you to be creative when planning the shower! These ideas we have given you are perfect for a bridal shower on a budget! Just because there is a budget, doesn’t mean corners have to be cut. The party can be equally as enjoyable on a budget. So don’t worry! You might need to put a little extra work in, but we hope our cheap bridal shower ideas give you inspiration for your beautiful event! Also check out our bridal shower checklist that will keep your event planning organized and easy.

Written by Alexandra

Alexandra Pourby

Binghamton University

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