The Hen Party may only date back to the 1960’s, but it is now seen as an essential part of the pre wedding preparations. While stag parties date back many hundreds of years, in different forms, it has taken a while for the concept of a hen party to catch up. Getting together with friends is a great opportunity to take some time out from the wedding stress and relax. The hen and stag parties now take place a few weeks before the wedding date, and it seems that a groom waking up in another country or handcuffed to a lamp post on his wedding morning are long gone.
There are lots of activities that can be enjoyed at hen parties, and these can be as low key or as lavish as you wish, from a quiet drink or lunch party to an all weekend extravaganza. It is usually arranged and hosted by a close female friend, family member or chief bridesmaid and they should have a good idea of what the bride will enjoy. Cocktail mixology has been popular in recent years as well as tea parties, knicker making workshops, cupcake baking classes, spa days and other activities. In some cultures brides will have intricate henna mehndi patterns painted on their hands and feet before the wedding and as this takes time to apply, the female guests will have plenty of time to give out any tips for pre wedding nerves or dealing with married life. A hen party can also help in bringing guests together who may not know each other well, which can make for a more relaxing atmosphere on the wedding day as there will be more familiar faces and a shared experience to talk about.
A guest book idea can be incorporated in to the hen party, with guests writing their good wishes on small tokens or bunting flags, signing a canvas or having photos taken with the bride, giving her a lasting memento of the day. The hen party is no longer looked at savouring the last days of freedom before married life, but as a chance to make some memories with close friends in the run up to one of the most special days of your life.