Achieve sweet summer perfection with a pineapple bridal shower. And let’s be serious, pineapples are everywhere right now, meaning decorating for this theme will be so very simple. The adorable pineapple invitation from Paper Source is actually listed as a House Warming invite, but it just seemed too perfect for a bridal shower to me. A couple quick edits and it’s transformed! And I’m maybe a little bit obsessed with the pineapple sundress. Much needed addition to my summer wardrobe? Pineapples can find their way into your food, your drinks, and you decor in a snap.
Real talk: Throwing a party can get expensive. I’m totally guilty of drooling over bachelorette party favor packs I see on Instagram or around the blogosphere. But then I add up the price tag and cringe a little. Chances are you do not have the funds to drop $100 on a gift basket for each guest. At the same time, you want your favors to be cute. You don’t want to just hand out Advil and Band-aids (little known fact: your guests can supply their own Advil!). So what you want is the Holy Grail of party favors: incredibly stylish but inexpensive items. I get you. I’m here. With bachelorette favors under $5. You’re welcome.
Free swag alert! That’s right, these cute wine labels are absolutely free and you can snag mini Sutter Home wine bottles for only $1.75 each. There’s also a tutorial for creating the little bows to accent each bottle of wine. The perfect thing to greet your friends when they arrive.
Hi, I’m obsessed with these OMG koozies. They are just so clever and cute (and only $5 each!). Plus, I maybe have a weakness for koozies?
Emma Flhair’s Etsy shop is one of my favorites—she’s got tons of cute hair accessories from “Will You Be My Bridesmaid” to “Last Fling Before the Ring.” These Bride Tribe hair ties favors are a complete steal at only $1.75 a pop.
A shiny little reminder that you are absolutely going to have the Best Day Ever. This pack of 12 Metallic Tattoos will run you $26, so that’s only a little over $2 apiece.
Beau-Coup is like affordable wedding favor central, but these pineapple bottle openers really stand out amongst their collection. They’re stylish, on trend and under $5!
Did you know H&M has a home section? I know, me neither, mind totally blown. But it’s a freaking gold mine for low-priced cute accessories, like this candle 2-pack for $4.99!
Virginia wedding photographer Kim Stockwell is used to being behind the lens rather than at the center of the action. But for her bachelorette bash in Key West, Kim was blown away by the action-packed weekend planned by her closest friends. “Nine very important people in my life made me feel insanely loved and I am beyond grateful,” said Kim. Kim took a few moments to snap pictures of the gorgeous Florida beaches and their cute beach bungalow close to party-central Duval Street, as well as a group shot or two, which made the perfect thank-you gift to remind the girls of their weekend in the sun.
Check in to your house on Louisa Street, just a block off of Duval Street, the hub of nightlife and general revelry in Key West. This adorable cigar cottage is decorated in the quirky tropical patterns and bright colors typical of the Key West style, but the real draw is the backyard, complete with plunge pool, grill and patio setup perfect for a casual dinner. Serve drinks and dinner in the backyard one night, or for a casual dinner out, try Willie T’s.
No trip to Key West is complete without a Duval Street bar crawl. Sloppy Joe’s has a huge dance floor and Irish Kevin‘s in known for the great live music, friendly bartenders and generally fun and laid-back atmosphere. The rotating roster of performers are top notch, creating a nightly dance party. (Make sure to try the cinnamon toast crunch shooter.)
Sign up for the Fury’s Ultimate Adventure, an all-day boat trip that includes snorkeling, parasailing, jet skiing, kayaking and more. Breakfast, lunch and afternoon drinks are included in the price of the tour (and the cute crewmembers are an added bonus). A great deal for everything you get!
After a day on the water, head to dinner at the Conch Republic Key West, a beautiful open-air restaurant overlooking the marina (which happens to be right next to the dock you board for the Fury tour). Be sure to try Key West specialties here, like conch fritters, mahi mahi and key lime pie.
If you’re hoping to model your Key West adventure on that season of The Real World, try Dante’s, a giant pool party complete with floating beer pong and shot skis.
Head to 801 Bourbon Bar for their world-famous drag show (it’s been running for 25 years!). This raunchy, racy show isn’t for everyone, but the right bride will have a blast. Call ahead to book a table in front and to the left of the stage, where there’s plenty of room for a large group. The bride gets in free, but the $10/person cover for the other members of your party is well worth it.
After your night out, you’ll be in need of a restorative brunch at Louie’s Backyard Afterdeck. Enjoy a mimosa and tres leches French toast on the multi-level deck overlooking the ocean.
First up, can I just say that writing an New York City bachelorette dining guide is hard! There are so many choices and I want you to love your experience in my city. So take a look through the below, but make sure to also check out my first NYC Dining Guide! It includes many, many more recommendations.
Restaurants have to meet a few very important criteria to make this list. First, they can’t charge you crazy rates for being a large party. Some restaurant require large parties to have a set menu and buy things like “beverage packages” and meet “room minimums.” You just want to go to dinner! So if they have a policy that will end up costing you $75 a head just for the food or will force you to meet a $2500 minimum in three hours (I am not making these numbers up, they are legitimate packages I found while researching this article), they are out! Also, they have to accept reservations. If you have a group of six or more, you are just never going to get into a nice restaurant without a reservation. Not on a Saturday night. No way. Unless you wait, like, two hours. And you don’t want to do that. You have some celebrating to do!
For this list, I let myself go up a little bit on price point for you. My first list focused on restaurants where you could pretty easily get an entree for $15 and still enjoy some ambiance. This time, I’ve upped my price point to places that average around $20-$25 an entree. I’ve made sure that each of my selections still has lower-priced options, but we can look at a whole new group of restaurants if we open the price point a bit. Eating cheaply can definitely be done in New York—what’s difficult is finding cheap eats with atmosphere. Lots of incredible hole-in-the-wall joints are making amazing food in New York, but many only have counter service or have six chairs crammed up against the wall in a railroad-style eatery. They can’t accommodate a big group. Or they won’t have that urban, energetic New York atmosphere you desire. I’ve tried to pick places that deliver on atmosphere, will serve great food and can accommodate a big party with ease (no easy feat).
Also, note: Happy hour is your friend. A lot of these restaurants have considerable deals between the hours of 5 and 7pm.
Pagani: A beautiful rustic Italian restaurant with plenty of candlelight and leather banquettes perfect for seating a large group (they also have a private back room that can accommodate 13). The homemade pasta dishes are the star, like the ricciatelle with wild mushrooms and arugula ($19.50) or the gnocchi with gorgonzola and black truffle ($23).
Flex Mussels: This place focuses on doing one thing really really well: mussels. The menu offers over 20 preparations, from the classic white white with garlic and herbs ($21) to thai flavored with a curry coconut broth, lemongrass and kaffir lime ($24) or decadent Maine lobster with bacon and a creamy chowder-like broth ($26). And yes, they do offer a few non-mussel dishes (helpfully listed on their “Not Mussels” menu), and a good happy hour menu. Save room for dessert and try the key lime pie in a glass, a deep fried whoopee pie (sinful but delicious) or a selection from their donut “collection.”
Bacaro: The ambiance of this little Italian spot is pitch-perfect for a bachelorette party. A flight of stairs leads down to a wine cellar–like dining room lit by romantic candlelight. The location is a bit off the beaten path, tucked away in Chinatown, but a quick cab ride will bring you to the heart of nightlife just a few blocks north in the Lower East Side. They’re great with groups and the food is lovely and quite affordable—braised pork shank with polenta will run you $20 or try a whole wheat pasta with duck ragu for $17.
The Mermaid Inn: The perfect spot for the seafood-loving bachelorette, The Mermaid Inn feels like a New England home with a bit of New York City flair. A daily happy hour from 5-7pm offers $1 oysters, $7 specialty cocktails like a Mermaid Mary and a menu of delicious snacks, like shrimp corn dogs ($3) or fish tacos ($3.50). The dinner menu is a bit pricier, with entrees like linguini and clams running $24, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a seafood restaurant with this high quality at a lower price.
Burger and Barrel: The ambiance of this winepub is warm, urban chic, with dark wood booths, brick walls and low lighting. Entrees like duck lasagna or Southern fried chicken will set you back $20, but you can also easily make a meal for the table with their sharing plates, which include things like a kale Caesar salad, chicken lollipops with Asian BBQ sauce or rock shrimp hush puppies for around $14 each.
Momofuku Noodle Bar: OK, I cheated a little on this one. But Momofuku is a New York institution and a dining experience not to be missed. The restaurant is small and incredibly popular (for good reason), but reservations are not offered…unless you order the fried chicken. Yep, the only way to get a reservation is to order the Korean fried chicken dinner ($135, including a few sides, but no drinks or other dishes—those will cost extra). Since the meal will feed up to 8 people, the cost isn’t prohibitive, so I let this one slip onto the list. So sue me. It’s that good.
The Frying Pan: Set on a barge floating in the Hudson River (docked next to a historic ship that you can also drink aboard), The Frying Pan is the perfect place to spend a sunny summer afternoon. Order a bucket of cold Coronas and some Old Bay French fries and enjoy the sunshine and the breeze off the river.
The Met Rooftop: Want a rooftop bar without the a hefty price tag or bottle service? Or just a fun way to end your visit to the Metropolitan Museum of Art? Grab a drink on the roof! Open during the summer, the roof features a sculpture installation plus stunning views of Central Park and midtown Manhattan. Sunset is the perfect time to visit.
Tequila Park: You like the name already, am I right? Located in a courtyard of the Hudson Hotel, Tequila Park looks like the coolest little Mexican eatery you’ve encountered. With ivy climbing the brick walls and plenty of inviting seating, this is the perfect place to kick back with a margarita and a few yummy and inventive tacos.
Gallows Green: From the folks behind Sleep No More, an interactive theater experience unlike any other, this bar is a bit of immersive theater in and of itself. Take the elevator to the top floor and suddenly find yourself outside a log cabin surrounded by a pine forest. Inside you’ll find bunk beds that serve as seating, communal tables, plush armchairs, and an outdoor patio under the stars. Truly transporting.
Momofuku Milk Bar: Oh man, this place. They do such crazy/wonderful things! Their inventive desserts remind you of childhood favorites but are totally grown up. Best known for their crack pie and compost cookies, which must be tried to be comprehended, they also mix up a mean frozen yogurt and naked cakes in unique flavors like cereal milk (way more yummy than it sounds). Not a sit-down joint, but pick up for a celebration in the hotel.
Dylan’s Candy Bar: Worth a stop for sheer color and sweetness overload. Dylan’s is the ultimate candy store, packed with every sweet treat imaginable, from nostalgic favorites to new creations. You can also hold private events here, making it a great location for a sweet-themed shower. Or stop in at the Candy Bar for a candy-themed cocktail, like a Pop Rocks Explosion made with vodka, melon liquor, lime and orange juices and, yes, Pop Rocks!
Sprinkles: Two words: Cupcake ATM. Worth it for the Instagram alone, am I right?
Looking for the perfect custom favor to add to a bachelorette survival kit? Emma from Flhair Accessories and Ultimate Bridesmaid are giving away one set of 12 custom bachelorette favors from Flhair’s new collection. Adorable and handy, these would be the perfect party favor before a night out on the town—you know you’re gonna need to throw your hair up on the dance floor! The winner will be able to choose from four just debuted designs—an engagement ring, a diamond, lips or a cocktail glass—then select the perfect colored or patterned hair tie to match the bachelorette theme. Emma will create a custom tag with the bride’s name and the saying of your choice. It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I particular love the “To Have and To Hold Your Hair Back” ones—too clever and cute. How do you enter? There’s seven ways below (each counts as its own entry, so share the love!). May the odds be ever in your (bachelorette) favor!
Terms and conditions apply. The winner will be randomly selected using Rafflecopter. Valid for residents of the U.S. and Canada only. The winner may choose from the designs shown in the following links: Option 1, option 2, option 3, and option 4.
Engaged and pregnant? Don’t skip your bachelorette night! The bachelorette party is about celebrating friendships and that certainly doesn’t require alcohol. Pregnant bride Justyna’s friends organized a surprise hen night for her, and asked photographer Nadine Jayaraj to tag along. After a quick photo session with the bride, the ladies headed to a belly dancing class (what a perfect way for pregnant Justyna to get in touch with her belly and what’s inside!). The group ended the night with dinner at Zurich’s Maison Blunt and toasted the bride with a touching video tribute. I’m so inspired by Justyna’s choice to celebrate and fully embrace two life-changing experiences at once—marriage and the arrival of her baby!
Bright colors, a pretty garden setting, lots of laughter, a candy-covered cake…what’s not to love about this thoroughly modern London tea party shower, captured by Ronnie and Rose Photography? The formal table set in the vibrant green back garden gave the occasion a Mad Hatter feel, as the ladies enjoyed tea and cake and mugged it up a bit with tiny hats and neon sunglasses. And though the toilet paper wedding dress tradition can be a bit silly, sometimes silliness must be embraced! Bride Nicky and her friends took paper fashion to a whole new level, creating flowy designs to model on their makeshift runway.