Whether you’re the bestie who’s been entrusted with the task of organising the hen do or you’re a bride-to-be looking for some info to pass on to your nearest and dearest, find all the hen night dos and don’ts right here.
A hen do is an age old pastime that requires (just) a pinch of patience, touch of imagination, organisation skills worthy of a medal and a fabulous group of hens.
If the thought of pink feather boas and male strippers fills you with dread, don’t panic, hen dos have become somewhat more sophisticated over the years. However, that doesn’t mean to say that if sashes, L-plates and novelty props are your thing you shouldn’t go for it!
Remember, the hen do is a celebration of the bride-to-be. Channel her style, personality and tastes for a hen do to remember. Trust us, she’ll thank you!
Why Are Hen Dos A Thing?
The phrase ‘hen party’ dates back to as far as the 1800s, although it’s not necessarily linked to a pre-wedding celebration. Back then, it seems as though it simply refereed to a group of women. It’s thought to be The Times newspaper that coined the term hen party – in the modern day sense – in the 1970s. By the 90s hen and stag dos were of equal importance.
Originally wedding-related hen parties occurred between co-workers, as the brides role was shifting to domestic wife and mother post-marriage. However, it wasn’t before long the celebrations developed into larger affairs including female friends and family members. Now hen nights are an extremely popular tradition and have grown increasingly elaborate over the years!
Besides the event itself, they’re just a fabulous chance for the bride-to-be to enjoy the company of all her friends all at once. Who doesn’t love an awesome party after all? Especially when it’s just for you! That being said, some brides find that their hen do is much more symbolic than that.
Having a successful hen party promises that the forthcoming wedding will be equally as successful. Going beyond that, some brides may believe it shows that the marriage itself will be full off love and prosperity. If nothing else, at least the wedding festivities are getting off to a smooth start!
The Devil Is In The Detail
We’re fortunate enough to be inundated with choice. We can shop at the click of a button and gain inspiration wherever we turn, from our Instagram feeds to the news stories of our favourite celebs. However, all these options can leave us a little frazzled.
First a foremost, remember a hen do isn’t a competition. Trying to do too much of everything will ultimately mean that number one, the celebration isn’t personal; and two, not everyone can join in. If you’re planning a hen do for your bestie you’ll know her better than anyone, so think about who she is and what she loves.
Is she a fan of pampering and relaxation, a cocktail swigging Queen, thrill-seeking adrenaline junkie, creative gal with a penchant for arts and crafts? These thoughts are an excellent spring board to ensure she enjoys a hen do to remember.
Figure Out A Theme
This could be anything you like, and it can be customised to suit your group of friends!
Some people hear ‘theme’ and run a mile. But you can be as loose or as all-out with this as you like. Bear with us… Perhaps the bride-to-be is a total Potter-head, you could get stuck in and plan the ultimate Harry Potter hen do complete with chocolate frogs, sugar wands, and whitchy props.
A vintage tea party style hen do would be perfect for spring. Think summer garden party atmosphere with vintage crockery, tea and scones. Or swap the tea for eclectic cocktails! If you’re friends are really creative, you could easily transform this into an Alice in Wonderland themed occasion and have everyone dress up.
Autumn brides could channel Halloween for the ultimate Tim Burton themed hen do. The options are endless!
If the bride-to-be isn’t a theme lover, keep it simple and just have a colour scheme. There is an array of ‘team bride’ blush pink, rose gold and chic grey marble hen accessories out there, and we’re not mad about it! Of course absolutely any colour scheme goes, depending on what she’d love.
A totally easy way to enforce a theme with minimum effort is to have the bride in white and all the hens in black – or perhaps her favourite colour. This is a particularly great option if you have a bride who cringes at the thought of wearing a badge, sash or the like, but still wants to stand out. The members of the hen party will thank you for the minimum effort but great effect this will have.
When you’ve decided on a theme, it should seem a little easier to narrow down the rest. There’s nothing wrong with dinner and a night out on the town. Simply book a table at the bride’s favourite restaurant and a VIP booth at the hottest club in town.
However, thinking outside the box leads to a whole host of fun options guaranteeing a hen do to remember.
Cocktail making is a fun yet easy option with minimum organisation required. It also coincides nicely with an evening of dancing!
A spa day is always an excellent idea, perfect for overwhelmed brides-to-be who could do with a little pre-wedding relaxation. Also, spa sessions are really inclusive as all friends and family members, young and old alike, can join in.
Cupcake making and cake decorating is perfect for those who love to get creative. And taste some sweet treats along the way! Other options for the arts and crafts lovers include life drawing, flower arranging, jewellery making, pottery throwing and so much more.
Calling adrenaline junkies! With hen dos getting more and more elaborate, there is a whole host of active ideas appealing to the thrill-seekers among us. From go-kart racing to skydiving, escape rooms and agility courses, simply choose an option that suits.
Look After Your Fellow-Hens!
One key element to keep in mind when planning the activities during a hen do or hen night has to be the personalities of the individual friends and family who’ll be there.
There are going to be colleagues, family members and different friendship groups merging. Consequently, arranging some type of entertainment or activity serves as a good bonding exercise and ice breaker.
Some hen nights have a whole host of different ages coming along. As a result, thinking about the distances between venues and admission prices is something to consider. Organising a hen do where all the important people can get involved is so important.
So, when all is said and done, regardless of the chosen theme, venue, entertainment and transport, every bride-to-be is sure to have a hen night to remember so long as she has her loving friends and family around her. Take a look at our website to find hen activities in Bristol and beyond!