Are you planning a hen do, a bridal shower or a bachelorette party for your friend/sister/self?

Chances are you want to not only make it the best send-off ever, but you also want to add a thoroughly personal touch to the celebration.

From favourite colours to cute cocktails, and bespoke invites and chic accessories, modern day hen parties are so much more than just plastic tiaras, L plates and shots of tequila. (Though we're still rather partial to all three!)

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Photo by J Wiley Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

Five years ago when I (Claire here, BTW!) was organising my bestie Ciara's hen, it was tough to find ideas and products for giving her party a bespoke polish.

Luckily now, with creative online stores and talented makers all that has changed. Which brings us nicely onto our rather special guest, Hester Lear, all-round pretty party planning enthusiast and owner of Wedding in a Teacup.

Wedding in a Teacup is an online boutique, that's a veritable wonderland of cute decor buys, DIY supplies and gorgeous hen party accessories – lots of which is made by Hester herself. 

As you know, we like to consult the professionals from time to time, so who better to school us in adding personalised pops to a party, than a lady who has made doing just that, her day job!

Take it away Hester…

How To Personalise Your Hen Party or Bridal Shower

We just love a Hen Do here at Wedding in a Teacup! When else do you have the excuse to get all of your favourite people together and create havoc?

Okay, we do this quite often, but it’s still a good excuse…

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Photo via Wedding in a Teacup

Hen Dos don’t have to follow the typical “funny” outfits and trashy bar formula (although, a bit of trash never hurt anyone.)

Today a hen night is just as likely to be a hen weekend, and a vast array of activities are available to keep everyone happy; from craft evenings to dance lessons, to vintage cream teas and luxury spa days – there’s no excuse not to have fun!

In our experience it’s those little personal touches that really make a hen do special. So put a huge smile on the beautiful bride to be and her chicks with our top tips…

1. Start with Snail Mail

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Photo by Kristen Marie Photography via Style Me Pretty

Once you’ve agreed a time and a place for the action, get everyone excited with a snail mail invitation – there are times when a text or email just won’t cut it!

Send a badge invitation personalised with the date of the do, each guest’s name (good for larger parties where everyone doesn’t know each other) or simply HEN – then everyone can wear them on the day – a great ice breaker!

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Photo via Wedding in a Teacup

Or is the bride to be more eco minded? Pop our sunflower seed packets in A6 envelopes for a lovely introduction to a country weekend away….

Our ‘time to drink champagne’ stamps are perfect used on the back of the envelopes to make sure they’re opened ASAP!

2. Set the Scene

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Photo by Oliver Gordon via Emma Morton-Turner for Talking Tables

If you’re staying away for the night, make sure a few of you get there before the bride to be to set the scene and decorate!

A lovely idea is to get everyone to bring their favorite (or funniest) photos of her and peg them up around the room.

Personalise Your Bridal Shower | Bridal Musings Wedding Blog

Photo by Kristen Marie Photography via Style Me Pretty

The stories behind each one will surely come out throughout the night! Scatter bright confetti on the tables, pop fun paper straws and retro charms in the drinks and string bunting and colorful pom-poms from the walls.

Top it all off with a ‘hen party in process’ sign to make sure you’re not disturbed!

3. Swag Bag

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Photo by Ruth Eileen via Style Me Pretty

Gifts for all the girls are a really thoughtful touch, and can be practical too.

Fill hen do survival kit pouches with goodies to keep everyone in tiptop condition; sweets, plasters, paracetamol, mini bottles of booze and detox face masks – they’ll thank you for it later!

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Photo via Wedding in a Teacup

Pin one of our matching big badges to the front personalised with the guest and bride to be’s name for instant introductions – they’re great to wear to the bar later – more subtle than bunny ears!

Arrange the pouches on a table before everyone arrives for extra wow factor.

4. Gift Your Girl

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Photo by Jenna Bechtholt

And don’t forget the bride to be – this is (hopefully) the only hen do she’ll have – so she’s to be spoilt rotten!

Our ‘bride to be’ tote bags are larger than the pouches so you can cram more goodies in them – a lovely keepsake, and great sash alternative for the more fashion conscious!

Fill with gifts that she can use on the day and keep for her BIG day. We particularly love the fortune telling book for brides – a great conversation focus for the whole group!

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Photo via Wedding in a Teacup

Pop in a pocket mirror personalised with her name and the date – she can use it on her wedding day and smile as she remembers all the support she has around her.

Top it all off with a handmade bride to be necklace that she can wear with style and pride the whole weekend.

5. The Ultimate Keepsake

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Photo via Wedding in a Teacup

And finally, for the ultimate take-home gift for your bride to be, create a hen-do guest book for her.

We love the idea of filling a photograph album with all the chicks’ childhood photos and memories of her – add to it throughout the day and gift it to her at the end, leaving a few blank pages for her to add in the fun of the hen do!

Or bring along a ‘fill me in’ poster and some colourful pens so everyone can write their message and memories on it throughout the weekend – it makes a wonderful keepsake.

Now, THAT’S how to throw a hen party. Enjoy!! Xxx


Photo by Paige Winn Photo

What great tips! Thanks so much Hester for sharing your expert ideas on personalising a hen party. And lovely readers, don't forget to share your own tips in the comments below.

Visit Wedding in a Teacup's website to shop their gorgeous items for creating a unique, bespoke look to your celebration (they've even got an Etsy shop too!). With prices ranging from £1-£30, they've got something to suit every budget.

Need a killer hen do soundtrack? Check out our Bachelorette Party Playlist