This weekend…deep breath… I am going to be a hen! And if the thought of being a hen sends waves of fear running up and down your spine, I understand your terror entirely. Hen parties evoke pictures of marauding women running around in a gaggle, dressed in stupid costumes, with various parts of mens anatomy pinned to their person. There in the midst of all this is the ‘Bride’, a terrifying creature in heavy make up and a veil, doing various dares, and loosing all dignity in the process. Recently, gossip magazines were filled with pictures of Katy Perry and Rihanna enjoying hen japes before Katy’s nuptials to Russell Brand. But is there a way of having a more stylish hen night, without losing the fun. The answer, happily, is YES!
First though, you need to pick a venue. You could go for a club, but why not try something different for your special night. Spas are a great way of relaxing, enjoying a sauna, massage, general pampering session, before having a meal in a special restaurant. In summer you could enjoy a day at the races, where Hens could don their best dresses and prettiest hats and have a flutter, or try dog racing, Many dog tracks have amazing hospitality suites with champagne buffets on the menu. No standing trackside, you could even sponsor a race in the bride’s name.
The theatre is another good option. There are so many girl friendly shows – Legally blonde, Priscilla, Queen of the desert and Calender Girls to name but three. You can dress up, have a glass of bubbly mid show, and then enjoy a late supper with your hens. civilised – yes! Fun – most definitely!
So that’s entertainment sorted. What about clothes? A theme is a great idea as long as it isn’t schoolgirls, nurses, devils etc. Why dress tacky – this is your special night. It deserves a dress to remember. My theme was just ‘wear your best dress’ and I thought my hens looked gorgeous, individual, classy and beautiful. Good themes could be ‘full length and fabulous’, ‘in the red’, ‘What would Audrey wear’. My sister has chosen the themes ‘Think Pink’ from Funny Face, one of her favourite films, and ‘Sex and the City’ with the coda, ‘be fabulous’. Avoid the clichéd penis hats and veils, go for Paloma Faith – esque headdresses instead for a classier look. Venetian masks are a do, they look very pretty and glamorous. ‘L’ plates are a don’t – these days most brides should wear an ‘E’ for experienced!
Another nice touch is to present each hen with a little survival kit for the hen night /weekend. You can pick these up quite cheaply on Ebay at present, and you can choose the contents. Go for beauty options rather than cheap plastic tacky items. I put together a kit using an Ebay shop called JJS OCCASIONS, and the items came beautifully packaged and personalised. I am the Maid of Honour, so I am going to present these to the other Hens on the train travelling to London, the scene of the hen party. Check out JJS OCCASIONS Ebay store for your own options. ( http://stores.ebay.co.uk/JJS-OCCASIONS).
A nice touch is to create a special gift for the Bride to be. There are many companies that sell Bride to be holdalls that you can then fill with gifts for the bride to be. These can be cute (packs of loveheart sweets), practical (thank you notecards for after the wedding), pampering (Lush bath bombs filled with glitter) or just pretty (vintage style brooches from Primark).
So, there you go. There are now no excuses for silly veils, dare cards, whistles, horns, angel wings or L plates. Unless, of course, you’re into that sort of thing, and then you can raid Ann Summers with pleasure. Just count me out!