Literary Love: A Book-Themed Bridal Shower

Another one for the “books”! We threw a perfect shower for Roberta, my second and last sister to get married. My younger sis is a true bibliophile (i.e. lover of books). She’s an English teacher studying to become a librarian. So this bride-to-be clearly needed a book-themed shower. And since I love books almost as much as her, I was more than happy to take the literary theme and run with it.

We had a lot to live up to with this shower. After all, Emily’s bridal shower last summer was pretty wonderful — lovely decorations and delicious food. It was a LOT of work. Needless to say, I was very worried about meeting expectations for Roberta’s shower since Owen is here now, monopolizing all my time.

With the hard work of Emily, my mom, and Richard (yes, I made my husband help with shower crafting), we pulled off my vision for Roberta’s book-themed shower!

We hosted the shower at Emily’s gorgeous home, which really does look like the pages of a Pottery Barn catalog. Our literary-inspired decorations fit into the setting perfectly.

Here’s a look at Roberta’s shower, starting with the invitation:

I used every library/book/love story reference imaginable in this invitation. I lined the envelopes with book pages and we used library card pockets to hold a book page heart. They ended up being one of my favorite invitation designs ever.

These mini cupcakes were adorable! I created a template for a mini cupcake wrapper (click here for the template) and used the template to make wrappers out of book pages. Not only did they look cute, they tasted great too, thanks to the sublime brown butter cream cheese frosting.


We decorated the table with stacks of hardcover books, heart confetti made from book pages, and vases of baby’s breath and daisies wrapped with book pages and ribbon. A wooden “Love” sign completed our tablescape.

I used a few hardcover books as frames to display photos of Roberta and Bobby. We also made garland from library book pockets and photos.

Richard helped me make a bunch of mini books out of cardstock and old book pages that we hung from yarn with mini clothespins.

Instead of hanging pom poms from the ceiling, we made hanging decorations from book pages. Artistic, right?

I’m not a fan of shower games, but I tried to add some activities to make the afternoon interesting. We asked all the guests to bring their favorite book, which we collected when they arrived. Then we had Roberta select one book at a time and guess who brought the book. After guessing, she opened their gift. While Roberta opened her ton of gifts, we also handed out “I’m a Book Lover” pencils and “wed-libs”: a short story about Roberta and Bobby that we turned into a Mad Libs game. Our guests filled in the blanks and then Roberta read the original, complete story.

For the shower favors, we made bookmarks that said “Book Lovers Never Go to Bed Alone,” which we gave out with “I Love Books” reusable bags. We packaged the bookmarks and bags in large square navy and cream envelopes that we decorated with a book page heart. The perfect take-away for a literary afternoon shower. Now onto the next chapter…the wedding day!

ice cream sig
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36 Responses to Literary Love: A Book-Themed Bridal Shower

  1. This was the best!!!! The pictures look amazing. I was expecting a great shower because you were in charge but this exceeded my expectations :)

    • Hi! Glad you like the invites, but unfortunately I don’t have an online shop and can’t sell my designs. There are similar invitations on Etsy, if you want to try looking there.

  2. How did the favorite book guessing game go? I love the idea, but not sure how the flow of that would go.
    I am also worried about putting someone on the spot if they didn’t happen to bring a gift . . .

    • Hi Elle! The book guessing game was fun and casual, it added a little interest to the often long and sometimes boring gift opening session. We didn’t have any issues with someone not bringing a gift, but I don’t think it would have been noticeable if someone brought a book and no gift. We basically set a basket of books by the bride while she opened her gifts. She pulled out a book between each gift and guessed who brought the book. My sister was actually really good at guessing and, since she’s a book lover, it also gave her a chance to discover some new books.

  3. Hi, i love your invites! I know you made them yourself. Can you maybe give me.a.step by step? I’m guessing you used cream colored cardstock in 4×6? How did you make the lines? Black and lightbrown/grey lines? Also what font did you use, it really looks like a typewriter! =) thanks in advanced!!!!

    • Thanks! I did use cream colored cardstock. The cards were 5×7. The lines are the borders of a table and they are black. I used two fonts: Rough Typewriter and Typenoksidi. Let me know if you have any other questions.

    • It’s super easy! I just overlapped a bunch of book pages and tied them around a large mason jar with ribbon. You don’t need to adhere them; the ribbon holds them in place.

  4. Hi there! I’m also planning a book themed shower and I loved some of your ideas. Do you make the center Pieces? Do you have a copy or link of the wed-lies you used? Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Kelly! Yes, I made the centerpieces. I simply wrapped book pages around a large mason jar and tied a ribbon around to hold them in place. Then I just stuck a bunch of baby’s breath in the jars. It was super easy! The wed-libs were a story about my sister’s relationship with her fiance. So the version we wrote wouldn’t work for another shower. If you’d like me to format something you’ve written into wed-libs, just let me know.

  5. Hi Louisa!! Love the bookmarks you made!! I’d love to do that as favors for my sister in laws bridal shower. Do you mind sharing how you guys made them? What materials you used? Thanks!!

    • Hi Allison, thanks so much! We used ivory card stock and we just printed them at home with black ink. Then we used navy blue yarn to make the bookmark tassels.

    • Hi Catherine! I cut them out from pages from old romance books that I found on a sale rack at my library. I cut the hearts out by hand, but you can buy a heart punch from any craft store which would make the job much faster!

    • Thanks so much! The LOVE sign was actually a decoration I had in my home…I’m not even sure where I got it from, it was so long ago.

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