The relatives have been called, the ring has been swooned over, and a date has been set. As a loyal supporter, you share in the excitement, as the bride-to-be eagerly begins her wedding planning: dress fittings, cake tasting and securing the reception band. Then the conversations start to turn towards the hens party or hens night. A good hens should allow the bridal group to bond and share in a memorable and celebratory experience, before the bride embarks on a new stage in her life. It should be bright, cheery, meaningful and a little different, a bit unique.
Whether you’re the organiser or just a good friend who wants to steer your group in the right direction, here are some of the best inspiring and creative hens party ideas in Sydney. Perfect for both intimate smaller groups, and bigger celebrations. Make it a classy and refined experience, or let your hair down and have some silly fun. Everything's provided and no knowledge is assumed, so you can just book, BYO if you like, turn up, and enjoy!
Connect with nature
Weddings are all about love and new beginnings; the simple and wonderful things in life, wonders that just can’t be described with words. It’s a great time to get closer to nature, to smell the roses and to remind ourselves of the world’s beauty just sitting there quietly in the background, waiting to be picked up, seen in a different light, and treasured.
Play with the season’s freshest blooms, and develop your aesthetic taste. Get invited into a floristry, where you can discover the elegance and simplicity of Ikebana (the Japanese art of flower arranging), learn how to select and combine the right elements to create a more traditional bouquet, or mix it up by using Australian natives, which can last forever (just like love). Flower crown making is always a fun and practical option too, and if you're up for it, do it while soaking up the sunshine at a beach.
Make your own garden landscapes and let your creativity run wild. Make open succulent terrariums, or try your hand at cute Jurassic inspired leafy closed terrariums. Bring some wine or champagne, and chill out in the midst of one of Sydney's most beloved floristries. The teacher is the best rated terrarium teacher in Sydney, for good reason. Let the bride-to-be connect with nature and just be in the moment - crucial relaxation before the big day! Terrariums last for years with minimal maintenance, so they’ll serve as a nice reminder for your entire group of your lovely and priceless time together.
Our sense of smell is closely linked to our memory, more so than any of our other senses. The scent of jasmines may remind you of that first fateful encounter on a warm summer evening, while a woody musk may remind you of your childhood and your dad’s cologne. Unearth all those sweet memories and evoke all those wonderful emotions that represent the bride’s life journey so far.
Let the bridal party indulge in inventing their own perfume, sampling from scents used by the world’s top perfume houses. Mix and match the ingredients until you find the scent that perfectly tells your story, in a fun-filled fragrance workshop, and of course, take home your special creations, perhaps to use at the special day.
Choose from almost 30 different scents, compliment them with your choice of colour and beautiful glass jars, and learn to make your own eco-friendly and vegan candles, yours to keep. Later, the bride (and maybe you too) will have the perfect excuse (and tools) to create a romantic atmosphere.
Make your own unique natural batch of soap, using only the finest organic ingredients. Decorate with exotic flower petals and buds. Whenever you (or the bride) take a whiff of the lovely scent, you'll be transported back to the memory of this wonderful time spent together.
That's right, you can even make your own natural skincare for your hens. Design your own bath salts, body scrubs, lip balms and more, with only the best ingredients, and under the careful guidance of some of the best in the industry.
Looking for a naughty and indulgent girls-only activity? Yes, obviously we are talking about indulging in some sweet desserts! A hens only happens once in a girl’s life (or so we hope), so forget the diets, and just give in to one of life’s greatest pleasures.
We hear that it’s lower in calories if you make it yourself, so go ahead and create your own chocolates. Experiment with flavours and shapes, and learn first-hand how chocolate is made, in a real chocolate factory. Have some laughs and make sure to do plenty of sampling. You can even add some champagne, or finish off your experience with a Moet high tea in a lovely outdoor space.
Draw your cake and eat it too, in a playful class led by popular Instagram artist Blair Z. You’ll be served some delicious desserts, while she teaches you how you can use watercolour to capture all those luscious swirls and to paint those decadent layers. After spending a good amount of time with the desserts as your muse, appreciating all its finer details, you’re sure to have your mouth watering. You’ll have ample opportunity to taste your subject – it’s all good, you’ve already captured it on paper after all!
Petite, colourful and sweet, macarons are a cute addition to any wedding, and to any hens. Make your own with Sydney’s macaron king, MakMak, who got crowned as Sydney’s tastiest macaron makers, ahead of the usual suspects like Zumbo and Laduree. Macaron making is pretty tough to master, but MakMak will break it down and make it super simple for you to follow. You’ll even get a kit to continue your macaron making journey at home!
Hens are a great time to bond, and bonding is often best done with beverages. Whether your bride-to-be prefers to get a little tipsy or whether she’d prefer to keep it Zen and clean, you’ll have a lot more fun when you’re inventing and mixing the drinks yourself.
Learn how best to pair tea with chocolate, or, even cheese, and really indulge and develop your sense of taste and smell. Discover more about how these pairings complement and enhance one another, with an experienced tea atelier. Develop your palette and whet your appetite in anticipation for the culinary delights on the big day!
Cocktail making may just be the perfect party idea. We have some of Sydney’s best bars and mixologists that can show you all the classic techniques. You’ll be mixing, muddling and shaking-up Cosmos, Margaritas, Mojitos and more in their informal mixology workshops. Fancy making a cocktail using natural Australian flora? Or perhaps a signature fairy floss martini? Go on a little journey of discovery, and walk away with a deeper appreciation of your Friday night beverage, or flaunt your newfound knowledge at the wedding reception as an ice breaker with all those new people. Some of our venues will let you have the whole bar (the whole place for that matter) for your exclusive use - how's that for special treatment? Or, if you've already got a venue reserved for the day, our mobile cocktail bar can come to you.
After marriage, it may be hard to get your friend / sister by herself, without her husband tagging along. So now’s a great time to do something that’s just for the girls.
Craft original earring designs with the founder of ‘Etelage’, Christine, who creates beautiful product loyal to her philosophy: quality over quantity. Twist, link and wire-wrap vintage and modern crystals, cameos, stones and brass filigree. Whilst your final product may not make the cut as adornment for the bride on her special day, you will nonetheless leave the class with an artisan product superior in originality to the store-bought, mass-produced stuff.
Draw beautiful designs on pebbles from Sydney’s northern shores. Discover the Japanese art of Zentangu from an experienced Japanese artist, which will help you to develop the structure and discipline needed to make clear and intricate patterns, and you may even be able to turn your pebbles into unique pendants.
Weddings can be a stressful affair, what with all the planning and the emotional rollercoasters. Prevent her from becoming bridezilla, by giving her a creative channel to focus her mental energies on. Get her hands busy and her mind focused on something else, and she’ll be relaxed and calm, and her best self, for the big day.
Design and make your own printing blocks, which you can then use to print designs beautifully and effortlessly. Carving is a great way to focus and de-stress, and with your completed works, you’ll have a great way to create original wedding invitation cards, or just a way for the bride and her pals to put their stamp on the wedding décor. Each guest can carve something that speaks to them, or you can each do your interpretation of a common object or theme, which could be the bride or groom's favourite food or pet, or anything else that's meaningful.
Make pretty little things out of ordinary paper, with just a little fold here, a little bend there, and a little flourish at the end. Have a friendly competition as you see who folds the fastest and most precise crane, or keep it relaxed and play at a more leisurely pace. Your creations could make for great tabletop accessories on the big day.
Play with a potter’s wheel, or try some hand sculpting. Create your own vases, candle holders, mugs and much more. Do it in the tranquil surrounds of Bundeena, or in a bustling studio in Crows Nest, the choice is yours.
Meditate and paint
Wedding preparation can turn even the calmest lady into bridezilla. Encourage everyone to take a breath and relax, with a unique meditation and painting class. You'll be guided to access your natural energy and clear your mind, before you then learn the techniques to create an abstract painting that you'll be proud of.
Have a laugh
Are the options above just too serious for your bride-to-be? Share some laughs and don’t take it too seriously – you’re still young and you’re free to do anything you like, including breaking the usual conventions on what constitutes a ‘proper’ hens event.
Pick up a new party trick. Don’t worry, you won’t be tasked with keeping multiple cats in the air (at least not in the beginning). Learn from a pro in the great outdoors. Nobody gets it right the first time, which is what makes it so fun. A bit of good-humoured teasing among friends is sure to ensue – embrace it!
If you haven’t watched Dove’s touching Beauty Sketches video (and the hilarious men’s version), go ahead and check it out, we’ll wait here. Even if your greatest drawing achievement so far are stick figures, our artist-teachers will be able to guide you to create realistic portraits, quickly and easily. Don’t hold back, sketch away, and see what your friend thinks of your depiction of them!
ClassBento offers many creative and hands on workshops that would be perfect for a hens, including lots that aren’t listed here - go forth and explore the full list, and just reach out if you need any help, we'd be happy to assist you in making this day an unforgettable one!