The relatives have been called, the ring has been swooned-over and a date has been set, an e-mail alerts you to the exciting news of an engaged friend. As the 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. Though, whilst drafting cheesy speech anecdotes, you begin to envisage the fated Hens night. Memories of inebriation, fuchsia party hats and latex budgie smugglers in grimy nightclub interiors cloud your enthusiasm of an evening which should be celebratory. Cringe no more, from choreography to cocktails, we’ve provided you with new and improved Hens party ideas, minus the hangover.
1. Jewellery Making
Any opportunity to wring out those creative juices is as good as any and what better environment to create, than in the company of close friends? Craft and contrast earring designs with founder of ‘Etelage’, Christine Smalley, 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 walk home with an artisan product superior in originality to store-bought, mass-produced sterling silver.
2. Dance classes
Most can attest to the high-value of a good boogie on a girls’ night out. Despite the enticing crowd of hip-rocking and moon-walking glitter embellished bridesmaids, you struggle to ignore the frustrating shrieks of overly excitable girls, belting of sub-par pop and sweaty dance floor, hesitating when beckoned to link arms with the line gravitating toward the dazzling disco light. Remove the nightclub from dancing and enrol in a group dance lesson. Satiate the craving to knock your hips back and forth to your favourite tunes, minus the challenge of navigating a crammed mosh. Strap on those leggings, tie your hair back and perfect choreography to some great hits with the wedding party as mock-rehearsal for the main event. The class will serve as the perfect opportunity to discern which bridesmaid should refrain from the dance floor at reception and who should take centre stage.
3. Flower Arrangement
Fortunately, flower appreciation and arrangement is not a pursuit limited to wedding receptions, but a form of artistic expression practised. Allow Setsuko Yanagisawa, who boasts over thirteen years’ experience in the floral industry, to revive your love for the often overlooked flora which adorns our homes and sidewalks. Setsuko’s speciality is the Japanese style of flower arrangement called ‘Ikebana’. Fasten and position stems alongside friends in Setsuko’s flower design studio in Sydney’s eclectic Glebe, broaden your knowledge of different flowers and shrubs whilst gaining invaluable insight into an art evolved across centuries.
4. High Tea
Amidst all the flux of premarital planning, invest in some down time with your closest friends over some tea and cake. Clang charming porcelain and sink tiny forks into orange cake whilst entertaining conversation free of seating arrangement charts. A civilised alternative to a Hens night out, the English custom presents the perfect opportunity to rewind with the bridal party in a respectable setting, for instance a garden or sunlit courtyard, just ensure not to look over your cup when sipping or speak with a full mouth, spilling fuchsia macaroon crumbs all over the table cloth.
5. Cocktail Making
Whilst jewellery making, dance classes and flower arrangement boast their fair share of positive attributes, they may fail to please those who crave a more rousing Hens night alternative, in other words, involving alcohol of some sort. Cocktail making may just be the perfect party idea. Follow Robin Tabari, who has shadowed some of the UK’s best bartenders, in learning the theory and practice of cocktail making. Robin’s extensive knowledge of both new world and classic techniques will see you mixing, muddling and shaking-up Cosmos, Margaritas and Mojitos in his Mixology workshop. Walk away with a deeper appreciation of your Friday night beverage, or flaunt your newfound knowledge at the wedding reception to drive flirtatious conversation with the bartender.
Classbento offers many creative and activity based workshops for bridesmaid bonding, opportunities to express oneself and foster new skills, minus the sleaze of a nightclub or confronting lap dance. Our Hens party ideas and many alternatives can be found here.