My Italian-Themed Bridal Shower

Mini olive oil favors for Italian-themed bridal shower

Back in September I had the most wonderful bridal shower. It was held outside at my matron of honor's house, and the weather was absolutely perfect. I was told to be fashionably late, and I arrived to find friends and family mingling in the backyard.

On the deck, a vinegar and olive oil tasting had been set up, and as I looked around the yard, I quickly learned I was having an Italian-themed bridal shower. It was incredibly appropriate, as Jeff and I are headed to Italy for our honeymoon. There were gorgeous centerpieces with beautiful red Gerbera daisies in wine bottles, Italian music, Italian food, and plenty of wine.

Olive oil tasting for Italian-themed bridal shower

But back to that olive oil and vinegar tasting table. My sister had recently discovered a store near where she goes to school in Ithaca, New York, that sells all sorts of flavored vinegars and oils. The company is called F. Oliver's and it's based out of Canandaigua, New York. They have three stores, and you can sample all their olive oils and vinegars when you're there. It definitely sounds like my kind of place, and my sister, knowing that, suggested this tasting table and mini olive oil and vinegar bottles as shower favors.

Olive oil tasting for Italian-themed bridal shower

We tasted several varieties of olive oil, including Fresh Bright Basil, Fresh Pressed Blood Orange, Heady Garlic, and Tuscan Garden (which had lots of rosemary notes). And we also savored several vinegars, like Dark Chocolate, Lemon Bouquet, Felix Oliver's 18-Year-Old Special Reserve, and Aromatic Oregano. The Dark Chocolate Balsamic Vinegar and the Fresh Pressed Blood Orange Extra-Virgin Olive Oil were a very popular combination. I thought the sampling was a very fun -- and very foodie -- shower activity.

Olive oil tasting for Italian-themed bridal shower

I mingled with guests a bit and munched on the snacks set out on the tables. There were heaping bowls of mixed olives.

Olives at Italian-themed bridal shower

There were adorable red, white, and green caprese skewers.

Red, white, and green caprese skewers for Italian-themed bridal shower

And did I mention wine? There was wine. And punch too. (I actually picked out the wines for my shower, but I wasn't told the theme, which explains why they aren't Italian... they're just wines I enjoy!)

Wine bottles

After a little while of visiting with friends and family, I was asked to lead the way to lunch and was thrilled to see this delicious spread.

Lunch spread for Italian-themed bridal shower

There were heaping bowls of Caesar salad studded with grape tomatoes (with homemade croutons on the side).

Caesar salad for Italian-themed bridal shower

There were meatballs in homemade sauce and little pizza puffs (that I didn't get a picture of).

Meatballs for Italian-themed bridal shower

There were my mom's stuffed shells.

Stuffed shells for Italian-themed bridal shower

And there was chicken piccata. (My matron of honor's husband actually made all that chicken for us. He's a great guy!)

Chicken piccata for Italian-themed bridal shower

And then there was dessert.

My shower was held the day after my birthday, so there was birthday cake for me, and everyone sang "Happy Birthday." The cake was from Sweet Maria's and it was amazing. I saw people going back for more. It was almost like a tiramisu cake... it didn't have the texture of tiramisu but it definitely had those flavors.

Tiramisu-style cake for Italian-themed bridal shower

There were also mocha cupcakes and lemon cupcakes that my matron of honor and her son made that morning. (Mini cupcakes, of course, because they know me.)

Mini cupcakes for Italian-themed bridal shower

And there were cannoli -- both regular and chocolate -- from Mazzicato's in Hartford. People were raving about these. And I definitely sampled a chocolate one before the day was through.

Mini cannoli for Italian-themed bridal shower

After all the feasting, I sat with my bridesmaids (minus two -- missed my Lindsays that day but can't wait to see them at the wedding!) and opened presents. I was blown away by everyone's thoughtfulness and generosity. The whole day was just perfect. I may be biased, but this was the best bridal shower I've ever attended!

Me with some of my bridesmaids

And I have these two to thank... BIG TIME!

My mom and my matron of honor

On top of everything else my mom did for my shower, she arranged to have both my aunt (who lives in California) and one of my sisters fly in and surprise me. That was the icing on the cake!

Thank you to everyone who made my bridal shower such a fun, memorable occasion!

And thanks to friends and family for taking the pictures I used in this post.