How to Host a Fun, Practical ‘Honey Do’ Barbecue


Fine china.

A panini press.

Egyptian cotton sheets.

And… power tools?

You bet. For the practical couple who’s invested in building a life together, a Honey Do shower is a new twist on an old classic. There will always be a place in your life for fine dinnerware, but we have a hunch that a new drill set will get used way more often.

So, what the heck is a Honey Do shower? Simple: it’s a shower you throw to help equip a couple with the practical household basics they’ll need to complete all the stuff on their Honey Do list. Starting a life together can entail buying a home and embarking on a litany of projects: household repairs, painting, refurbishing old furniture, you name it. A Honey Do shower helps set couples up with the tools of the trade they’ll need to tackle those tasks. Plus, it gives the host a chance to celebrate the couple together and invite both their guy and gal pals. A popular option for Honey Do showers is to host a casual barbecue—and we are always looking for an excuse to host a barbecue! Know a couple that needs some practical pampering? Here’s how you do it!

The Goods

What does the couple need the most? Let them tell you! Have the couple register their wish list at a local hardware store, preferably one that also offers online shopping for out of town guests.

The Venue

The best place to have a casual barbecue: your own back yard, or in a back yard big enough to comfortably seat all of your guests. No need to splurge on pricey event venue rentals or pay for expensive restaurant food. Trust us, you can make a backyard shindig special! And this is a great time of year to plan an outdoor event. Fall is approaching, and with it comes that delicious, crisp autumn weather.

The Decor

Keep it simple and classy. Think burlap runners instead of fussy tablecloths and colorful bunting hung from tree branches (bonus points if it matches the couple’s wedding colors). If you’re into flowers, try soaking wine bottles of different sizes until the labels come off and using them as simple vases for a few seasonal blooms. Don’t forget to light a few citronella candles to keep the last few pesky summer mosquitos at bay. Also fun: use hardware as decor. Tie measuring tape around napkins in lieu of napkin holders. Pile utensils into a clean paint bucket. Add a simple hammer or screwdriver to a centerpiece. And at the end of the event, make sure those goodies go home with the guests of honor.

The Invites

Our fave: find an invite you love on a site like Etsy, have the artist customize it with your own info and send you a PDF, and print the invitations at home (or at a print shop, or via a photo lab like Walgreens or Shutterfly). Easy peasy, and way less expensive than outsourcing the whole job to a pricey printer. (Psst… We love this fun Honey Do BBQ invitation on Etsy!)

The Food

Barbecue is the best—the meat is the star. Ask the couple what their favorite is and let their preferences lead the way. Ribs? Burgers? Hot dogs? All super easy to do on the grill (bet you wish you had a Big Green Egg right now). Pick one or two proteins and add a few easy-to-eat sides—don’t pick anything too fussy or messy. If you’ve got a large, diverse group coming, you may want to include some vegetarian options on the menu, like grilled portobello mushrooms or veggie burgers. And don’t forget dessert. Grilled fruit (like pineapple and peaches) served with whipped cream on shortcake or pound cake is heavenly—though you can’t go wrong with cupcakes or a beautifully decorated cake from your favorite bakery. For drinks, keep it simple. If you’re serving cocktails, serve a signature beverage that the couple enjoys, or stock your Yeti Cooler with their favorite brew. Lemonade and iced tea are perfect for outdoor shindigs.

The Fun

Sure, opening gifts is fun. But guests (and the lucky couple) will love having the option of participating in a few laid back activities. Photo booths are always a hit. If you’ve got a large wooden picture frame, try hanging it from a branch so guests can stand behind it and pose. For extra fun, add some silly props (hats, glasses, mustaches, you get the idea). And you’ll want to go ahead and make this for every future outdoor party you host: giant Jenga (click for tutorial).

Are you hosting a Honey Do shower? Tell us all about it in the comments!

Did you know Dot’s Ace Hardware offers gift registries? They’re perfect for Honey Do showers! Come see us at 3411 Richmond Road in Texarkana, Texas and ask at the front counter to get started.

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