Have you ever been in charge of planning a bridal shower? It can get overwhelming pretty quickly, I hate to admit. I mean, just look at the concept of the theme. There are millions of bridal shower themes; storybook, “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”, fall-ing in love, kitchen-theme, shower-theme, lingerie-theme . . . It’s all a bit much! With all those options out there, it’s understandable that someone might struggle to narrow it down.
Not me, though. When my lovely MOH came to me and asked what theme I would like for my bridal shower, there was really only one answer I could give: “Psych.”
The idea for a “Psych” shower, I admit, was not entirely my idea. I stumbled upon the concept on Pinterest. While that shower looked great, it wasn’t really my style. I prefer simple, elegant, minimalist. My bridesmaids and I worked tirelessly watching dozens of episodes in order to make sleek but poignant references. This is a big post, guys, so I’m going to stop rambling and get going!
I think what took the most time and effort was coming up with the menu. The show talks about food a lot, so I figured it wouldn’t be difficult to stick to a menu that is entirely made of show references. While they do talk about food often, it’s usually junk food or snacks or tacos. It took a bit of creativity, but here’s the menu we came up with!
- Mrs. Pickles‘ Cucumber Sandwiches (recipe)
- Scary Sherry‘s Scary Good Cupcakes (cake recipe) (frosting recipe)
- Deacon Walker Farm‘s Fruit Salad
- Nigel St. Nigel‘s Tuna Nicoise Salad Sandwich (recipe)
- Shawn’s Easy-Bake Oven Pineapple Upside-Down Cakes (recipe)
The food was a huge hit, even with those who didn’t get the references. Those little pineapple upside-down cakes got raving reviews! But those little babies were probably the easiest things for us to make. It certainly wasn’t the overnight endeavor that Shawn went through, but using an actual oven will expedite the process.
The recipe came from a 1968 edition of a “Better Homes and Gardens” cookbook, from back before anyone cared about their health–so you know it’s gonna be good. Now, if you’re not a fan of using shortening in your recipes, you can sub out the shortening for more butter or oil in equal portions. This will unavoidably change the texture of your product, so switch wisely.
1 8.5 oz can sliced pineapple
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 maraschino cherries, halved
1/3 cup shortening
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally lubricated the wells of a cupcake pan, preferably with butter flavored cooking spray. Drain the pineapple, making sure to reserve the syrup! Melt the 3 tablespoons of butter and evenly coat the bottoms of an unlined cupcake pan.
Divide the brown sugar amongst the buttered wells of the cupcake pan, and drizzle 1 tablespoon of the reserved pineapple juice. To the remaining pineapple juice, add water until you half 1/2 cup of the mixture. Place the pineapple rings in the bottom of each cupcake well and place a maraschino half in the center of the ring.
Cream together shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and allow to fully incorporate. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Add alternatively to the creamed mixture with the 1/2 cup watered down pineapple juice. Beat after each addition.
Divide the badder evenly into the cupcake wells, over the pineapple rings. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out cleanly. Cool 5 minutes, invert on a plate. Serve warmed.
Adapted from a recipe by Paula Deen for Benedictine
1 large cucumber
1 small onion, quartered
1 8oz package cream cheese, softened
pinch of salt
pinch of paprika
1 drop green food coloring
thinly sliced white bread
Peel cucumber and slice down the center lengthwise; remove the seeds with a small spoon. Chop the cucumber into large chunks and put them in the food processor, pulsing until the cucumber is minced. This is about 5-7 pulses. Remove cucumber and set in a bowl to the side. Put onion in the food processor and pulse until it is finely chopped. Add the onion to the cucumber. Add the cream cheese and stir well with a spatula. Add salt, paprika and food coloring.
Cut the white bread into strips (or circles or stars or pineapples). Lightly press down on the slices to create a thinner, but not squashed, bread. Spread the cucumber mixture on the slices of bread. Chill for 5 minutes, serve at room temperature.
It wasn’t just the food that followed theme, though. Even the drinks nodded back to Shawn and Gus.
The drink table was dubbed Hadewych’s Mimosa Bar. The bar featured orange, cranberry (Gus’ red car), and pineapple juices. Guests sipped their delicious drinks through Psych-green colored straws.
For guests who didn’t wish to drink alcohol, we offered sweet and unsweet tea, as well as water. Despite what the sign says, we did not spice the water!
Tags for the food and drink table can be downloaded here!
For favors, we gave out pineapple-shaped sugar cookies. They were so cute, and while very simple to make, they had a huge impact. All the guests were raving about those little guys! Here’s the recipe for them, and if you wanted to get your own cookie cutter, you can buy one here.
The easiest part of planning the shower was coming up with the decorations. The venue had an amazing fireplace that created an excellent display case for all the “Psych” memorabilia, but I definitely went overboard; by the time the date rolled around, I had too many decorations! Below are some of my more difficult DIY’s that I’ll teach you how to do.
I created the books by taking a screenshot image of the books as they appeared in their respective episodes. I then blew up the image, sharpened it, and created a spine based off a traditional design. Then I cropped the image to the size book I had on hand and printed the image. They fit on preexisting books like a jacket. Super simple!
Or you can just download the jackets. Here is Killing with Class, as seen in “Feet, Don’t Kill Me Now.” Here is Yang: The Whole Story, as seen in “Mr. Yin Presents.” Be sure to adjust the sizes before printing. Measure twice! It takes a lot of ink.
I made Shawn’s portrait in a similar fashion; I re-watched the episode “Dis-Lodged” and snapped an image of the portrait. I then sharpened it and changed the dimensions. I put the portrait in a chunky wooden frame I found at a swap meet that I spray-painted gold. Tuh-duh! A classy lodge portrait.
The cross-stitched Gus quote I first saw on Etsy, and thought, I can do that! Now, it came out alright, but it was much more hassle than it was worth. It took me three days to stitch that, which may not sound too bad, but with all the other things needed for the party, that was just too much. Even if you don’t want to buy this piece, I recommend looking around the shop–they have a ton of amazing things!
The Santa Barbara Mirror was maybe my favorite item to make. I used to create news layouts all the time, so it was like a flashback. Plus, this one item has three or four references in it. But what made it my favorite was the horoscopes. I borrowed Shawn’s predictions from “Meat is Murder, But Murder is Also Murder“, but changed Juliet’s horoscope to mine.
For those who haven’t seen it in a while, Shawn predicted for Juliet that her one true love would be wearing sneakers and an Apple Jacks shirt. He then walked around all day in sneakers and an Apple Jacks shirt. How cute! If you’re looking to buy a similar shirt, you can buy them on Kellogg’s website.
The Shules quotes, while much simpler as part of the decor, took a bit more time. As I found out after extensive episode-watching, Juliet and Shawn are mostly romantic with actions rather than words–a sidelong glance, a heavy sigh, an unexpected kiss. While sweet to watch, they did me no good for decorating!
I got together the ones I like the best and set them out on tables in different frames. They went nicely with the simple centerpieces of pineapples, magnolia flowers and palm leaves. The gray bubble vases held pens, which each table used for the games. You can download some of them here.
Speaking of games, I knew these would be very important. “Psych” is all fun and games, so the shower needed to be just as fun. There are tons of traditional bridal shower games that can be incorporated into this kind of party, but the ones that seemed particularly fitting were How Well Do You Know the Bride? and a predictions game.
How Well Do You Know the Bride? is pretty straight forward–it’s a list of questions about the bride that your guests have to answer. It seemed appropriate since Shawn is constantly making assumptions about someone’s personal affairs, so of course he’d know the bride’s favorite food!
The predictions game was tailored a little more to the “Psych” theme. The game calls out the psychic (your guest) and tells them to put their fingers to their head–it’s time to make a prediction. The rest is simple fill-in-the-blanks, almost like MASH.
Another traditional game we played was Find the Groom. How it works: a small envelope containing a picture of a man is taped under each seat. These are mostly magazine clippings, but one lucky person has the groom in her envelope! It’s an easy, no-skill-required game that works great as a way of transitioning from food to fun. Since we didn’t have much seating and really focused on finger food, we handed the envelopes out to guests as they arrived but told them not to open it yet. We still used this as a transitional game.
My MOH was in charge of the little men, and didn’t she just kill it? She really tried to throw people off by putting in men who looked similar to my fiancé.
The best game we did, though, was definitely crime scene. I could explain it to you, but why don’t I just let Lassiter do that.
It’s hard to see, but in that back corner is a little “room” set up; just a table full of things. Another option if your short on space is to make a smaller, dedicated table with several items, then ask the room, which is broken into teams, about those items–like a game of memory.
For fun, we also had a killer photo booth! A simple tri-fold board, black electrical tape and a steady hand was all it took to create the height markers for the background. The plaques read Santa Barbara Police Dept., include the inmate’s number, and has the date of the event below. In the download I’ve made for you, I’ve left the bottom blank.
We also brought several goofy props and signs to play around with, because why not?
A special shout-out to this motley crew for helping me put it all together. And there you have it! Everything you need to make an outrageous “Psych” party! If you end up using any of my items for a party, send me a picture. I’d love to see your events.