This post highlights all you need to know about baby showers and how to plan a memorable baby shower. Anyone who’s ever held a baby knows they’re an absolute bundle of joy, especially when you overlook the constant crying, the tantrums, the mess they make, and did we mention the constant crying? You coo and ahh at the adorable creatures and then pass them along to their parents when you’ve had your fill.
When you’re about to have your own child though, you can’t help but feel overwhelmed, anxious and perhaps a tidbit fearful. If you do feel this way, your fears are 100% valid and understandable, after all, when you’ve had your fill, you would not in fact get to return them or pass them along. Shocking? We know! Life really is unfair that way.
This is one of the reasons baby showers are often organised to allay the fears of the expectant mother and ease her into full-fledged motherhood.
1. So, what exactly is a baby shower?
We humans just love festivities. We throw parties when we buy cars. We throw parties when we move into a new place. We throw parties when someone else moves in next to us. Unlike many other reasons for which we throw parties, this one has quite a lot of merit to it. After all, what other better reason would there be to throw a party if not for the birth of a baby?
A baby shower is simply a party celebrating the pending birth of a new child. Naturally, the mother-to-be, as well as the baby-to-be are the most important guests, the cynosure of the entire event. In essence, the baby shower is thrown to give the new mum the emotional support she needs, ensure she has all the fun in the world while at it, and give the necessary baby care items as gifts to the mother.
A baby shower is an event organized for an expectant mother to usher her into motherhood. It is celebrated by women who are close friends or family relatives. Baby showers are moments when friends and relatives share happy moments with the pregnant woman, showering her with gifts and wishing her a safe delivery. To organize a baby shower, there are several tips to consider so as not to stress the expectant mother.
So maybe you’re expecting a baby soon, or maybe you know someone who is, and you’re clueless as to what baby showers entail, sit back and relax because whatever questions you may have are about to be answered.
Who plans and hosts a baby shower?
If you ever end up having to host a baby shower, you’ve either volunteered to or been asked to. Conventionally, baby showers are planned and hosted by either a friend of the mum-to-be or a distant relative. It’s hardly ever done by the new mum herself or her immediate family, as this is considered rude and interpreted as a “gift grab”.
It is perfectly acceptable for the mum-to-be to ask someone she trusts to plan the shower. However, if the new mum is particular about details, she’s free to involve herself in the planning or plan the entire thing if she pleases. After all, it’s her baby shower.
2. When to plan a baby shower?
Typically, baby showers are held four to six weeks before the expected date of delivery. This is done so that the pregnancy is well along and yet still early enough such that the party isn’t disrupted by the arrival of the baby. But wouldn’t that be interesting, though?
Nevertheless, as with many things in life, there is no hard and fast rule. Sometimes, the parents-to-be prefer to hold their baby shower after the baby is born, for religious, cultural or personal beliefs. Like we said earlier, it is their baby shower.
3. Who to invite?
More often than not, the guests of a baby shower (who you’ve obviously given invites earlier) are the close female friends and family members of the mum-to-be. But because no one really cares for conventionality anymore, people have started opting for co-ed showers where the male gender is also invited. Men do have a way of spicing things up.
In the end, it doesn’t really matter what gender you invite, as long as you’re sure the guests are genuinely happy and would be willing to bring gifts. Just make sure to run the guest list by the mum-to-be so she’s comfortable with everyone coming. And if it’s a surprise baby shower? Oh, well!
4. What to do at a baby shower?
Before you get to this junction, you must have mentally calculated how much you intend to spend. You can set the venue at your place or wherever else is convenient and suitable. Remember, humans run on food, so light refreshments should also be on the agenda. Some take things a step further and make cakes to honour the mum-to-be, and even prepare “shower favours”, small gifts to thank the guests for coming. In all things, do well to remember your budget.
After considering all these, you’re probably wondering, what exactly do people do at baby showers? Well, the answer is simple. They have fun!
There is no regimented way to conduct a baby shower. Some people play games, dance to soft music, exchange labour tales, gossip, open gifts or simply sit and chat. Whatever floats your boat. The goal is to create a light-hearted environment where everyone, especially the mother-to-be can relax and of course, have fun!
Can you have a baby shower for other babies down the line? Of course, you can, it’s a free world! Although those showers usually won’t involve gifting.
5. How long should it last?
Not too long, so you don’t bore the guests or tire the mum-to-be. But long enough to be memorable.
What if the baby gifts are not to my taste? We do hope that this is never the case. However, to prevent this and also the duplication of gifts, the mother-to-be and the host sometimes prepare a gift list, to give the guests an idea of what exactly to look for. But remember, we don’t want to appear on a mission simply to collect gifts, so it’s best just to keep an open mind.
So that’s it! A simple crash course on everything you need to know about a baby shower and how to organise one. What else are you waiting for, protégé?
Follow the tips below to plan a memorable baby shower without so much hassle
6. Date selection 🗓️
Date Selection is the first and most important thing to do when organizing a baby shower. The criteria for selection of date include:
- When there is a visible and obvious baby bump
- When the woman is in her safe month (preferably 7 months)
- When the mother-to-be is less irritated and comfortable with having people around her.
Having these criteria in mind when choosing a date will lead to a happy and fun-filled baby shower.
7. Guestlist preparation for a baby shower 📋✅
A baby shower isn’t an event open to the public, it requires only the presence of close friends and family relatives who are mostly women and as such a guest list has to be prepared on time to know how many people will be invited and how to budget for them. Guestlist is expected to be done early as it influences the choice of venue, food and so on.
8. Baby shower budget planning 💸
Budget planning is a crucial step to take when planning an event, it helps in keeping track of all expenditures to be made which include: venue selection, decoration cost, food planning and miscellaneous. It also gives an idea of where to cut down to avoid excessive spending.
9. Venue selection for the baby shower 🏘️
The next step after you’ve set out your budget and determined the number of guests to invite is the selection of venue. The number of guests to be invited greatly influences the choice of location, you would opt for a smaller room if your guest invites are less than 10 and a bigger room if they are above 10. The goal is to ensure that the expectant mom doesn’t get claustrophobic.
10. Baby shower theme and decoration 🎈
Once the choice of venue has been settled, the next thing to consider is choosing a theme to plan for the decoration. Most times, knowing the sex of the baby helps in nailing down the theme. For instance, you can choose a cinderella theme if it’s a girl or a superhero theme if it’s a boy, but in cases where she does not want the gender of the baby to be widely known, a neutral theme can be used. After the theme has been selected, the decorating team is contacted and issues regarding decoration are settled.
11. Sending out invitations 📨
After the venue, date and theme for the shower have been settled, the next step is to send out invitations to the guest list that was drafted earlier. Invitations are expected to be sent out early enough at least two weeks before the shower to enable the guests to prepare their gifts.
12. Planning the food menu and the parting gift 🍽️🍨🛍️
This is one of the last things to plan, after the venue and decoration have been taken care of, an amount of money can be set aside to cater for food and drinks that would be served on that day and also parting gifts for the guest to take home. The choice of food to eat depends on the host but mostly small chops or light menus are advised.
13. Organizing the agenda 🥳
Organizing an agenda is the last thing to do when organizing a baby shower and it could be done on that day. The agenda includes activities that will be done on that day including games. Some of the games include:
- Guess the baby food
- Name that tune
- Guess the gender of the baby and so on.
You might also be interested in bridal shower ideas.