How to Plan a Baby Shower
As the host of the baby shower, you’ll have a lot to keep in mind, but if you consider the mom-to-be’s personality and stay organized, planning a baby shower can be stress-free and even enjoyable.
Baby Shower Location
Consider what the mom-to-be would love. Is she a homebody? Does she like fancy lunches? Would she prefer a brunch at her favorite café? Of course, your budget, number of guests, and even the weather will also play a role in what kind of location will work best for the baby shower. Consider these options:
Home (of the host or the mom-to-be): It’s private and comfortable. You have free rein in the kitchen, and everyone knows where the bathroom is.
Restaurant or café: All you have to do is book a table, and you’re set.
Party venue: Venue staff can help arrange almost everything you’ll need, but you can also personalize the space with decorations.
Outdoors: If you have a scenic outdoor location nearby, that could be a great option. For example, consider a picnic at a beautiful park or a barbecue on the beach. Each guest could bring a dish of food to share.
Destination: Enjoy a pampering session at a spa or consider the mom-to-be’s hobbies. If she loves art, you could host the baby shower at a crafts workshop; if she’s into sports, consider choosing a bowling alley or an ice-skating rink.
Whichever way you go, if you keep the mom-to-be’s personality in mind, you can’t go wrong.
Baby Shower Theme
One of the first steps in baby shower planning is choosing a theme. For more themes and baby shower ideas, check out the Pampers tool, where you can browse many fun and exciting theme and decoration ideas.
Themes often reflect the personality of the mom-to-be, while celebrating the new baby. For example, if you don’t know the gender, you could do a stroller theme. If you know the baby is a girl, then a pretty-in-pink fairytale theme with a princess castle diaper cake could be perfect. And, if you know the mom-to-be is expecting a boy, consider having lots of blue at the shower, with a train diaper cake. The theme of the baby shower will also guide the kind of decorations that will work best.
Guest List and Invitations
The number of guests depends on your budget and the space available at the venue — and, of course, who the mom-to-be would like to have there. Work closely with her to finalize the guest list and the date of the shower.
When choosing a date, remember: Some baby showers are held before the birth, so the mom-to-be has time to enjoy herself and get some much-needed emotional support. Other baby showers are scheduled after the birth, so that the shower can double as a meet-the-baby party.
Make sure the baby shower invitations match the theme, and include details about the baby registry as well. Depending on whether you pick printed invites or will be sending electronic ones, you’ll either need the street address or the email address of each invitee, plus the guest's full name, from the mom-to-be. It’s a good idea to get each guest’s phone number, too, so you can follow up the invitation with a call. If you’re creating a Facebook event, you might not have all the guests on your own friend list, so make the mom-to-be an "admin" as well so she can add people to the event.
Send the invitations about four to six weeks before the shower, and create a list of RSVPs as they come in.
Baby shower refreshments need not be elaborate. You can hire a caterer, ask each guest to bring a dish to share, or bake a simple spread of desserts. Don’t forget drinks! Ask guests to let you know about any special dietary needs ahead of time.
If the baby shower is to be held at a party venue, the staff can help you select food and beverages. If you’re hosting the shower at a restaurant or café, they might create a special meal for you — or guests can just select from the menu.
Baby Shower Games
Baby showers usually wrap up after a few hours, but the memory of this occasion will last a lifetime for the mom-to-be. Ask her whether she would like to have some baby shower games as part of the celebrations. If you’ve decided to organize baby shower games, think about how long you want to spend on games, as this will guide how many games to prepare for. Make sure you have the supplies you’ll need for each game, and prizes for the winners.
A baby registry will help guests know what they can give the mom-to-be that she will really appreciate. The mom-to-be usually puts together the registry, but it’s important that you, as the host, have the details of the registry so you can add them to the invitations.
As a “thank you for coming” given to each of your guests at the end of the shower, consider offering party favors, such as a framed photo of the parents-to-be, a scented candle, or a special, baby-themed soap.
After the shower, the mom-to-be might also want to thank guests for their gift. As the organizer of the shower, you can help the mom-to-be write and send short thank-you notes. For more guidance on planning a precious baby shower, take a look at this checklist, and read up on baby shower etiquette and do's and don’ts.
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