How to Host a Baby Shower
When do you have a baby shower?
A baby shower is typically held 6-8 weeks prior to the baby’s due date, before the mum-to-be is 35 weeks is best. Babies before 37 weeks aren't even considered premmie, so don't leave it too late or you might have another guest at the party!
If you are the shower host there is a lot to organise, start planning 4 weeks before the day. Firstly, choose a theme for the party. Do you know the sex of the baby or do you want a gender neutral theme? The number of guests will dictate the location. Whose coming? What games do you want? And of course what food and drink will you serve!
Where should you have a baby shower?
Baby Showers are often held at the host’s home: in the lounge for comfort or the garden in warmer months. Home Showers are more relaxing, it allows those guests who don’t know each other to mingle and if children are invited will give them a safe space to play. If the host’s home is too small for the guests, parks or restaurants are alternatives. A downside to hosting a party at a restaurant is the lack of privacy and the inability to have games. Many people feel self-conscious in a public setting and even if they could begin enjoying the games, it is very difficult to play any while sitting around a table.
Who should host a baby shower?
Sisters, best friends, cousins, mothers, co-workers (in some cases the expectant father), anyone interested in celebrating the new journey that an expecting mother is embarking upon can plan a Shower. To avoid disputes, it is best to agree first who is planning the party. This is a happy time and starting a party on the right foot is the best way to keep the event joyful. If a few people want to throw the shower, join forces and co-organise, many hands can make light work and a happy day!
Who should you invite: baby shower etiquette?
It’s easier if the expectant mum knows about the Shower, as she can provide you with a guest list. Alternatively, surprise showers are very popular, but in which case do your homework! The organiser(s) may not know all the guests the expectant mum may want there, and importantly family or friends who are expecting an invitation! Ask her mother, co-workers and partners for a guest list. Is it girls only? Or are partners and children invited too? All options are fine, only try to ensure the guest of honours’ wishes are the ones catered for. Make enquiries with the future grandmothers too, they may have friends they wish to invite and they’ll enjoy being involved.
Should you invite children?
If the expectant mother already has children, then children of the guests - particularly her extended family - are often invited too. Avoid the expectant siblings feeling left out, by bringing a sibling gift (perfectbabyshower.com.au has a selection of sibling gifts). Jealousy of a new born is not uncommon and a gift can be a well-timed olive branch. If children are coming make sure you cater for them both with food and entertainment.
Should a baby shower be themed?
All Baby Showers are themed by definition of the event. A group of women showering the guest of honour with gifts and their collective knowledge provides a theme. The details of the theme can vary and will reflect a lot about the soon-to-be-mum and possibly her host. Traditional colours of pink or blue will signal the gender of the baby, eclectic colours can represent a fun or whimsical afternoon. Decorations will set a mood, as it’s a day to celebrate womanhood, pretty decorations can reflect this. Whatever the theme, it is important to decide whether or not you will have one and, if so, what it will be. Always keep in mind what the expecting mother would like. The theme should run tastefully throughout the entire Shower, including invitations, decorations, tableware and thank you cards. A strong theme will create a party atmosphere and transform a home into a perfect Baby Shower!
Wanting a Fresh Idea
Ssshhhh....... can you keep a secret? A fun & fresh way to announce the sex of your baby to your closest friends is at your baby shower. Order one of our baby shower boxes & let us know via the comments box you want a Secret Baby Shower Box...inside your white baby shower box, your items will be wrapped in pink or blue enclosed with a free "it's a girl" or "it's a boy" balloon! We have gender specific ranges: Wild Safari Blue and Happi Tree Boy for baby boys and Wild Safari Pink and Happi Tree Girl for a shade of pink! Imagine your friends' anticipation waiting for you to open your decorations in front of them. You can then have the fun of styling your baby shower together... ooohhh and aahhhing collectively at the pink or blue. Simply gorgeous.
Baby Shower Games
Don't be shy! Definitely include at least one game, but 2 to 3 games is ideal. As many showers will bring women together from different aspects of the mum-to-be's world, they invariably won't all know each other. Baby shower games help break the ice, whilst also creating a fun and relaxed atmosphere. Please see our selection of Baby Shower Games.
The theme of your shower will provide the overall direction you use. Perfect Baby Shower can provide you with all the decorations you need including balloons, a variety of banners, lawn signs, centre pieces, confetti and much more. Flowers are also a perfect complement to include in the day.
Be creative with your décor, think of ways to apply the shower theme in fun ways your guests will enjoy e.g. if your theme is baby clothes, hang a clothes line and attach cute baby items or clothes that the mum to be can take home after the party. If your party is in a home, decorating the outside of the house always puts everyone in great mood. Perfect Baby Shower has great Lawn signs and balloons to help with this.
What food should be served?
Apart from deciding on your budget, make sure you choose food your guest of honour can eat! There are many foods pregnant women can’t eat, or ones she’ll turn her nose up at, now her palate may have changed. Buffets are popular as they are less formal and allow guests to mingle. Your Showers’ theme will influence what food is served, is it a high tea style affair, a garden party or is it centred on the children present? Cupcakes have become an iconic element of baby showers, when served on a cupcake tier stand they provide a beautiful centrepiece for your table.
What drinks should you serve?
A champagne glass cries "all girls party" ...whether they are filled with champagne or juice is up to the individuals! Tea and coffee is another popular option or why not a mocktail. Just remember your expectant mum won‘t be drinking and it’s her party.
What are good gift ideas?
Registries are gaining popularity, ensuring no double-ups or unwanted gifts are received. When there is no registry, just remember this is the expectant mothers’ day. A day to celebrate her, before a new life. Remind her she’s a woman, not just a baby incubator! Spoil her with beautiful nursing lingerie and night wear, scented candles or a day spa gift certificate. More practical gifts can include a stylish nappy bag, change mats, books on parenting and baby slings. A beautiful cuddly toy or baby hamper for her newborn will fill the room with welcomed oohs & ahhs.
Remember a Baby Shower is one of the few parties where gifts are opened in the presence of all guests. Gift opening is an integral part of the Shower, presentation of the gift can be as important as the gift itself. Make sure you have someone ready to jot down the gifts received.
Depending on the size of your guest list the favours can be as simple or as elaborate as you want to make them. Favour bags are used instead of Loot Bags and can be filled with travel sized beauty products, scented candles, mini soaps, chocolates and other sweets to name just a few.
What should you wear to a baby shower?
Invitations can dictate any particular theme or dress code, however as Baby Showers are a time to celebrate femininity, it’s a lovely opportunity to frock up!
Create a Time Capsule, ask your guests to bring along an item which is relevant to the world today. When guests arrive ask them to place the item in a box, at the end of the shower give it to the mum-to-be to keep for the baby. Ideas for the capsule include the newspaper on the day of the shower, a light bulb, CD, disposable camera, things that probably won’t exist in a few years.
Perfect Baby Shower has some lovely Guest Signing and Mum-to-be Advice books. This is a lovely way for the guest to write a note for the mum-to-be so she has a keepsake from her shower.
Include your guests in a group photo, this can later be emailed to everyone or the mum-to-be can put a copy in the thank you notes to everyone.
Think about all the little things you might need during the shower and have these ready prior to guests arriving. If you are playing games you may need props, paper and pencils. Be prepared to record gifts as they are opened. If the shower is in a home, plan ahead for the entertaining items you will need during the party. This includes chairs, serving dishes, extra tables, ice, candles etc. If your shower is at another venue make reservations in advance. Music is a nice touch; make sure you have a selection on hand if it is appropriate for the type of shower you are hosting.
Depending on your group, you may find nametags and or place cards to be beneficial. Be prepared for lots of gift-wrappings by having plenty of large bin bags on hand. Also be ready to help the guest of honour pack up the gifts and get them home, she will appreciate this extra effort.
Don’t forget your camera or ask one of your guests to be the official photographer for the day. Most importantly….enjoy yourself and make your baby shower as memorable as possible!
Free Baby Shower Game Ideas
Here is a selection of free baby shower games we love! We've selected the least complicated ones that don't involve an art degree to set up! Baby shower games are an intrinsic part of baby showers. At most baby showers, not all guests know each other, so fun baby shower games are a terrific way to break the ice and get everyone having a good time. The best idea is to choose only 2 or 3 games, as you want to allow unstructured time for your guests to talk freely with each other.
What's in the Jar?
Before the shower: Purchase 6 jars of baby food (apple sauce, bananas, peaches, pears, green beans, and peas), and 4 jars of juice (apple, orange, pear, and prune). Using tape, or stickers, write numbers 1 through 10 and attach on lids of the jars. Tear off all labels and write numbers 1 through 10 on the inside of the appropriate labels. Put aside in envelope.
Play the game: Pass all the jars around to each guest, having them guess what's inside by the colour and texture. Take labels out of envelope and read off what is in each numbered jar. The guest with the most correct answers wins.
After the shower: Tape all the appropriate labels back on the jars and give to the new mum to use.
Guess Mum's Girth!
For this baby shower game all you need is a toilet roll! It's quite a simple game where people have to estimate the circumference of the expectant Mum's belly by taking a long piece of toilet paper.
After each person has taken their length of paper from the roll, get each one to get up and put the toilet paper around the Mother-to-Be, and see who is the closest! You'll probably get more than one winner, but guaranteed to have a great laugh at some of the estimations!
Baby Shower Memory Game
This baby shower game idea will test your guests’ brain power! It's the old fashioned memory game, with a baby shower twist. You will need a large tray - like a serving tray or a baking tray. Find items that are related to looking after a baby, and place them on the tray, then cover with a tea towel.
To play the baby shower game, each person needs a piece of paper and a pen. Bring out the tray, and explain to the group that they have 1 minute to look at the items underneath, and then the tray will be taken away. They will then have to write down as many items as they can remember. The winner is the person who has remembered the most items.
Some ideas of items to put on the tray:
Who is that Baby?
This game requires a bit of preparation beforehand, but it can be really fun to play.
The host needs to ask each guest to bring along a photo of themselves as a baby. Once you have the photos, stick them very carefully (careful because they could be really old, and very precious) on a piece of cardboard, give each one a letter or number, and then stick the cardboard on a wall.
Alternatively, you could mount each photo on an individual piece of cardboard and put them on walls throughout the house.
When it's time to play the baby shower games, the guests have to walk to the photos, and with a piece of paper and pen, write down who they think is which baby! Trick your guests buy including a photo of the dad-to-be for a bit of extra fun!
Please click this link for more Baby Shower Games.