Although they originate in America, Baby Showers are growing in popularity here in the UK, but we’ve given it a much more British feel. Here’s the lowdown…
Why hold a baby shower?
Why not? You don’t need an excuse to get the girls round for a celebration, some fun and friendly chat. Sadly, you’ll have to dispense with the gin this time but they’ll be plenty of time for friends to give you advice and regale their own memories of mummy-hood over tea and cake or finger food! I’d recommend inviting family, close friends and work colleagues to your baby shower. You might also find that they’ll bring gifts, which can be a big help towards the huge costs of a newborn and essentials you will need like bibs, comforters, blanket, hooded towel, bath and hair wash, or baby gifts like a teddy or bunny and books for the nursery.
When’s the best time to throw a baby shower?
I always think the ideal time to host your baby shower is around the seventh or eighth month of pregnancy. You’re well on with your pregnancy by then and have a good idea of the gifts you may like to receive. It also gives you something you can look forward to aside from sorting everything for your baby.
Food for thought…
What you offer will depend on how many people you’re inviting, the time of day and where you’re holding the shower. Tea parties are always popular as they’re fairly simple to organise, suitable for all ages and you don’t have to provide alcohol. Even just tea and cake is nice. If your baby shower is in the evening, perhaps lay on some easy savoury finger food, crisps and dips and some sweet treats and perhaps a glass of prosecco for your guests.
It’s fine to ask each guest to bring something along or ask family members to help out so you don’t end up doing it all and paying for it all. Just make sure whoever’s cooking knows what’s safe for a pregnant women to eat.
If you and your guests are used to playing games, then bring a few to your party. I wouldn’t recommend drinking games though as you can’t join in! Don’t do too many games as everyone will want to chat and find out more about your plans.
You could run a sweepstake to guess the date and time of the baby’s arrival, or guess the sex of the baby. One fun idea is to buy a few jars of baby food, remove the labels and get guests to guess the flavour. Whoever gets the most correctly, wins a prize.
Pin the sperm on the egg! Just like the old fashioned game of pin the tail on the donkey, this updated baby shower version will give everyone a giggle. Another option is pin the bun in the oven – use a large photo of the mum-to-be’s bump and get your blindfolded guests to pin the bun on the mummy’s belly button.
Baby shower gift etiquette
While there aren’t any set or standard rules, bringing a gift is usually a given. But to avoid awkward gift duplication, you can always be specific about the gifts you’d prefer. It might even help the guests out, who might be scratching their heads at just what to bring along.
Personalised baby gifts are usually best kept for after the baby is born as you can tell everyone the sex and name, but there are essentials that every mum will need for her newborn like bibs, comforters, muslins, blankets, hooded towel, bath and hair wash, or baby gifts like a teddy or bunny and books for the nursery. You might also consider asking for a baby journal to keep a note baby ‘firsts’ (smile, words, crawl) or a weaning journal to help you keep track of feeding and sleep times, favourite foods, all thing that your health visitor will want to know.
Most of all, have fun. It’s good to have a break from organising everything else that having a new baby demands of you.