Pregnancy is a joyous affair, involving plenty of celebrations, self-care, and of course, hospital visits. Before welcoming their bundle of joy into the world, the expecting parents tend to inform all relatives, friends and loved ones. And as everyone is excited about this important phase in the lives of the parents-to-be, it calls for multiple occasions of celebrations, one of them being the baby shower.
What is a baby shower and when is it done?
A baby shower, is a small party or gathering of sorts, to celebrate the end of the pregnancy and the beginning of new life. Excited friends and family shower gifts and blessings onto the mother and the unborn child. By offering these gifts, not only do they express their joy, but they also offer great financial help for the would-be parents, as purchasing all baby-related products can be practically never ending.
Most baby showers are celebrated around 4 to 6 weeks before the due date. By this time, everyone is also aware of the gender of the unborn child, determined by the gender blood test. This information makes it easier for everyone to arrange gender-specific gifts and decorations.
Now that the importance of baby showers is clear, it’s time to plan the event for the would-be mother. If you are at a loss regarding this, take a look at these 5 useful tips for planning the perfect baby shower.
1. Make A List Of People And Decide On A Budget
First and foremost, it’s important to know who will be present at this joyous occasion. While there are no strict rules regarding how many guests you can have, it’s better to err on the side of caution and invite everyone closely connected with the expecting mother. If you are planning the party with her blessings, then it’s best to consult with her regarding the guest list. Once you have all the relevant emails and physical addresses, you will be much clearer regarding the actual size of the shower, thereby helping you plan your budget.
The importance of a budget can’t be stressed enough as it will offer you a proper guideline by which you can organize a memorable baby shower. For example, if the guest list involves only around 10 people, and you have a generous budget of say $ 500, then you easily splurge on the shower by opting for a more luxurious venue and snacks. Conversely, if the budget remains the same, but the number of guests has increased to 50, then you would need to really dial back on the decor and food. However, don’t sweat too much on the budget, as the presence of loved ones is the most important gift of all.
2. Decide The Venue Or Go Virtual
Now that the budget and guest list are clear, the next step is to decide on a venue for the baby shower. While it is evident that hosting it in a restaurant or cafe will make things more expensive, there is no shortage of innovative ideas when it comes to venues. Many intimate baby showers are hosted in the comfort of a home, and your humble abode can become the perfect venue for the day, provided you keep things classy. For example, if you have a garden or a terrace on your property, and the weather is nice and pleasant, then perhaps it can be the perfect location for the event, where your guests can enjoy the natural setting.
While these ideas are excellent, they might not always be suitable for all cases, especially for city dwellers. Moreover, ever since the pandemic struck the entire world, many people have become reluctant to attend parties and gatherings. For such hesitant folks, it is perfectly acceptable to host the baby shower online. While it might sound absurd on paper, it is a very viable and pragmatic solution, as a lot of cultural events have been hosted digitally with great success. With the location finalized, it’s time to segue into the next tip.
3. Consider Hiring A Party Planner
It’s one thing to decide on a guest list, budget and a suitable venue. It’s a whole different ball game to organize and coordinate all the nitty-gritty of the event, like contacting all guests and confirming their presence on an agreed-upon date and time, the type of food that will be catered to the guests, the party’s entertainment and a whole lot more. Hence, it’s evident that organizing this event can be a very tedious and time-consuming task. If you find that you don’t have the time to personally handle all these responsibilities, then it’s best to leave it to the pros.
Professional party planning is a very profitable and in-demand business, where these planners will manage all aspects of the shower, starting from decoration and food presentation to entertainment and more. Thus, handing over the reins to the experts might be the wise thing to do in this case, as they would exactly know how to dazzle the mother-to-be, and you can take away all the praise. However, it’s important to note that hiring professionals for this purpose might significantly increase the budget. Hence, consider your options wisely and be prepared to bump up the baby shower budget.
4. Decide The Agenda For The Baby Shower
A baby shower seems pretty self-explanatory at this point. Guests come in, congratulate the mother, enjoy the snacks, give gifts and leave, right? Well, it is not as simple as it seems. Even if a baby shower is not a high-pressure social situation, it is vital to come up with an agenda or plan of action to ensure a smooth party. By this we mean the flow of the party, wherein the guests have an enjoyable time. Hence, it might require some fun activities, eating, drinking, opening of presents and more.
For example, allow some breathing room for guests when they enter the venue, for say 15-20 minutes, where you can serve drinks to them. Once this period is over, engage the partygoers in a fun activity such as games, photo sessions or something more sentimental, if the gathering is rather intimate. Serve the food only during the gift opening session, and perhaps add in a dessert or coffee to end the fine evening. Such careful planning allows the guests to enjoy the drinks and entrees as well as connect with the guest of honour. Of course, this is just a sample, and you can spin your own version. Just make sure that things move seamlessly from one event to the next.
5. Give Plants As Return Gifts
Lastly, it is also important to arrange for return gifts. Although the mother-to-be will be getting the majority of the presents from the attendees, it is proper etiquette to also give them something in return apart from the refreshments as a token of gratitude. Of course, you also don’t want to break the bank with these gifts, hence they should fit in your moderate budget. Perhaps plants are a perfect present for such an occasion, as they are thoughtful, beautiful and don’t cost a fortune.
Order some refreshing plants such as peace lilies or jade for your friends and family. Apart from being a wonderful return gift, plants are also symbolically appropriate for the occasion. After all, you are celebrating the coming of new, joyous life into this world, and what better way to convey that sentiment than with some plants? Representing growth and new life, plants are a convenient option that is suitable for this occasion. That being said, there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to gifting for a baby shower, as the concept of a shower itself is fairly modern. Just make sure that all attending guests receive the gifts and you don’t end up splurging too much.
In the end, by following these 5 sensible tips, baby showers can be a breeze to manage and organize. So pat yourself on the back for a job well done and don’t forget to enjoy yourself!
Dhruv Mehta is a Digital Marketing Professional who works as a brand consultant and provides solutions in the digital era. In his free time, he loves to write about marketing, healthcare, finance & home decor. Follow him on Twitter or connect with him via LinkedIn.