6 Simple Rules for Baby Showers

Who wrote the book on baby showers etiquette?  Some say the rules might be a bit out of step with modern society.  

Some of the old baby showers rules of etiquette have long since been laid by the roadside, but what has taken their place? Welcome to a new liberated age of baby shower celebrations where the mom to be and baby are celebrated in the way their friends and family will most enjoy!

To really make a baby shower a memorable one, remember follow these simple steps:

1. Know Your Audience

The kind of baby shower you are going to throw successfully will largely depend on the guest list.  If your mom to be hands you a guest list including everyone from her great-grandmother to maiden aunts the theme will differ from that of a shower being thrown for a group of younger non-matronly women.

Family baby showers with grandmothers, aunts and cousins should follow a more traditional feel. A shower complete with games, refreshments and gifts will make grammy very happy.  

When the guest list resembles the who’s who of girl’s night out a tame shower of yesteryear is bound to feel just a bit like a bore. Of course your guests will be gracious enough not to snooze loudly on your sofa, but why tempt them? A party predominantly attended by age mates can be more contemporary. In fact, why box yourself into the baby shower package at all?  Opt for more of a girl’s night out theme and shower mom to be with gifts while sharing a meal at her favorite restaurant.

2. Keep it Simple

Many a hostess has gone way over budget, and lost much sleep trifling with the cute, but totally unnecessary and unnoticed details.

Doing too much is what generally kills a party quicker than anything else.  Guests, especially the mom to be, tend to get lost in the party when décor, food and itinerary take over the day.  Do yourself a favor: choose one or two cute games, a simple menu and leave time for what the women really want to do, which is socialize and chat freely without the looming dread of the next shower activity hanging over their heads.

3. Food Matters

Food is at the heart of most parties, holidays and family time. A baby shower is no different. The foods should be appropriate to the time of day, not necessarily bound to baby themed fare.  If the shower is timed for a major meal guests will expect a substantial menu. If you don’t have it in you to plan a full meal schedule the party for in between meal times.  Brunches are especially easy and delicious.

4. Keep to the Schedule

If the invitation says the party will begin at 3 pm, then it needs to be ready and set to swing into full motion at 3:05.  Hosts who just don’t get enough done before hand are setting themselves and their guests up for a disappointing engagement.

One way to ensure the timing goes well is to begin with a buffet with games to follow. This allows late comers to insert themselves into the party rather inconspicuously, without throwing off the timing of a game or other activity. Games and chatting come next, followed by opening of gifts.  Doing gifts last helps to regulate departure.  If a guest needs to leave early, they can slip out when the gifts begin.

5. Location Matters

Have you ever been invited to a party miles away in an unfamiliar house with a difficult to find address after dark?  No one likes the idea of needing to go inconveniently out of their way and into the unknown. When possible make attending as easy as possible on guests by holding the party in a familiar locale.  

Having the party at a convenient place will increase attendance which means more gifts for mom, improving the ‘shower’ quotient of the party.

6. The Second Time Around

There is an unwritten rule in some social circles that mom gets one baby shower; that’s it, no matter what!  This line of thinking is being challenged, and down right ignored.  If your social circles aren’t quite ready to abandon this rule, but you’d still really like to celebrate mom to be and baby numbers 2-infinity, then it is time to introduce the notion of the Baby Sprinkle.  

Baby Sprinkles are a scaled down baby shower, but the difference is mostly syntax.  The party planning, theme-ing and invitations are still the same.  The main difference is in the gift department. ‘Sprinkles’ don’t generally generate the same amounts/size of gifts for mom. Gifts will tend to be smaller in nature (such as clothing only, books, bath essentials, etc.).