Baby Shower 101

Baby Shower 101 is your number one source for planning a baby shower. Our free baby shower information will help you plan every aspect including baby shower ideas, games, party favors, drinks invitations and food for your baby shower. From shower invitations to the party games, we'll help make your baby shower a very memorable one. Baby Shower 101 will handle all of your baby shower needs!
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BABY SHOWER ETIQUETTE

Baby Shower EtiquetteThrowing a baby shower is an honor and lots of fun, but can also be stressful. Many people may be involved with different opinions on how the baby shower should be thrown. We have included some of the more common baby shower questions that are asked may come up below to help make your baby shower a major success:

Who Hosts the Baby Shower: Historically, the baby shower was hosted by someone outside of the family (friend, co-worker, symbolic Aunt). Today, anyone other than the Mommy-To-Be and her mom can throw a baby shower for her friend or family member! It is most common for the Best Friend, Aunt, or sister to throw the Mommy-To-Be the baby shower! It is becoming more common for co-workers, cousins, groups of friends, or church/temple friends to throw the shower and much appreciated.

When To Throw A Baby Shower: It is traditional to have a baby shower one to two months before the baby is born. It is important to not have the shower too close to the Mommy-To-Be's due date in case she delivers early. It is also helpful to have it far enough away that the Mommy-To-Be has time to return items that she receives duplicates of or are not what she wants. She will also need time to order or purchase the items she did not receive that may have been on her baby shower registry. The extra time before the birth also helps The Mommy-To-Be and Daddy-To-Be to set up all the great gifts they received if they building (Pack-n-Play, Crib, Play Mat, etc.).

Surprise Baby Showers: Although the surprise baby shower is not traditional, sometimes it is nice for a second baby shower (if the Mommy-To-Be is going to have a second) to throw a surprise party. Keep in  mind that surprise parties can be a little stressful for the Mommy-To-Be as well as the planners since you need to make sure you invite the right people without asking and pick an available time when the Mommy-To-Be and family will be around. It is our suggestion to not have this type of party as the first baby shower, but if there are going to be multiple showers then this can be fun!

Welcome Baby Showers: A welcome baby shower is "after the fact" of the little one being born! This is not traditional party but a great way to have people that could not make the baby showers join in on the fun. The issue with welcome showers is that the new parents will probably be overwhelmed with the new baby and want some alone time. The Welcome Baby Showers, for this reason, are usually thrown a month or two after the baby is born to give the parents time to adjust. The nice thing about welcome showers is that the Mommy-To-Be can tell her host and guests what she still doesn't have for the baby so it is a great way of her getting all the essentials she still does not have.

Baby Shower Location: Traditionally, the baby shower is held at a home, church/temple or restaurant. Today, it is common to see baby showers at country clubs, parks, restaurants, bars and any place where people can gather! I prefer the warmth of a baby shower at some friend's house since it is more quaint, comfortable and homey! If there is a second or third shower, a restaurant with a private room, bar or church/temple are great places to throw the baby shower! Baby showers have also been made into overnights at a spa or hotel for those who may have a little larger budget. It is important to take cost into consideration since someone will have to pay for the shower. It is also important to think about the weather and time of day when the baby shower is going to take place to figure out where the baby shower should be thrown.

Who To Invite To The Baby Shower: Historically, a baby shower was only for the first born as well as there was only one shower so everyone important to the Mommy-To-Be was invited (women only). Today, many woman have multiple showers for the same baby and that it is not only for the first born anymore! It is important to follow the suggestions we have listed below:

Check with the Mommy-To-Be's parents on who to not forget to invite.
Make sure there are no schedule conflicts with the important people going (Mommy-To-Be, her mom, her husband who may want to show up at the end, best friends)
Make sure to give guests a few weeks to purchase the baby gifts so send invites way in advance.
More formal way to invite with real baby shower invitations (email to follow up with guests if you can get their email sent to you)
Make sure to include the following information on the invite:

a) Name of Mommy-To-Be and host(s)
b) Location
c) Date
d) Directions (important)
e) Phone number in case questions
f) RSVP
g) Where Mommy-To-Be is Registered
h) Theme of the party (if chosen)

For those of you who would like more formal invitations written, you can look at our partner's site who does calligraphy for invitations here.

Should Men Be Invited: Traditionally men were not invited to baby showers since it was a woman oriented party, however it was common for the man to show up at the end to help his wife with the presents. Today, many things have changed and it is absolutely okay for the men to be a part of the baby shower, in many cases couples parties or the husband coming at the end of the baby shower with his friends. The only drawback for men being a part of the baby shower is the atmosphere changing. That is, us girls may not be as "girly" and sentimental when the men are there teasing or making comments which is why for the first baby shower, it is nice to have only the women present with the men coming at the end.

Who Pays: It is customary for the person who is the host (or hosts) to pay and it is considered the Mommy-To-Be's present from that person (or those people). Today, it is common for multiple people to throw the baby shower together which helps in splitting the cost.

Baby Shower Gifts: Yes, it is customary to provide the Mommy-To-Be with some type of gift at the baby shower. Gifts can range from all shapes, sizes, and prices. Check out our Baby Shower Gifts page for ideas. Here are some helpful guidelines below:

a) If it is the Mommy-To-Be's first baby and shower, it is helpful to bring more practical gifts (diapers, blanket, pacifiers, formula, etc)

b) If it is the Mommy-To-Be's second baby or baby shower, feel free to be a little more spontaneous with what you get the Mommy-To-Be. Check out her registry as well as our gifts page for more ideas.

c) Ask the Mommy-To-Be's Mother or sister in what she really wants that is reasonable. You may find some ideas in the invitation that may have a list of places to go or a theme you want to purchase a gift around.

d) It is absolutely okay to ask the host if she may know what the Mommy-To-Be really needs or even the Mommy-To-Be herself.

e) There is no right or wrong gift since you can just as easily bring a $5.00 gift as well as a $100.00 gift, depending on your budget and what you feel like.

f) Feel free to go in the gift with others to all pitch in money to purchase something extra nice if you want.

Mommy-To-Be's "Liaison": Last, but not least, one of the nicest things anyone can do for the Mommy-To-Be is to be her personal Liaison during the baby shower. Due to the fact that the
Mommy-To-Be feels bloated, tired, exhausted and maybe even a little stressed. It is helpful for someone to be there for the following:

  • Place her in a comfy chair
  • Get the Mommy-To-Be's favorite food for her
  • Make sure she is always drinking lots of water
  • Get her something for her feet to be raised
  • Massage her shoulders a little on down times
  • Help her up and down from the chair
  • Monitor her mood and the amount of stimulation going on
  • See if you can get her anything a few times during the baby shower

By doing the courtesies above, you will be the Mommy-To-Be's favorite person and respected by all the people at the baby shower.

Baby Shower Food: It is customary to serve some type of food and beverage, but this may vary. Traditionally, a baby shower was at high tea hour (Afternoon) where women with their umbrellas would site around on a warm day and get together having tea and light snacks. Today, anything goes as for food; from finger foods, appetizers, candy on tables, to full meals at restaurants. Tea has been replaced more with cold beverages, coffee, wine and other drinks. Usually a standard is having a cake for the baby shower's Mommy-To-Be. It is important to decide what to serve based on:

a.. Mommy-To-Be's wishes
b.. Budget
c.. Length of baby shower
d.. Location of baby shower
e.. Amount of guests invited
f.. Time of Day
g.. Season

Baby Showers for Fathers: There is not enough information regarding fathers for baby showers as usually it is traditional for the mommy-to-be to be the center of focus. For fathers, it would usually be a time for the guys to get together and meet at a restaurant, house or bar and to socialize. Baby shower presents can also be brought which is a traditional custom. Most of the time the party will be more about eating, drinking and enjoying the company. The parents of the father-to-be may want to say a few words of advice as well as a game being played where all the fathers, family and friends write down their advice on napkins that are collected and read aloud! This is a great game for the father to be to learn from and laugh at what is written.

Bringing Babies, Children and Husbands (large children): It is traditional to only have the mommy-to-be and her girlfriends and female family members at the baby shower with the father-to-be being the only male attending or showing up at the end. This is traditional but there may be a co-ed party. Some have asked us if it is okay to have children at the party attend. This would be up to the mommy-to-be as certain venues and parties are not for children. Anything is okay as long as those who are throwing the baby shower and the mommy-to-be are asked.

Mother and Mother-In-Laws, Grandmother, Grandmother-in-Laws: if you are lucky enough to have your mother, grandmother or in-laws in your life, they are an important part of having them share the baby shower with. This is also a special time for them to see the mommy-to-be all grown up and having her own family! Sometimes one of these ladies will want to take a larger role in the baby shower and should be asked by those who plan the shower if she can participate or has any ideas. It is important at the same time that there is not a power struggle if the mommy-to-be wants it a certain way. Wishes should always be with the future parent(s) as it is ultimately their party. Make some special time to honor the parents or parent-in-laws of the couple having the baby since it again is a special time!

 

I hope you find the baby shower information above useful and helpful in planning your baby shower.

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