When should I throw the baby shower?
Baby showers are normally given about two to three months before the mom-to-be's due date. By this time, the she is sporting a large belly, which is what everyone wants to see! You will want to give the mom-to-be enough time after the party to shop for baby items that were not given as gifts. Also keep in mind that you do not want to throw the party too close to her due date - just in case the baby decides to arrive a little earlier than expected. Always check with the expectant parent's schedules to make sure there aren't any conflicts. You may want to take into consideration the grandparent's schedules as well as some other important guests.
How many people should I invite?
Baby showers normally range from 5-25 guests. Check with the mom-to-be on how many guests she would feel comfortable inviting to the party. Plus, it depends on the location of the party. Will it be held in a small living room or in a large backyard? You want to make sure that your guests have enough room to walk around and mingle.
Who should I invite?
Friends, co-workers, close neighbors, and family of the parents-to-be are appropriate to invite to a first baby shower. Subsequent baby showers normally have close friends, family, and anyone that wasn't invited to the first party.
When should I mail the invitations?
You will want to mail the invitations at least one month prior to the baby shower. You want to make sure there is enough time for the delivery of the invitation and that it is far enough in advance that most people won't have another occasion to attend on that date.
When should guests RSVP?
This depends on where you are having the party. If it is in a restaurant, you will need to know the attendance as soon as possible. If it is in your home, then request that they respond a week in advance of the party. This way, you will be able to prepare the amount of food, utensils, party favors, and chairs needed for the party. A spin on this is to ask guests to respond if they can't attend.
Where should I have the baby shower?
There are many places that you can hold a baby shower. The most typical one is in the hostess's home. Other options are: restaurant, church cafeteria, office, park, and banquet halls. Where you decide on hosting it depends on your budget and the overall feel you want for your party.
How long should the party last?
Two hours is normally the amount of time you want to plan for the party duration. As with any party, it may end earlier than planned or it may last a little longer. It depends on how many games you've arranged to play, the number of gifts to open, and how you run the party.
Do I need to have a theme?
No, you don't need to have a theme to the party. A theme is a way of unifying the party and giving it some direction. Keep in mind that the guests and mom-to-be may be expecting some kind of baby-ish decorations and theme. It really is a personal preference.
How do I decide the theme?
There are a few ways to decide on the theme. You can choose to use the theme of the nursery (ex: Noah's Ark, Cow Over the Moon, or specific colors), use the baby's gender as a guide (boy, girl, or not known yet), or whatever looks cute to you! Our Tableware section has some great ideas and designs.
How much will it cost to throw a baby shower?
This depends on many factors: how many guests you've invited, what kind of food you intend on serving, where you hold the party, the type of game prizes you've purchased, how lavishly you decorate the room, the cost of the cake, and any other purchase made for the party. To keep costs down, consider baking the cake or holding the party in your home.
Do I need to give party favors to the attending guests?
You don't really need to, but some areas of the country expect that you hand out party favors. Other regions don't feel it's as important since you are there to "shower" the mom-to-be with gifts, not the other way around.
How should I decorate the party?
Decorations are a fun way of creating the party atmosphere. They can tie in the theme and bring about a memorable experience for the mom-to-be. For ideas on decorations, Go Here.
What type of food should I serve?
The food at a baby shower is not expected to be an entire meal. Finger foods such as chips and dip, veggie platters, small sandwiches, and small candies are all acceptable. A buffet style setting is ideal. The guests will be able to fill their plates and return to mingling with the other guests. One idea is to place the food trays in different areas of the room so that it makes the guests get up and walk around. If it is a very large shower, however, you may want to keep everything in one area for convenience and to avoid confusion.
Should I serve drinks with alcohol?
Try to avoid serving anything that the expectant mommy can't drink/eat. If the party is in the evening and the mom-to-be approves, then serving alcohol along with other non-alcoholic refreshments is appropriate.