4 Tips For Baby Shower Etiquette
There are few events are more exciting than welcoming a baby into the world. Whether a shower is being thrown for you or you're planning the party for another mother-to-be, you want it to be worthy of the spectacular event it's celebrating. However, traditions come with rules. Here are 4 tips on following baby shower etiquette.
Close friends are welcome to host the shower. Though showers are thrown to honor the mother, the event is about gift giving. With big events like weddings and showers it's common practice and common courtesy for people to give gifts to those being honored, but it's considered tacky to mention gifts; you never want to ask for gifts. This is why no one in the immediate family of the mother-to-be is supposed to host; it suggests the honoree is asking for gifts.
Though the honoree isn't supposed to ask for gifts, it's perfectly acceptable for her to register for gifts. For guests who don't know what to buy, it's an excellent guide for getting gifts that will be useful and that mom needs. How much to spend is up to each guest. It's customary to spend $25-$30, but close friends and relatives might want to spend more. If your budget dictates that you spend less, try giving sentimental baby toys or going in on a big gift with another guest or two.
It's hard to come up with a time that's convenient for everyone who wants to be part of the festivities, but the only person it really needs to be convenient for the mother-to-be. Party organization aside, pregnancies generally last about 40 weeks, and those last several weeks are uncomfortable for the woman carrying the baby. Around 32 weeks and later isn't too late, but it likely won't be fun for the honoree. Aim for around 28 weeks. Mom will still be comfortable and it will give her time to sort through her gifts and get things set up before the baby comes.
How Many Showers
Traditionally, showers are held for the first child. Buying all the items a new mom needs to care for a baby gets quite expensive, so showers are a way to gather the things people need for a newborn (clothes, cribs, strollers) and ease the financial burden to the expectant mother, as well as celebrate the event. For a second child, a shower might be considered tacky. However, the circumstances should dictate whether or not there's a party. For instance, if the second child comes several years after the first one and there's nothing left from the first baby or if you just want to have a celebration, it's OK as long as guests are asked not to bring gifts.
The birth of a baby is a time to celebrate! Getting caught up in the rules of traditions is inevitable, but there are ways to navigate the customs so everyone is comfortable and can enjoy the party.