In today’s world where babies are named after obscure herbs and there’s a constant stream of beautiful Instagram photos, it can be intimidating to throw a baby shower that’s both stylish and budget-friendly.
The good news? The expertise to make this possible has never been so accessible, thanks to websites like Pinterest.
With a few tips in mind, throwing your friend, sister, or co-worker a chic baby shower is within your grasp. Here’s how to make it happen.
1. Keep Food Local
Serving a dessert or appetizer that’s unique to where you live makes the shower feel more personal. Small businesses might also be more willing to offer you a catering deal.
You might want to schedule the shower for late afternoon or early evening. That way, you don’t have to serve a full meal. And be creative! Skipping the cake and going with donuts, dipped Rice Krispies, or make-your-own fruit tarts can cut down on costs and give guests a unique and delicious treat to enjoy.
2. Forgo Flowers
Flowers are one of those undercover costs that sneak up on you. Instead of flowers, consider brightening up the room with mini lanterns, candles, or a name tree with cute cards.
At my friend’s book-themed shower, for example, we had pretty jars full of multicolored pencils for coloring an A-B-C book for baby. They served as both an activity and decoration.
3. Split Costs
It’s an honor to be picked to organize your friend’s shower. But working with a few buddies will cut down on the time of labor and cost of organizing. Even if you’re someone who dreads group projects, it’ll be worth it on the day of when someone else remembers the centerpiece, or was more talented at hand lettering.
The plus side of organizing as a group? Everyone gets to feel involved in what is a really special day for the future mom.
4. Avoid Holiday Weekends
With more and more couples living miles apart from friends and family, scheduling the party at a time when it’s cheaper to fly is the considerate thing to do. If you have anyone who’ll be flying in, they’ll appreciate the thoughtfulness. The mom-to-be will appreciate that more of her loved ones get to attend.
5. Plan Activities
As much as bridal shower games are mocked, plan on playing one or two to please your guests. The upside to including games is that they aren’t expensive to pull off. So give in to the silliness because your guests will secretly thank you for it. Your wallet will, too.
6. Send Evites
There are gorgeous stationary invitations you could send. But if you have a bottom line, going online for invites will cut your costs in half. Consider classics like Evite and Paperless Post, but consider some newer additions to the field like Punchbowl or Minted.com’s new online invites.
7. There’s No Place Like Home
One of my favorite parts about my baby shower was that it was across the street from my house at my friend’s house. I could waddle there at my own pace. Consider the mom-to-be’s comfort and hold it at her house or nearby. This will also keep down costs.
Alternatives to look into are religious venues or outside. A park might be the perfect venue for a late spring or summer shower.
8. Keep Gifts Reasonable
Keeping the shower thrifty doesn’t just apply to the host. Consider the guests, too. They may be keeping budgets of their own.
When we held a book-themed shower for our friend, several guests pulled us aside afterward to thank us. They maybe couldn’t afford a new crib or gizmo, but they could bring a few baby books to share. Your guests’ comfort is a big part of throwing a successful party.
9. Go Dry
In most cases, alcohol’s the maker of great parties. But it can really destroy your budget if you’re not careful. At a shower where the mom-to-be can’t drink, serving it isn’t necessary.
Instead, serve a signature party mocktail. Martha Stewart’s pink grapefruit “margarita” was one of my favorites when I was pregnant. It’s perfect for a baby girl shower.
You also could set up a drink bar. Make a hot chocolate bar for cold weather or a lemonade and fruit bar for summer showers.
Bottom line: The mom-to-be comes first.