Shop our collection of Baby Shower InvitationsIn many ways, planning a baby shower is just like planning any other party: you have to set a budget, and stick to it; you have to consult the guest of honor on important details, such as the date; and you have to plan, plan, plan. Some party-planning mistakes are also universal: you don't get a head count for food, and you end up with too much or too little. You forget to invite someone important, and feelings get hurt. Or you take on too much and don't accept offers of help, and your dreams of a perfect shower fizzle. All are surefire ways to doom any party you host-and then there are those no-nos specific to a baby shower. Review this list, and make sure you don't fall into these party-planning traps!
1. You spill the beans. If baby's name, or sex, is a secret, don't take this opportunity to fill people in. The parents-to-be have chosen to keep the information private, whether only they know or just a few close family and friends do as well. By revealing it, you'll just hurt mom's and dad's feelings and come off as a spoilsport. Be sure to check with the parents-to-be before you include anything specific to the child on the invitation or in the party décor. If you know the child's name or sex, confirm it's not a secret and that the parents want it revealed before sharing it. And if these details are unknown, don't worry! You can have a lot of fun with the secret-for example, invite guests to participate in a pool to guess the name, birth date, or sex.
2. You don't pick a theme. A big part of the fun of throwing a baby shower is choosing a theme for the invitations, decorations, favors, and even food. A generic shower with no personal touches, or a shower that mashes together two or three or more themes, won't be well-received, by mom or guests. Take some time to think about the right theme for the mom-to-be, the season, and the baby. Talk with the guest of honor about her plans for the nursery and her favorite things to get inspiration. Best of all, once you've settled on a theme, the rest will fall into place.
3. You don't have someone record the gifts and their givers. Mom can't be expected to remember everything she receives and from whom. Take the pressure off her, and ensure everyone gets the appropriate thanks, by having someone on board before the day of the shower to keep track of the gifts. That way, you won't be scrambling in the moment for someone to do the task. Have pen and paper handy, and, if there's time, have each guest self-address a thank-you envelope so mom doesn't have to. At the end of the shower, provide mom with a set of personalized thank-you cards and the addressed envelopes.
4. You don't record the moment for posterity. Especially if this is the first child, mom will surely want a photographic record of the people who helped her celebrate her baby's birth. Make sure she has something to remember the day by, and take photos-or ask someone else to-throughout the shower. Have disposable cameras on hand in case of a camera malfunction. You might even want to develop one of the shots and frame it as a gift for the guest of honor.
5. You forget to make it all about the mom-to-be. This might be the most important thing not to do. Soon enough, it will be all about baby-so make sure mom feels celebrated and honored at her shower. Take care to make her feel comfortable and relaxed. Consult her on important details, but don't overly involve her in the planning. And make sure the shower is a warm, inviting atmosphere for all the guests. Encourage mingling with icebreakers if guests will be unfamiliar to one another. When the shower is over, send mom home with at least one special gift just for her.
When planning a baby shower, keep in mind that this is a special, but also emotional, time for the mom-to-be. Take stress and worry out of the equation for her by avoiding these mistakes, and you'll have one relaxed and happy mama-and a lot of pleased guests as well.
Shop our collection of Baby Shower Invitations
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