Etiquette for a baby shower used to be quite rigid, but rules have relaxed in the past several years. Etiquette is a word that strikes fear in the heart of many party planners. You don’t want anyone to get upset or think that you are being rude. There are several rules of that you should be aware of. Whether or not you follow them is up to you.
It used to be that etiquette for a baby shower said that mothers of the new parents should not plan a baby shower. Some people may have viewed this as a gift grab by the family. Even sisters were not supposed to plan the baby shower. However, in past years this rule has fallen by the wayside. If you are related to a new mom, go ahead and plan her baby shower to your heart’s content.
The next etiquette for baby showers rule you need to consider is whom to invite. If you know the new mom well, most of the guest list will be obvious. However, you should show her the list to make sure that no one has been left out.
If the shower is a surprise, run the list by a few people that are close to her. This way they might notice some names missing that you may have forgotten.
Invitations don’t follow any sort of etiquette rules anymore. People still enjoy receiving baby shower invitations in the mail, but you can phone guests or email them as well. Just be sure in the case of email that guests actually check it regularly!
Etiquette for a baby shower says that you should not ask guests to bring anything. You should not even imply that they are to bring a gift. This is obvious, but no one likes to be directly asked to spend money. If you are asking people to pitch in for a large gift, this is considered acceptable.
You should also not ask people to bring food with them. Most people will feel insulted that they are expected to bring a nice gift and now make some food as well. This is your job as the hostess. If you are doubtful that you can make all the food yourself, ask only close friends and relatives. Be sure to make them feel appreciated.
Etiquette for a baby shower also says when the best time to have the baby shower. Typically you should have it one to two months before the baby’s due date. This allows the mom time to put gifts on her registry. She can also have some time to purchase anything that she did not receive at the shower.
Party favors used to be expected. This is not at all necessary anymore, but still a lot of fun for the guests. Consider a small bag with baby related items, especially edible ones! You can find adorable chocolates and candies that are perfect for baby showers.
A final note on etiquette. You may be wondering if it is considered insensitive to invite someone who has recently miscarried. While attending a shower may be difficult for her, you should always give her the option of coming.
Baby shower etiquette is important, but not so much as with other events such as bridal showers. If you take other people’s feelings into consideration you will probably follow all necessary etiquette. Every group of people is different and something that offends one may not offend another. Try not to let etiquette determine too much of what you do, but listen to common sense. The perfect baby shower can be a piece of cake.