Can You Throw Your Own Baby Shower?

baby shower

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When no one steps up to throw you a baby shower, it can feel like you’re stuck without one. It can also leave you wanting to throw your own baby shower.

Some people are strongly against this, but there’s no shame in hosting your own baby shower. In fact, modern moms are doing it all the time

You have so many options, it’s okay to toss etiquette to the wind. However, you need to know that some people are still going to think it’s tacky. 

According To Etiquette Rules, You’re Not Supposed To

This is the main reason why soon-to-be moms don’t throw their own baby showers. It’s considered taboo because it’s against etiquette rules.

You should also keep in mind that those same old etiquette rules say that men and boys can’t attend baby showers. In recent years, this rule has also gone out of the window. 

Some Will Interpret This As Asking For Gifts

When you throw your own baby shower, it can easily be interpreted as asking people for presents, which can be considered impolite.

However, you should also remember that people get married, throw their own wedding and gifts are usually so expected that couples have a wedding registry.

When you throw your own birthday party, people still bring you presents. It’s the same thing, in my opinion. You’re having a baby and people know you need stuff, so most people won’t be too offended.

Younger generations seem to be more open to tossing those etiquette rules out the window compared to older generations, so keep that in mind if you’re deciding which invitations you want to send out. 

How To Throw (And Plan) Your Own Baby Shower

If you’re going to throw your own baby shower, great for you! Etiquette rules are quickly becoming outdated, so you shouldn’t feel embarrassed about throwing your own party.

That also means that you can toss the other etiquette rules, like not inviting men to baby showers, out the window too. 

Pick A Co-Host

If you’re hosting your own baby shower, that means that you’ll be doing most, if not all, of the planning. However, you need another person for the day of the baby shower. This is the person that can help you decorate.

They also will be the ones to hand you presents when it comes time to open gifts. Sometimes, a co-host will help foot the bill, but this isn’t always the case.

Don’t ask them, but feel free to accept the financial help if they offer. If you’re still in a relationship with the father, he would make a great co-host!

Decide For Or Against Co-Ed

If you’re already throwing away etiquette rules, you need to keep in mind that this is the only reason people don’t invite men to baby showers.

Today, more and more people are including males on baby shower invitations. This is a great way to encourage the entire family to celebrate your little blessing, and a wonderful way to include fathers.

Deciding whether a baby shower will include men can also help you determine what type of baby shower you will have. 

Pick The Type Of Baby Shower

Some people still have formal baby showers that include games, people wearing dresses, etc. Other people tend to lean more towards casual baby showers that are more like a cookout with presents.

You can have games at the cookout, but no one will bat an eye if you don’t because it’s such a casual baby shower. It’s more popular today to have a casual baby shower, but there’s nothing wrong with opting for something more formal either. 

The Venue Needs To Be Picked Early On

Most event venues require a reservation. You can have a baby shower at your house, or a friend’s, too. If you’re going with a venue, plan ahead.

There is usually a deposit, and you’ll need to include the location of the baby shower on invitations. Some great ideas for places to have a baby shower include: 

  • The park (great and affordable, especially if you’re going with a casual cookout)
  • Church event room (most churches will rent out their event room for a Saturday)
  • Event space (start googling in your area)
  • Hotels (they have conference rooms, event rooms, etc.)
  • Your house (it’s just convenient and it’s free)
  • Your friend’s house (even more convenient because they’ll instantly help decorate/clean up and it’s free)

If there is ample space for the baby shower, a few tables, and the guests, you can have a baby shower there! That’s really all you need. 

How To Ask For Gifts When Planning Your Own Baby Shower

Some people instantly look at you planning your own baby shower as you asking for gifts. However, you can tactfully put their minds at ease, even if you do need the presents.

When you invite people to the baby shower, make sure to let them know two things: where your baby registry is and that they shouldn’t feel obligated to bring a gift.

This tells people what you need for the baby if they do want to bring a present. It simultaneously lets them know that you care about them coming to celebrate the new life you’re bringing into the world and that it’s not about the presents. 

How To Invite People To Your Baby Shower

Inviting people to a baby shower used to consist of sending invitations in the mail. That’s still an option today, but you have a couple of other options to choose from.

You can also make a Facebook event. Today, almost everyone has social media. This is a great way to keep everyone informed about changes to the event, and you can keep better track of the guest list.

For my daughter’s gender reveal, we used social media and called people that we weren’t friends with on Facebook. You can also create a social media event as well as mail out invitations.

Consider your guest list, and how many people have social media when deciding which option will work best for your baby shower. 

Food For A Baby Shower

baby shower food

If you’re having a cookout, this is what type of food you’ll serve. You can have hamburgers and hot dogs. Chips make a great side.

Other common cookout foods, like fruit salad, potato salad, and macaroni and cheese are all great ideas. This isn’t the only option you’ve got, though. 

Sandwich Platters

Providing sandwich platters as the main course is a great idea for any event. You can order these from anywhere that caters, including grocery stores like Krogers.

If you want to make your own, DIY sandwich platters are a great, budget-friendly food for a baby shower option. 

Most dollar stores, like the Dollar Tree, sell large platters. Pick up a few of them. Use one to stack hamburger buns or Hawaiin rolls on. Use another one to carefully line sliced cheese on.

The other one or two will have rolled deli meat on them. Just pick up some lunch meat, fold it or roll it, and then line it up on the platter. You’ll have your own main course in an hour for under twenty bucks. 

Finger Foods

If you’re making your own food for the baby shower, you might not feel up to making hundreds of customized cupcakes. Finger foods are the easiest option, in my opinion.

They are simpler to make if you opt for sticking with the basics, and clean-up will be much easier if there are small children attending. Finger foods can include: 

  • Finger sandwiches
  • Devilled eggs
  • Chips and dip
  • Fruit trays (and fruit dip is an option)
  • Fruit kebabs
  • Rolls
  • Veggie trays

These are all easy to make yourself, making them essential if you’re both having a rough pregnancy and throwing your own baby shower.

There are plenty of other fun ideas for finger foods for a baby shower if you’re able to and want to spice things up. Check out this website for some great recipes. 

DIY Salad Bar

I love DIY bar ideas for every event, including baby showers. A DIY salad bar doesn’t require that you serve people, and that can be the main appetizer.

All you have to do is put the food in bowls and set it on the table. (Perfect for pregnant mamas that are doing all of this planning on their own!) Items you can include in your DIY salad bar include: 

  • Lettuce
  • Spinach leaves
  • Shredded cheese
  • Diced eggs 
  • Tomatoes
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Diced chicken
  • Diced ham
  • Bacon bits

If you’re not a fan of those and are still trying to come up with ideas, head to a local grocery store that has a fully stocked salad bar. Make a mental note of things you’d like to include in your own. 

At the end of the table, make sure that you include plenty of options for dressing. Ranch is always popular, so you want to make sure that you don’t run out of that. If you have plenty, it can serve as a backup when you run out of other dressings. 

Get Creative!

There are tons of creative ideas that can make your baby shower food table adorable. These are all great ideas that are Instagram-worthy.

I love the idea of going with something a little bit more basic, like the DIY salad bar, because that leaves you plenty of time to make adorable baby shower food. This website has some great DIY ideas that are also easy to make. 

Don’t Forget The Cake Or Cupcakes

It’s a tradition that never seems to go out of style. While people are ignoring outdated etiquette rules, this one seems to stay. Everyone that has a baby shower usually has a cake and/or cupcakes.

This is the main desert at the baby shower. If you’re not a pro at cake decorating, consider just ordering one. Most bakeries offer affordable prices and can give you a customized cake on the big day. 

Consider The Venue When Picking The Foods

If you’re going to have a cookout at the park, it’s not ideal to have food in a crockpot. It simply won’t stay warm. An outside venue in the middle of the summer is going to be a disaster if you have an ice cream cake.

Make sure that you can have the food that you want at your venue. If it doesn’t coordinate well, you can always opt for different food. 

Do You Have To Have Games At A Baby Shower?

You can have games at a baby shower. Keep in mind that there is usually a prize. If you’re having a co-ed baby shower, it’s important to have prizes for both males and females. Going with gift cards is a great idea!

You can also opt-out of games at your baby shower. Instead, mingle. Enjoy the food. People will talk to each other, so it’s not as though you have to provide something to entertain them. Either way, you’ll be fine. You can still have a blast! 

Baby Shower Games

If you do choose to have baby shower games, there are plenty to choose from! Most of these are gender-neutral, meaning that they aren’t geared towards males or females.

You can enjoy them at a co-ed baby shower or one that only has female participants. 

Test Your Memory

Place several baby items on a platter. Then, have everyone sit in a circle. Walk around the circle, letting each person view all of the items on the platter once.

Next, everyone has to write down the things that they remember that were on the platter. Whoever can remember the most things wins a prize. 

Name That Baby

Ask that every guest bring a baby picture of themselves to the baby shower. Then, hold up the pictures so that people can guess who the baby is. To keep order, go from one guest to another. Give each person one guess. If anyone gets it right, they get a prize!

Cupcake Decorating Contest

Make sure that you have plenty of cupcakes, icing tubes, and sprinkles! Then, each person decorates their cupcake. Select three people to be judges.

If you don’t want this to be one of your baby shower games, consider eliminating the contest portion. Instead, everyone can simply enjoy decorating cupcakes. 

What Can You Do Instead Of Baby Shower Games?

If baby shower games sound a bit corny to you, you’re not alone. Some people tend to stray away from competitive baby shower games.

Instead, they pick activities that are fun for everyone, and that they can use to show their little ones how much they were loved before they were even born. 

Decorate Onesies

Pick up all white onesies in various sizes. You’ll also need some fabric paints, and consider a tie-dye kit. Then, set up a station at the baby shower for everyone to decorate your little one with a customized onesie. 

Baby Shower Paintings

Leave one wall in your nursery blank. Then, pick up canvases of various sizes, paint, and plenty of paintbrushes. Everyone can make the baby a painting for their nursery. These can go on the blank wall in your nursery. 

Write Birthday Cards For Future Birthdays

Pick up at least 18 birthday cards. Then, your baby will have a new one to open up every year until they are 18.

If you have more than 18 guests, consider picking up more so that everyone can write your little bundle of joy a birthday card for them to open later down the road. 

If you want an activity for your guests to do, consider some arts and crafts. However, you’ll also need to keep in mind the age of the guests. This might not be the best activity for a group of three-year-olds. Instead, opt for writing cards in that situation. 

Decorating For A Baby Shower

baby shower decor

If you’re going to throw your own baby shower, you’ll also need to consider what decorations you’d like to have. Usually, the cake table is decorated with a table cloth. This is the centerpiece of the food table.

There are quite a few options you can use to decorate your baby shower. You can use all of these, or none of them. (There’s also not a single rule that says you have to decorate for a baby shower.)

Here are some common ideas that can get your creative juices flowing: 

  • Centerpieces
  • Flowers
  • Balloons
  • Streamers
  • It’s A Boy or It’s A Girl banner
  • Tablecloths
  • Candles
  • Plastic diaper pins
  • Vases full of seashells or decorative rocks
  • Bows on the back of chairs
  • Placemats
  • Paper lanterns

However, you choose to decorate will greatly depend on the venue. It’s a bit difficult to hang paper lanterns from the ceiling if it’s thirty feet in the air, for example.

You’ll also need to consider your own personal tastes. Last, don’t forget your budget. If you’re the one throwing the baby shower, you’re also the one paying for it. 

Party Favors For A Baby Shower

baby shower party favors

I’ve personally never done these. They remind me of wedding favors a bit too much. However, I have been to baby showers that included party favors.

This helps make up for the fact that everyone doesn’t get a prize during the games. It can also be a nice way to remember the baby shower. 

If you choose to give out party favors, consider placing them on a table with a sign. It saves you from having to make sure that everyone gets one. People can only take one if they want one. 

Baby Shower FAQs

How long is a baby shower supposed to last?

Most baby showers only last 2-3 hours. Of course, there are always exceptions. Some baby showers are more of an evening-long event.

A cookout might last most of the afternoon just like other cookouts typically do. However, some baby showers only last for 1-2 hours. The more activities you include, the longer the baby shower will be. 

Are baby showers only for the first child?

Traditionally, couples only had baby showers for their first child. Now, however, things have changed. Most people have baby showers for other children as well. A sprinkle shower for second and third children is very common. 

How many prizes do you need for a baby shower?

Most people have 2 prizes per game. This gives the person that wins a prize, and the runner up. If your budget allows for it, consider picking up a few extra prizes to thank the guests for their participation. 

What month do you plan a baby shower?

Most people have a baby shower between 6 and 8 months. It’s become increasingly common for couples that are counting on baby shower presents to have them earlier, such as at 6 months. This lets them know what they will still need to buy before the baby arrives. 

Who pays for the baby shower?

The person that is hosting the baby shower pays for it. If you’re throwing your own shower, you’re the one that’s paying for it.

If more than one person is hosting the baby shower, each person hosting usually contributes to the baby shower with either money or by purchasing things. 

In Conclusion

Traditionally, women did not plan their own baby showers. Instead, a family member or friend planned and hosted the baby shower. Now, times have changed. You can plan your own baby shower, or co-host it with someone else. 

My name is Amber Dixon. I am a mother to three wonderful children, and recently welcomed a beautiful grandson into the world as well as into my home. I've learned a great deal about raising children through my own experiences as a mother, but also from several other places. While working at a daycare full time, I learned about childhood development, teaching children, and more. Through earning degrees in Social Work, I was educated about human development, including a great deal about children and childhood development. My education and experience combined have taught me a lot about children of every stage and age, and I hope that I can help you on your journey to becoming the best parent that you can be!

My name is Amber Dixon. I am a mother to three wonderful children, and recently welcomed a beautiful grandson into the world as well as into my home. I've learned a great deal about raising children through my own experiences as a mother, but also from several other places. While working at a daycare full time, I learned about childhood development, teaching children, and more. Through earning degrees in Social Work, I was educated about human development, including a great deal about children and childhood development. My education and experience combined have taught me a lot about children of every stage and age, and I hope that I can help you on your journey to becoming the best parent that you can be!