Image: iStock / Zinkevych
Baby is coming! And soon! For most first-time moms, and even for second- or third- or more-time moms, the baby shower is a rite of passage. The friends, the decor, the games, the conversations, and of course, the food! All together, these elements add up to a fun party that the mom-to-be (or parents-to-be) will never forget.
But what all goes into the making of a truly unforgettable baby shower? The best place to start, of course, is with the expectant mama. Design the shower around her interests and you’re sure to have a winner. But beyond that, there are plenty of ideas out there for fun activities and games to round out the event. Read on for some of our favorite ideas for a cute shower!
Image: Instagram / @babyshowerpartydreams
These days, it seems like half the fun of a baby shower is picking just the perfect theme. Do you go simple, pastel blues and browns for a boy or pinks and purples for a girl (or greens and yellows for a surprise-sex baby)? Woodland animals? Disney? Whether it’s Dr. Seuss or seasonal or elegance or anything the parents-to-be love, the idea can likely be converted into a great baby shower theme. We particularly love this jungle theme, but Pinterest, Instagram, and the Internet as a whole are full of cute ideas if you need a little help finding just the right one!
Image: Instagram / @my.cub.and.i
If you want to really record this shower for posterity, why not make a photo booth? This cute idea is easy as pie! Get a large piece of poster board and cut it into a frame. Decorate with baby’s name, or the mama’s name, or anything baby-related. For your guests, provide props: word balloons, fake mustaches, baby supplies, whatever floats your boat! You’ll love being able to look back and see your loved ones hamming it up to celebrate you and Baby. These photos will be a great addition to a baby book or a regular ol’ scrapbook.
Image: Instagram / @little_muir
Onesies are everybody’s favorite all-purpose baby outfit, and it’s a ton of fun to break out the fabric paint and let your friends decorate some! Invite shower guests to draw animals, write cute phrases, or to otherwise get as artistic--or not--as their little hearts desire. To make this activity even more fun, offer onesies in a wide variety of soft colors; to make it more practical, get a handful each for sizes up to 24 months, rather than going overboard with newborn and 0-3 month onesies. Get that baby a mostly-full wardrobe for the first two years and you’ll have one happy mama!
Image: Instagram / @bambisbeautifulthings
Often, the guests at a baby shower include many who are already parents and are eager to share their hard-earned wisdom! Instead of a more traditional guest book, ask attendees to contribute to a scrapbook full of advice, tips, and tricks to raising small humans. Best way to change a boy’s diaper without getting, er, sprayed? Feeding advice? Tips for functioning on little or no sleep? Pack that book full! For further fun, guests can be given the page in advance, so they have plenty of time (and no excuses) to offer all their best ideas. The impending parents will want to read every page before their own little one arrives!
Image: Instagram / @wensbodyart_bodycasting_mosaic
By the end of pregnancy, most women just want it to be over with; perhaps surprisingly, many women miss that belly once it’s gone! For those who revel in being in the full bloom of pregnancy, belly casting is a fun idea and one that works well at a shower. Simply apply a layer of lubricant to the belly (and possibly the breasts), then coat with a sturdy layer of plaster casting. Once dry and removed, remove and decorate. Some mamas like having their close friends draw pictures or sign the cast; others just paint it simply and beautifully for future remembrance.
Image: Instagram / @chattanoogaplanners
Half the fun of a baby shower is the decorations, but most would say the food is pretty important as well! Combine the two and make a fun “baby carriage” fruit salad. A large watermelon is the perfect shape to cut a carriage out of (check out this tutorial!). Once the carriage has been carved and fruit ring wheels added on, the inside can be filled with mixed fruit or even fruit made to look like an adorable berry-eyed baby. Caterers have been doing this for ages, but you don’t need to be a professional to make this sweet idea work.
Image: Instagram / @hollyscudero
There’s no denying that the idea of actually giving birth is a bit intimidating, especially to first-time moms. In an attempt to get away from the ubiquitous birth “horror stories” that so many pregnant mamas are inundated with, a fun baby shower idea is to surround the mama instead with positive affirmations. These can range from birth-specific ideas such as “opening like a flower” to a simple “you can do it!”, or can be more personalized with photographs of favorite places, religious icons, or drawings of items or animals of personal significance. The affirmations can then be hung on the wall in the hospital room (or wherever the baby is being born) for inspiration once labor has begun.
Image: Instagram / @thirtythreedesignco
Know a lot of artists? Wanna-be artists? Even if your friend circle is full of people with no artistic talent whatsoever, you might be surprised at the results of this fun idea. Everyone gets a letter of the alphabet, and everyone draws a page for a customized ABC book featuring their letter! The possibilities are endless, and the final book you’ll be left with for your bundle of joy will reflect the passions of the people who already love her or him. Different pages might feature animals, sports, celebrities, video game characters, foods, or pretty much anything under the sun!
Image: Instagram / @steph.f.artist
Many moms love celebrating their pregnant belly with some art! Some delight in bright, colorful designs: babies, cartoon characters, and animals are all popular designs. Other mamas might prefer to have their bellies adorned with plant-based henna; many mamas are choosing henna to go for mandalas, but there are plenty of other cute ideas out there as well. This can be a group activity, or you might choose to hire a professional, so the end result is just right. No matter which type of paint you choose (make sure it’s non-toxic) and what design appeals to you, photos of that sweetly painted belly are sure to be treasured in the years to come.
Image: Instagram / @leannc
There are so many unknowns when it comes to birthing a baby. When will Baby come--what day, and what time? How big will she/he be? One fun shower idea is to place a friendly wager with friends and family on some of these things! This might be a big fun poster for guests to fill out, or it might be conducted via a scrapbook page to go in the future baby book. Participants record their names and their guesses. Prizes could be a small gift card for Amazon or coffee, or even just bragging rights. Let the betting begin!
Image: Instagram / @vberrystein
We can’t have all of our friends with us when we go into labor, but this idea lets you bring a positive wish from everyone with you when the time comes. Here’s the idea: ask everyone invited to the shower to bring a bead with them. Likewise, people who can’t make it can get a bead to you some other way. Then each person presents the mama-to-be with her bead, along with wishes for a great birth, or advice, or even just a story. Mama strings all the beads together into a bracelet or necklace, which she can wear to the hospital! Alternatively, attendees can bring precious stones, charms, feathers, or whatever else moves them, and all items can be collected into a drawstring bag, which is then turned into a necklace.
Image: Instagram / @littlesizzlegram
No baby shower is complete without some cheesy games, and there are plenty of fun ideas out there to keep everyone busy. Some ideas are bingo, Pictionary, “name the mommy/daddy/baby animal,” and even gameshow-themed activities based on Price is Right (how much does all that gear cost??) or Jeopardy (pull out all your favorite trivia tidbits!). Word games are always a blast, and even the most cynical party goer ends up loving them and trying their hardest to score a win. And with the magic of Etsy, Photoshop, or even your favorite word processor, it’s easier than ever to make these games cute as can be!
Image: Instagram / @meganhstudio
What better way to celebrate the love and camaraderie of a baby shower than to jointly create art for the new little one’s nursery? For this fun and unbelievably cute project, start with a drawing of a tree--draw your own, or get on Etsy and find something there. Pass around ink pads in various shades of green or gold or orange or whatever color foliage you desire, and everyone adds a “leaf” fingerprint to the branches! Participants can then sign their names on the back, so you can remember who all participated in this special day.
Image: Instagram / @kateducharme
If this one seems a little cliche, it’s because most moms love it! It’s a well-known fact that babies go through a lot of diapers, especially in those early days (or maybe it just seems like more because of those middle-of-the-night changes!). Help mama-to-be stock up on these essentials by buying a ton of diapers (in various sizes) and then arranging them in a “cake.” It’s the perfect centerpiece for any baby shower, and the “cake toppers” can easily match the rest of the decor! And a diaper cake can also be made using cloth diapers, if that’s the new mom’s preference.
Image: Instagram / @littledailylibrarian
Studies show that it’s literally never too early to start reading to babies, but how early is too early to begin building that library? One super fun idea is to ask each shower guest to bring a children’s picture book, new or used, preferably a favorite. Inside, write a dedication to the new baby, something for the mama-to-be to cry over every time she cracks it open. Baby will have fun pictures to look at, and parents have no excuse not to read all the time. These books, likely to be the first in an expansive home library, are bound to be treasured forever.
Image: Instagram / @julieamandadoula
A staple of many “Blessingway” celebrations, the string ceremony can just as easily be used in a more a traditional baby shower party. The idea is that everyone sits in a circle. The mom may be regaled with positive birth stories, or songs, or even just reminders that most women go through birth and come out whole and emotionally intact on the other side. Then, string from a large spool (some prefer red, but any color can be used) is wound around the wrists of everyone in the circle, signifying the bonds of sisterhood. After, everyone cuts a piece of that string to wear as a bracelet until after the birth of the baby, when it is symbolically removed.