Outline: how baby showers started – a quick guide | baby shower host | baby shower when | how to plan a baby shower | baby shower games | final note

Yay! There’s a baby on the way! It’s exciting, thrilling, and you must be eager to rain showers of gift and love on the baby. Hence, I’ve decided to share a few tips with you on how to plan a baby shower.

Before that, here’s a quick question. Are you planning the baby shower for your friend, sister, neighbour, or maybe yourself? Forget it. It doesn’t really matter. What matters is how to make it fun and memorable!

First things first, what happens at a baby shower?

A baby shower is a ceremony that’s organized to celebrate the arrival or the impending birth of a child. It’s a gift-giving party whose key ingredient is love.

Let me bore you a little with how baby showers started, so you can understand why I chose love as the key ingredient.

How baby showers started – a quick guide

No one knows for sure how baby showers started because different regions had different names for it.

However, some believe baby showers dates back to the ancient Egyptian and Roman Empire. Meanwhile, because different people had different names for it, they celebrated it uniquely – based on their tradition.

For example, in Nigeria, naming ceremonies sound like a near-synonym of baby showers. Naming ceremonies are held about 7 days after the child is born, it’s the official announcement of the baby’s names and of course, the invitees are expected to come with gifts or cash.

The ancient Egyptians, for instance, considered it a period where both the mother and child where secluded from people to avoid “pollution of birth”. Baby showers in Egypt was strictly a woman-centred ceremony.

Ancient Greeks called it Amphidromia. It was held 5 or 7 days after the arrival of the baby, usually in the evening.

The outside of the house would be decorated with olive branches to signify that the baby is a boy, or garlands of wool if the baby is a girl. The family is always presented gifts.

And in ancient India, baby showers were called Pumsavana Seemantham, and it was always celebrated for all the babies in the family between the 6th and 8th month of the woman’s pregnancy.

Certain rituals are always performed to appease the Indian goddess of wealth, Sri Mahalakshmi. The ceremony was aimed at blessing the expectant mother and making her feel calm and relaxed to ensure the safe delivery of a healthy baby.

And remember, love and gifts are two key ingredients to include when planning a shower.

PS: Don’t exclude the father! Except you’re hosting an Amazonian baby shower.

Who is supposed to host a baby shower?

As the best friend, cousin, or sister, it’s in your place to surprise the expectant mother with a baby shower.

There’s no particular person that’s designated to host a baby shower. Even the expectant mother could organize a shower for herself if she’s up for it.

Gone are the days when men were excluded from baby showers, these days they don’t just attend, they can host a shower for their babies as well.

When should you have the baby shower?

Before now, there were specific dates and months that a shower could be hosted, but today, we have the freedom to fix our own dates and time.

But most baby showers are hosted just before the baby is due or immediately after the baby’s arrival.

Most families like to host their showers after the baby’s delivery, so that it can be combined with the introduction of the baby to friends and family.

Others prefer to have it before delivery to avoid exposing the new born to a crowd, which might result in the baby being infected, or sometimes, they do so to know the gifts that they would be given so as to complete their baby shopping.

Whichever option you’re going for is perfect, but first, you need to know how to plan a baby shower.

How to Plan a Baby Shower

baby shower decor

Baby showers are low-key parties that are quite easy to plan because it’s more like a family gathering that’s mostly organized in the house. However, a lot of things could go wrong if you don’t know what you’re doing.

To achieve the right blend of fun and entertainment, you need to know how to plan a baby shower like a pro.

When talking about fun baby showers, we think pretty theme colours, food, games, great music, friendly company, gifts, and drinks. These are the basic things that plaster a permanent smile on the soon-to-be mother’s face throughout the event.

1. Theme & decor

Themes basically decide what happens at a baby shower party, however, your budget often determines the theme.

In other words, the first thing on your mind should be coming up with a budget, a date, then the theme before other things like venue and guest list.

For an emotionally appealing event, pick a theme that resonates with the mother. You can recreate her favourite scenery – surely, a grand gesture that’ll never be forgotten.

You could also choose to focus on the baby – a little peek at Disneyland or a walk-through Wonderland would be a nice welcome. Also, you can keep it simple with ribbons and balloons here, beautifully coloured plants/wall stickers there.

Note: Create a calm and serene environment to reflect the peacefulness of babies.

2. Food & drinks

The type of food and drinks served at baby showers depend on the time, theme, and budget. If you want to keep it simple and easy, do finger foods and fruit drinks.  

Cupcakes, fruit salads, vegetable sticks, mini pizza, samosas, cookies, crackers, and candies, make a great buffet. You can spice it up with fruit juice, zobo drinks, and white or red wine.

You can also add alcohol (like palm wine) to the list, especially for the dad’s crew, if it’s co-ed.

3. Music

Your music choice shouldn’t only be centred on the expectant or new mom, as the case may be – there are tons of other persons around.

Play some of the mother’s favourites and play songs that appeal to the general audience.

But usually, the playlist should contain soft soul music that are calm, but lively. Your theme can also influence the type of songs being played.

Consider playing other genres like classics, soft pop, soft rock, and maybe afro beat, to get people on their feet.

4. Friendly company

This has to do with the people you have on your guest list. Baby shower is an intimate occasion, hence only those who are considered family at large should be invited.

While compiling your guest list, check with the mother or father to know the people they’d like in attendance. You wouldn’t want to upset them on such a special day by inviting those they aren’t cool with.

5. Photography

Lastly, don’t forget to have a photographer (and photo-booth) around!

Memories need to be preserved; hence this shouldn’t be exempted from your plans.

Pro Tip: Creating a gift booth where all attendees can drop off their gifts would reduce the stress of someone having to collect it from them.

Fun baby shower games

This is the most fun part. There are several baby showers games for men, women, and kids. The “change the diaper” game for men is highly recommended.

Here’s a compilation of our favourite games here!

PS: A few of those games will fetch you extra money from the guest – more money!!!

Final note

The excitement that accompanies baby showers can be dulled by improper planning. Don’t just plan a baby shower, plan a fun-filled baby shower that is laced with love; one whose memory is unforgettable.

When considering how to plan a baby shower, ensure that everyone is going to have fun.

The day might be for the mother and the baby, but parties are best enjoyed when everyone is having fun.


Pat Asanga

Pat Asanga is a science writer with a passion for fact-based storytelling. She has a background in Animal and Environmental Biology.

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