After finding out you were pregnant, one of the most memorable and enjoyable parts of your pregnancy is likely to be your baby shower.
These are a beautiful way for friends and family to celebrate the immanent arrival of a baby, and by giving gifts and participating in a diaper raffle, baby showers are a great way for the guests to help the parents with some of the costs they will face with raising a newborn.
But in all the excitement, you may not have thought about who traditionally pays for the event, and who exactly is supposed to host or throw the celebration.
So in this article we’ve taken a look at these celebrations in more detail, from who traditionally pays to what duties hosting entails, and even if husbands and dads can make an appearance.
Who Traditionally Pays For A Baby Shower?
If you are following traditional etiquette, then the host is the person who pays for the event.
No surprises for guessing your next question: who should host the baby shower or who is supposed to throw the event?
Traditionally, the host is someone who is a close friend of the mom-to-be, or a distant relative (for example an aunt, cousin or sister-in-law), but not a close relative.
The reason why close relatives were not supposed to be the host is not entirely clear, but many people believe it is to avoid the immediate family or mom-to-be appearing like they are throwing a party to simply collect gifts for the parents or unborn baby!
Some baby showers are much larger than others, so if you are worried the cost of the event will be too much for one person to bear – baby showers can typically range from $150 to $1,200 – then it’s perfectly acceptable to share the responsibility (and costs) by asking a few other close friends of family members to help out.
Can The Grandmother Host A Baby Shower?
A common question from expecting moms is if it’s ok for the grandmother to host the event.
Although tradition says that baby showers should not be hosted by close family (see above), nowadays it is seen as perfectly acceptable for a grandmother or grandmother-to-be to host or throw the event herself.
There’s probably nobody who knows mom-to-be better than their own mother – and probably no one who’s more excited about the new arrival (except perhaps the new parents themselves) – so for this reason grandma can make an excellent baby shower host!
When Do You Throw A Baby Shower?
These events can be thrown at any time during pregnancy, although they are usually held in the third trimester.
Many women find that around 4-6 weeks before the due date is a good time, as it’s far along into the pregnancy, but not so late that the baby might make an early arrival to disrupt your plans.
It’s also worth pointing out that although most occur while mom is expecting, some women prefer to have their event after their baby is born.
Do Dads Go To Baby Showers?
If you are thinking about having your husband at your event then you’re not alone, because a lot of women nowadays wonder if it’s ok for dads to go to baby showers.
Traditionally these events are only for women, so if you’re going with traditional etiquette, then the husband, dad-to-be or other men should not attend the event.
However, as with many things these rules have become more relaxed, so if you do want to invite one or several men to your baby shower then there’s nothing wrong with that.
Keep in mind however that dad’s can also have their own diaper party, which is a nice way to keep mom and dad’s celebrations – not to mentioned activities and themes – separate.
Can I Throw My Own Baby Shower?
There are two lines of thought regarding whether you can or should host your own baby shower.
Some people will tell you it’s absolutely fine to throw your own shower, especially if you want a less traditional, smaller or more casual celebration and you like the fact you have more control over the event.
On the other hand, you should be aware that some people believe hosting your own event is poor etiquette and greedy, because it may be viewed as a way to get gifts out of your guests, especially if you have a baby registry.
Baby Shower Hostess Duties
If you are planning to host a baby shower or will be helping out in the lead up or on the day itself, you will no doubt be wondering what does a hostess do at the event?
No two celebrations are the same, but typically some of the most common duties of a baby shower host include:
- Choosing the venue
- Organizing food and drink
- Decorating the venue (for example with bunting, flowers or balloons)
- Organizing games (some will need pre-preparation like “Guess Who”, where guests bring their own baby photo and guests try and match the baby photo with the grown ups in attendance, or
“Who Knows Mommy Best”, a quiz all about mom).
- Organizing the diaper raffle
- Asking mom who to invite to the baby shower and sending out invitations, which may include selecting your preferred diaper raffle wording
- Bringing advice cards or a book for other moms in attendance to fill in with words of wisdom
- Ensuring everyone is mingling well and having fun on the day, and most of all making sure mom-to-be is having a great time!