Tuesday, October 18, 2011

tips for planning a shower

I mentioned yesterday I had attended a baby shower for a dear friend of mine... I thought I'd elaborate a little on that shower as well as some others I've planned and include some tips for some of you who are maybe planning on hosting a shower. Obviously I'm no expert - just thought it could be a fun little run-down. So, here we go...

1. Watch your watch. It's probably safe to say that not all of your guests will know each other - or will be able to spare three hours of their day playing games, eating snacks, and watching guest of honor open gifts. Leave about 15 minutes for mingling at the beginning. but no more. Get the ball rolling with food or any other planned activity. With that, don't stress about time - just be sure to not be sitting on your hands wondering when it's time to move on. I've just been to one too many showers where I chit-chatted with too many people I did not know because host/s weren't quite sure when to start.

2. Have a game or activity. I think you need a game or an activity at a shower. Something for the guest of honor to come home with is especially nice. At the baby shower this weekend I had the idea of a hair bow station. I asked other people planning the shower to bring fabric/crafty supplies so that everyone would be able to make a bow for the baby girl. I also asked everyone to leave a note for the mommy - 1. so she would be encouraged and 2. so she'd know who the bow was from. Ashley ended up having dozens of sweet cards and a boatload of cute new bows for her baby girl. It was awesome to see everyone's creativity with this!

(All are attached to a clip so she can attach them to different hair bands as she wishes!) It was a big hit. I plan on doing this if I ever help plan another shower for a baby girl and would recommend it if you are hosting a shower for a baby girl! But if hair bows aren't your thing - another idea is just the encouragement notes. At all of my baby showers the hosts had guests write a not of advice for me as a new mother. I still have every single one.

3. I like games. I know not everyone likes games so keep your guests in mind with the type of game you choose. I've done "who knows the couple/pregnancy" best games and those are always a winner. I think the more you can personalize the shower with a game - the better. And then you're not always playing the same shower games over and over. Also, gift cards or candy make excellent prizes... and let's be honest, who doesn't love winning a prize? :)

4. Pick a theme. I'm typically not a theme-y person but I'm learning that a theme makes party planning so much easier! You can decorate, make food labels, menu ideas, anything you can think of after you make your theme. A few examples - Caedmon's first birthday party was balloon themed.

So the invites, food, decorations, thank-yous... all came back to balloons. This shower theme over the weekend was pumpkins - and to make it girly I had the idea of tying pink bows to the stems. Simple, and also really cute! Themes can be as simple or elaborate as you want... I think I'm just better at the simple. :)

And the above are from an airplane-themed shower I threw over the summer. I made "encouragement" cards look like clouds that the airplanes left behind. I may have been a little proud of myself for that one. :) So, my tip would be - simple is best. Unless you're awesome and can do a complicated more-than-one-word theme. :)

5. Enjoy yourself! Remember you're hosting/attending to shower your friend/cousin/sister/neighbor with love. If things don't go totally as planned. Don't stress. If your decorations aren't as cool as you hoped or you didn't get around to making that dip or just whatever - it truly doesn't matter. Just have fun. And take pictures of your hard work AND with the people that you love. Surprisingly it's too easy to forget that last one.

And just one other good idea - my bestie threw Michael and I a baby shower and in the invitation she included a note that said "in lieu of a card, bring a book and write a special message to the new baby" perfect idea! I've done this at every shower now because it is just such a good idea. It helps the mommy to not feel bad for throwing away $4.00 cards that she just doesn't have room after the shower for and it helps the baby start an awesome library (because typically people bring their favorite book!) win-win.

Another good idea is to have all of the guests write their address on an envelope for a thank-you card. The guest-of-honor will truly appreciate this - major time saver - and kind of a money saver since she won't have to purchase the thank-you's herself!

Okay, I think that's all of my shower/party tips. Like I said, I'm no expert - I know I have boat-loads more to learn - and I realize this is kind of random, but hopefully a teensy bit helpful for someone! :)

Happy party-planning friends! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment