Many cultures around the world celebrate the birth of a child. It’s a chance to celebrate the mother and ensure the family has all the supplies they need to care for their new addition. In countries like the US, a baby shower is usually held a few months before the child’s birth. In recent years, gender reveals have become part of the celebration, using the party to announce the baby’s gender.
Just as different cultures have different ways of celebrating a new baby, there are also many different rules about who should be invited to a baby shower.
If you’re expecting a baby or planning a party for someone who is, you might be feeling overwhelmed with all the planning. You may be wondering what etiquette dictates when making a baby shower guest list. Who will be expecting an invitation and who can you leave off the list?
In This Article
Who Should You Invite to a Baby Shower?
Traditionally, in many western countries, only women are invited to baby showers. However, some modern moms find this to be a bit old-fashioned and want their partner and other men to be involved in the celebrations too.
If you’re throwing a party for a mom-to-be who prefers adhering to specific cultural traditions, it may be a good idea to research those traditions in advance. If the party isn’t a surprise, you may also want to consult her about who should get an invite. It may be considered rude to miss inviting certain family or community members in that case. You want this celebration to bring the new parents joy, not additional stress, after all.
Outside of specific traditions, the most important thing is to invite people who are close to the new parents. Having a baby is a momentous occasion, so it’s best to celebrate it with people you really love and who love you.
Make sure to invite close family members, long-time friends, and community members or co-workers.
How to Send out Invites
If you’re collaborating with the new parents, they will likely have the contact information for most of the people they would like to invite. However, it can be a little more challenging if you’re planning a surprise baby shower.
Getting a close friend or family member of the parents to help you with the planning will be a big help. They can help you figure out who to invite.
When you’re tracking down someone else’s loved ones, it can be helpful to use an online public record search, like this one from Information.com. This will help you find the most up-to-date addresses and phone numbers without having to ask the person you’re trying to surprise.
Even if you’re planning your own baby shower, you may see this change in your phase of life as an opportunity to reach out to someone you’ve lost touch with.
Once you’ve found the contact information for everyone on the guest list, you should decide whether you want to send physical invitations by mail or invitations by email. There are online invitation services that can send links via text message.
What to Include on a Baby Shower Invitation
After deciding on the format of your invitation, you should make sure to include some key information in the invite so everyone knows what to expect from the event. For example, if it’s a surprise baby shower, you should make sure that’s clear in the invite so no one spoils the surprise ahead of time.
It’s also important to note if it’s a small event with a limited guest list. This will prevent people from bringing additional guests you might not be able to accommodate. You can also include a date to RSVP so you know how many people to expect for the event and if any plus-ones are attending (if you allow it).
Including information about gifts and what the expectations are can also set your guests at ease. If there is a baby registry for guests to buy their gifts from, be sure to make that information readily available. If gifts are optional, be sure to make that clear as well so that folks on a limited budget don’t feel that they have to skip the celebration.
Celebrate a New Life Together
Baby showers are exciting celebrations of life and love, so make sure the people you invite are the ones who will share your joy. You don’t have to adhere to traditions like excluding men from the guest list, instead, feel free to create your own family traditions together.
You can also use this as an opportunity to reach out to friends and family you’ve lost touch with to help them see they’re still important to you and you’d like to share this occasion with them.