How to Throw the Perfect Baby Shower

baby, nursery, baby shower CBS/The Early Show

Want to know how to throw the perfect baby shower?

Carley Roney, editor in chief of TheBump.com shared some tips for making your baby shower a charming occasion from the invitations and favors to food, games and gifts.

This segment will be broken down into three stations: the first will highlight some ideas for invitations and favors. The second station will focus on food and games, and the third will feature some fun and trendy gift ideas.

INVITATIONS & FAVORS

INVITATIONS:

Custom Baby Book
Custom baby book invitation from Ceci New York, sample keepsake of best parenting tips.

For hosts who want to really go over the top, we love the idea of actually designing a baby shower invitation as though it's a book. This is an invitation that's a play on the children's book "Madeline," and all of the artwork is custom-drawn by Ceci New York. We added text about the upcoming baby shower, and in the back is an insert where guests can actually write their favorite parenting tip for the mom-to-be. Guests bring the inserts to the shower so it can all be put together to make a personalized parenting manual and keepsake.

According to Roney, this is a great way to combine a gift and invitation all in one. Other guests can contribute their parenting tips, so it's filled with great advice from friends.


Video Invitation
A huge trend in invitations now is making a video e-vite! The baby shower hosts can just make a video at-home and send it out via email to the guests. Great option for a last-minute invite that needs to go out too; and it's budget-friendly!

Roney said this is personal and fun. You just create a little video, do it with a webcam and e-mail it out to your guests. It's a fun, cheap way to spread the word. And it's more personal than a standard e-vite.

FAVORS:

Candy Baby Socks
Candy baby socks are a cute way to give candies as a baby shower favor. Just buy a bunch of baby socks, fill them up with assorted candies, and tie pairs of socks with a ribbon. Some guests can even send the socks back to the mom-to-be a few weeks later so she can use them.

People always give candy and goodies at wedding showers, but for this favor, it's the packing that makes it special. Go out and buy a bunch of pairs of baby socks, which are very inexpensive. Get some candy, fill up the socks with candy, and tie it up with some ribbon. Then the guests can return the socks to mom once the baby's born, so it's a very practical favor.

"Shower" Umbrellas
Take the idea of a baby shower literally and gift guests with umbrellas! Personalize the umbrellas with tags of guest names. They're practical gifts that guests will actually use.

Roney said it is a shower, so why not provide some protection from the shower? It's a gift, and everyone can always make use of an umbrella, so why not use one as party favor we're constantly using - umbrellas? And you can personalize them with these tags.

FOOD AND GAMES

Pickles & Ice Cream
Everyone knows there's a saying that moms-to-be crave pickles and ice cream. So play off that idea and set up a pickles and ice cream craving station! We've set up jars of different pickle flavors and paired it with ice cream. Guests can add their own favorite topping to it too.

A baby shower is not a baby shower without food. Roney said everyone knows the old adage, pregnant women crave ice cream and pickles. Salty and sweet. These are the show pieces: pickles in glass jars and then an ice cream bar with some sprinkles.

Milkshakes and Mini Cupcakes
Another huge pregnancy craving is sweets! You can pair mini cupcakes with little "shots" of milkshakes in different flavors.

Roney said this is really cute and fun. It makes for good decor. They are perfect for an afternoon shower, if you don't want to serve something boring or too heavy.

GAMES:

Designer Onesies
This is the perfect crafty baby shower game that even non-mommy guests will love too. Just buy packs of little white onesies for future baby, along with fabric markers. Have guests design their own couture onesie for the baby and the mom-to-be gets to pick her favorite! Plus, the baby now has tons of new, custom clothes! Make sure you buy different sized onesies so baby can wear it as he grows

Roney said this is a really great activity for everyone. Go out and buy some packs of plain white onesies and get some fabric markers. Each guest can make their own design. Don't by all newborn onesies. But different sizes so mom can use them through the babies first year of life.

Baby Face
This is a hilarious game that will get baby shower guests laughing! Give each guest color headshots of the mom- and dad-to-be, and a sheet of paper with the outline of a baby's head. Ask guests to make a one-of-a-kind baby face by cutting out and gluing the eyes, nose, mouth and other features from the parents-to-be photos. Mom-to-be picks her favorite look to determine the winner.

According to Roney, this is sure to generate a lot of laughs. You get pictures of parents, maybe even grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. The guests will cut out the eyes and nose and hair and re-assemble it to what they think the baby will look like. These can also double as great room decoration, will give it a fun feel. And of course you have to have a prize for the winner.

Nursery Rhyme Karaoke
Who doesn't love karaoke?! You can use either a karaoke machine with a nursery rhyme CD or just play some nursery rhymes over an iPod. Break guests into teams and have them sing along with the nursery rhymes, but at certain points of the song, the hosts stop the music and guests have to try to sing out and remember the lyrics. The team that remembers the most lyrics and sings the best, wins!

Roney said lullaby karaoke is also really fun. We all know these lullabies, but can you actually remember the words to the songs? For this game, you break people into teams, start playing the song and pause it to see if people can remember the rest of the lyrics.

GIFTS

Diaper Delivery
Babies go through tons of diapers, which means new parents are constantly running out to buy more. Amazon.com has a Subscribe & Save program where you can buy one, two, three or even five months worth of diapers. You get to choose from Pampers, Huggies, Seventh Generation and a variety of different diaper brands. Plus, it's free shipping and you save 15 percent.

Roney said these gift cards are very practical. Basically Amazon has a service where they'll deliver boxes of diapers depending on the supply you get. Moms are always really appreciative, they don't have to lug around diapers and they take up a lot of room in the shopping cart. You can get different brands for different time periods.

Non-Diaper Looking Diaper Bag
No mom-to-be wants to wear a diaper bag that actually looks like one! Timi & Leslie Ruby Convertible Baby Bags are so gorgeous, they can be used as a diaper bag or hand bag! The bag is filled with baby essentials like a changing pad, bottle tote, stroller straps, diapers wipe case and more.

This is a diaper bag that doesn't cry out "i just had a baby," Roney said. This baby bag is very cute; you can use as handbag, or even as a bag to bring things to work once your child grows a little older.

Stroller
Stroller-shopping has been compared to shopping for a car sometimes! The Quinny 4 Complete Stroller is eye catching with a futuristic design. Gas spring technique means that the stroller can automatically fully unfold itself (so no more wrestling to open it). Has a two front wheels placed together so it's great for maneuvering-even in rough terrain. Ergonomic seat so baby can sit comfortably -- choice of two reclining and sitting positions, and the option to place the seat in a forward or rear facing position.

Roney called this a hot new stroller. There are so many new styles, this is great, it's got cool futuristic design, it's really easy to open, easy to maneuver on rough terrain. Plus, there are different choices for the position of the baby and lots of different attachments.

Eco-Friendly
New parents are incredibly conscious about what's on and around baby. A basket of eco-friendly goodies is the perfect gift, such as organic teething toys, organic onesies and even organic hooded towels.

Roney said some moms are pretty sensitive about toxins, so there are some really great toys and accessories available that are eco-friendly, like teething toys, towels, clothing, and bottles. This is a great idea for the wishing well -- everyone brings a little green baby gift idea for the baby to fill up the basket with. Make it a green theme.



All the gifts above are available at Amazon.com.
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