A baby shower is a great way to celebrate the arrival of a new member of the family. The event usually involves gifts, food, games, entertainment, and lots of fun.
If you want to throw a successful baby shower, you should plan. This means knowing exactly how much it costs to host a party.
Baby showers are expensive. They can range from $200 to over thousands depending on the size of the guest list, the number of guests, the type of gift, location, etc.
So what exactly does a baby shower entail and how do we break down the costs? This article takes a look.
What's In This Article
What Is A Baby Shower?
A baby shower is an event where friends and relatives gather to celebrate the birth of a child. It’s sometimes held between 6 weeks and 3 months after birth but can also be held before birth.
The idea behind a baby shower is to give the mother-to-be a chance to meet her future in-laws or other people who will play a role in raising the child.
These include grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, siblings, parents, and even godparents.
The other purpose of the shower is to provide the expectant mom with a variety of gifts that will help when the baby arrives.
Guests may bring a range of different gifts, including baby clothes, toys, blankets, bottles, strollers, crib sheets, diapers, and more.
Most women have a theme for their baby shower. Some themes include:
- Animal – Think zoo animals, dinosaurs, jungle creatures, etc.
- Color – Think pink, blue, yellow, green, purple, orange, etc.
- Flowers – Think daisies, roses, tulips, lilies, carnations, sunflowers, etc.
- Food – Think cookies, cakes, cupcakes, fruit, candy, sandwiches, salads, etc.
- Garden – Think garden plants, flowers, trees, vegetables, fruits, herbs, etc.
Some also theme the party according to gender. For example, if you are expecting a boy, the theme might have a tone of blue in the decorations.
Some people think that a baby shower is just for women but usually anyone can attend a baby shower when invited by the future mother.
How Much Does The Average Baby Shower Cost?
Baby showers are expensive. A typical in-person baby shower costs around $100-$1000, while a virtual baby shower can set you back around $20-$200.
The exact cost mostly depends on the venue, how many people come, and whether you choose to include things like party favors or gifts.
Virtual baby showers cost much less than in-person ones since they don’t have to pay for food and venue costs.
However, hosts and parents need to watch out for other costs, such as video hosting and custom domain fees, if they’re doing the virtual shower themselves.
By hosting your baby shower online, future parents can cut costs significantly.
It is recommended you keep track of all expenditures when planning a baby shower, especially if you plan to invite a lot of guests.
You’ll need to take into account venue, food, gifts, and any other expenses. The best way to make sure you stay on budget is by noting all expenses down and tracking each expense in an online calculator.
Budgeting A Baby Shower
A baby shower budget should be around $400, but you should plan out what the shower will include when finalizing this number.
Remember, the costs will depend on your budget; this is also true for virtual baby showers.
If you are hosting an in-person baby shower, the venue should account for around 5-10% of the budget, but you could always cut this cost by hosting at home.
Hosting at home is a great way for hosts to save money but still provide guests with the same great experience.
However, it might be wise to hire a venue if you have a very large guest list. You could even hire out the mom’s favorite restaurant or something similar.
When it comes to invitations, you should budget around $5 per invitation. This includes printing, postage, and design.
If you want to go digital, you can create your invites using sites that help you do so and these are a fraction of the price as you do not need paper, ink, and postage materials.
You can expect to spend anywhere from $25-$75 on food depending on how fancy you want to make it.
You can either buy some items ahead of time or order them online to arrive on the day. Some popular options include:
• Cupcakes – These are perfect for smaller parties where everyone gets one.
• Sandwiches – A good option for larger groups who want to eat together.
• Cookies – Another sweet treat.
• Fruit – Fresh fruit is another great, healthy option.
• Chips/Salad – For those who prefer not to cook, these options are a great alternative.
You will also need to remember to budget for the decor. The average cost of decorations is around $50.
Remember to stick with the theme and if $50 is not enough, go by the guide of 10% of the whole budget. To save money, try printing your bunting or similar decorations!
Finally, you might want to play some games when you are having your baby shower, and this means you’ll have to budget for game prizes and supplies.
Game prices can range in price from $1-$20 each depending on the type and quality, but try not to go over 10% of the budget.
Baby Shower Gifts
Gifts are another big part of a baby shower but the costs are typically left to the guests. It is recommended guests spend around $50-$150 on each gift.
You can find great deals specifically for baby showers online, which makes shopping for this special event much easier.
The most important thing to remember when buying gifts is to get something meaningful. The best gifts are thoughtful presents that show how much thought you put into them.
But also make sure the mother can use it! She is going to appreciate all those baby clothes when her baby arrives, and usually, new parents are always a little tight on money.
You can find unique ideas for baby shower gifts online, or you can shop around in town and head to your favorite baby boutique.
Alternatively, if you’d like your gift to stand out, forget the baby, and buy something lovely just for the mother-to-be.
When it comes to cost, although it is on the guests, you will need to budget for thank you notes as a host.
The paper thank you notes can cost 10-15% of the budget but this includes postage and envelopes.
Trust us, your guests will appreciate the gesture, and you may even received a baby shower invitation in return in future.
Who Pays For The Baby Shower?
Traditionally, the host and/or friends and relatives of the parent(s) pay for the baby shower, but the mom-to-be may choose to pay for it herself, even if baby shower etiquette is against it.
It comes down to how much the mom-to-be wants to plan and execute and how much the host has planned on their own.
If the parents are paying for the party, then they usually cover the cost of the venue, food, drinks, favors, etc.
The parents may be responsible for covering any additional expenses such as entertainment, decoration, and other surprises, but traditionally this is left to the host.
How Many Guests Should You Invite To Your Baby Shower?
This depends on what kind of event you are planning. If you are having a small gathering at home, invite-only family and close friends.
If you are throwing a large party, you can invite a lot more people but make sure that you have a large enough home or venue for all your guests.
The average number of guests is often about twenty, but it depends on what the host can afford in their budget, and how many people the mom-to-be would want there.
The host needs to prioritize coordinating with the important people in the mom’s life so she feels comfortable and the guest list is special to her.
We hope we’ve helped you understand the ins and outs of hosting a baby shower.
We know it’s a lot to think about, especially since you don’t know exactly what you are getting yourself into until you start planning.
But as long as you budget accordingly and know what you will be spending your money on, you will do just fine.
Try not to go over the budget, stick to the guest list and opt for money-saving ways of planning such as sending out digital invitations!
Carly Link, a 33-year old mother of two toddlers. She is a parent and goes through a lot of the usual parenting difficulties herself. Carly shares all her experiences and knowledge about the best baby products through this blog.