Baby Shower Etiquette in the Modern Day

1208093_baby_boyA baby shower is first and foremost a social occasion, which means that etiquette will always be a concern. Under no circumstances would you want to inadvertently cross a line or offend someone when you are holding a baby shower—something that is supposed to be such a joyous occasion for everyone involved. With that said, however, there are few truly hard and fast rules these days, when it comes to a baby shower.

Then vs. Now

This traditional event celebrates new parenthood and grew out of a tradition of afternoon teas held to celebrate a baby among the impending mother’s female community. Though it was once governed by many strictures, the baby shower is pretty much exactly what you make of it these days. As long as you observe the common politenesses, your event will be sure to be successful from a Miss Manners point of view.


One of the most important questions of etiquette in baby showers for most people centers around who holds the shower and who pays for it. Traditionally, a baby shower was held for a new parent’s first child and hosted by a friend rather than a member of the family. The cost of the shower was considered to be the responsibility of the host and it was her gift to the new mother. These days, anyone who wants to may host a baby shower for a new mother. It can be her mother, her coworker, her sister, or even a group of close friends. In any case, however, the costs still rest with the host. Furthermore, it is the responsibility of the host to properly plan the event. This not only includes planning the guest list and menu, but also activities and baby shower games to keep guests entertained.


Another major concern when planning a baby shower is timing. Every reference you consult will tell you to carefully avoid planning a shower too close to the due date. As they euphemistically put it, you don’t want any special deliveries here. Instead aim for either six to eight weeks ahead of the due date or one to two months after the baby’s arrival. This will help you keep the focus on the celebration, where it belongs. And don’t forget the perfect gift of Newborn Clothes for the new mother.

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