How to Host a Meaningful Virtual Baby Shower
You could argue that virtual anything and everything is here to stay, even as our circumstances evolve through a pandemic. While in some cases it may make sense and be exciting to attend in-person gatherings, we still think it would be helpful to share how you can host an amazing virtual baby shower.
With friends and family across the country (and sometimes the world) it seems a shame to miss out on celebrating a soon-to-be momma just because you can’t get together in person. There’s something about coming together around a momma to show your love and support before her birth that is like nothing else. (Even if it is virtually.) We’ll show you how we recently hosted one for a friend of ours!
The usual order of business
Ask the momma-to-be if she’d like a shower and exchange some dates and times that work for her. All she needs to do is mark her calendar and send you a list of her guests she’d like invited with their email address and snail mail address. She should also share her registry link(s) with you. We’ll help you take care of the rest.
Get an online event platform
If you don’t already have a Zoom account, go ahead and subscribe to one. The free account will cut off your baby shower after 40 minutes and that’s no good. (Plan on at least an hour to an hour and a half) Depending on how soon you send out the invites (we recommend six weeks out to allow time for guests to send gifts), you can budget $15/per month for this trusted platform to get everyone together virtually, not to mention seamlessly. Zoom has been perfecting their platform well before we all needed them.
Have fun with the theme
We highly recommend Paperless Post for virtual invitations, as they make it easy for you to share your plans and for your guests to reply. Keeping track of RSVPS is easier with Paperless Post than anything else. With an array of themes and styles, you’re sure to find one that fits your guest of honor’s personality. After entering the basic shower details and including the link to your guest of honor’s baby registry, you can send the invitations and watch the RSVPs roll in.
Gather and send your shower boxes
There’s a lot of creative ways to do this part, but having a box of goodies that everyone shares makes the event more tangible. When we’re sharing the same “things” together we feel more connected and that’s the key to a great virtual baby shower! We love these magnetic closure boxes for a sophisticated presentation that each guest will love to open in their mail. Fill it with some shredded crinkle paper and stock it with the following:
- a premixed canned cocktail or a mocktail - gotta have a drink! *Note: you can send alcohol across state lines if it’s under 4.5% ABV.
- a plastic flute - a classy way to sip (if guest prefers to make their own drink)
- a cocktail napkin - just a classy touch
- a taster bag of sugarfina candies - the most sophisticated candies available
- these custom calendar stickers - for those guests who use a good ‘ol paper planner, they’ll love adding these as a reminder to check on momma-to-be once baby has arrived!
- this “Wishes for Momma” card + stamped and pre-adressed envelope - guests can use the mini pencil you include to jot down their answers and if they run out of time or prefer not to share aloud, they’re set up to mail it to the momma-to-be
- a miniature pencil
- this “My Day to Support Momma” card - this is a little “planner” for guests to remember to show their support postpartum with ideas for meals, coffee, etc.
- this “Shower Agenda” card - see below for more details on this and a picture example
- this adorable paper seed card - lightweight addition to the box of goodies and a sweet way to remember what’s “growing on” with your friend the momma-to-be
- a shower steamer - we love a good pun
- theme-coordinated ribbon - tie the box up with a bow and take it to UPS to ship
- hanging name tag - everyone loves a personalized touch
For the guest of honor
Add something that’s exclusively for the momma-to-be, such as a sash she can wear during the virtual baby shower. She doesn’t need the wishes or support cards, but she can enjoy all the other goodies with everyone.
Plan a concise agenda
The worst thing you can do in a virtual meeting is have no agenda. Make a plan (see suggested timeline below) and while it’s not going to flow to the minute, the plan will keep a better cadence than if you had none at all. We secured the agenda to the top of the inside flap of the gift box so everyone knew what to expect. We also asked the guest of honor a few questions to make sure she was comfortable with the flow of the shower, without the leg work (that’s your job as hostess). Ask if she’d prefer to open gifts or not during the shower. If she does, encourage her to open them in advance, so you’re not spending precious time unwrapping, but maximizing time ooing and aaawing over what she’s received. This is an effective way to “thank” her guests for their gifts, saving her time on hand-written thank you cards. Ask if she wanted to offer a tour of her nursery, or not. Ask if she is comfortable giving a brief update on how she’s feeling, what questions she might have for her friends who are current moms, etc. Her answers to these questions will help you develop the optimal agenda and she’ll be more comfortable knowing what to expect.
This approach to a virtual baby shower really sets up the momma’s “village” for intentional support after she’s birthed baby. That’s the most important thing, when all the realness of motherhood happens - that her village of friends and family actually act on their promises of support. Between receiving the “wishes for momma” cards in the mail and each friend reaching out with touch-base texts or dinner delivery, she’s going to feel less lonely and better supported through one of life’s toughest transitions. The love and support felt in the moments of a baby shower should ultimately linger long into her motherhood journey. By giving her friends and family attending the shower the tools to place an emphasis on the long-haul of motherhood support, you’re giving her one of the greatest gifts ever - her “village”.