How to host the perfect virtual baby shower
Virtual baby showers actually pre-date the global pandemic we find ourselves in by a long way. In the US, where baby showers are more popular than here in the UK, the concept of virtual baby showers is nothing new – sites like webbabyshower.com have been helping expectant mums host online gatherings of family and friends for almost 20 years!There are lots of advantages – it’s less expensive to host online than at a venue, you can invite people from all over the world if you want to, and right now, people are much more likely to be able to make the date! Here’s how to plan your perfect online shower.
Decide how involved you want to be in organising your baby showerYou might currently want the distraction of planning your own shower, or the thought of organising all your friends and family might just be too much right now. If that’s the case, put together your guest list, choose a date and time and then ask a close friend or family member to step in.
Choose a ‘venue’There are lots of options for hosting your baby shower online and they’re generally really easy to set up and use:
- Zoom is currently the most popular choice for all sorts of online get togethers. Up to 100 people can chat with the free version but you’ll be limited to 40 minutes unless you sign up for a paid subscription (get around this by logging straight back in on the same meeting link after the initial 40 minutes)
- With FaceTime you can host up to 32 people (they will all need to use an Apple product to log in)
- Host up to 25 friends and family on Google Hangouts (everyone will need to use a Gmail account)
- With Facebook Messenger you can chat to up to 50 people but you’ll only be able to see six at a time
- Skype allows you to join together 50 friends and family online for up to four hours
- For an intimate baby shower, you can host up to eight people with the Houseparty app.
Send invitations to your guestsYou could send traditional paper invitations, but to stay safe, reduce paper waste and keep with the virtual theme, there are plenty of options for sending e-vites – try Paperless Post or GreenVelope for some gorgeous designs which you can personalise. You could also set up an event on social media e.g. Facebook, to track who’s coming, post updates and generate excitement. Don’t forget to post a link to your Little Wishlist so guests can buy you a present that you really want and need with no double-ups.
Decide on your theme and decorationsJust because you’re hosting online, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t decorate your party venue – and by this we mean the space behind you that will show up on camera! To get everyone involved and bring the shower together, you could send a themed party pack to each guest so they can decorate their party space for the shower. Sites such as Meri Meri, Paperchase and Not on the High Street offer loads of partyware to choose from, as well as party favours such as these gorgeous baby themed biscuits.
Plan some fun gamesBaby themed games are pretty much obligatory for a shower! Here are a few suggestions of fun games to get everyone interacting.
- The Price is Right – choose 10 baby-related items (e.g. packet of nappies, wipes, car seat, onesie) and hold up a picture of them to the screen. Everyone has to guess the price and the guest with the total price closest to actual total wins.
- Who knows mummy best: put together some facts from the mum-to-be’s childhood (the funnier and more unlikely the better!) and write them up into multiple choice questions. Whoever scores the highest, wins!
- How many baby items can you name: each guest must write down as many baby items as they can think of in one minute. The person who comes up with the most items wins.
- Opening gifts: the new mum could choose to open gifts live or guests could hold up the gift they’ve bought and send it later.
Set up your gift list via Little WishlistWhichever option you choose for opening presents on the day, the best way of organising gifts is to set up a Little Wishlist. The mum-to-be can add all of the items she really wants for her new arrival and then simply share it with her guest list. Guests know that they’re giving a gift that will be really loved and appreciated and there will be no double-ups. They could even contribute to a bigger, more expensive item. It’s simple to set up and fun to create! If you need some gift inspiration here are some ideas to add to your list:
- Brown Rabbit Animal Print from Strawberry Valley.
- Amuseable Strawberry Jitter from Jelly Cat.
- Velvet Playmat from Cottage Toys.
- Handmade Pom Pom High Top Booties from Gooseberry Fool.
- Moses Blanket from Camomile London.
- Sheepskin Snuggler from Binibamba.
- Organic Cotton Towel from Smallable.
- Organic Muslin Cloth, 3 Pack from Cam Cam.
- Sleepyhead Deluxe Baby Pod from John Lewis.
- Ergobaby Baby Carrier from Amazon.
- Bugaboo Cameleon 3 Plus from Amazon.
- Dreamgenii Maternity and Nursing Pillow from John Lewis.
- Béaba Babycook from Amazon.
- Philips Avent 3-in-1 Steriliser from Amazon.
- Elvie Single Silent Wearable Breast Pump from Amazon.