Baby Shower Planning Time Line

If you are going to have a baby shower it is best to start at least planning 6 weeks before the shower. You should ask the mother to be for a guest list so that way you have an idea how many to plan for and what kind of budget you are going to need to set. Below is a timeline for planning a baby shower to make sure things turn out well for all.

Six Weeks Before:

  • Set time and date with Mother-to-be
  • Prepare a guest list with the couple’s help so you don’t overlook someone
  • If it is a surprise shower, contact the couple’s friends or parents to help with guest list
  • Reserve your location
  • Make or purchase your invitations
  • Reserve a caterer if you are using one
  • Start thinking about the decorations you are going to use.

Four Weeks Before:

  • Plan menu and start planning who will bring what (if this is a group effort)
  • Decide on what games you will play and gather necessary props
  • Decide on game prizes you will award and start shopping for them
  • Choose the gift you are going to give as you might get so busy you forget
  • Mail out invitations
  • Begin your search for anything you may need to rent or borrow for the shower
  • Purchase or create place cards if you will be using them

Three Weeks Before:

  • Take care of the decorations, either buying, making, collecting or borrowing
  • Ask friends to bring teddy bears or stuffed animals if this is your theme
  • Purchase and wrap your gift so you won’t forget at the last minute
  • Prepare shopping list for all ingredients you need to prepare food
  • Purchase and wrap the favors for guests
  • Make sure you have extra wrapping paper and ribbon on hand (just in case of last minute gifts)
  • Purchase the prizes for games
  • Designate someone to pick up the Mother-to-be

Two Weeks Before:

  • Make sure that you have the proper serving dishes and utensils
  • Check tables and chairs to be sure you have enough
  • Look over table linens and napkins (if using cloth)
  • Empty coat closets so you will have a clean space to hang coats
  • Confirm reservations if the shower is being held outside the home
  • Order centerpieces and corsage for the Mother-to-be
  • If it is being catered, contact the caterers
  • If friends are bringing food, touch base with them


One Week Before:

  • Prepare anything that can be frozen ahead
  • Call anyone who has not responded to the invitation
  • Check all recipes and buy the ingredients
  • Either clean your home or hire someone to do it
  • If you will need extra refrigerator space, call a neighbor
  • Decide what you are wearing, making sure it is pressed and ready to wear
  • Check over your decorations to be sure you have everything you need

The Day Before:

  • Purchase, pick up, or make the rest of the food on your menu
  • Check your home for last minute cleaning
  • Set up extra chairs for guests
  • Check to be sure you have enough ice
  • Try to set up a spot to display baby’s gifts
  • Check on any last minute details
  • Have plastic trash bag ready for wrappings
  • Pick up helium balloons (they’ll be fine overnight, unless you have pets!)
  • Make sure “Mom” is feeling good

The Day of the Baby Shower:

  • Call “Mom” and make sure she feels GREAT. Encourage her to take a nap before the shower.
  • If the shower is being held someplace other than your home, plan to arrive at least 30 minutes ahead of your guests
  • Make sure designated driver picks up the guest of honor
  • Try to have someone there to help with last minute details
  • Light candles or use essential oils to scent the room
  • Have glassware and light refreshments available
  • As each guest arrives, make sure she knows someone or introduce her to others
  • Provide the Mother-to-be with a footstool and a pillow for her back

We hope that by providing you with a detailed timeline will help you with planning the perfect baby shower for the mother to be and her precious bundle of joy!

Good Luck and Happy Planning!

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