As we continue to be under stay-at-home orders and have limits on large gatherings, it’s highly likely that we will not see in-person baby showers for a long time. The solution to that? A virtual baby shower!
What is a Virtual Baby Shower?
Essentially, a virtual baby shower holds the same concept as a traditional baby shower does! It just takes place on-line.
A virtual baby shower can take place before or after the baby arrives. However, even though they have the same concept — they will have some differences to a traditional one! Keep in mind that a virtual shower cannot replace a real one. It will be more casual and won’t have the same feeling that an in-person shower does.
It might be awkward, too. But that’s okay! Real-life parties and showers can be awkward, as well. We’re acknowledging that there certainly isn’t anything “normal” about a virtual baby shower, but there are many ways that you can make it feel more normal!
How to Throw a Virtual Baby Shower
How does a virtual baby shower work, exactly? Everyone will log on to your chosen platform at a specific time to celebrate the mom or parents-to-be! Here are some of our more specific steps on how to throw the perfect on-line baby shower!
Who should host?
It’s really up to you! With the current situation, it’s sometimes easiest for the expecting parents to host it themselves. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with doing that!
It is also perfectly acceptable to have a family member or close friend help with hosting the shower. This will definitely be easier if you live with the person. However, it’s still possible if they live elsewhere — you can coordinate virtually, since the shower will be happening virtually, anyway!
The “venue”: a.k.a. hosting platform
Of course, you’ll have to choose your “venue” — a.k.a. your hosting platform for the shower! There are a lot of different options, so here are some of our top picks to help you narrow it down.
Facebook Live: This option will allow you to stream video from your location. Keep in mind that guests will be able to comment with you in real-time, but you will not be able to see video of them. This is a great option if you have a lot of guests — too many guests on video at once can get overwhelming and hectic!
Zoom: Zoom has become increasingly popular throughout this time of quarantine. This is probably because it’s free for up to 100 guests (you can have up to 500 for an extra charge), and you do not need to download an app (although there is an option to do so).
All that your guests will need is an internet connection and some sort of device, whether that is a laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
Keep in mind that Zoom only allows you to have up to 40 minutes of screen time — you can purchase additional time, or simply close out the room and start a new one.
Google Hangouts: Google Hangouts is available to those with a Google/Gmail account. These accounts are free. Besides, who doesn’t already have one anyway?!
Keep in mind that the video feature will only allow for 10 devices, but up to 250 people can participate if it is an audio call.
Here are two sample timelines for a virtual baby shower:
11 – 11:10 am: Chat with those who first arrive and give everyone some time to get situated with the hosting platform.
11:10 am – 12 pm: Play virtual games! (We will get into ideas later on)
12 – 12:20 pm: Open gifts! If you choose not to open gifts, you can devote this time to more games.
12:20 – 12:30 pm: Wrap up and say your virtual goodbyes!
11 – 11:05 am: Chat with those who first arrive and give everyone some time to get situated with the hosting platform.
11:05 – 11:25 am: Play virtual games! (We will get into ideas later on)
11:25 – 11:35 am: Open gifts! If you choose not to open gifts, you can devote this time to more games.
11:35 am – 11:40 am: Wrap up and say your virtual goodbyes!
Setting up a registry
If you haven’t already taken care of setting up a registry, now is the perfect time to do so! You’ll also want to include a link to it on your invitations.
Theme vs. no theme
Yes, a virtual baby shower can have a theme! They don’t have to have one, but they are a sweet tradition that comes along with planning a baby shower, and you don’t have to forego that just because it’s online.
Going along with a theme, you can most definitely have decor for your on-line shower! Your guests will be able to see it on your screen and it helps tie the theme together.
Some ideas for decorations that are simple to be in the background are a backdrop, balloons, and banners.
Are you hosting the shower for someone else and unable to see them in person? Send them a little care package with some decorations for them to use! You can even include some tasty treats inside for them to enjoy, like decorated cookies!
Sending invitations and thank-yous
Digital invitations will probably be your best bet for a virtual shower. You can use a website like Evite, Paperless Post, or Greenvelope. Or, to make things even easier — create a Facebook event or group!
Of course, if you want things to feel a little more formal — feel free to send out physical invitations in the mail! Regardless of how you choose to send invitations, be sure to include information on how people can join the shower, as well as a link to the registry.
As for thank-you cards? They are still necessary and can be virtual or physical. Getting them out two weeks after the shower is a pretty good timeline to follow!
Virtual baby shower games
So, you’re all in different locations. That doesn’t mean that you can’t play some fun games, though! Here are some fun ideas.
The Price Is Right: The host can hold up a series of baby-related items to the camera, and have everyone write down their guess of what the total price is for all of them together.
Have guests show their guesses to the camera. Whoever has the closest guess, wins!
Who’s That Baby?: Before the shower, have guests e-mail pictures of themselves as babies to the host. During the shower, have the host share each one with the group. Everyone gets to guess who each one is!
Who Well Do You Know Mom?: Ask guests a series of questions about the mom-to-be. Whoever gets the most questions right, wins! Some sample questions include: “What’s her favorite movie?” “When’s her due date?” and “How many kids does she want?”
If you choose to open gifts on camera, you’ll have to make sure that everyone sends them to your location beforehand. If someone isn’t able to ship it to you in time, they can always show you their gift on camera before they ship it to you!
Virtual showers are much more flexible than an in-person shower. If you don’t want to open gifts on camera, then you don’t have to. A thank-you card will suffice!
Our Final Tips
We know how frustrating and upsetting it can be to have to alter your plans and cancel your in-person baby shower. However, we hope that your virtual baby shower lives up to your expectations! No matter what, you are welcoming a baby into the world soon — and that is worth celebrating!
P.S. need help planning a virtual bridal shower? Check out our tips on that here!