5 Baby Shower Themes for 2014

Baby Shower Vintage Treats
Baby Shower Vintage Treats
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I believe that the best baby showers reflect not only the excitement of the parents-to-be but also their passions and personality. In 2014, baby shower themes will no longer just be about the colors pink, blue or pale green. These showers will be events that tell the story of the past of the parents and their future hopes for their new bundle of joy.

5 Baby Shower Themes for 2014

  • The Hot Air Balloon Shower — The hot air balloon is one of the hottest nursery themes and baby shower themes of 2014. This theme is filled with whimsy, and is perfect for parents who have sky-high hopes for their new baby. Use cake pops that look like balloons for dessert and decorate with plenty of real balloons.
  • The Gender Reveal Shower — Many couples today find out whether they are having a little boy or a girl long before the baby is born. Announcing this big news at the shower can be great fun. Plan a shower game that requires guests to guess the gender of the baby. Have the parents-to-be open up a box filled with either pink or blue balloons to make the announcement.
  • The Shower with Elephants — Forget the owl — 2014 is all about the elephant. This nurturing yet strong creature is the perfect symbol for a new life, and best of all it is gender neutral.
  • The Heritage Shower — I’ve found that many couples are starting to honor their past as they plan for the future. A heritage shower is a great way to celebrate a baby’s background. For instance, a Scottish shower can be filled with tartan decorations and shortbread can be served for dessert.
  • The Vintage Shower — Go back a few decades and throw the perfect vintage shower for that special mom-to-be in your life. Play old-fashioned baby shower games and use the pram and vintage baby rattles as decorations for this shower.

Whether the mom-to-be is expecting a little bouncing baby boy or a tiny sweet baby girl, she deserves the celebration of a lifetime. This is a big moment in any person’s life, and I have found that friends and family love to share in the joy of this exciting time. In 2014, expect to see expertly-planned baby showers that are inspired by symbols of hope for the next generation.

New Parents Choose Both Online and Traditional Ways to Announce Baby’s Arrival

baby-announcement-across-cultures-sm
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Brand new parents have plenty on their plates, so you might think formally announcing baby’s birth in new and creative ways would not be high on their list.  Yet, new parents around the world announce baby’s arrival in an assortment of ways, from sweet treats to swaddling hammocks.

For a generation that doesn’t know a world without the Internet, keeping in near constant contact with friends and family via social media has become a part of daily life. It shouldn’t be surprising, then, to find many new parents in the U.S. are choosing online options to announce the good news. A surprising number, however, are still opting for what they feel are more personal—and traditional—ways of heralding baby’s arrival. Here is a quick glance at a bit of both worlds:

Tradition Meets Creativity

Handmade Creations

Many expectant moms are turning to creative projects to occupy their time, especially during that last trimester. What better project than handmade birth announcements? Using scrapbook or card-making materials, these moms are designing announcements around meaningful or fun themes. Once baby has arrived, parents need only add stats, pop in a photo of their precious newborn and the announcements are ready to drop in the mail.

Yard Announcements

From banners to stork lawn ornaments, parents are still opting for these very traditional ways to tell neighbors and passersby the happy news, particularly in small towns. Outdoor announcements, whether in the form of rented wooden yard signs or custom-printed banners, remain a very public way of letting the world know that baby has arrived.

Open House

Usually hosted by a close family member to take the burden away from busy new parents, open houses or post-birth baby showers are a great way to announce baby’s arrival to closest family and friends in a personal way. Sometimes referred to as meet-and-greets, these celebratory get-togethers offer visitors a firsthand look at the new arrival and the opportunity to congratulate the happy parents in person.

No Smoking

Cigars were the traditional way for new dads to share the happy news with pals. But with social and health concerns over smoking, parents are seeking retailers who offer alternatives in the form of bubble gum cigars in baby blue or pretty pink to allow parents to mix fun with tradition.

Online/Cloud Based Announcements

Digital Slideshows

Whether new parents opt for a professional photographer or snap those early pics on their own, posting a digital slideshow online provides parents with a handy link to email to friends and family. Many professional photographers offer clients an online page posted with their baby slideshow. Parents opting to handle their own photography are posting their slideshows on social media or personal websites.

Social Media Announcements

It is no surprise that parents are choosing to announce baby’s arrival via social media sites, like Facebook. Reasoning that all friends and family are followers anyway, new parents are also realizing that utilizing social media in place of more traditional paper announcements saves printing and postage costs.

Video Announcements

Whether opting for YouTube or another video platform, new parents are posting everything from the simplest announcements to creations that rival Hollywood productions. Some new parents are also choosing to announce baby’s arrival via live video on Skype, a popular solution for announcing baby to out-of-state relatives.

Online Announcements

Parents strapped for time are turning to online printers or photo sites to make creating their announcement a simple task. With dozens of designs to choose from, parents need only pop in the photo of their baby, add the pertinent details and click to order. Some sites even allow parents to mail their finished announcement directly from the site.

Whether online or traditional, this is just a small sample of baby announcement methods. Have one you would like to share?  Just add it as a comment.

7 Unique Baby Shower Themes for the Fall Season

Fall Leaves

I wait all year to see those first golden leaves and feel the new sharpness in the air on fall mornings, so when I was asked to throw a fall baby shower, I was thrilled. In my preparations for the upcoming event, I did some research and found some amazing baby shower themes that are perfect for fall.

Some of these themes require a little more work than others, but you can customize any of them to create the perfect shower for the lucky mom-to-be.

Fall in Love
This theme highlights falling leaves and plays on the word “fall.” If you already know the baby’s name you can print invitations that say, “Fall in Love with Baby Charles.” Create banner decorations by cutting heart-shaped leaves out of tissue paper and stringing them on twine. This is a very sweet theme that is best executed in muted shades of orange, green, and blue, though you should definitely add some pink of the new arrival is a girl!

Harvest Shower
Take advantage of delectable fall foods with a harvest theme. Serve pecan bites, cranberry scones, and pumpkin muffins, and give your shower attendees a half-pint of homemade jam to take home with them. Round up some orange and white platters and bowls to give your serving table a decidedly fall-ish look, and weave some orange and yellow flowers and vines around the buffet table. Bring baskets or Radio Flyer wagons for hauling the baby gifts to the lucky mom-to-be’s car after the shower is over.

Pumpkins
This is one of my favorite fall baby shower themes. It’s so easy to find pumpkin decor in the fall, but there’s also that sweet baby connotation with the word “pumpkin,” as in, “How’s my sweet pumpkin?” Create a pumpkin monogram for the shower by carving an initial in each of three small jack o’ lantern pumpkins. Put a candle or small lantern inside each pumpkin, even if you’re not holding the shower in the evening. Hang a clothesline, and pin the baby’s new clothes to it as the presents are opened. Decorate the cake with a picture of a little pumpkin nestled next to a bigger one.

Apples and Cinnamon
This combination of flavors is one of the best things about fall. Find a way to incorporate apple cider, apple pie, and candy apples into your baby shower, and keep a scented candle or two burning during your festivities. Use red and green colors for your decor, and send out apple-themed invitations: “Baby Hazel is the Apple of Mom’s Eye.”

Owls
If you’ve been anywhere near Pinterest, you’ve noticed that owls are huge right now. Owls are showing up on baby bedding, baby clothes, and more. Owls are great for fall, and you can use a brown-and-pink color theme for a girl or a brown-and-blue theme for a boy. You can probably find ready-made owl invitations, or you can create your own. Owl cupcakes would be a terrific final touch for this theme.

Nests
For a restful, nature-inspired baby shower, create a simple, earth-toned atmosphere. Create rustic centerpieces by filling oversize glass vases or Mason jars with smooth stones, bits of moss, and chunks of bark. Create pedestals out of wood slices, and make nest-themed place cards using mini peat cups, moss, white jelly bans, and tan card stock for the name tags. For the food, serve salads nested into Parmesan cheese cups.

Woodland Forest
This is one of my favorites of all the baby shower themes I found in my research. Gather decorative accents of bark, green moss, and deep woodland greenery for the party, and then search for bright splashes of color to accent all that greenery. Make red-and-white mushrooms, plump acorns, and little yellow birds out of felt, and disperse pine cones and pieces of interesting wood throughout your decor. Make cupcakes that look like mushrooms for your refreshments.

Any of these baby shower themes would be wonderful for a fall shower. Enjoy your time with your friends, and welcome that baby! Do you have any other baby shower themes you’d like to share?