Is it possible to have a sustainable baby shower?
We all love a baby shower … but what about the impact on the environment and all of that potential waste? Parenting is an expensive business and well-thought-out gifts and the right experience can save parents-to-be lots of unnecessary costs and be much more meaningful. There’s really no need to indulge in all the plastic throw-away materials and overpriced balloon arches - your guests will appreciate a more wholesome experience and some guidance on what really matters to you.
If there’s one thing we have learnt over the years it’s that ‘stuff’ really doesn’t matter - new parents remember the neighbour who brought a home-cooked meal rather than the matching tableware. Here we’ve combined our top tips for those hosting and attending a baby shower to make the most of the experience and avoid unnecessary waste.
Hosting a Baby Shower the Eco Way
1. Avoid single-use items
It sounds obvious but when catering for lots of friends, and time is precious it’s so easy to dive into the store and come away with plastic cups, single-use plates and banners. So let’s start at the beginning with invitations - electronic is the way to go, easy to find beautiful ready-made templates in programmes such as Canva and let’s face it they will all end up in the bin.
Try and stay away from throwaway cups and plates - if you are hosting at home then you will find everyone willing to help, loan and tidy up. We all have a friend who is super artistic and with a natural flair for decor - why not ask them to take charge of this for you with one rule - nothing can be bought. It will be a fun challenge for friends to come up with something and it will be truly unique.
2. Homemade over shop bought
We all love home-cooked food but the time and effort involved means we are often heading to the supermarket for mini quiches and pastries. Now is the time to lean on your guests - have a ‘bring a dish’ theme that will allow everyone to contribute something homemade. Baked potatoes are an easy option with lots of salads and fillings, easy to prepare and easy to tidy away. If everyone brings their own dish of food - they will also take it home with them, win - win!
3. Communicate with guests
Most guests would agree that they would much prefer to spend money on a gift that is going to be used and valued. Therefore, don’t be afraid to stipulate what exactly you’d like (and what you wouldn’t…). This can avoid wasteful presents, embarrassment and ensure that you have a baby shower your way. A simple tick list on your invites - no to plastic, yes to wood, no to synthetics, yes to natural materials will help guide your guests on how best to surprise you.
4. Choose sustainable baby shower favours
If you’d like to include something to thank your attendees for coming and giving gifts, you can choose to shop sustainably with small local businesses or even bake cakes as a thank you. Etsy is a great resource for handmade and eco-friendly, or perhaps choose some seed favours to plant wildflowers or herbs.
Attending an Eco-Friendly Baby Shower
So you have been invited to a baby shower and the parents-to-be are eco-conscious and keen to put the planet and nature right up there with their new arrival. Don’t panic, there are lots of sustainable ways to help out and to gift in a responsible way. Here are our top tips for baby shower gifting
1. Purchase something that will really be useful
This tip sounds obvious, but please bare in mind that your perception of useful might not resonate with the parents. There are some obvious necessities but these will likely be taken care of by close family or the parents-to-be. Try to think a little longer than birth and new baby - think about the child, a sustainable gift that will stand the test of time and be of practical use for years to come.
Talk to the other attendees and make sure no one has bought the same gift as you, ask the expectant parents and check what they have already bought. A sneak peek or photo of a nursery will help ensure any gift sits well with a colour scheme but without this information, you can’t go far wrong with neutrals and naturals.
2. Shop small
Supporting a local and small business has lots of advantages - the opportunity to personalise your gift, and have something truly unique that isn’t available everywhere. It’s also a fantastic way to increase sustainability - reducing mass production and supporting individuals is a much more wholesome experience than reaching for the amazon prime option and will likely bring a much more thoughtful gift.
3. Package sustainably
If you can, wrap your gift in recyclable or reusable packaging that won’t be wasted. There are plenty of sustainable luxury options available on small business websites like Etsy or at local markets and stores. Our Baa Baby Magnetic Close Keepsake Gift Boxes can be reused to store treasured memories, photos, cards or tiny booties and are fully recyclable if you so wish.
We hope that our sustainable baby shower guide has helped you to see that you don’t have to miss out on the fun of a baby shower to keep it eco-friendly and sustainable. If you need some sustainable gifting inspiration, don’t forget to check out our collection here.