First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby carriage! Most of us have sung this little song since childhood, and sometimes it's hard to believe we're now adults living out its rhymes. With The LovingKind being a love and marriage blog, I suppose talking babies is inevitable!
Last spring, I helped host a baby shower for my dear friend, Amy, and it was a truly special day. It's been a year since the shower, and now spring is on its way again, so I thought I'd share our party with you! If you are planning a shower, decorating a nursery, or just enjoy fun event ideas, I hope you find some useful inspiration here.
Many of the shower elements were created DIY-style by the hostesses, and are things you could do yourself too! If you see something you like that you want more details for doing it yourself, feel free to ask!
Also, big thanks to shower guest and photographer, Ashley, for all these fabulous images of the event!
Being the lover of paper products that I am, I was very excited for the opportunity to create a special invitation for Amy's shower, and the other hostesses graciously obliged. Amy and Todd had announced the name of their baby boy, London, and we decided to incorporate it into our shower theme, and it started with the invitation.
I illustrated the London Bridge (a nod to London's name and the popular nursery rhyme) along with London's name and worked with Amy's husband Todd, a graphic designer and photographer, to complete the piece.
We kept the invitation a surprise for Amy, and it was such a sweet moment when she called me with such sweet, genuine excitement after receiving it in the mail!
We also framed a copy of the illustration to use at the shower and to give to Amy to display in London's nursery. It turned out to be a wonderful keepsake from the event.
Amy's shower was held at brunch time, and we loved picking out delicious brunch items to offer guests. We served fruit kabobs, orange juice, coffee, mini quiche and mini muffins. These items were easy-to-eat finger foods and were just right for a morning event. In addition, as any Southern hostess knows, you can't have a shower without something sweet! We couldn't resist a festive cake being part of the celebration, and one of the hostesses, Lindsey, selected this darling baby blue one from Edgar's, a popular Birmingham bakery.
Also, check out that fabulous doughnut hole tree! In my opinion, there is no better sweet morning delight than a doughnut! The tree was made by Lori, one of the hostesses, and was such a fun and tasty treat for the table! I found a couple great resources to help you make your own: Rachael Ray and Oh Happy Day.
One of the hostesses, Ammie, offered her home for the event, and it truly was the perfect location. From the natural light to the colors of her home decor, it was the ideal backdrop for the shower.
Ammie also brought in beautiful, fresh elements in the beverages served and the floral touches throughout her home. The orange slices and mint leaves in the water not only looked nice, but tasted fresh too! Notice how she kept the flowers simple by only selecting a few types of blooms; this made a beautiful impact without feeling over the top. The colors were bright and happy, just right for an early spring, boy baby shower.
One of the first things I always ask parents-to-be is if they are sharing with people the name for their baby. The name parents give their new little one is so special, and I just get so excited! If the parents have announced the name for the baby, personalizing the shower is a really sweet touch. We incorporated this starting with the invitation and continued it throughout the event decor.
The cheery, green monogram was made from floral wire, floral tape, greenery and craspedia (commonly called billy buttons). I used the floral wire and tape to create the letters, making loops at the top where I could tie ribbon for hanging. Once I had a letter shape I was happy with, I used the floral tape to attach the greenery and then the billy buttons to the volume that looked right. The finished product was lively and happy, and I love the statement it made hanging in the window!
Anxious to put my new calligraphy skills to use, I also made these little flags with toothpicks, scrapbook paper, and glue and personalized them with London's name and monogram. They looked adorable in the delicious Magic Muffins mini muffins and mini quiche we served.
creative guest book
We wanted to provide a memory of all the friends who came to celebrate Amy and Todd and baby London, and decided to take a creative route over the traditional guest book.
We found this great map of the London Underground Transportation at Paper Source and used spray adhesive to mount it on a foam core board to be used as the guest "book." We loved that we were able to incorporate London's name into so much of the event, and guests enjoyed finding the perfect place to sign their names to create a memory.
As Amy put together London's nursery, animals became a theme of the decor, so we wanted to incorporate these into the shower as well. One of the hostesses, Mandy, made these fabulous metallic animal figurines, and they looked amazing! She bought plastic toy animal figurines and spray painted them in metallic gold and silver. They looked so special throughout the shower, and we were also able to send them home with Amy to add to the nursery decor if she wanted.
As another tribute to the animals, we got her two Little Darlings prints from The Animal Print Shop as a gift from the hostesses. Also, we gave her a few of the toy animals (pre-spray painted) for London to play with one day!
As I look back, one of my favorite things we did throughout the planning was to create special items that were personalized to Amy and London, and that Amy could take home with her to remind her of the shower well beyond the actual event!
At the shower, Amy was surrounded by so many friends who were excited for London's arrival, and we truly celebrated their growing family that day. While all the decor and sweet touches were great, it was the love felt in the room that made the event truly meaningful.
a year later
It's been a year since the shower, and London is just weeks away from his first birthday! He is one of the happiest little boys, and his parents are beyond smitten with him (I'm sure you can see why!). It has been a joy to be part of his life in this first year, and I can't help but kiss his little cheeks every time I see him. Amy and Todd are great parents and there is so much love in this little family of three.
Wherever the baby carriage may find you, as the hostess of a shower or preparing for a little one yourself, may your heart be ever focused on what matters most—the gift of life you are celebrating and the foundation of love you are blessed to be part of laying.
I know there are so many great shower ideas out there, and I'd love to hear from you! What are your favorite baby shower ideas or tips?