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Timeline for Planning a Baby Shower After Baby's Delivery

Many baby showers are given before the baby is born, but there are many situations in which having a baby shower afterwards is more appropriate.

  • Pastel tassels, triangular flags and sheer fabric drapes. Brown paper-wrapped gift boxes with ribbons spelling baby in big pastel letters. Glass jars with candies on a small table.

Timeline For Baby Shower Planning After Baby's Delivery

Whether it’s a matter of timing, or whether the shower is for a child that’s being adopted, or perhaps the shower is for a mother’s second or third child, the only thing that’s really different about a baby shower that’s planned after the baby’s arrival is the baby shower timeline.

Rather than planning this special occasion 6 to 8 weeks before the baby’s expected delivery date, showers that are held afterwards are typically planned 4 to 6 weeks after the new child’s arrival. This allows time for the family to settle in and develop a routine.

To make planning easier, use this baby shower planning timeline as your guide and baby shower checklist.

5 to 6 Weeks Before Shower

  • Host and/or new mother decide a date and time for the shower, whether there will be a theme, where the shower will be held, who will be invited, and whether guests should bring gifts
  • Reserve the shower location, if necessary
  • Order/purchase baby shower invitations
  • Put together food and beverage list

4 to 5 Weeks Before Shower

  • Finalize guest list, address and mail invitations
  • Coordinate shower games including prizes and other activities
  • Shop for shower favors
  • Shop for decorations and coordinating paper goods (streamers, center pieces, signage, flags, etc.)
  • Finalize/coordinate the menu details

3 Weeks Before Shower

  • Confirm reservation for shower if being held somewhere other than home
  • If holding shower at home, begin gathering ample tables, chairs, serving utensils, bowls and platters accommodate all guests and food

1 Week Before Shower

  • Outline baby shower schedule of activities – games, food, and entertainment
  • Contact guests who did not RSVP so you can finalize guest count
  • If shower will be held at home, start cleaning
  • Order cake
  • Order flowers/floral arrangements (optional)
  • Begin shopping for food ingredients
  • Prepare foods that can be frozen
  • Coordinate transportation to and from location for new mother (remember she might be leaving with more than she arrived with!)

2 Days Before Shower

  • Rearrange furniture to accommodate guests’ table and chairs
  • Decorate
  • Reconfirm cake order
  • Reconfirm shower location details (if applicable)
  • Identify and decorate a gift table (if guests will be bringing gifts)
  • Begin prep work for food

1 Day Before Shower

  • Finish preparing food
  • Finish cleaning house
  • Select a comfortable chair for guests of honor and position prominently
  • Get cameras ready
  • Order balloons to mark the party location
  • Put out garbage receptacles/bags for wrappings and other trash

Day of Baby Shower

  • If shower is being held somewhere other than home, arrive before shower begins to decorate and to check on food, drinks, cake, and other details. Otherwise,
  • Arrange food and beverages on designated tables
  • Pick up flowers/floral arrangements
  • Pick up balloon bouquets
  • Pick up cake
  • Greet guests upon arrival
  • Stick to the schedule of activities
  • Try to relax and have fun too!

Tips for Hosting

Hosting a baby shower can be both exciting and overwhelming. Here are some tips to help you ensure that the event goes smoothly and is enjoyable for everyone involved:

  1. Plan Ahead: Start planning well in advance. This will give you ample time to organize all the details without feeling rushed.
  2. Coordinate with other hosts: If you are co-hosting the shower, make sure to communicate clearly and divide responsibilities evenly.
  3. Set a Budget: Determine how much you're willing to spend and stick to that budget. There are plenty of ways to create a memorable event without overspending.
  4. Decide how many guests: Talk to the new mother and decide together how many guests you want to invite. Remember, more guests means more planning and expenses.
  5. Delegate Tasks: Don't be afraid to ask for help. Whether it's co-hosting, preparing food, or helping with cleanup, having a team will ease the workload and make the experience more enjoyable.
  6. Send Invitations Early: Make sure you send out invitations with plenty of notice. This allows guests to save the date and RSVP in a timely manner.
  7. Keep It Simple: Sometimes less is more. Focus on a few key elements like good food, fun games, and pleasant company rather than trying to do too much.
  8. Consider the New Mother’s Needs: Take into account the new mother's schedule and comfort. Ensure there’s a comfortable seating arrangement and that the shower doesn't run too long.
  9. Create a Welcoming Atmosphere: Decorations, music, and a warm welcome can make guests feel at ease. Aim for a relaxed and joyful environment.
  10. Prepare a Schedule: Have a general timeline for the shower, including when to eat, play games, and open gifts. This helps the event run smoothly and keeps everyone engaged.
  11. Capture Memories: Designate someone to take photos or set up a photo booth. This way, the new mother and guests can have lasting memories of the special day.
  12. Have Fun: Remember that the essence of the shower is to celebrate and have a good time. Don't stress over small details; focus on the joy and fellowship.

Baby Shower Themes For A Post-Birth Celebration

Choosing a theme for a baby shower can add a delightful and cohesive element to the celebration. Here are some charming themes that are perfect for a shower held after the baby’s birth:

Welcome to the World

This travel-themed shower can include decorations like maps, globes, and postcards. Guests can write wishes for the baby on cards that look like plane tickets or passports.


A literary theme featuring classic children’s books can be enchanting. Decorate with images and quotes from beloved stories and encourage guests to bring their favourite children’s book as a gift.

Little Star

An outer space theme with stars, moons, and planets can be magical. Use dark blue and gold colours for decorations and have star-shaped cookies or a moon cake.

Teddy Bear Picnic

Perfect for an outdoor gathering, this theme can feature picnic blankets, baskets of goodies, and teddy bears as centrepieces. Guests can bring their own favourite teddy bears to add to the decor.


Bright and colourful, this theme celebrates the baby's arrival with a spectrum of decorations. Use a rainbow colour palette for everything from balloons to cake icing.

Woodland Creatures

A forest theme with adorable animals like deer, foxes, and owls can create a cosy atmosphere. Use natural elements like wood and greenery to enhance the look.

Tea Party

A classic and elegant theme with fine china, teapots, and floral arrangements. Serve an assortment of teas, sandwiches, and pastries.

Baby's First Year

Highlight the milestone moments baby will experience in their first year. Decorate with month-by-month photo props and have guests make predictions or give advice for the months to come.

Garden Party

A fresh and floral theme with plenty of greenery and blossoms. This works well for an outdoor shower, with garden-inspired decor and light, botanical refreshments.

Choosing a theme that resonates with the new mother and the baby will make the shower even more special and memorable.

Party favors

To thank your guests for celebrating this special milestone, consider offering thoughtful and themed party favors.

Personalized Cookies: Decorate cookies with the baby’s name or themed shapes like teddy bears, stars, or baby bottles.

Mini Photo Frames: Provide small frames where guests can place a picture from the day or a photo of the baby.

Succulent Plants: Small, easy-to-care-for plants serve as a lasting memento of the celebration.

Candles: Scented candles in baby-themed holders can be a soothing and elegant gift.

Bath Bombs or Handmade Soaps: Offer luxurious bath items, perhaps with calming scents like lavender or chamomile.

Seed Packets: Give small packets of flower seeds so guests can grow their own beautiful blooms at home.

Tea Bags or Coffee Blends: Choose high-quality tea bags or gourmet coffee blends for a comforting treat.

Custom Keychains: Personalized keychains with the baby’s name or initials make for a practical and cherished keepsake.

Baby-Themed Magnets: Magnets with cute baby motifs that can serve as a cheerful reminder on their fridge.

Mini Honey Jars or Jam Jars: Sweet and practical, these can be decorated with ribbons and customized labels.

These favors are sure to add an extra touch of gratitude and joy to your baby shower, making your guests feel appreciated and connected to this special time.

Baby shower gifts

If you are invited to a post-delivery baby shower, selecting a thoughtful gift for both the baby and the new parents can make a big impact.

Personalized Baby Blanket: A soft, cozy blanket bearing the baby's name or initials can be a keepsake that the family treasures for years.

Baby Clothes: Practical yet adorable outfits in various sizes ensure the baby has stylish options to grow into. Be mindful of the season to choose appropriate attire.

Baby Essentials Kit: Packages that include items like baby lotion, shampoo, diaper cream, and a comb can be highly useful for any new parent.

Memory Book: A beautifully illustrated baby memory book provides a place for parents to record milestones and precious moments during the baby’s first year.

Diapers and Wipes: While perhaps not the most glamorous gift, a supply of diapers and wipes is always appreciated for its practicality.

Baby Monitor: Help parents keep an eye on their new-born with a reliable baby monitoring system.

Books: Board books and picture books make great gifts that enrich the baby’s growing library and encourage a love for reading from an early age.

Handmade Keepsakes: Consider crocheted booties, personalized artwork, or custom-made toys for a heartfelt touch.

Baby Carrier: A comfortable baby carrier can be a game-changer for parents on the go, allowing them to keep the baby close while having their hands free.

Gift Cards: For those who might be unsure of what to get, a gift card to a popular baby store or online retailer provides parents with the flexibility to pick what they need most.

These thoughtful and practical gifts are sure to be appreciated by the new family as they celebrate this joyous occasion.