Baby showers are a celebration of life, and a lovely way for friends and family to share the excitement and anticipated arrival of your newborn. It is a beautiful ritual that symbolizes the beauty of new life and a way to share in the joy of the journey of parenthood.
When someone says ‘baby shower’ it’s easy to picture a tower of gifts, helium balloons, confetti, and excessive food. It can be easy to fall into the consumer trap. However having a baby shower that allows for a heartfelt and joyful experience, whilst being compassionate to the planet by having a limited contribution to a landfill can actually be pretty simple.
Remember, the amount of money you spend does not equate to the amount of fun that you and your guests will have at your baby shower. In fact, it can be very inspiring for your guests as they may begin to consider how they can implement more waste-free practices into their own lives.
So let’s get started…..
The best way to reduce waste from the beginning is with digital invitations. This is a great first step to making your event a little more eco-friendly.
You can find many services online that have a tonne of different designs to choose from, which means you can still have beautifully designed cards, just without using trees. The added bonus is that it can also make RSVP tracking that much easier!
Another worthwhile idea is creating a Facebook event. This is a great way to invite your loved ones, especially if you are not having many guests.
It can be easy to let the excitement of planning a celebration sweep us away, and we might forget what we already have on hand in our own homes that cater perfectly to our event.
Depending on the size of your guest list, you might want to consider hiring a reusable party kit from a local small business for things like plates, glasses, and cutlery instead of disposables or compostable dinnerware. Or you might want to collect vintage tea cups, saucers, and cutlery from your local charity shop, op shop, or garage sale and re-donate them when your shower is over.
Get creative, use what you have, and remember that you can still have a beautiful-looking shower whilst also being kinder to the planet
Fairy lights are definitely becoming a popular way to create a magical ambiance at any event. These can be used time and time again and in many different ways. A simple glimmer of light and some reusable garlands can really set the scene.
Another great way to create a beautiful atmosphere is by getting out into your garden, local park, or neighborhood and collecting garden cut-offs, and fallen branches to create garlands, place them in vases on the tables or simply scatter them across your tables. Or why not use potted flowers or plants that you can then place around the house or replant after the shower?
Food and drink
When it comes to the choice and purchase of food for your shower, there can be so much needless waste that can be minimized by just shifting focus to more mindful choices that leave less behind.
Here are a few things to consider:
• Try buying snacks and nibbles from your local bulk food store where you can bring along your own jars, containers, or reusable bags and be in control of the quantities you need and reduce the chance of overbuying.
• Choosing a menu that favors finger food can help you keep costs down as well as reduce the need for dinnerware.
• By considering these options you can significantly cut down waste from packaging and reduce the chance of overbuying what you don’t need.
• Consider buying cakes, sweets, or ingredients for platters from delis or bakeries where you are able to bring along your own tubs or tins.
• When it comes to hot beverages, choose leaf tea that you can make bulk in pots and flasks. For coffee drinkers, look for reusable coffee pods and filters or plunger coffee. Iced tea in large glass jugs with sliced citrus fruits or berries can really make your table pop and reduces the amount of packaging from bottled drinks.
Low waste baby shower gifts
Babies give us the perfect opportunity to reconsider our relationship with ‘stuff.’ And yes babies DO use a lot of stuff for such tiny people. However, your baby shower doesn’t need to turn into a giant collection of junk and unnecessary items.
Often the most valuable gifts are things like support, time, positivity, and wisdom. And during this time your loved ones most likely want to spoil you and your baby, however, materialism is often and easily mistaken for love. But this doesn’t have to be the norm.
Be honest with your loved ones about what your values are. And if people insist on gifts, consider picking a theme that is minimal waste or provide ideas for things you really need.
Here are some great ideas to offer your loved ones:
• Meal Trains provide regular, hot, and nourishing meals and is a great way that loved ones can gift you the gift of support for you and your family when the baby arrives.
• Create a hand-me-down theme for your shower and ask for pre-loved toys and clothing that are often very sentimental
• A previously loved book to add to your baby’s library with a sweet inscription inside. Ask them to write why the book was special and what it means to them.
• A potted plant, tree, or bush to grow in the garden for the baby.
• gift certificate for a local day spa, postnatal massage, or another way for you to be nurtured after the baby is born
• A cloth nappies or cloth nappy service if you plan to use cloth nappies.
• Reusable breast pads, maternity pads, Reusable baby wipes that can be used over and over again
• newborn photography or maternity photography gift certificate.
• A dinner voucher for you and your partner to have one last baby-free date night.
• Baby Clothes Rental
• Hiring baby accessories such as a sling, baby carrier
• Encourage guests to bring previously loved items, like books and clothes
• Ask for recycled, reusable or no gift wrap. Or if you are attending a shower try wrapping your gift in baby wrap or muslin cloth.
• And of course monetary donations are always helpful
• And if you do receive a lot of unwanted gifts, perhaps keep them in a box together to share with other parents or offer them to charity and those in need.
Hopefully, you have found some inspiration for your low-waste baby shower with the ideas above. Share these ideas with other soon-to-be parents to help spread awareness of how easy it is to celebrate your baby shower in a low-waste way.