Being pregnant is no reason to put style and sophistication on the back burner. If you're throwing a baby shower, consider that the mom-to-be may prefer an elegant gathering over a loud, informal get-together. You don't have to sacrifice fun or traditional themes to host a successful, sophisticated baby shower.
Forget the chips and dip. Start your guests with gourmet cheese straws and cinnamon-glazed pecans. Follow with mini sandwiches, but nix the ham and turkey; instead, opt for deviled crab salad, chutney or Brie. Vegetarian guests can choose goat cheese or watercress sandwiches. Serve a salad with baby greens under fresh roasted peppers, crumbled bleu cheese and pears. For dessert, freeze vanilla ice cream on wooden sticks for two hours. Roll them in shredded coconut and provide chocolate sauce for dipping.
Stay away from diapering toy dolls or sampling baby food. Instead, turn your baby shower venue into an oasis of relaxation. Fill the room with comfortable chairs for guests (you may need to rent or borrow these) and hire a spa team to give everyone a facial or pedicure. Set up tables and chairs outdoors, cover the tables with pretty linens that match the shower's color theme and have a garden tea party. Give each guest a small canvas and provide various paints so each guest can create a painting to decorate the baby's room. If the guests are comfortable with each other, enjoy a refreshing outdoor yoga session together (if you do this, make sure the invitations indicate that guests should bring appropriate clothing).
Your guests probably don't want a pacifier keychain. Instead, print all the recipes you used at the shower and bind them into a mini cookbook for each guest. Buy tiny pillows and embroider the date and occasion on the front. Personalize the pillows by adding each guest's name to her pillow. Give each guest a bottle of wine labeled with "(Mom-to-be's name)'s Baby Shower." Add the date. Or, hand out small ($10) gift cards to a gourmet coffee shop or bakery.
Avoid the typical pastel pink, blue or yellow. Opt instead for an all-white or -black theme with touches of silver or gold. Fill empty wine bottles with silk flowers. Blow up silver and black balloons and tie them with gold ribbon. Use crystal glasses edged in gold and sterling-silver flatware. Avoid plastic dinnerware. Change the venue's light bulbs and replace them with bulbs that provide a soft, gentle glow.
- Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images