Friday, June 22, 2012

Baby Shower By Mail

My little sister had her first baby in May, and we couldn't be more excited for her.  The only problem - she lives in Washington State, and the rest of her family is scattered from Texas to Colorado to Georgia to Michigan to New York.  Clearly it was impossible for all of us to gather to celebrate this precious blessing which was so hard for us all.  So her sister-in-law, our other sister, and I threw a "Baby Shower By Mail" to honor her family.  If you're considering this type of shower, here is how we made it special for her.

First of all, since the majority of our budget went into invitations alone (no food, decorations, etc. to pay for), we splurged a little on custom-designed invitations that we all felt were so "Amy."  I bought them on etsy, and I highly recommend shopping there.  The seller was fantastic, and the process was so smooth.  Since the shower was so unique, I just purchased the blank invitation and did all of the text myself in Photoshop.  Of course you could save yourself the time by having the seller do it all.

Because they are an Air Force family with an impending move, they chose not to set up a nursery in their current house.  To help, we decided on a gift card shower so nursery items can be purchased later and the newborn necessities could be the focus now.  We thought it would be a great idea because people wouldn't have to pay to ship larger baby items and could just slip a gift card in a card.  Wording is always tricky, and it is something we worked back and forth on.  Here's what we finally decided on:

"Since we are all too far away to shower Amy in person, we wanted to celebrate her new baby girl from afar.  Please consider joining us in one of three ways:  1) mail a gift card of your choosing to Amy and Will, 2)  follow the directions on the card included to participate in a "Wishes for Baby" book, or, 2)  both!"

You probably know by now that I like to include a lasting memory with each shower I throw.  This shower by mail was no exception.  On an insert in the invitation, we included information for all of the invited guests to participate in a book I put together in Mixbook.  It was a fill-in-the-blank "Wishes for Baby" list that guests responded to by email and attached a picture of their family.
  

Each page of the book featured a large family photo with their responses below.  I knew it would be special, but I was blown away by the responses!  It was such a personal, precious keepsake.  I used the invitation design as the book cover, and I'm thrilled with the way it turned out.  I also glued one of the hot pink invitation envelopes in the front cover to hold her copy of the invitation as a keepsake.  And, as always, Mixbook was wonderful to work with.
When it came down to the actual box to present the shower to Amy, we wanted to make it over-the-top.  I staked out some local places that had great reviews, gave them a call, and included gift cards for "catering" in the card.  She had a gift card for a cafe with delicious lunches and authentic French cuisine/pastries and a gift card for a cupcakery right down the road.  They both mailed gift cards to me a few weeks ahead of time to include.  

Lastly, I added all of my personal gifts wrapped in hot pink tulle.  Such fun for a precious little princess.
ruffle-bottomed bloomers
nursing cover
 carseat canopy
 embellished burp cloths
blanket made with fabrics Amy bought and sent for me to get creative with
all of the gifts packed up and ready to go (including the basinette streamer blogged about here)
 And, just for fun, a picture of me finally getting to meet my precious, sweet niece, Charlotte.  Please pardon my "I've been on planes all day with a migraine" look. The joy is still evident.

3 comments:

Shannon Meairs said...

I love the invites and the book! Did you order the book from Etsy also? Who was your seller? And how much did you spend on the invites and book? I want to do something similar for my best friend and love the way you made it so special!

Shannon

MrsOgg said...

This is just lovely! And thank you for sharing your box. I was having trouble finding any posts or articles about personalized and home made baby showers in a box let alone pictures. Yours has really sparked some ideas and I especially like your idea of including the sheet with wishes for the baby. I am definitely using that one! Thanks

JP Kork said...
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