Thursday, July 24, 2014

How to Throw a Baby/Bridal Shower for $75 or Less!

With a limited budget, our church blesses new mommy's or wives with a shower. I'm always amazed at how a limited budget forces me to be imaginative and super creative. So far each shower has received many compliments and I feel overwhelmingly blessed that God has given me the ability to put these skills to work so I can, in turn, bless these women. By shower 5, I got the hang of it and here are my suggestions:
  • Choose a specific theme and stick to it.
  • Send electronic invitations, Punchbowl offers adorable invitations that can be sent via email or social media for free. 
  • If you have a crafter's thumb, use it, and make decorative items yourself. I try to create items that these mom's would want in their nursery or home. That way I kill two birds with one stone, decor = gift.
  • Plan, plan, plan way ahead of time. My procrastination bone has to be broken if I want to keep my costs down. Organization is key here: I have a notebook filled with details about decor and food (what I'm using, the cost, &etc.)
  • The time of the day determines the food you provide. I love having a mid-afternoon shower because it's right after lunch so light snacks are perfect! 
  • If I spend more than $75 in preparation, I consider the items I make (frame, book, wreath, etc. etc.) their gift from me. It takes so much time and effort in preparing a shower that I've never had anyone think twice.
  • I have a storage bin just for showers. I keep anything that could be used again. Do not be afraid to recycle and reuse.
  • I do not play or plan extravagant games or activities. I've never been a fan of games and most of the people I've "polled" don't either. I'd say that 90% of the shower attendees say they'd rather NOT play a game. It's one less thing you must prepare or pay for, plus women love an environment where they can sit around, snack, and chat without a lot of pressure to do anything else. 
  • Pinterest can be your best friend or your worst enemy. There's so many fantastic ideas, but don't overwhelm yourself by trying to do it all, plus supplies can add up pretty quick.
  • Do not plan for every guest invited to show up. I always plan for approximately half the number I invite. It has yet to fail me. If I have more than I intended, I never fill a plate for myself.
  • Consider the possibilities of cheap items in bulk - like wrapping paper for a table runner, tulle has many possibilities, I keep burlap stocked, old book pages offer great ideas for decor. Don't limit yourself.
  • Shop at junk stores. You'll always find gems. (Like old books, vases, frames, &etc.)
  • Shop in the clearance first. You'll be surprised at what you find.
  • If you're looking for a specific item always look for coupon codes (if shopping online) or printable coupons. Every penny saved helps.
  • Do not hesitate in asking to borrow items from others. 
  • Use nature. (Twigs are fantastic! Wild sunflowers - pictured below - grow like crazy where I live in the fall.) 
  • Keep it simple.
Example: A Little Deere's Baby Shower (Pictured Above)
I borrowed the mason jars.
I borrowed the wood pieces from a bride who used them in her wedding.
The tractor table runner is wrapping paper (I cut them in half).
I picked the flowers (FREE!).
The green table cloth was a $1. 
All in all I spent less than $2 for each table to be decorated like you see it pictured. 

Links to the showers I've thrown:

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