The next time you are invited to a baby shower, give the mamá-to-be something extra special, a personalized baby gift basket made especially for her by you!
It’s not difficult to do and it won’t take too much time, but the new mom will surely appreciate your thoughtfulness. Your baby shower basket can be filled with so many interesting, necessary and unique gifts for both baby AND mom. Choose a great container and thoughtful items for your basket, they will make all the difference!
The basics: The basket should take about 45 minutes to assemble, plus the time it will take you to shop for the basket items. The cost of the basket will depend on what you are going to buy. It’s best to set a limit and then work to make sure that everything fits within your budget. A smaller basket may cost about $30-$45 to make, while the maximum really depends on your budget. What will you need? A basket or other container to hold the items, an assortment of baby and mom products and a few decorative elements for the finishing touch. You may be able to purchase all the items at one place, but you will probably have to visit two places – a craft store for your container and another store for your baby items.
Step 1: Buy the basket/container
A wicker basket makes a great container because they tend to hold many items and can later be used for extra storage in the nursery or baby’s dirty laundry. The size of the basket will depend on what it’s going to hold. You can make a simple basket for a co-worker or a more elaborate one for a close friend. You may buy baskets in an assortment of colors and sizes at craft stores or home goods stores (Michaels, Jo-Ann Fabrics, World Market), where they can be very reasonably priced, unlike at many specialty shops.
Aside from wicker baskets, you can get creative and use other items to hold the gift together. How about using a little red wagon, a child themed wastebasket, or a decorative children’s suitcase? Consider buying a diaper bag off mom’s registry and filling it with all sorts of unexpected goodies. A baby bathtub can also be filled with lots of baby AND mom bath items! There are no limits – be creative! You may even suggest to a friend or two that you make a larger basket together.
Step 2: Basket Liner
You will need shredded paper or raffia to fill in and line the bottom of the basket. These items are available at craft stores. You can skip these items if you choose to line your basket with baby items, like a blanket or diapers.
Step 3: Gather your gift items, the fun part!
Deciding which items to buy for a baby shower basket will depend on your budget, the type of basket you are making and size of your basket/container. You may want to build a basket around a certain theme (bath time, feeding time, or diapering). It’s a nice touch to incorporate the nursery’s theme or baby’s gender into the gift items. Lots of clothes & cute novelty items are fun to buy, but a basket full of items that new parents are always running out of or may have been overlooked on a registry will be much appreciated. Don’t worry, baby will have plenty of new clothes and toys!
Baby Basket Themes
- Bath basket: Include an assortment of baby bath products like shampoo, bath towels, wash towels, lotions and bath toys. For that extra touch, include a nice bubble bath, body scrub and lotion for the tired mom!
- Feeding basket: Include feeding items that mom may have registered for but may get overlooked on a registry, like extra bottle nipples, a variety of PBA free pacifiers, small feeding spoons, and a cute bowl and sippy cup feeding set. Burp cloths, bibs and teething toys will come in very handy too! Add something extra for mom, like a nursing cover. Surprise her with a fresh batch of cookies or other gourmet treats she may enjoy. The new mom will also appreciate having some extra nursing pads or nursing bras on hand!
- Relaxation basket: Include baby massage oil and a book on the benefits of baby massage, a soothing baby music CD, and lotion for baby. A new mom will appreciate a CD of her favorite type of music, a scented candle, an assortment of teas and aromatherapy treatments. How about a nice bottle of wine for the new parents that they can enjoy when they have a quite moment? A massage for a new mom is a FABOULOUS treat, so are gift certificates to the movies or to her favorite restaurant, but make sure to include a certificate for babysitting too! We like to include a set of “thank you” stationary and stamps for mom.
- Labor basket: When the “big” day arrives, make sure mom has lots of handy items at the hospital, birthing center or home to help her through labor and after baby’s arrival. You may want to include: a relaxation CD, slippers, a book/magazine, lip balm, lotion, hair clips, massage oil, bath products for mom, a plush robe and maybe even a journal and pen to record all the exciting moments leading up to the birth and after.
- Big sister/brother basket: It’s a great idea to remember older siblings by making a basket just for them. The basket can be given to them on the day of baby’s arrival as a special treat by mom. Not only will they not feel left out, but they will be kept busy! You may want to include: coloring items, small toys, snacks, puzzles, drawing pads, and stickers. You may event want to include a book on becoming a big brother/sister. As an extra treat, include movie tickets or give them a new DVD they can watch as a family.
- Book basket: Sure, we know baby can’t read quite yet, but it’s never too early to start reading to the new little one! Research has shown that reading to young children, even from a very early age, can be very beneficial. Include baby friendly board books and a book that is bath friendly. This basket is a wonderful opportunity to give baby some wonderful books in español too. Many classic baby board books like Goodnight Moon, The Going To Bed Book and The Runaway Bunny are available in Spanish. Has mom been meaning to read a certain book? Maybe you can get her a copy on a CD for her car or buy her a gift certificate to a local bookstore. Mom may enjoy a new stationary set for all those great gifts!
- Baby Favorites “Green” Basket: This is the basket that we most enjoy making because it includes a collection of all of our favorite baby and mom products – green & natural products that it is! See our guide to make this basket.
Other items you may want to include:
- Baby wipes & diaper ointment
- Cloth or disposable diapers
- Board books for baby
- Helpful parenting books or magazines for new parents
- A year subscription to a parenting magazine
When possible, include natural and BPA-free products. They are so much better for babies’ skin and overall health!
Step 4: Arrange basket items
Arranging your baby gift basket will depend on your container and personal taste. Ideally, you want to keep the larger items in the back and the smaller items in the front of the container. If your basket includes diapers, try lining the bottom of the container with them. It may take some adjusting, but just stand back and take a good look at the basket. Is everything visible?
Although not necessary, there are a few items that can help with making all the items visible and keeping them in place. We like to use white “brick” foam at the bottom of the basket and then cover it with paper shred. Foam bricks are available in the floral department of most craft stores. It will keep heavier items from sinking to the bottom. Plant “stakes” (sold in the same section of craft stores as the brick foams) can be used to hold items in place. We tape the narrow stakes the back of the gift items and them poke the stake through the foam board so the items stay in place.
Step 5: The final touch!
Add a pre-made bow or make your own with ribbon. You can place the basket in a pre-made clear plastic gift bag or use clear cellophane wrapping plastic (also at craft stores) for that professional touch! Remember to be creative! Your thoughtfulness will be much appreciated!