Tips I Learned from Throwing My First Baby Shower - Cupcakes & Cashmere

Tips I Learned from Throwing My First Baby Shower

How I celebrated a best friend's first baby on Saturday.
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This past weekend I threw my first baby shower for my best friend, Rachel. I've been practically planning it since I found out she was pregnant and couldn't wait to spoil her (and her little girl). And while I've hosted my fair share of parties, baby showers are a different beast. You want them to feel intimate and sweet without being overly saccharine. Here's a look at Rach's shower and what went into it.

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A room full of balloons is kind of a family tradition that I've since implemented now that I'm adult (I did the same for Rach's bridal shower, but with white). It sets the tone immediately for a party and when done in one signature color, it still feels (relatively) sophisticated instead of childlike. 

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I kept the table setting simple - with a white tablecloth with pops of blush from the napkins (they're by my friend, Heather Taylor Home), and three compact flower arrangements in similar hues.

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One of the ideas I borrowed from my own baby shower was to place books with pens at each seat so the guests could write little notes to the baby. Sloan and I still read them and it's so special to see how loved she was by her "aunties" even before she was born. 

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I have a tendency to overcommit to things and subsequently go nuts trying to get everything done. While I had intended to make baby bottle-shaped sugar cookies as party favors, I ended up having them made instead. They turned out beautifully and I was able to channel that freed up time towards other things.

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Though it veered a little on the shrine-side, I thought it would be fun to place streamers along the archway peppered with pictures of Rach from childhood. Everyone liked being able to see what she looked like as a kid and it led the way into the family room where dessert was served.

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For the dessert bar, I made four of Rach's favorite desserts: jam pockets, salted brown butter crispy treats, melomakarona, and lemon bars. This was certainly the most time intensive part, but the one I enjoyed the most. I also used it as an opportunity to revisit one of the funniest aspects from my bridal shower when Rach decorated the table in little cat figurines. Since she was into horses as a kid, I scattered them around the buffet, which added a playful and personal touch.

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Though Rach and I met at 18, we're confident that we would have been compatible even as young kids. When I received a PR box recently that was filled with colorful gems, (Sloan was thrilled) Rach and I both agreed that it would have been our dream package as kids as well. I decided to use it as inspiration to add some color to the drink station and added some in the tray to brighten it up a bit.

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Though the party wasn't huge (there were eight of us), I knew early on that cooking lunch would set me over the edge. Rach loves Greek food so I ordered a variety of snackable items (hummus and pita, dolmas, etc.) plus enough food for the actual meal (skewers, lemon potatoes, salad, etc).