how much to spend on a baby shower gift

How much to spend on a Baby Shower Gift?

A baby is an exciting arrival not only for the parents but for the entire family and their friends. A baby shower is a traditional way to help shower the baby and the new parents with things that they will need for their new addition. There are many different ways to have a baby shower. And the gift ideas are endless. But there are some expectations around how much to spend on a baby shower gift.

These etiquette guidelines are based upon your relationship to the parents, what fits your personal budget and financial situation, and if it is a first baby or a second or subsequent child. As parents will have little of what they need for the first baby gifts are traditionally more expensive. While showers are less popular for second or more children, the gifts are often less costly as they will have the basics from the first.

Baby Shower Gifts from Grandparents

what to spend on a baby shower

Grandparents to the new baby are traditionally some of the most excited over a new birth. They will be the parents of the parents, and this makes them the most closely linked family and therefor will be expected to contribute a larger gift than others. Etiquette states that they will likely select a gift around $100 for the new baby. Grandparents are also traditionally known to hand down items from their own children that had sentimental value or that are family heirlooms. These items may have the most sentimental value to the parents and will be well cared for.

Others suggest that since the grandparents will be involved with helping to care for and raise the baby. They may spend less on a gift but make up for it with their time. Grandparents are often turned to for support, questions, suggestions, and even babysitting. Often the most trusted people, knowing that a baby is safe with their grandparents may ease a parent’s anxiety about going out without them.

Baby Shower Gifts from Aunts and Uncles

how much should you spend on a baby shower gift

Aunts and uncles of the new baby are often expected to splurge and spoil their new niece or nephew. Many guides on etiquette suggest a gift over $100 is normal. And siblings can get together to pool their resources for a larger ticket item such as a car seat or even a crib.

The aunt of the parents, who will be the great aunt or great uncle to the new baby will spend less than siblings. Coming in around $50 seems to be the consensus on etiquette for a baby shower gift. In close knit families these family members may act as an extra set of grandparents. While in others they will remain more distant. The amount of time that they spend with the parents and how active they plan to be in the lives of the baby may affect how much they spend on a gift and how personal that gift is.

Baby Shower Gifts from Siblings

In instances where older siblings are working and able to contribute to their parents new chid, they may wish to spoil their new sibling. Young adults will gift what is comfortable for them. And this may mean they spoil them with new toys or books, or it may be in the form of babysitting and caring for the infant. With a wide range of incomes, ages, and abilities of siblings to the new baby, there is no expected amount on how much to spend on a baby shower gift. With this lack of expectation, even gifting items they had that are sentimental is a wonderful approach.

Baby Shower Gifts from Close Friends

how much to spend on a baby shower gift

If a close friend is having a baby shower and you are wondering how much to spent on a baby shower gift, there is a simple answer. Close friends will often be in a similar financial situation to the expecting couple, and $50-$100 is a generous gift for something that will be well loved. Choose something that has extra meaning or that you feel is well suited to them. These items may become coveted belongings to a growing child. Or a reminder to the parents that they have a strong support group.

Baby Shower Gifts for Co-workers

When invited to a baby shower for a work friend, you might spend less than you would for your own family or close friends. Even $25 can be a suitable gift from the registry and will be appreciate by the new parents. If you are close work friends, or you consider yourself to be close outside of work as well, you can spend a little more, but look for something meaningful.

Choosing A Gift from the Registry

It is polite and even expected to choose a gift from the registry. Most registries will have a range of items that cover a wide price range. They include small gifts that can be packaged together to make a basket, some items that are midrange in price such as outfits or snowsuits, and they will have higher priced items like highchairs and strollers. When selecting a gift from the registry begin with a price point that you are comfortable with and that you can afford without stressing your own finances. The point of the shower is to shower the baby with gifts. And help ensure that they have everything they need. However the parents don’t want or expect their loved ones to overextend themselves.  If you are unable to find a suitable gift on the registry, it is acceptable to purchase items that are not listed.

When going off the registry to select a gift look for one that often isn’t thought of by new parents. Perhaps you found a specific item invaluable to your life after the birth of your child, or your friend or family have been raving about a new item they consider a must have. If you can, purchase this item but include a smaller item off of the list. For example, if you hear of a baby bath that is versatile, safe, and easy to use, but they do not have a baby bath on their list, wrapping it with facecloths or towels that are on the list will ensure a gift that is within the expected etiquette for what to purchase or how much to spend on a baby shower gift.

DIY Baby Shower Gifts

diy baby shower gift

It can be a beautiful idea to make something special. And while they are not included on the registry that does not mean they are not wanted. Gifts that were made by hand with love can become treasured family heirloom. Some believe that etiquette requires at least one small item off of the registry, which can be included with a hand made item. Knitted or quilted blankets are traditional baby shower gifts. Alternatively, some small gifts off of the registry can be added to a gift basket. Include some home made items to create something any parent will love.

Top ideas for handmade or DIY gifts include knitted clothing such as hats, booties, mittens, and sweaters. Quilted blankets or bedding, car seat covers, and stuffed animals are well received. Plus these are often better quality than those purchased in stores. Scrapbooks that are personalized and made to record the first years of the child’s life can present the parents with an easy way to mark each milestone and build memories.

Do I Bring A Gift To A Second Baby Showers

Second baby showers are less common. But they are gaining traction for those who have a large gap between the first and second child. Or even between the second and the third. Often they will have passed on their items and will be starting over. If the second baby is a girl and they had a boy first, or the second baby is a boy and they had a girl first, a second shower may be held for a few extras for the baby. In these situations, people are expected to spend less, and focus on smaller ticket items. Shoes, clothing, hats, blankets, and similar items are suitable. It is always safe to provide diapers and related items. As any new mom will be happy to have extra baby wipes when they mysteriously run out in the middle of the night.

How much to spend on a Baby Shower gift – final note

When considering how much to spend on a baby shower gift, consider how close you are to the parents. Plus how much you will be involved in the child’s life, and what you are comfortable with. Close friends and family will usually spend more than people from work or distant family. Many cultures will have their own expectations around a baby shower gift, and these should be deferred to when necessary.

About Author

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Jane Sheriff is the founder, creative director, party planner and mom of three. She started Darling Celebrations back in 2012 to share easy and beautiful ideas for celebrating the special events in life.

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