Tuesday, December 9, 2014

DIY: The Perfect Baby Shower Gift Basket

Baby showers, we’ve all been to one. I’ve planned some, and even had one of my own. We never had one for my little guy because they were so close together (15 months apart), it felt downright rude to expect a bunch of family & friends to gather again so soon and shower us with gifts... Again. Also, we didn’t need anything! I learned something after my first rodeo, most registries look exactly the same. Something you may have learned as well, a lot of that stuff isn’t necessary. I found myself surrounded by friends and family suggesting tons of different registry “must-haves.” Yet it’s filled with stuff you either don’t need right away, or will mostly likely not work and never be used anyway.

It seems the moment you get pregnant everyone has advice for you, but that’s another post for another day.

I found that every time I went to a baby shower I wasn’t sure what to get for the mom-to-be. After learning about the true necessities in early motherhood, I vowed never again to shower someone with useless items whether it’s on their registry or not. There’s no need to feel confined to only buying from the registry by the way. Most of the awesome gifts I received and could not live without, were not on my registry.  So when one of our beloved friends announced they were expecting, I couldn’t wait to shower them with all the pearls of wisdom from my experience. Perhaps that’s what was happening when I was receiving tons of advice, I suppose motherhood is much like anything else, a very personal experience. No two situations are exactly alike. I digress.

So I decided to put together a DIY Baby Shower Basket of my own! One that reflected all of the basic necessities and thoughtful gestures I wish I had been privy to in my pregnancy.

Now, these are all ideas that can be used as a single gift for someone who you may not know very well, or as a whole basket for close friends or family that you love.
Either way –  these items are thoughtful and functional all at once! They are perfect gifts for the experienced “Crunchy” mom in your life, or the mom who is interested in a more natural approach to parenting but not quite sure where / how to get started.

Diapers: Let’s be honest, who doesn’t need diapers? This is ALWAYS a welcomed gift, in fact it’s even requested on some invitations! I’m a cloth diaper advocate, no secret about that if you’ve read my Cloth Diaper Confessional. Cloth diapers are an awesome gift to give, but not quite functional for the mom who doesn't know how to put them to use. So in this case there are alternatives – Biodegradable Diapers! It's the next best option next to traditional disposable diapers. The Honest Company has gift bundles online that you can purchase in monthly increments. Obviously the more you buy the better the price. In this case I was able to provide a month’s worth of these stylish diapers with wipes. Indeed, this is gift enough for most showers. If you’re interested in “upping the ante”, then keep reading!

Baby Wrap: I'm pretty passionate about baby wearing, I wish I knew more about it when my oldest was born. I had an Ergo carrier and loved it, although even with the newborn insert it didn't quite fit right until he was at least 5-6 months old. For this reason wraps work great for smaller babies. The benefits of baby wearing have long been studied and there is plenty of research pointing to the positive hormonal effects it has as well as the increase in lactation for the mother. The Solly Baby Wrap has long been on my radar as one of the most stylish and comfortable baby wraps around. Their adorable patterns and soft lightweight material make it perfect for South Florida weather.

Nursing Cover: A good nursing scarf is a great gift for the breastfeeding mom. The Nuroo Baby scarf is by far the most innovative and stylish scarf I've come across to date. It's unique  snap enclosures allow for multiple ways to wear this and make it optimal for discreet nursing in public. 

Maternity/Newborn Photo Session: What better way to celebrate a new bundle of joy than giving the gift of memories. A Maternity or Newborn photo session is on the "to do" list for most new parents these days. The miracle of pregnancy and the celebration of life is something we want to look back on and remember with detail. For this basket the highly talented Jennifer Reina Photography offers a unique baby shower gift certificate good for one maternity or newborn session. She presents it beautifully in a complimentary picture frame with details on scheduling and a free print. This is a wonderful gift for anyone who is expecting.

Photo Props: It doesn't hurt to throw in an adorable little striped crochet elf hat to include in their newborn shoot. Couldn't help myself!

Blankie Pillow: This cuddle pillow was featured in my MOABS Recap, and for good reason! If your babies suffer from acid reflux or silent reflux, then you know what a necessity a pillow like Blankie Pillow is. This comfortable pillow is ideal for propping baby up after feeding to avoid any spit up. It also converts into a toddler pillow as your baby grows! I wish I had one of these in my early days of motherhood! It comes stuffed in this awesome little sack. As a rule I pass this one along to all expecting mommy's I know!

Onesies: What new mom doesn't need onesies? These aren't just any onesies, The Little Boss has the cutest selection of newborn / infant and toddler necessities for your new "little boss in training".

Rattle: This montessori inspired hand crafted wooden baby rattle from Essential Montessori is an awesome addition to this basket. Baby's first rattle is sealed with a custom beeswax/olive oil blend and tinted with all natural homemade dye that's safe to the touch. Perfect for baby's first grip and safe for teething.

Baby Moccasins: These are just plain adorable! Although they do serve a purpose as they are great for keeping those teeny toes clean and comfy while they take their first steps. They are also thin and very natural to the touch  so as to keep babies feet firmly planted on the ground.

Gift Cards: Gift Certificates to be redeemed at a later date are an awesome shower gift for expecting parents. It gives them a gift to be excited about after the baby has arrived. In this case I presented them with a gift certificate to Budsies, one of my new favorite companies. I first featured this company in my Ultimate Mom's Night Out article, for their ability to foster creativity and bring it to life. They will print a physical doll from your baby's first drawings!

Protection: Once the baby arrives, there will be no shortage of well meaning family members wanting to come and meet the newest addition to the family. Unfortunately, they bring with them a host of germs, allergens or any outside carcinogens that are picked up by the average adult in every day life. However, the new little bundle is not yet equipped to fight off such pathogens. The Kuddle Coat is the perfect gift for the overprotective parents or germophobe in your life! It keeps any harmful chemicals or harsh perfumes from coming in direct contact with the adorable bundle of joy.

Relief: I first learned about Motherlove all natural organic salve with my second son. This absolutely saved my life! It really helps aid in healing and is completely safe for ingestion so there is no need to wash in between nursing.

Books: Books are a wonderful gift for any occasion, especially baby showers! This particular shower requested a book on the invitation, this is a growing trend. It's a great way to get a good start on a wide reading selection and encourage a love for reading. You can never start reading to your children too soon, I started at about 3 months old and I have two boys who would rather sit and listen to me read a book than watch television. I first got this idea from my friend and fellow blogger Lindsay from You Are The Roots, she bought this book for her son Ethan and decided to have all the teachers he has over the years sign the book at the end of each term. This way he has wonderful memories to look back on highlighting his educational career and how far he's come. It's a sweet tradition and makes for an amazing gift!

I decided to deliver these gifts in a canvas basket instead of gift bags or wrapping the presents separately, ensuring they could also use as storage or a baby hamper. I hope that this DIY Gift Basket has given you some helpful suggestions on some functional necessities for a new "mommy-in-training." It sure made this mom to be happy!

Essentially Yours,



  1. Its perfect gifts for newborn baby.. and its true we need Diapers and baby wrap are very important... but i like most Blankie Pillow and Nursing Cover. May your blog help peoples.

  2. I used washi tape to hold it down so that it didn't damage the wood in our bay window but every day I had to re-tighten it because the fabric would pop loose over night! personalised kids towels

  3. Yeah, it is just a perfect Baby Shower Gift Basket. I am truly in love with each and everything that has been put in this basket. Well, at some local San Francisco event venues I will also be attending a Sunday baby shower and will surely use your idea for the personalized gift.

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