How To Give A Baby Gift

Is there a right or a wrong way to give a baby gift? Yes and no. If you follow these simple guidelines, it’s likely that everyone will end up happy in the end.

baby shower giftsPractical gift-wrapping

I love when I see baby gifts wrapped in something or with something practical. I recently went to a baby shower and instead of using a gift bag, I used one of the gifts -- a Skip Hop diaper bag -- tied a Teething Bling Bangle to the side and put a few smaller gifts inside the diaper bag. I then wrapped a second gift with colorful wrapping paper and decorated it with a Babe Magnet Tie. Dad has to get something, right?

More practical gift-wrapping ideas

  • Wrap a swaddle blanket around a gift or gift basket, gather and tie in the middle with a ribbon and pacifier.
  • Place your gifts in a toy storage basket or toy box.
  • Create a diaper cake -- these can be done with disposable or cloth diapers.

Buying off the baby registry

There's no rule saying that you have to buy a gift from the registry of the parents-to-be. While they probably spend hours and hours researching, scanning and window shopping for what they want or what they think they want, you are the one selecting the gift and spending the money.

Gift cards

Half of the people I talked to said that buying gift cards was too impersonal and half said they were extremely practical -- that mom and dad could pick up the necessities they didn't receive. Let's face it, not everyone likes to give the practical yet much needed gifts like grooming kits, skin care products and feeding necessities.

Handmade gifts

Handmade baby gifts become a family favorite and possibly even a keepsake. My boys each received a handmade blanket from a family friend who happens to be an extremely talented seamstress. I loved getting her blankets and still have them all. Baby blankets, clothing and nursery décor are all great handmade gifts for a new baby.

Baby gift etiquette

Always provide a gift receipt. If you buy something off the registry, it's always best to give the parents the option to return or exchange the item. Especially if you buy an item from the registry from a different store or something similar to the item the parents registered for, as they could end up with duplicates.

Respect the parent's choices. If the parents are not sharing the baby's name but you happen to know it, don't let the mom-to-be open a monogramed gift in front of all her family and friends.

More on baby registries

Setting up a baby registry
Creating the perfect baby registry
Baby registry checklist

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If you're invited to your niece's baby shower but can't make it, should you still send a gift?