Baby shower gift ideas

If you’ve been invited to a baby shower, you might be wondering what gift the mum-to-be would really appreciate? If there’s a gift registry, you’re in luck. If not, it’s time to get creative.

Here are some of the best baby shower gift ideas whether you're looking for something unique, unusual, personalised or even just practical that you know she will get lots of use out of.

Best Baby Shower Gift Ideas: Nursery Must-Haves

Choosing a baby shower gift for the nursery can be tricky. What do the parents really need? Will the nursery have a theme or colour scheme? Are you looking for a baby shower gift for a boy or girl, or would the parents prefer something unisex?

Here are some baby shower gift ideas that rank among the top baby essentials for the nursery, and you can be sure the mum-to-be will love getting any of these:

  • Cot. This is something no nursery can do without, but there are so many to choose from and many factors to consider, safety being the most important. If you opt for this, start by finding out what type of cot the parents would like and go for that.

  • Cot accessories. Your budget may not extend to the cot itself, or the parents might already have that covered. Still, spare cot bedding is always welcome as sheets and covers may need to be changed frequently. If you know the parents will be using an existing or hand-me-down cot, a fresh mattress will give it a new lease of life (and may also lower the risk of allergies caused by dust mites). Make sure you find out the exact size though. A firm, perfectly fitting cot mattress and the right size of cover is important to ensure safe sleep.

  • Changing table. Another nursery staple that will be put to good use and makes a great baby shower gift. As with the cot, Mum or Dad might have their eye on a specific style or brand, so it’s important to find out what type of changing table they would like before making your purchase.

  • Changing pad or mat. With one of these, any area of the home can be transformed into a nappy-changing station with a changing pad, some nappies and wipes. This item will come in for lots of use as it’s always good to have one on hand.

  • Burp cloths. Even relatively cheap baby shower gift items like burp cloths can be incredibly useful. These help protect Mum or Dad’s outfit while burping their baby during and after feeds. Traditionally a simple white muslin square was used, but these days there are plenty of patterned, tailored or coloured varieties to choose from.

  • Mobile. Choose something colourful and magical to dangle (safely out of reach) over the newborn baby’s cot. Static or rotating, battery-powered or clockwork, some mobiles also play music – there’s no shortage of options. Find out if the baby will have a themed nursery, then select a mobile to match. Before buying one, look at the mobile from the baby’s perspective – underneath. Afterall, that’s where the baby will spend the most time looking at it from, so it’s more important to be pattered and interesting when viewed from underneath than side-on.

  • Rocking chair. A sturdy rocking chair will keep Mum comfy while feeding and cuddling her baby. The gentle back-and-forth motion can also help soothe her little one to sleep. Before deciding on a baby shower gift like this, make discrete enquiries to find out if the parents-to-be have space for extra large items of furniture in their home. Also, because it’s a big ticket item, it’s worth enquiring about what colour and style the mum-to-be prefers before making your purchase.

  • Nightlight. A dim nightlight can help settle the baby and make it easier for parents to get around without stubbing a toe during night-time feedings. Some nightlights can also project patterns, like stars for example, onto the wall or ceiling.

  • Sound machine. These little machines can play soothing sounds like white noise, nature sounds or lullabies. Although not all babies enjoy it, many babies fall asleep faster if there is some ambient noise.

  • Baby monitor. Baby monitors can give parents a little extra peace of mind – always a great gift. There are many different kinds including audio-only, video, and some even have app connectivity.

  • Baby clothes. If you’re thinking of including baby clothes among your baby shower gifts, find out what a newborn baby’s wardrobe might consist of. A bodysuit, cardigan, t-shirt, leggings, beanie, mittens or socks are all good options. You may like to get a bigger size that the baby can grow into.

  • Baby shower gift basket. Combine lots of smaller necessities in a lovely hamper. You might include a nappy bin, barrier cream, nappies, burp cloths, body suits, wipes, dummies, a toy rattle and more – the possibilities are endless, just pick and choose from among the smaller items listed in the rest of this article.

Baby Mobil

Unique Baby Shower Gift Ideas

One of these ideas could make the perfect unique gift for the baby shower that the mum-to-be is sure to appreciate:

  • Memory book. These books allow for a little creativity throughout the baby’s first year. They’re a place to jot down special milestones and add pictures. Once the baby is all grown up, the family will love looking back at this special keepsake.

  • Baby books. It's never too early for parents to start reading to their baby, so already having a nice selection of books at hand is a huge advantage. Prepare a gift basket of new or classic children’s books. Or, add a personal touch by giving one or two of your own favourite childhood books.

  • Toys. Consider giving toys the baby can play with in the years to come. This way, as the baby gets older and is looking for something new to play with, the parents can simply reach for something that’s been waiting on the shelf for just the right moment.

  • Funny baby shower gifts. If the parents-to-be share your sense of humour and you think they’d appreciate something a little ‘off-the-wall’ and light-hearted, there are plenty of jokey and novelty baby shower gifts, from swaddling blankets that make the baby look like an actual giant burrito to tongue-in-cheek books about children and parenting.

Homemade Baby Shower Gifts

Personalised baby shower gifts really come from the heart. If you love getting creative, consider one of these ideas:

  • Nappy cakes. A nappy cake – nappies cleverly folded to look like a decorative, often multi-tiered cake – is a DIY baby shower gift that’s both fun and useful. Consider using various nappy sizes, so there’ll be plenty of nappies on hand later on, even as the baby grows out of the newborn sizes. If you’re pushed for time or not feeling creative, ready-made nappy cakes can be ordered online or from specialist shops.

Nappy cake
  • Handmade clothes. If you knit or sew, consider making bootees, hats, mittens or other clothes for the baby.

  • Home-cooked meals. With a newborn, parents don’t have much time to spare, especially for cooking. Consider providing a delivery of home-cooked and frozen meals each week for the first few months that can be thawed out and heated up as needed.

  • Handmade art for the nursery. If you are particularly creative, you might feel inspired to create a truly unique baby shower gift in the form of an artwork to decorate the nursery.

  • Other personalised baby shower gifts. Order a baby book or children’s book online that can be personalised with the baby’s name. Buy a cotton playsuit or baby blanket and personalise it by printing a message on the front. Or, have the child’s name stitched or embroidered on a teddy bear or other soft cuddly toy.

Baby Shower Gifts for Mum

Baby Shower Gifts for Mom

If this is baby number two or three, the mum-to-be may already have most of the basics needed for the latest arrival. So, consider some of these ideas, and remember Mum deserves a treat too.

  • Pyjamas or dressing gown. She has a lot of late nights coming up, so why not treat Mum to some cosy jim-jams, a pair of comfy slippers or a chic dressing gown or bathrobe? Bonus points for items that are machine washable and breastfeeding-friendly!

  • A good read. She’s read all the pregnancy and newborn guides and now her library is about to be taken over by picture books, so give Mum a selection of the latest grown-up bestsellers, a magazine subscription or even an e-reader so she can download her favourites to enjoy during those (possibly elusive) quiet moments.

  • Personalised jewellery. Available in a wide variety of price ranges, personalised charms or pendants engraved with the baby’s name or initial make great statement pieces that Mum can keep close to her heart.

  • Gift vouchers. If you’re in any doubt, purchase a gift voucher for a local baby store or even a local supermarket. This is a great way to help parents-to-be purchase exactly what’s needed. Alternatively, a gift voucher from the mum-to-be’s favourite clothes shop could be ideal for when she’s ready to treat herself to something special.

  • Blanket. A crocheted blanket is a creative baby shower gift that shows how much you care. This blanket comes in handy for mum while she’s resting. It’s sure to be used for many years and could even become a family heirloom.

  • Pampering session. Arrange a pampering session for the mum-to-be at a nearby spa, hair or beauty salon, including things like a massage, pedicure or perhaps a new hairstyle or complete makeover. She’ll enjoy this just as much after the baby arrives too.

  • Nappy bag. If the mum-to-be is a close friend, you may know her personal style well enough to buy her a nappy bag. Look for one that’s spacious and has easy-to-access compartments. Mum (and possibly Dad) will be hauling this bag around for a couple of years, so go for something classic and versatile that she’ll love.

  • Breastfeeding cushion. A special V-shaped or U-shaped breastfeeding cushion can help the mum-to-be get comfortable and hold her little one more securely while breastfeeding. This can be especially handy when feeding from both breasts at the same time, making it an ideal baby shower gift for twins.

Unusual Baby Shower Gifts for Mum and Dad

Grocery

There are some gift ideas you aren’t likely to find on any baby shower registries, but they can still be a great help to new parents. Most of the ideas below are services rather than physical gifts. They can help free up parents’ time to spend enjoying their little one or grab a few welcome moments of ‘me time’.

  • Professional photo shoot. Once things have settled down after the birth, many new parents appreciate a family photo shoot with a professional photographer to capture memories that will last a lifetime.

  • A date night. Give the new parents the gift of some precious time together away from the baby. The night out may not take place during the first few weeks (or even months), but eventually Mum and Dad will enjoy having some ‘time off’ to dine out, see a play or perhaps go to the cinema together. Tell the parents you’d like to provide a gift voucher for a restaurant meal, babysitting or both, but let them suggest when would be convenient.

  • Cleaning service. Parents of newborns are so busy and so tired. Consider providing a professional cleaner to come and do a one-time big clean, or to come once a week for the first few months after the birth.

  • Babysitting or night nanny service. The gift of a night off from baby duty will certainly be appreciated. You can offer to provide your own babysitting services or those of a trusted agency in your area. A night nanny can be arranged to care for the baby at night while the new parents grab some much-needed rest.

  • Food delivery. You can also provide a gift certificate for home deliveries of groceries or even hot meals. Parents will appreciate having their larder and fridge stocked without having to make trips to the supermarket with a newborn in tow.

  • Streaming services. It may be a while before Mum and Dad are ready for a night out, so why not make it easy for them to put their feet up and binge-watch the latest drama everyone is talking about. The gift of a prepaid subscription to one of the major streaming services might just be priceless.

On-the-Move Baby Shower Gift Ideas

There will be times when the mum will need to travel with her little one in tow. Whether she’s braving an airport or just heading across town, she’ll need a variety or portable items to help get from A to B. Consider giving one of these on-the-go essentials:

  • Travel cot. Look for safe, lightweight options that are easy to set up and pack away again. Some double as a portable playpen, providing a safe space for the baby to play or sleep under the parents' watchful eyes.

  • Play mat. A portable play mat or floor gym is another great way of keeping babies busy and entertained away from home.

  • Emergency nappy bag. Put together a smaller nappy bag with essentials that the parents can keep in the car or in a storage compartment of the pushchair so they’re always ready for changing an active baby on the go.

  • Baby carrier or sling. A good baby carrier is ideal for parents to keep their hands free while running errands or just moving around the house. It’s also cosy and soothing for the baby, encourages bonding and can boost development.

  • Portable changing mat. If the parents-to-be love to travel or go on day trips, a portable travel changing mat that can be rolled up or folded into its own little pouch will make changing nappies on the go a breeze.

  • Pushchair or pram. Many parents-to-be will prefer to choose a pushchair or pram themselves, but if you know which make and model they will just love, then this is one baby shower gift that is sure to get plenty of use.

  • Pushchair accessories. These can range from toys and books for the baby to accessories for Mum and Dad, like cup and smartphone holders. Pushchair covers, mosquito nets, umbrellas and foot cosies are great options for traveling with a baby in any weather conditions. Just make sure any accessories you buy are either universal or designed to fit the pushchair or pram mum-to-be has chosen.

  • Baby car seat. This is a major purchase, and because of the safety aspect the parents-to-be will probably want to have the final say on which type of baby seat their baby is going to travel in. There’s also compatibility with the parents’ car to consider. So, if you’re planning on covering the cost of the car seat as a baby shower gift, it’s probably best to discuss this with Mum and Dad in advance.

More Good Baby Shower Gift Ideas

Baby Bath Accessories

If you haven’t yet found the right gift idea among these mentioned here, don’t worry — we’re not done yet! We have even more great ideas for you. These gifts will really be appreciated as the baby grows:

  • Baby swing. There are many baby swings to choose from; but check the age and weight requirements carefully before you pick a style. Keep in mind that some are designed for newborns while others are only suitable for older babies.

  • Highchair. This might not be needed until the baby’s old enough to join in meals with the rest of the family, but time flies and a sturdy highchair with all the necessary safety features is a great item for the parents to have waiting in the wings, ready to be brought out when the time is right.

  • Baby food maker. Why buy baby food in a jar when you can make your own? A baby food making machine that gently steams and purees fresh vegetables and fruit will be great for conjuring up healthy, homemade kiddies’ meals once the baby is old enough to start eating solid foods.

  • Bottle warmer. Even if the mum-to-be isn’t planning to feed her little one with formula, some feeding bottles and a bottle warmer can still come in handy. There are lots of reasons she might like to express and store breast milk at some point, for example so her partner or a babysitter can take over feeding duties occasionally. A bottle warmer offers a convenient and safe way of defrosting or warming up stored milk.

  • Toddler clothes. Consider buying children’s clothes the mum-to-be’s toddler can wear when the time comes.

  • Bath time accessories. Buy a baby bathtub, and then use it as a gift basket, adding a rubber duck, baby soaps, baby-sized towels with a little hood to keep the baby’s head warm, a non-slip bathmat and a baby grooming set.

  • Baby first aid kit. For all those little emergencies that the parents might not yet be prepared for, give a baby first aid kit with a thermometer, tweezers, antiseptic cream, little bandages, sticking plasters, a cold pack and other first aid essentials.

  • Babyproofing items. There are all kinds of safety items the new family will need to make their home safe for the new arrival, including plug socket covers, corner covers and baby gates.

The Bottom Line

Trying to choose the ideal baby shower gift may seem daunting at first, but we hope this list has given you some inspiration. If you’re still unsure whether the baby shower gift you have in mind is really needed – especially if it’s a major purchase – don’t be shy about asking the baby shower’s organiser or another close friend of the parents-to-be for extra advice.

Keep in mind that it’s not the size or expense that counts. The parents have a lot on their plate, and your gift is bound to be appreciated no matter how big or small it is.

Above all, remember that the best gift of all is likely to be you: For a mum-to-be, having her friends and family around her offering support and encouragement at this early stage of the parenting adventure is perhaps the best baby shower gift she could possibly wish for.

How we wrote this article
The information in this article is based on the expert advice found in trusted medical and government sources, such as the National Health Service (NHS). You can find a full list of sources used for this article below. The content on this page should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult medical professionals for full diagnosis and treatment.