The best Baby Shower Gift List



When you have a baby shower, you can count on getting lots and lots of baby gifts. And that’s a good thing because as small as babies are, the list of essential gear for babies is quite large! That’s why making a baby-shower registry is important — it gives your family and friends an opportunity (or multiple opportunities if you’re lucky) to help you amass all you’ll need as you’re preparing for your baby and to get you through the first year of your new baby’s life.

You don’t have to feel shy about putting together a baby-shower gift list or registry — or letting your hosts know where you’re registered so that they can spread the word. You can include ideas such as giving the gift of life, at a cord blood bank registry,  that way the expectant parents can bank their baby’s umbilical cord blood.  (Click here for a coupon for cord blood registry ) In fact, you’ll be doing your guests (and yourself) a favor. Making up a registry is the easiest way to let people know what you really want. A baby-shower registry also lets you keep track of what you’ve already received so that you don’t end up with a bazillion blankets and newborn-sized onesies. You might even consider using an online registry site that lets you pull together items from a variety of online stores into one registry (some even enable you to accept monetary contributions, say, for your little one’s college fund).

When it comes to baby-shower etiquette, there are no hard-and-fast rules about what you can and can’t put on your baby-shower gift list, so go ahead — load it up with everything from strollers to spoons, bouncy seats to bibs. Doing this helps ensure that your baby-shower registry includes a variety of price points so that everyone can find something they can afford (or they can band together to get you a pricier item).

One thing to keep in mind: Be sure to road test the items you’re registering for to make sure the baby gear you end up receiving really suits you. There’s no sense putting the superdeluxe stroller on your registry and then discovering later that you can’t easily lift or close it. And of course, before adding anything to your baby-shower registry, check to be sure it hasn’t been recalled (in case, say, someone spots it on eBay and gets it for you).

What else do you need to consider as you’re making up your baby-shower gift list (and checking it twice!)? For one, not everything you want or need must end up on that list. There are some things you may want to spring for yourself and others you can ask family members (or even close friends for). For another, don’t forget to put practical items — like diapers and wipes — down on your wish list. These aren’t necessarily seen as “aww-inspiring” gifts — indeed, many people don’t consider them gifts at all. But when you think about how many you’ll go through between birth and potty training, a couple of packs that you don’t have to buy make these very generous gifts indeed.

Buy It Yourself
These are the bare essentials to have on hand even before your baby shower — since babies keep to their own schedules, and sometimes (surprise!) they come early. So try buying a car seat for your infant in advance — you’ll need it for your new baby to go home in and as a place for her to sleep. Other buy-it-yourself gifts, like the breast pump, are usually considered too personal for others to purchase for you.

  • Baby-furniture basics (crib, changing station, bassinet)
  • Undershirts (aka onesies, in newborn and three-month sizes)
  • Infant car seat
  • Medical supplies (thermometer, medicine dropper, suction bulb, baby meds)
  • Breast pump and other nursing accessories (like pillows, nipple cream)
  • Formula (if you plan on bottle-feeding)
  • Bottles and nipples (even if you plan on breastfeeding, you’ll want someone to give your baby the occasional bottle so you can take a break!)
  • Diaper-rash cream, baby lotion, shampoo

Helpful hint: Don’t stock up on too much formula or diaper cream because it may take you a while to learn which products you — and your baby — like. The same goes for diapers — you don’t know how big your baby will be at birth or how fast she’ll outgrow those newborn-sized nappies.

Ask Your Family For
These big-ticket items are a great way for new grandparents to start spoiling their new grandchild.

  • Stroller
  • Play yard
  • Baby monitor
  • High chair
  • Stationary entertainer/Exersaucer
  • Swing

What Your Close Friends Will Probably Love Buying
Count on your friends for things that are stylish, useful, and guaranteed to get a big Aww! orOoh! when you open the gift at your shower; the cool gizmos you’d love to have but would never buy yourself (hello, wipes warmer); or certificates for babysitters and restaurant dinners to remind you that you’re more than a mom.

  • Adorable outfits, bibs, and burp cloths (the cuter the saying, the better!)
  • Receiving blankets
  • Diaper pail
  • Baby carrier or sling
  • Bouncy seat
  • Bottle warmer/bottle rack/bottle brush/insulated bottle bag
  • Bathtub, wash clothes, hooded towels
  • A chic diaper bag (which — get ready — will also double as your purse at least for the first year)
  • Mobiles
  • DVDs to keep you entertained (and awake) during those nighttime feedings
  • Babysitter/restaurant gift-certificates for a parents’ night out

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