How to Host a Book Lover’s Baby Shower

June 9, 2023

By Christa Protano

Whether celebrating a wedding or baby, we love a theme. So if the parents-to-be are book lovers, a storybook shower is a no-brainer. A bookish theme not only adds a personal touch to the festivities, it’s an opportunity for guests to help build out the baby’s library. Here’s everything you need to know about planning a storybook-themed party to honor life’s next chapter.  

Choose a Genre

You don’t have to pick a specific category, but if you are new to the planning process, the more you hone in on the theme, the easier it will be to choose all the other details (read: invitations, decor, food, favors … don’t worry, we’ll get there). For a storybook theme, you can make it all about fairy tales with the words “Once Upon a Time” featured throughout the shower elements. Another popular pick is a nursery-rhyme theme (think “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” or “The Cow Jumped Over the Moon”). Or, you may want to zero in on the mom’s favorite author or children’s book.

Send Out an Announcement

Next up: Invitations. There are so many great ones out there that are pre-made. All you have to do is populate all the logistics. You can also go custom and have something totally unique created on Etsy or through a custom stationer. Either way, be sure to add a line that asks guests to bring a new book to add to baby’s bookshelf. 

Have Fun with the Menu

Think you can get away with a traditional menu? Think again. Kate Aspen has plenty of ideas for turning a book title into some inspired eats. From hors d’oeuvres to desserts, you just need to get a little creative. For the showers piece de resistance (the cake, of course), you can turn the whole confection into a tower of titles, or focus on the toppers instead. These edible children’s book toppers can rest atop plain chocolate and vanilla cupcakes for a sweet storybook send-off.

Splurge on an Epic Photo Op

In this age of social media, being able to share a wow factor via Instagram is more important than a creative diaper cake. For a bookish baby shower, take a cue from the mother of all interior designers — and author! — Joanna Gaines. Before welcoming her fifth child, her shower decor featured an over-top stack of books donned with a cascade of balloons. We also love this book-themed photo backdrop created by Chicago-based Limani Designs.

Build a Cohesive Brand

To really wow your guests, don’t stop at the front door. Be sure to carry the theme all the way through if you can. Centerpieces, event signage, and the buffet and dessert table are all great opportunities to prominently feature the book theme. Need a little inspo? Check out these storybook showers:

Popular Children’s Book Theme from by MMJ Events

Mo Willems-inspired by Tonya Staab 

Velveteen Rabbit Shower by Simply Charming Socials

Dr. Seuss theme shower ideas at Darling Celebrations

Don’t Forget the Team Building

Nothing gets guests talking like a little friendly competition. While writing down baby advice on an index card is definitely a conversation starter, attendees can steer clear of any sleep-training judgements by participating in some low-stakes shower games. For this particular theme, try something like Name That Children’s Book or Storybook Character Match to pass the time. 

Bookmark It

Personally, it’s a no for me when it comes to often-useless party favors. But as a self-proclaimed bibliophile, I could always use another bookmark. For a baby shower, you’ll find a ton of free printable ones on Pinterest, or you can buy and print your own on Etsy. For something a little more special, consider a metal bookmark that will make a more lasting keepsake.

Add to Baby’s TBR List

If you are reading this post as a guest, I can tell you from personal experience, the mom-to-be will most definitely receive at least one copy of Goodnight Moon and On the Night You Were Born. So consider something different when choosing a sweet board book. Click here for a few of our favorites, or check out the original titles shown in this post.

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