I can’t believe I’m already 6 months pregnant and so close to meeting my little nugget. This past weekend, a few of my friends threw me an incredible baby shower. They knew that keeping it low waste and intimate was important to me, and they didn’t disappoint.
Like many special occasions — bridal showers, bachelorette parties, birthdays, valentines, etc — it can be easy to fall into the consumer trap. Just browse Etsy and you’ll finds hundreds of cutesy decor and themed items to buy that can really only be used once. When else are you going to wear a white “bride” bikini?
Knowing my distaste for anything disposable, my friends kept true to keeping the event personal and focusing on details that really matter, like food!
Below, I have compiled 5 way my friends kept my baby shower zero waste that are easy to pass along to a friend or relative:
1. Invitations: The invitations went out by email and instead of linking to a registry, the invite specified that I Max and I were going to buy most our baby stuff secondhand. Guests were encouraged to either bring previously loved items, like books and clothes, or a monetary donation of choice.
2. Food: The food was AMAZING. Mostly finger foods — a crudité platter, fruits, a cheese and cracker plate — and the host made a delicious gf savory tart with butternut squash and chard. To keep it low waste, she used real plates and cutlery, mason jars for wine and a watermelon/mint punch and cloth napkins. She also picked up these crazy good gf cakes from the farmers’ market. This pregger couldn’t have been happier.
3. Decor: The decor was simple and whimsical. The host picked up a few beautiful bouquets from our local farmers’ market and set them out in glass vases. Another friend made a garland with leftover flowers, twine and paper tape. She also made me a flower crown. I loved that there were no cheesy plastic signs or disposable party chachkas.
4. Activities: All of the ladies at the shower brought flowers, feathers, stones and other natural materials to contribute to a mandala circle. We sat in a circle on a large blanket and cushions while they created the mandala in the center. When the mandala was complete, they each gave me a blessing, including poems, words of wisdom and whatever else was in their heart. It was such a beautiful experience and definitely got me choked up.
5. Gifts. Each lady brought me a previously loved booked to add to our baby’s library with a sweet inscription inside and many also gave us a monetary gift. I loved seeing what book was special for each of my friends and hearing what it meant to them. Friends wrapped the books in paper, reusable bags, tissue and other reusable materials. One friend also brought a baby outfit her child had loved and wanted to pass on. I did create a baby registry for people who couldn’t attend but still wanted to get us something. The great thing about having a registry is you can select exactly what you want and ensure that you’re filling your nursery with sustainable, low waste items.
I know that I am truly blessed to have such wonderful friends that know me so well, and I know it can be challenging to keep an event zero waste when it is out of your control. Having someone throw you a party is a lot of work and a gift, so it's best to gracious and if some waste is created, c'est la vie.