How to Throw a Surprise Baby Shower: Avoid Disappointment and Plan for Success!

When was the last time you got a really good surprise? A well-executed surprise can brighten anyone’s day and make them feel special and loved. When expecting a baby, most moms expect someone to throw a party in their honor—but a surprise baby shower can take a joyous event to a whole new level. 

If you’re thinking of planning a surprise baby shower for a mom-to-be, you probably have a lot of questions: is a surprise baby shower the best plan of action? How do I plan for a surprise shower? How can I make sure everything goes according to plan without giving the game away to the mom-to-be? Relax, friend—we’ve got you!

At WebBabyShower, we’re great at planning all kinds of baby showers. Virtual baby showers are our specialty, but we’re pretty good at helping hosts plan, organize, and throw in-person or hybrid baby showers as well. WebBabyShower offers full baby shower support: from setup to execution, we are there every step of the way. WebBabyShower offers customizable invitations, unlimited sending and tracking, baby shower games, and so much more. 

So let’s get down to the heart of the matter: how do you plan the perfect surprise baby shower? Keep reading to learn how to throw a surprise baby shower that will have guests talking for months to come. 

Why Throw A Surprise Baby Shower?

If you’re still researching different kinds of baby showers to throw, you might be asking yourself why throwing a surprise baby shower is a good idea. There are so many great reasons to throw a surprise baby shower. 

Expecting moms have so much on their plate. They’re thinking about nursery themes, getting ready for the baby, building their birth plans, attending prenatal visits—and that’s just scratching the surface. Worrying about a baby shower is the last thing that should be on their mind! 

Planning a surprise baby shower takes any stress away from mom-to-be, especially if she happens to be one of those types to want to plan everything herself. (We see you, Enneagram Type 1s.)

An unexpected baby shower can be an incredibly heartfelt gesture that makes the mom-to-be feel taken by surprise and utterly loved. When she thinks about how much time and energy went into coordinating, planning, and executing such a big secret, it will make her feel like the most important mama-to-be in the world. 

To see this in action, check out this incredible, surprise mermaid-themed shower that was thrown for actress Sam Pinto!

surprise baby shower mermaid theme
Image from: @hellodarling.ph

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7 Tips For Throwing A Surprise Shower

Planning a surprise baby shower can feel especially daunting since there’s the aspect of secrecy to keep in mind. A surprise baby shower can be an incredible, memorable event, but it definitely requires careful thought and planning. You need to consider the needs of mom-to-be first and foremost!

If you’re worried about whether or not you can pull off a surprise baby shower (especially if it’ll be a virtual baby shower), check out our 7 tips to help ease your mind: 

1. Get Organized

First thing’s first: to pull off the perfect surprise baby shower, you must be organized! Get yourself a planner or a bullet journal and make sure to plan down to the tiniest detail. 

One of the most crucial things you have to consider is time. When planning a surprise baby shower, make sure you have plenty of time to give planning your full attention—no spur-of-the-moment surprise baby showers. 

WebBabyShower can help you keep things organized and planned out meticulously.

webbabyshower invite tracker | WebBabyShower

 It can be hard to keep track of a guest list and invitations, but with WebBabyShower, it’s super easy. Our virtual showers come with customizable invitations, unlimited invitation sends, and we even offer invitation email open tracking, so you can chase up those RSVPs. It’s never been easier to keep your surprise baby shower guest list straight! 

We also have a whole games section to help you plan that part of the event ahead of time, as well as private photo and video albums. This can come in handy if you need to coordinate a place for everyone to be—upload photos of the spot and send guests the WebBabyShower URL, or have guests upload photos, notes, or videos of their own. WebBabyShower makes hosting a baby shower a truly collaborative experience, which is ideal if you have a co-host!

webbabyshower gallery page 1 | WebBabyShower

2. Keep Things Simple

It’s easy to get wrapped up in all of the excitement of a surprise baby shower, but not so fast! An extravagant party might be nice, but if you’re juggling too many things it increases your chances of dropping a vital piece. Keeping things simple is the name of the game when it comes to planning a surprise baby shower. 

Surprise showers can sometimes be more difficult not only because you’re keeping a secret, but because everything’s happening without the mom-to-be’s input. Consult her close friends and family to make sure you’re getting everything just right and make sure you have all the tools you need to make your surprise shower a success—don’t leave anything to chance! 

Just because simplicity is a key part of pulling off a surprise baby shower this doesn’t mean things have to be boring. 

WebBabyShower has inspiration for themes, décor, invitations, games, and so much more! Our theme gallery lets you customize your virtual baby shower from start to finish. When you choose your theme, it sets the tone for the rest of the surprise shower. You can match your decorations to your WebBabyShower theme, craft favors that complement it, and so much more! 

3. Consider the Perfect Date and Time

One of the trickier aspects of planning a surprise baby shower is the timing. It’s essential that you select a date and time that, first and foremost, will work for mom-to-be without tipping her off to the surprise! 

To pull this off, enlist the help of her partner, her close friends, or close family to find out the dates for any upcoming doctor’s appointments, ultrasounds, haircuts, etc. that she has scheduled that might conflict with the surprise. 

You also want to consider her needs. Baby showers are typically done in the 7th or 8th month of pregnancy, and growing a baby is a lot of work! If you plan a surprise baby shower in the evening, the mom-to-be might be too tired to fully enjoy the surprise. If you’re dealing with a night owl mama, that’s ok—but this is where knowing your guest of honor well is important. 

Once you’ve settled on a date and time, you need to actually get her to the event without her knowing what’s happening. Depending on the time of day you choose, you can invite her to lunch, dinner, or even for mani/pedis or a shopping trip. 

Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, but don’t get too crazy. If you invite her to do something out of the ordinary, she might suspect that something’s up. 

4. Choose The Right Location

surprise baby shower party

The perfect location can make or break a baby shower, but this is even more true for a surprise baby shower. In order to pull off the surprise, the location needs to be someplace semi-familiar. 

Taking mom-to-be to an unfamiliar location might tip her off that something is up, but having it at someone’s home also has its own challenges, like making sure there aren’t a ton of people parked outside the location!

It’s best to talk with mom-to-be’s partner, as they can help give some insight as to where mom would want the shower to be, and can even help planning some of the more difficult surprise baby shower aspects, especially if you end up choosing someone’s home as the location. 

For example, if you decide to have the shower at mom’s house, her partner could send her out for a day of pampering: a prenatal massage, a mani/pedi, or another treat. That way, she’s out of the house and you’re free to decorate and set up the surprise baby shower without worrying about her unexpectedly showing up. 

Tip: If you do decide to throw the surprise shower at someone’s home, suggest that guests park down the street or even carpool. The fewer cars outside the home, the better!

You could also pay for a venue like a restaurant, or host an outdoor shower at a park or a botanical garden. The key to planning a surprise baby shower is to make sure you have plenty of space for guests and that it’s not a place that is unusual for an expectant mom to be (like a bowling alley or a bar, for example). 

In the end, make sure you are keeping mom-to-be in mind first and foremost. This is an event to celebrate her and the baby, so you want to make sure she’s getting a baby shower she will love.

If you’re having a hybrid baby shower, make sure to organize the virtual aspect of the shower with plenty of time to spare. WebBabyShower is a great way to plan your entire event and make sure it goes smoothly. Apps or services like Evite leave a lot of work for you, the host. 

5. Create A Wishlist

When it comes to wishlists and baby registries, the mom-to-be’s nearest and dearest are your best resources. Consult with mom’s partner and closest friends to create a wishlist of the kind of gifts she wants or needs for the baby. (Or for herself—don’t forget that pampering the mom-to-be is important, too!)

She may already have a gift registry. If she does, add it to your WebBabyShower site—you can use any gift registry, and you aren’t limited to just one. Add as many as you’d like! 

Make sure guests are aware of any gift registries ahead of time; you can add links to WebBabyShower invitations you send out to make it easy for everyone to stay in the loop regarding what mom-to-be wants and needs.

6. Send Your Invites And Manage Your Guest List

Okay, so you’ve got your date, time, and location—now it’s time to get everyone on board to help make the surprise a great one. Using WebBabyShower makes sending invitations super easy. You can send as many as you like, as often as you’d like. WebBabyShower allows you to track the invitations you’ve sent and how many RSVPs you get. 

When sending the baby shower invitations, make it crystal clear that this is a surprise baby shower! You don’t want your hard work to fall through because guests weren’t aware they needed to keep the baby shower hush-hush. 

webbabyshower invite for surprise baby shower

When setting up your invitations, make sure RSVPs ONLY go to you and not mom-to-be. WebBabyShower’s invitation tracking will help you know who is coming and who can’t make it. Having an accurate guest list count is an important part of making sure you have everything covered on the day of the surprise shower. 

7. Communication Is Key (But So Is Secrecy)

Yeah, this is sort of an oxymoron, but it’s still true! One of the key elements to successfully pulling off a surprise baby shower is simultaneous communication and secrecy. 

It’s important to keep in touch with guests so they know what to expect and so they know how important it is that they keep the secret. Communicate the importance of discretion frequently with any guests when you give baby shower updates, and you can also use the invitation manager to reiterate the importance of secrecy even for the guests who won’t be able to attend. 

WebBabyShower can help with this! It’s the best tool available for keeping all of your baby shower-planning elements in one place. One of the quickest ways to lose control over a surprise baby shower is disorganization, so having your guest list, registries, and other planning elements together in one place sets you up for success. Send out as many guest updates as needed and track who’s coming all in one spot. 

Bonus Tip: Consider A Surprise Virtual Baby Shower Instead

webbabyshower site for surprise baby shower

If you’re having a little trouble getting your ducks in a row for an in-person surprise baby shower, consider throwing a surprise virtual baby shower instead. This type of surprise shower eliminates several elements and makes it easier and less stressful for you and your guests. 

A surprise virtual baby shower may even be preferable to an in-person shower if you have a mom-to-be who likes small surprises instead of large, loud surprises. A virtual baby shower allows for a smaller, more intimate—but no less surprising—experience for everyone involved. 

WebBabyShower can help make a virtual surprise baby shower a success for all the reasons we’ve mentioned above: it’s an all-in-one tool that makes everything easy, from planning to execution!

Surprise Baby Showers: A Fantastic In-Person Or Virtual Option When Done Well!

Planning a surprise baby shower can feel really intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. If you’ve got a mom-to-be who loves surprises, it’s a gesture that can go a long way toward making her feel special and loved.

 A surprise baby shower requires a lot of careful planning and consideration, and it’s important to always keep the guest of honor and what they’d want in mind first. 

WebBabyShower can help take a big task like planning a surprise baby shower and make it more manageable. By keeping everything organized and in one place, we can help you not only pull off a surprise baby shower but absolutely knock it out of the park. 

If you’re considering planning a surprise shower, keep us in mind—we’d love to help you throw a surprise baby shower that mom-to-be will remember for years to come!

Natalie is a freelance writer and digital marketer. She’s a native Chicagoan, but currently lives in North Georgia with her husband and three children, who may or may not be feral. (The children, not the husband.) She loves movies (favorite movie is Jurassic Park), music (favorite band is The Beatles), and books (favorite author is Stephen King). Natalie is passionate about social justice and recently served on the leadership team for the Chattanooga Moms for Social Justice.

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