Every kid deserves to be treated like a prince or princess. Why not start the royal treatment with a lavish, extravagant and perfectly British baby shower? Pippa may have had her hands full planning Kate’s baby shower for the next heir to the throne, but with these tips, throwing a royal baby shower will be a piece of Victoria sponge cake.
What to serve
It wouldn’t be a proper royal function without formal afternoon tea, which is traditionally served on a three-tier cake stand. But don’t worry – you don’t have to be from royal or even English lineage to perfect your own afternoon tea.
Place teeny-tiny tea sandwiches on the bottom tier of your cake stand. Popular varieties include cheese and pickle, tomato and cheddar, and cucumber. Place scones with fruit preserves on the middle tier. The top tier should consist of petit fours (or any pastries of your choice). To make sure all of your items are authentically British, stop by the British Emporium in Grapevine, where you can find ingredients to make your own scones and petit fours.
And you can’t serve afternoon tea without the tea. The Brits love Earl Grey, which you can find at any grocery store. Sheela Kadam, owner of the British Emporium, suggests serving Prince Charles’ favorite tea, London Cuppa, which can be found in the store’s tea section.
If any youngsters are invited to your royal baby shower, you can take a playful spin on formal afternoon tea. For tea sandwiches, serve mini slices of PB&J. Instead of scones, homemade cookies and chocolate cake will make your party a hit with the younger set. On the top tier, traditional British candies, such as Cadbury chocolates, are the perfect last touch for your kid-friendly afternoon tea.
What to do
Kadam says American-style baby showers did not become popular in England until recently; however, you can still adapt distinctly British traditions to fill the time.
See who’s on top of things Kate – along with the entire royal family – loves fascinators. Tell all your guests to wear their best fascinator or hat and give a prize for the most royal-worthy hair accessory.
(To keep your Kate impression going, make sure you have your best sundress on. Kate wore plenty of polka dots and pastels all throughout her pregnancy, paired with a well-fitted blazer. Finish the look off with nude heels, wedges or flats.)
Play a traditional parlor game Pass the Parcel draws lots of comparisons to the American game Hot Potato. Wrap a parcel in multiple layers with a gift in the middle. Pass the parcel around in a circle to music. When the music stops, the person holding the parcel unwraps a layer. This continues until all the layers are unwrapped. The person who unwraps the last layer gets to keep the gift.
What to give
Whether you are registering for your own royal baby shower or shopping for someone else’s, gifts are where you can get most creative with the royal theme.
Jeweled baby slippers For a DIY gift fit for royalty, take your everyday baby slipper and transform it into sparkly, jeweled present any little princess will love.
Paddington Bear The beloved British tale from books and television is the perfect stuffed animal for any youngster. The British Emporium even has a Paddington Bear blanket available for purchase.
Nappies and prams Or, for us Americans, diapers and strollers. To keep the royal theme, pick out strollers that look more like a baby carriage. Kate chose the Bugaboo Cameleon3 for her new bundle.
British children’s books This is a fun, inexpensive way to ensure your new baby grows up with British culture right from the start. Below are classics every child should own:
The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter
Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne
The Mother Goose Treasury by Raymond Briggs
Gifts from across the pond Try the baby section of London toy store Hamleys for great gifts, and you can find prams, cribs and toys from popular brand Mamas and Papas at Toys“R”Us (multiple locations; toysrus.com).
UK style Bonnie Baby is a luxury baby clothing line that will make any new baby look even more adorable. Shop online or at Dillard’s (multiple locations; dillards.com).
Charitable contributions Kate dedicates loads of her time to charity and philanthropic appearances. So in true royal fashion, skip the gifts altogether and ask for donations to the charity of your choice.
Keep Calm and Carry On We can’t forget the mum! After all, once her royal bundle of joy comes along, she’s going to wish she were receiving the royal treatment. “Keep Calm and Carry On” merchandise has exploded in recent years, and it’s the perfect reminder for a new mum. A mug with the British phrase, paired with her favorite tea, will help her keep calm and carry on through the sleepless nights.
Published July 2013