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Not-Too-Shabby Baby Shower Ideas

Is your pregnant friend known for drooling over weathered end tables or getting feverish over chintz slipcovers? Do you share her love of shabby chic? Use your shared passion to create a classy yet comfy baby shower theme to make the mama-to-be feel right at home.

Decor galore

When you're decorating for a shabby chic baby shower, keep the colors muted and the patterns simple, such as florals or stripes. Combine pale pinks, yellows, blues and greens with beige or white to create an old-fashioned feel. Wrap tables and chairs with ruffled fabric skirts, which will not only look beautiful but also create impromptu storage spaces under the furniture for party supplies or gifts. To make a baby shower banner, use pinking shears to cut out rectangles or triangles from pastel felt and link them together with floral or striped ribbon. For a vintage look, set the tables with milk glass serving dishes and fresh flowers.

Chic invitations

Create shabbilicious invitations by utilizing the scrapbooking section of your local craft supply store. Make the base of the invitations with chintz and a mix of striped and floral card stock. Cut out an oval or rectangle from solid pastel paper using pinking shears or a paper edging hole punch. Write the information about the shower across the pastel cutout, and highlight it with rubber stamp letters and a brown or gray ink pad. Avoid using black ink; it may appear too harsh or modern. Attach the cutout to the invitation base with a glue stick, or make the shape pop out from the page by using an adhesive foam square. Trim the invitation by gluing fabric ribbon around the edge.

Shabby chic magnifique

Look for baby shower gift ideas that reflect the new mom's passion for shabby chic: old-fashioned lace and cotton baby clothes, cloth diapers, hand-knit baby blankets and bonnets, shabby picture frames and a ruffled breastfeeding cover. If you can't find such gifts in stores, you can always make your own handmade baby shower gifts.

Old-fashioned nibbles

When planning the food for a shabby chic baby shower, think about what hosts might have served 100 years ago. A decadent vanilla cake, our Baby Booties Cake or stacked cupcakes can serve as the centerpiece. Include some old-fashioned favorites, like finger sandwiches made with cucumber or watercress, lady fingers, petit fours and a milk glass bowl filled with fresh fruit. For that special touch, trim off the edges of the finger sandwiches, just like people used to do back in the day. Neatly arrange all the nibbles in beautiful, appetizing patterns on your serving dishes. Not handy in the kitchen? Don't worry; you can find old-fashioned finger foods at many grocery stores or bakeries.

Shabbify baby shower games

Baby shower games can transform a mild event into a lively affair in the blink of an eye, and adding a few shabby chic elements can really bring your whole party together. Give a regular ol' baby shower bingo game a chic twist by giving each guest vintage-inspired rubber stamps to mark their bingo cards. A few weeks before the event, ask guests to send you copies of their baby pictures, which you can have reprinted with a vintage, sepia finish. Pin each picture on a cork board decorated with floral or striped ribbon and have the guests guess who belongs to each baby photo. Or, ask every guest to bring along a vintage children's book with the title concealed by a book cover. Each person reads the first page of her book, and the guest who guesses the most book titles correctly wins.