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How much do you spend on shower gifts?

Ali de Bold

Baby shower? Wedding shower?

I was at two showers this weekend. At one of them, the gifts were extremely extravagant.  I'm not exaggerating when I say each person must have spent between $200 - $500. While I was thrilled for my friend to have everything she could possibly need for her wee one, I was shocked at the amount people spent.  Maybe it's because I'm from Winnipeg where people are more conservative in general, or maybe I'm out of touch when it comes to the amount people are spending these days.

How much on average do you spend on a shower gift for a wedding or baby shower?
Jun 28, 2011 @ 02:32 pm

16 Replies


From The Heart

I think a nice shower gift is home baked goods. A basket filled with cookies and pies is a really sweet gesture and it is truly from the heart. It is also a lot less expensive then other gift options you could give.
Jun 28, 2011 @ 03:00 pm
Ali de Bold

Home made gifts are really sweet

If you do purchase gifts though, how much would you spend?
Jun 28, 2011 @ 04:19 pm


I have been to baby showers before where the expectant mother was registered so in that case, it was a bit easier since it was like we were given a budget. Although, I don't really think that this is the norm. Otherwise, I guess it partially depends on how well you know the mother and if they (the mom-to-be) has ever given you any baby shower/wedding shower etc. gifts. Generally, though in my position I would stick to under $100 unless it is a very very very good friend or family member. I would try and go in on a gift with another friend too maybe to lessen the trouble and cost.
Jun 28, 2011 @ 04:49 pm

Gifts on a budget

I've never been to a baby shower, but I do enjoy giving a good gift. Like GlamGal said, a gift from the heart is always more meaningful than the most expensive baby toy. For example, if you know the mother well enough to be invited then you probably know what she likes, so if she is having mad chocolate cravings, stock her up for a lifetime. Or something else baby-friendly that the parents will like. I know a friend of mine got her face printed on a onesie for her friend's shower.
Jun 28, 2011 @ 04:59 pm

Shower virgin...

Not that I've never showered or anything, just haven't attended one.
I have noticed however that as I get older, and due to living in a city, gifts for various occasions are a lot higher in price than expected!
I was about to talk about a registry, just like what Alexjc suggested, but I've noticed these registries start at like...$90 for the cheapest gift!

But I can't really offer any helpful suggestions :(. Maybe babyshower101 can offer some ideas?
Jun 28, 2011 @ 05:17 pm


Just like wedding gifts, I feel that what you spend for a baby shower gift is really reflective of how well you know the person. However, it's not coloured by the fact that they're feeding you overpriced rubber chicken like at a wedding.

For my best friend I can't remember what I spent, but I chose a bunch of items that were very personal. A few books that had been my favourite as a child (and wrote in them), a really pretty blanket, and a bunch of other useful items. Because I don't have kids it was really hard to know what to get, what would be something that she'd use and appreciate versus something that would just collect dust in the corner of a nursery.

I think a good rule of thumb is, take what you'd spend on a birthday present for that friend (a present, dinner and going out) and use that as a guide. It's this kid's first birthday, so to speak, so a big one. Does that make sense?
Jun 28, 2011 @ 08:42 pm


Also a shower virgin..I think it depends on the person the shower is for. If it's for a close friend or family member then maybe spend more than on a friend that you may not be as close with. I do think that 500 is a little too much so maybe my budget will be from 100 - 300?
Jun 28, 2011 @ 10:07 pm

Wow Ali I'm with you and I'm from Ont.

They spent way more then I would have expected my guests
to spend when I had my baby shower. I didn't have a wedding shower, but
have bin to many of both over the years.

Years ago we'd usually used what ever we spent at the wedding as a guide
to what you spent when the couple had they're first baby, but that got
shot out the window when people started using those store registration.
My Aunts daughter just got married last year and sent a list of things
she had on her registrations for each store. I
couldn't believe the things this girl was asking people to buy her!
Nothing was under $100. As I recall she even had a stove on the list,
like that was going to happen! Then she expected more gifts at the
actually wedding on top of money for the meal. I found it all to be
pretty tacky and never went to the shower, or her wedding after I saw
how greedy she looked. I also only met the girl a few times in my life,
so it wasn't like we were close. For the last baby shower I went to,
that was about seven years ago, I just bought her a nice diaper bag and
filled it with every thing I new I used with my boy's and a few extra's
like baby nail clippers and a little book for the mother to write in
after the baby arrived. The Grandparents usually were the ones that
bought the big ticket items for the baby at the showers. Like the car
seats, strollers, things like that. Everyone else bought sleepers,
blankets, bottles if the mother was bottle feeding, monitors.
!t was never more then $50 to $80, $100 at the most, but never into
$200 and higher. Some people even made the blankets and bibs themselves
and no one ever though bad about what was given and what they received.
Things sure have changed over the years haven't they.
Jun 29, 2011 @ 10:10 am

good question!

I recently went to a friends baby shower and I bought a bunch of stuff that I thought her baby could use: a set of the "colic-free" bottles, blankets, clothes, and this reallyyyyy gorgeous beige-golden, golden-on-golden embossed print quilt-ish thingie with a zip and hoody. You can put your baby in it and zip him up and leave him on the bed nice and cozy, that way he can't roll out of the bed either, you can also put it in a car seat. I loved it, and wanted one for my own, but couldn't justify the buy :(

I know that some cultures are big on gold and jewelery expect / look highly upon gold gifts. So even a small baby chain is more appreciated and thought of as a 'big gift' than what I gave. Even though a small gold baby chain will often cost much less than real baby items. Anyways I don't buy into that mentality, so I give what I feel is a good gift; what I would want to give my own baby when the time comes.

Nowadays gifts have become a prestige thing. The bigger and more expensive your gift, the more prestigious you are. I think expecting large gifts, and especially registering for gifts is very tacky. People should gift how they want without any expectations. My husband and I when throwing our wedding reception party specifically put in the invitation cards that we don't want any gifts, and if they feel they must give a gift then please donate to X Y Z charities at your own discretion. We were very happy with that, and that way no one is made to feel embarrassed on how big of a box they're carrying.
Jun 29, 2011 @ 11:49 am


"wanted one for my own" meaning, i wanted the quilt zip hoody thingie (i'm sure it has a name, I just don't know what it is!) for myself. I don't have a baby so my "own" isn't a baby, but anyways...just thought I should clarify :)
Jun 29, 2011 @ 11:51 am

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