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Simple DIY Baby Shower Gifts

Simple DIY Baby Shower Gifts

By Melissa Summers

I’m a big fan of DIY baby shower gifts. And before you get nervous and think I’m going to recommend that you decoupage a crib for the mother-to-be, let me say that while I love a good handmade gift, I prefer things which don’t require painting or sewing or any special skills like knitting. Although, in my opinion, you really should learn to knit. It’s so relaxing, and handmade baby sweaters are the sweetest gift. Also babies are small so their sweaters take nearly no time.

Anyway, here are five easy handcrafted baby gifts that you can put together at home, no knitting required.

Welcome, Baby!

1. Theme basket. This involves no crafting skills at all, unless you count tying a bow as crafting. Choose a theme for your basket, ideally something the new parents will not have thought to stock up on or will need in greater quantities than they think they will, and arrange it in a cute basket or tote. If the new parents are interested in making their own baby food, for example, you could do a basket with all the things they will need, including a cook book (AlphaMom’s Amy recommendsCooking for Baby“) and ice cube trays (to freeze the food). Other options would be a nursing basket (nipple cream, nursing pads and a pair of super-soft pajamas), a monthly photo basket (signs for each month, a pretty blanket for a backdrop, a gift certificate for prints or a photo book) or a laundry supplies basket (Dreft and stain sticks and lingerie bags to contain all the teeny tiny socks).

2. Bushel of books. Gather your family’s favorite children’s books and pack them in a cute bushel basket wrapped in cellophane. Mix up board books and picture books for bigger tots, because babies grow fast. Isabel is a fan of the Baby Lit board books — classic literature for little hands! And I love these little photo books — like a tiny photo album for the baby. You (or the parents) can fill it with pictures of people who live far away, like aunts and uncles and grandparents. Or you can just put your own picture on every page because obviously you’re going to be the baby’s favorite. Also, a pro tip: Skip the classics, like “Goodnight Moon” and “Pat the Bunny,” because everyone buys those and the mom-to-be doesn’t need six copies of the same book.

3. Portable diaper changing station. I never used our changing table when my kids were in diapers (thankfully, ours was just the top of a dresser with a pad). Instead, I kept changing supplies in a basket in the living room where we spent most of our time. This was especially useful when my son was a baby because leaving my two-and-a-half-year-old daughter alone while changing her rival’s diaper could have resulted in some serious mayhem. A lightweight woven basket filled with all the diaper changing essentials — diapers, wipes, a washable pad (or three) to protect the floor or sofa, and some really great diaper cream — would make an excellent gift. And the basket can be repurposed later to hold toys or laundry! Or, diapers for the next baby.

Best Baby Shower Gifts4. Homemade bibs. Martha Stewart’s hand towel bibs require a very, teeny, tiny, miniscule amount of sewing. I know I said no sewing, but these are too cute to leave off my list — and think how impressed your friends will be when you coyly admit that yes, you made these bibs, with your own hands. Aside from finishing the edges where you cut the opening for the bib, these come together with one simple lollipop shaped cut. Bibs are always useful — I had a couple of very drooly little teethers, so I know first hand how helpful it is to have a lot of bibs around. And cute bibs are really a bonus because honestly, a new mom can only stand so many golf-themed “I LOVE DADDY” bibs.

5. Nightlight shade. If you refuse to sew but still want to give something you made with your actual hands, you could put together a simple nightlight shade. This is just cutting and pasting, like in kindergarten! You’ll need a small nightlight with a shade, pretty fabric and fabric glue. Cut the fabric to fit over the shade, glue it into place, and you’re done. The baby’s parents will thank you when they are stumbling into the nursery at 3:00 am and your adorable nightlight prevents them from crashing into something and breaking a toe.

Finally, if you’re feeling super creative, you could make our Really Useful Diaper Cake. (Hint: The “really useful” part isn’t the diapers, it’s the bottle of champagne in the center.) Although if you give that as a gift it pretty much guarantees that all of your friends will get pregnant so that they can have a booze-filled diaper cake, too.

What’s your go-to baby shower gift?

More from AlphaMom

10 Outside-the-Box, Clutter-Free Gifts for the New Mom
Advice Smackdown: Hostess Gifts for Baby Showers
The AlphaMom Ultimate Baby Registry Checklist
Skip the Shower — Have a Sip and See Instead

Photo source: Depositphoto/amarosy, Martha Stewart

Melissa Summers
About the Author

Melissa Summers

Melissa Summers was a regular contributor writing Melissa’s Buzz Off.


Melissa Summers was a regular contributor writing Melissa’s Buzz Off.

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  • Meredith

    February 1, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    I love the idea of a diaper changing station. I have many baby showers coming up. Now for those of us who do not have kids yet- what all goes into the caddy?

  • Kate

    February 1, 2008 at 1:23 pm

    Meredith, I would line it with some cloth diapers (they make great burp cloths) or a receiving blanket, then put in a small folded changing pad, a package of newborn size diapers, a package of wipes, some hand sanitizer, and most importantly, butt paste:

  • A

    February 1, 2008 at 10:29 pm

    Have you seen the baby sock sushi? I am dying to try this one to give as a gift:

  • j3n

    February 2, 2008 at 2:40 am

    The only thing I would add to Kate’s list is lap pads for use on top of the lower half of the changing pad cover (unless you want to wash your cover a million times).
    Buttpaste didn’t work so well for us so we used Burt’s Bees Diaper Ointment.
    I carried their Baby Bee Getting Started Kit in my diaper bag, it was so convenient to have small sizes of everything I used at home that I just kept refilling them when I’d run out.

  • Nell

    February 2, 2008 at 5:53 pm

    I received a basket full of supplies for breastfeeding — book on the subject, Lanisoh, breast pads, water bottle, snack mix, etc. This was one of the most useful things I got, especially since as a first-time mom I really had no clue.


    February 3, 2008 at 1:10 pm

    Tomo & Edie have a great organic baby kimono that would be a great gift to include!
    I’d also add a bottle of wine for the mom!

  • KUchick

    February 5, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    I am totally stupid about crafty stuff like this, but I am intrigued by the hand towel bibs, since regular bibs seem puny. What is the teensy bit of sewing involved that Melissa alludes to? That link to the Martha Stewart site doesn’t mention sewing. Do you sew on the tape? Is it not sticky like actual tape? Remember, I told you I am stupid about this stuff!

  • Memaw

    July 27, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    You have some really great handmade gift ideas. I posted a link to you on my gift blog today, because sometimes it takes only a little effort to make a super special gift rather than buying one. I really like the diaper changing tote; it looks like a real time and effort saver.