Avoiding an overload of gifts — The Bump
Baby Showers

Avoiding an overload of gifts

My husband and I have big families and a large church community that will definitely want to throw us a shower or two for our first baby (due in August). However, we have a small home and are not at all interested in collecting a lot of stuff. I won't refuse a shower as I love the thought of celebrating with our friends, but I'd love to find a way to tactfully ask for either contributions to big items or absolute necessities like diapers and wipes. I know that may sound rude, but I feel it would be worse to not indicate our preferences and end up returning most of the stuff people get us. In all honesty, I'd rather have guests make donations to help children in third-world countries, but I know we'd end up getting gifts anyway. Any ideas?

Re: Avoiding an overload of gifts

  • I agree that tons of unneeded items are a nuisance, and that's just one reason I'm not a fan of big showers. There are plenty of other ways to celebrate/spend time with with your family and friends!
    [Deleted User]
  • Thanks, ladies! You're right - can't have it both ways! Looks like I'll need a shower alternative ... I would feel like a heel for having one and then returning most of the gifts.
  • What PP said. Turn down the offer of a shower or accept everything you are given graciously. Thank everyone, send thank you notes. Then donate or exchange what you don't need.

  • It's pretty much a bride askinggg for cash instead of a gift. We would all love cash but there's no polite way to ask. Same with this situation. I would love everyone to buy me baby furniture but there's no polite way of asking
  • I've thought about this too, since we also do not want a bunch of stuff. My idea is, instead of having a registry, to say "We are not registered because we would prefer hand-me-down items. We would love a used toy, book, or piece of clothing." Would this be considered rude or anything??
  • Or maybe only put a few big ticket items on the registry?
    We got a ton of stuff that I just regifted or returned but then I used the credit to buy things I needed. I put a lot if clothes on the registry and then marked them as recieved so that people could see I already had plenty of them. I still got a few but that's the norm. I did get a few gift cards which was awesome.
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  • You can always return unwanted/unneeded items, but as far as gifts go,you can't dictate what someone else will do it off the kindness of their heart. Register for what you will need. If your worried about getting things that will take up to much space, register for babies essentials (toiletries and such) and maybe some baby space savers or organizers
  • We're in the same boat. We're doing a registry because there are some things we'll genuinely need. Put those big items and small items on there. People will find others to chip in for expensive items. If you're thinking of items you don't normally buy at baby stores, you can add anything on an Amazon registry, whether Amazon sells it or not.

    As for a charitable donation, nobody should be offended to get an invitation that lists a registry and/or name of charity you like. Casually mention it to moms/siblings... I've found them to be great for spreding the word.
  • I'm in the same situation.  I don't want a lot of things.  Like someone mentioned above, register for essentials.  I have a list already going-- baby Tylenol, laundry detergent (bc we are cloth diapering), breastfeeding supplies (cream, nursing pads), diaper cream, baby shampoo and lotion, etc.

    You can donate any unwanted items to a children's shelter (or women's shelter) in your area.  I worked at one in college. We could always use toys, clothes, baby items, and anything else you could need in a home.  When you have so many children and babies coming through, toys and clothes wear out fast.  Also, we kept any brand new toys still in their packages in a store room and that way we could "shop" for birthdays and holidays.  There are a lot of children right here who need help.  
  • Oh, and I have to add that we felt the same about our wedding registry.  We lived together for about 3 years, so we didn't need much.  We got most of the things we needed.  I think we got about 3-4 gifts that we weren't going to use.  Things like home decor and crystal glasses.  I donated those to the animal shelter thrift shop.  
  • This is a zombie thread. The OP created this thread in January
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  • So I googled zombie baby shower, and this came up, and now I'm thinking WHO DID THIS???


    I lurk. I snark. I offer sound advice if you're not BSC. You may not like me. I'm okay with it.

  • So I googled zombie baby shower, and this came up, and now I'm thinking WHO DID THIS???

    I need to un-see this.
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