By Pratibha Soni & Priyanka Chopra
So, the past couple of weeks have been absolutely fun and super duper busy. We’ve been busy planning a warm intimate fun and laughter-filled baby shower for our beautiful and pregnant friend, Juhi.
We first wanted it to be a surprise for Juhi but remembering the Rachel fiasco (FRIENDS!) we decided it was better to take her into confidence and invite all of her close friends.
The first step was to decide on the date & the guest list and with Juhi’s help we received this almost a month in advance. Since there were close to 35 invitees, we decided to create a what’s app group to make everyone a part of the planning. After all it was a wonderful way for girls to come together and share their wisdom. But soon we started to realize that we had ideas pouring in every minute and it started becoming increasingly difficult to keep up with everyone. The only next logical step was to create a core team of 3-5 friends.
One thing that all of us agreed on was that we wanted the venue to be outdoorsy.
So, we decided to host the party at Priyanka’s place as it was large but at the same time cosy and personal enough to make all the guests and of course Juhi feel special and preserve the initimacy of the event.
We started with our first meeting at Alliance Française where we discussed various ideas on theme, food, games, dress code etc. We assigned responsibilities to make it easier to coordinate as well as take decisions. By the time we had our second baby shower meet, we were pretty sure of what we wanted as we had exchanged various emails with ideas from the internet, pinterest, blogs etc.
We sent out invites [courtesy: internet] by email to everyone to make sure they had blocked the date.
Our first challenge was to have a simple yet elegant baby shower. So, we planned, coordinated, designed and styled the baby shower to have a very neutral theme. Since the gender of the baby was still a mystery, we decided on “What’s it gonna bee?”. Yellow was the obvious choice of color and since we were hosting it outdoors, it was only natural to have green as the second colour.
Gifts for Juhi
The next step was gifts for Juhi. Since, we wanted to be in sync with some Indian traditions, gifts coupons from various baby stores seemed to be the best option. But we still wanted Juhi to take back some personalized gifts. So [again with the help of various blogs] we decided to request everyone to “bring a book” for Baby Upadhyay. Since Juhi is an avid reader, we wanted her baby to have his/her “my first book collection” ready well in advance.
We also asked everyone to send in a short video (about 30 secs each) for Juhi. This was especially helpful forthose guests who weren’t able to make it to the shower, Juhi’s little nephews and ofcourse a cute short message from Kunal. Once we’d received them all, we made a long 10 minute video for Juhi to see at the party.
The next thing was a guest list tree. We requested our guests to print an impression of their thumb on a board which looked like a tree. Juhi was gifted that board after the party was over. Along with that, we asked our guests to write a personal message on a diaper so that whenever Juhi or Kunal would pull out a diaper to clean the little one’s naughty deed, it would bring a smile on their face when they read the message.
One of the other tasks for all guests was to make a mini Upadhyay baby using clay. All the babies were gifted to Juhi at the end.
Bring a Book!
Designing the cake was one of the most challenging as well as fun activity. Since we wanted it to go with Juhi’s personality as well as to have a bit of humour, we zeroed in on having a cake which depicted, “a night in the life of mommy Juhi”. Yes, so we had Kunal sleeping, Juhi reading books on parenting and of course our baby Upadhyay playing. We got our multi-talented friend, Amishi [Sweet Tooth Fairy] to bake it for us.
As it was Juhi’s special day, we wanted her to stand out from the rest of us, so we dressed ourselves in cream and white and accessorized with green and yellow, to go with the theme. What’s interesting is everyone turned out to be a total fashionista even if they had to go out and buy an outfit! We had people turning up in yellow nail paint, green footwear and all sorts of creative ensembles. Juhi was so proud! (pics in the next post)
In keeping with the sentiment of intimacy and love, we decided every bit of the decorations should be personally crafted by us.
We wanted Juhi to feel like she stepped into a page from pinterest and so we designed one table, “our fancy table” which had a beautiful backdrop of “what’s it gonna bee?”. We hung little bees along with the yellow and green balloons. We decorated it with lovely yellow and white flowers. It also had these tiny cutouts of onesies, bibs, bottles that had funny phrases on them. The most loved by everyone was, “9 months ago, my mom read 50 shades of grey”.
We wanted our fancy table to also have food and drinks that looked synchronized with the rest of the theme. So, we decided on our lovely personalized water bottles and ice cubes with either a slice of lemon or a mint leaf to go with the theme. Green Olives, Khaman Dhoklas, Patras and khandvis (which were a big hit with our out of town guests) were also part of the fancy table. We also had baby shower cookies specially designed by Anushree Kothari Bhandari from The Orange Zest. They were both cute and yummy and an instant favorite!
So, this looks like a lot of work, doesn’t it? In Part-II we’ll bring to you the rest of the planning and the fun we had at the party!
Harsh Limbachia (Stereography)