Are you a mom-to-be who would like to ask for baby shower books instead of cards?
Are you nervous about asking your guests for something a little unconventional and looking for the right wording for the invitation?
Or maybe you’re a guest who was just asked for a book in lieu of a card and want to know what the etiquette is.
We have you covered below with a full guide on the growing trend of baby books instead of baby shower cards.
Bring A Book Instead of A Card – Ultimate Baby Shower Guide
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What is a Bring a Book Baby Shower?
A unique baby shower idea is for the host to request books instead of cards with the baby gifts.
This allows for the mom-to-be to build the baby’s library with her family and friend’s favorite books.
Typically the baby books are inscribed by the guest with a little message and their name. (We’ve included some inscription ideas below.)
When the new parents read the baby the books they will be able to read the message as part of the book.
Benefits of Baby Shower Books Instead of Greeting Cards
The benefits of baby shower books in lieu of cards are:
1. The baby gets lots of books right away
2. Cards are often thrown away or tucked away never to be read again
3. Books can be kept for any siblings born later
4. Books can be kept as keepsakes and passed down to future generations
5. The baby will be read the inscription often maintaining a connection with family and friends who aren’t near by
Negatives of Baby Shower Books Instead of Cards
While there are many benefits, some guests/hosts may find some negatives in a book baby shower. The may include:
1. Some guests may think this is an expensive swap.
A book is typically more expensive than a card, but this does not need to be the case.
The dollar store carries books, a good-excellent used condition book is acceptable and Amazon carries books that are less than $5 (the cost of a fancy baby shower card).
2. You may get some repeats.
While the odds are very low, it could happen. If this happens you can store the books in different rooms or at a grandparents house.
Related Baby Shower Gift Articles:
How to ask baby shower guests to bring books instead of a card
Requests for books are often included as a separate piece/card in the baby shower invitation.
Here are 6 different options to add in yours – original authors unknown.
One small request that won’t be too hard…
Please bring a book instead of a card.
By signing your book we’ll remember and share
Your special gift, even when you’re not there!
Why we like it: The message is clear. It also includes the ask to sign the book as well.
2. Baby’s Library
Instead of a card, we have one small request:
Please bring a book that you like best.
We hope you write a special line or two,
So that each time we read it, we think of you!
Why we like it: It entices the guest to pick their favorite, which makes the book and request more personal.
3. Please Bring a Book (instead of a card)
Whether it’s Cat in the Hat or Winnie The Pooh.
You can sign the book with a note from you!
By signing the book we will remember and share.
This special gift from you even when you’re not there.
Your book will be cherished well – loved or brand new.
Please don’t feel obligated, we’ll leave it up to you!
Why We Like It: This wording includes the option of a new or used book and also gives the guests an “out” in case they don’t want to participate.
4. Books for Baby
A small request for you, we hope it’s not hard.
To bring a book for baby, instead of a card.
It doesn’t matter if it’s well loved or brand new.
Either way your book will remind baby of you.
Please write a small message on the inside cover.
And your words will be cherished forever and ever.
Why we like it: It acknowledges that the request might be a little harder than a card, but also highlights the sentimental touch of writing a small message inside the book cover.
5. Let’s Stock Baby’s Library
Instead of bringing a greeting card, please write your wishes in your favorite children’s book for baby to cherish forever.
Why we like it: It is straightforward with a feeling of community as you all help to stock the baby’s library.
6. Books for Baby Please
Peter Rabbit or Mother Goose,
Goodnight Moon or Dr. Seuss.
Just one small request,
And we hope it’s not too hard.
Please bring a book instead of a card.
Why we like it: Including example books help guests to understand exactly what you’re asking.
What do you write in a baby book instead of a card?
A good rule of thumb is to include the date of the shower (or the year), a short note for the baby and your name.
It can be tempting to write something for the mom to be, but remember that this is a gift for the baby and will be read to the baby.
If you are struggling to find the right words, the below writing prompts can help.
1. Explain Why The Book Was Chosen
“This is my favorite book because..”
“I read this to my daughter/son..”
“I hope you like this as much as I do..”
2. Provide Some Life Advice
“Like the hero of this story I hope you learn xx “
Include a quote:
“The more that you read,
The more things you will know.
The more that you learn,
The more places you’ll go”
- Dr. Seuss
3. Wish the baby well
“I wish you all the happiness in the world”
“Welcome to the world little one! So thrilled that you are here.”
4. Be personal
“Remember, Grandma loves you!”
“I am so happy to be your Aunt, I love you so much!”
If you need more ideas check out this post:
Where Should You Write The Inscription?
Ideally on the front inside cover or the inside back cover.
If those places are covered by publisher information or content you can place a white sticker over top and write your message.
Alternatively a white sticker on the back cover can also be lovely.
Conclusion – Baby Shower Books Instead of Cards
This growing trend is great for many reasons!
Not only does your baby get a library right away, they also get to hear messages from their loved ones every time they are read their stories.