Gender reveal parties have been trending since the late 2000s and the question remains, “Am I supposed to bring a gift?”
Finally, the suspense is over. The answer is…”Yes, if you want to…and no, if you don’t.” But, there can be a lot more to it. Read on to find out all you need to know about gender reveal gift etiquette and other fun facts.
👶 What is a Gender Reveal Party?
A gender reveal is when a party is thrown to announce the sex of a baby that hasn’t been born yet. The events tend to vary a lot. Sometimes the expectant parents host the party and other times a close friend or relative throws it.
The gender is usually announced in fun and creative ways such as by releasing blue or pink balloons from a box, shooting off blue or pink fireworks, or dawning a blue or pink cake.
It’s typically the expectant parents that do the announcing since the information is gathered from the results mother-to-be’s ultrasound.
It is becoming more popular though for a close friend or relative to be given an unopened envelope with the results inside so he or she can surprise the expectant parents as well.
😶 What to Expect when You’re Expecting to Go to a Reveal
Most gender reveals are like baby showers with both expectant parents present and men as well as women relatives and friends on the guest list.
From backyard barbeques and casual gatherings to fancy dinners with all the trimmings, gender reveal parties come in all shapes and sizes. Like baby showers, they are full of joy but with an extra dose of excitement in the air, awaiting the reveal of the baby’s gender that is shroud in mystery until the climactic moment.
The sky’s the limit to the imagination that can go into a gender reveal. The event IS usually decorated in pink and blue or a gender-neutral color combination. They typically have a fun theme too like Prince and Princess, Moustaches or Lipstick, Heels or Wheels, Rifles or Ruffles, etc.
Cake is usually served and sometimes is the way the gender is revealed – blueberry or strawberry cake under the icing. Punch may flow along with the reveal and is sometimes spiked.
Entertainment is common at gender reveal parties. You’ll find bands, DJs, magicians, and comedians. Games are often played too. Sometimes guests are given a chance to guess the gender and prizes are later passed out to those who guessed correctly. Ice breaker, team-building games may be played between blue teams and pink teams.
The reveal itself is the highlight of the get-together.
Some have been so extravagant and dangerous; gender reveal parties got a bad reputation for a while, like the time a couple poured dye in a water fountain landmark in Brazil and found themselves liable for thousands.
And… the countless fires set from pink and blue fireworks including a 47,000-acre inferno, the alligator fiasco, and a gender reveal plane stunt that ended in a fatal crash. Just a remind that reveal parties that get out of hand take all the fun out of the occasion.
If you received an invitation, you’ll have a better clue as to what will be taking place – if dinner or appetizers will be served and if it is formal or informal. Some invites include information regarding a baby registry and if yours does, then yes, you should bring a gift.
📄 Some Considerations to Help You Decide
If the reveal party is held prior to a baby shower and you are going to the baby shower, there’s no real need to bring a gift unless you just want to.
If the gender reveal party is the shower, you might want to grab a gift to bring along.
Split it up
In the event that you are attending a reveal and a shower, one popular approach is to bring two gifts – one to each party – that equal what you’d normally spend on one.
That way, you get the pleasure of giving at both events without the added expense. Of course, if you can financially swing it and want to spend more, by all means do it. There really are no rigid rules.
Another way to know whether you should bring a gift to a gender reveal party or not is to simply ask the host or hostess. If the expectant parents happen to be throwing the party, that could be awkward for them and for you, however.
Play it cool
If you really want to be on the safe side, buy a gift, wrap it and keep it in the car. If you see that others brought gifts, you can run out and grab yours. If not, you’re a step ahead if there’s to be a baby shower. Or you could always give it at the time the baby is born.
Truth be told, unless you are given some guidance in an invitation or by word of mouth, you can’t be expected to know whether to bring a gift to a reveal party or not. You can follow the clues above but still; you have enough suspense to deal with wondering what the baby’s gender is. You really don’t need to have to strain your brain worrying whether you should bring a present too.
🎁 Gift Ideas for a Gender Reveal
Perhaps one reason so many people are unsure if they are expected to bring a present to a gender reveal is that in the past several decades when finding out the sex of an unborn baby has become commonplace is that expecting parents usually like to decorate the nursery in appropriate themes and to use colors that are typically associated with the baby’s gender.
They also appreciate having clothes that are specifically for a boy or girl. Picking a present can be challenging prior to the reveal.
Items that don’t matter
Most expectant parents appreciate baby toiletries since they are for boys and girls. You can get creative by assembling a gift basket together and tying it with a yellow curly ribbon and tissue or why not opt for pink and blue trimmings?
Baby blow-up bathtubs make cute alternatives to baskets. Diapers are a universal choice too. You can find instructions online to make a diaper arrangement, also called a ‘diaper cake’.
Big ticket items
If you want to spring for a larger item, you’ll have plenty of choices. Strollers, highchairs, car seats, and most other staples are not gender specific.
There’s always the thought of going in with someone else at the reveal if you have your heart set on giving a big ticket item.
‘Back in the day’, no one knew the sex of the unborn baby and showers were held all the same. Expectant mothers cleaned up on yellow, green, and white outfits, blankets, and buntings.
Primary colors are great too. You can always go with a gender-neutral gift or take your chances and be prepared to switch it out if you’re wrong.
Expectant parents appreciate gifts too. Pedicures, a massage, or even a dinner and movie night make spectacular gestures for parents-to-be, especially if there will be a dedicated baby shower where baby will receive presents.
Greenbacks are loved by males and females alike. So are gift cards. No matter what sex the little one turns out to be, cash and cards are excellent choices.
What to Spend if You Do Opt to Bring a Gift
If you elect to bring a gift or know it’s expected because you were given baby registry information or the host or hostess let you know, you’ll want to set a budget. But…how much should you spend?
The basic range is $25 USD to $100 USD, but that’s not set in stone. Most experts agree that $25 USD is sufficient for acquaintances and co-workers, $50 USD is a fair amount for friends, and $100 to $150 USD is a good budget for close family and best friends.
If you can’t afford to spend the given amount or want to spend more, that is always your prerogative.
Keep It Simple and Stress-free
Have you ever given a party and nobody came? If you have, you know – your presence is far more important than your presents.
As with most other events like bridal and baby showers, birthday events, and most other get-togethers, gender reveal parties can be stressful if you allow them to be.
There can be competition to give the best gift, shaming of those who didn’t bring one or didn’t spend enough, and all the other drama that can arise. But if you’re wise, you’ll follow your best thinking and either bring a gift or not and if you do, it will be something from your heart so it won’t matter what others think.
The fact that you took time out of your busy schedule to come celebrate baby and learn the gender is what it’s all about – or should be, at least. And if not…you might think twice about even attending.