All Your Baby Sprinkle Etiquette Questions, Answered (2024)

In the history of preparing for little ones, baby sprinkles — which are more low-key baby showers to welcome second (or third, or fourth) babies — are a relatively new phenomenon. So naturally, there are lots of questions about what is acceptable and what might not be.

The key to ababy sprinkle is that, unlike a shower, it doesn’t focus on stocking new parents with everything they need for their baby-to-be. It’s a celebration of a new life — which is always appropriate, whether the baby is the first or the sixth.

With the emphasis placed squarely on the support and love of your closest family and friends rather than a focus on big-ticket gifts, a baby sprinkleis a party that, ideally, is relaxed, warm and laid-back. While there are no hard rules when it comes to baby sprinkle etiquette, here are some tips to help you feel prepared to throw (or attend!) a sprinkle party.

Who hosts a baby sprinkle?

While there are plenty of differences between a baby sprinkle and a baby shower, the host for both events is often a close friend or sibling. The host of your baby sprinkle may be the same person who threw your first shower, or it may be someone different. Of course, anyone may throw you a baby sprinkle, whether it be a co-worker or another relative.

Just like withbaby showers, the host generally organizes all of the details, so you can rest easy and soak up the celebrations rather than worrying about all the ins and outs of planning.

Who should you invite to a baby sprinkle?

While baby showers are typically larger and more involved, baby sprinkles are often intimate and casual, centering around support and encouragement rather than presents and funny games. That's why lots of parents prefer to keep the invitation list small, surrounding themselves with close friends and family rather than a large crowd of loved ones.

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Is it okay to have more than one baby sprinkle?

Yes, it's fine to have more than one sprinkle. If a co-worker and your best friend offer to throw showers, and they’re different groups of friends, it’s perfectly acceptable to accept both invitations. The same goes for sprinkles in honor of baby number three or four— if a loved one offers to organize the celebration, feel free to graciously say yes.

Baby sprinkle etiquette for parents-to-be

While every baby sprinkle is unique to the host and the guest of honor, these etiquette tips may help you feel more prepared:

  • Don’t expect someone to throw you a sprinkle. And don’t bring it up to anyone else either — especially not whomever threw your first shower. Leave it to your other close friends or relatives to think of it on their own.
  • Register for (smaller) gifts. But step away from the scanning gun! Yes, ababy registry is okay, but it shouldn’t, and won’t need to be, as long as your first list (and it shouldn’t be on the invitation — instead it should be given to guests on an as-requested basis or included on a separate card). Set your sights on everyday essentials, like diapers, wipes, baby wash and the like, plus one or two big ticket items you absolutely need (such as a newinfant car seat or double stroller).
  • Don’t forget to thank the host. A batch of homemade cookies or muffins with a handwritten note is inexpensive and sure to be appreciated. If you’re not up to baking (or delivering anything for that matter), you can't go wrong sending a bouquet of flowers.
  • Send thank-you notes. Even if few or no gifts were given at your sprinkle, it’s still nice to let people know you appreciated their presence and support. And just in case baby arrives early, prepare the thank you notes in advance and send along with the birth announcement.

Baby sprinkle etiquette for guests

Many guests who attend baby sprinkles opt to bring a gift — but what you offer is totally up to you. If you're not able to make it, it's up to you whether or not you send a gift. Either way, it's a good idea to RSVP so that the host can prepare for the event adequately.

From the What to Expect editorial team andHeidi Murkoff,author ofWhat to Expect When You're Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading ourmedical review and editorial policy.

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All Your Baby Sprinkle Etiquette Questions, Answered (2024)


What is the etiquette for a baby sprinkle? ›

Baby sprinkle etiquette for guests

Many guests who attend baby sprinkles opt to bring a gift — but what you offer is totally up to you. If you're not able to make it, it's up to you whether or not you send a gift. Either way, it's a good idea to RSVP so that the host can prepare for the event adequately.

How many people should be at a sprinkle? ›

Since a sprinkle is a generally casual affair, you can invite as many or as few people as you'd like. Typically, though, a baby sprinkle has a shorter guest list, with only close friends and family invited. Big brother or sister can come to this one, too.

What if no one offers to throw you a baby shower? ›

If you're worried that no one will offer to throw a baby shower for you, talk to a close friend or a relative and, if you're comfortable doing so, ask her to take the reins.

How much do you give for a sprinkle? ›

Sprinkle Strategy for Gift-Giving

Consider Convenience: A $20 to $50 investment in a practical present like easy-change pajamas ensures your gift is both well-used and cherished. Enhance the Essentials: Sprinkle gifts often complement the baby's existing collection – consider what they have and fill in the gaps.

Who pays for a baby sprinkle? ›

So it is normal for the cost to be split between the host and the key organisers. This way the cost is shared with her closest family and friends. Guests are not expected to pay for attending the baby shower. Especially since they will already be spending money on a baby shower present.

Do you serve food at a baby sprinkle? ›

Menu Planning: Since baby sprinkles are more relaxed, consider serving finger foods, desserts, and light refreshments. Ask the expectant parents if they have any specific dietary preferences or restrictions.

Who hosts a sprinkle shower? ›

While baby sprinkles are traditionally hosted by close family members and friends, Gosselin says it's becoming increasingly common for the parents-to-be to host an event themselves. “It allows them to have more control over the execution and timeline, which is often a big factor,” she explains.

Do you play games at a baby sprinkle? ›

While traditional baby shower games still work at a sprinkle, you can plan on simpler activities, too, like making a DIY shower gift as a group.

Can I wear jeans to a baby sprinkle? ›

Can I Wear Jeans to a Baby Shower? This one comes down to the dress code and location. If the dress code is casual, semi casual, or, in some cases, business casual, you're in the clear for jeans. For smart casual, co*cktail, and lounge suit dress codes, jeans are not appropriate.

Do people still do favors at baby showers? ›

Nowadays, baby shower favors range from self-care items like handmade soaps and bespoke candles to practical items like mixing spoons and drink koozies—you can really turn almost anything you want into a party favor. A couple things to keep in mind: Party favors are by no means a requirement for throwing a baby shower.

Who pays for baby shower stuff? ›

The hostess traditionally pays for the baby shower and its associated costs. However, the hostess can divide up the responsibility and costs by asking a few close family members or friends to co-host.

Do you have to give party favors at a baby shower? ›

If you're wondering whether or not you should provide party favors to your guests, honestly, it's really up to you. Party favors are a nice gesture to thank guests for coming, but they can quickly get expensive. If you do choose to give party favors, feel free to cap your spending at just a few dollars per guest.

Do you open gifts at a baby sprinkle? ›

So you're "sprinkling" them with baby essentials—and love, of course. The parents-to-be can open gifts during the sprinkle, but it's not necessary and doesn't need to be the event's focal point.

How long should a baby sprinkle last? ›

Baby sprinkles aren't meant to last as long as traditional baby showers. While guests will be at a baby shower typically around two to three (or up to four) hours, most baby sprinkles end after about an hour and a half to two hours.

Do people register for a baby sprinkle? ›

Whether you're expecting your second child shortly after you've had your first or there's been a larger gap between them, it's a good idea to make a registry for a baby sprinkle. A registry gives your guests a guideline of which items are most useful to you and your growing household.

Do you bring a gift to a sprinkle? ›

The biggest question I receive about Sprinkles is : Should guests bring presents? Generally, the answer is no or something small. Now some pregnant moms will retort, “But my friends really want to bring me a gift.” That may be true, and they might bring one, but the event itself shouldn't be regarded as another shower.

Who should be invited to a baby sprinkle? ›

Since a sprinkle is a more low-key affair than a shower, it's typically a smaller gathering of only family and close friends. Some moms-to-be opt for a kid-friendly party, since they already have the new baby's older sibling at home. Baby sprinkles are more laid back and typically shorter, too.


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