You’ve got the party planning routine down. A few months out from your friend’s due date, you set up a text chain or email with the hosts to divide up duties. The group orders cookies, gifts and decorations. The big day arrives and, after a quick set up, you’re ready to celebrate. 

Then COVID-19 happened, and many of us were left wondering how to mark this important occasion in our loved ones’ lives while keeping the parents-to-be and guests safe. Hosting a social distancing-approved baby shower, sprinkle or gender reveal can be tricky. But it can be done safely and successfully with these four foolproof tips:

Blow your guests away

Balloon arches are a fun and affordable option for any special event. Whether you choose to use them as wayfinding signs for a drive-by shower or as a photo backdrop for an intimate outdoor sprinkle, you can easily modify the colors, shapes or overall scale to fit your needs. You can even fill large matte balloons with pink or blue confetti for virtual or in-person gender reveals.

Create a grand entrance

Due to social distancing guidelines, many showers and sprinkles are now being held outside. But that doesn’t mean you can’t welcome guests to your home in style. Add a custom door wreath or handpainted sign featuring the baby’s name or gender, which the parents can take with them to the hospital or hang in the nursery. 

Make it a piece of cake

Communal food is discouraged during COVID-19. So, forget the traditional sweet treat and make a DIY diaper cake with a vase of flowers in the center instead. Add it to your gift table and accent it with a diaper bag or baby bottles filled with wildflowers or other seasonal varieties for colorful, yet practical décor.

Share parting-gifts

No matter the occasion, everyone loves a party favor. Pass out mini flower arrangements, brightly colored bath bombs, individually wrapped cookies or, in theme with this current season of life, COVID-19 kits with mini hand sanitizers and cloth face coverings—after the party or as guests drive by.

Chris Norwood, AIFD, is the vice president of Tipton & Hurst, one of the state’s leading florists since 1886 with five locations in central Arkansas. For more information, visit