It’s Christening Season again…
I don’t remember my christening, obviously, but it was very 1980. Guests dined on vol-au-vents while knocking back Lambrusco. Relatives in their best C&A clothes filled the air with Rothmans fumes and I was shrouded in gold jewelry and a big muffin dress!
Today however, christenings are far more chic affairs. We can thank Prince George for bringing them back in vogue. Cheap wine has been replaced with Proseco, lacey gowns have been updated with baby suits and bunting. Well, there’s still bunting…
So now Boo is four months old, it was time for his christening. However, organising a party while babysitting isn’t the easiest to do. So I decided I would take on the challenge of organising it online. There’s nothing you can’t buy on the web, and this was going to be a modern baptism anyway. With the exception of the Church and reception venue, which needed to be visited, I decided to do everything else online.
The day was beautiful and just as I had hoped it would be. To my amazement, Boo didn’t even cry when the water was poured on his head! My top tip is to keep the venues close to each other, which helps with logistics. And if like me, you’re strapped for time – definitely do the rest online.
Here’s what we did….
THE CHURCH & RECEPTION
The only bit of the baptism we didn’t do online. I chose my local Church, which required a ‘baptism session’ beforehand and donation of £50. It was very simple to book, and having it local made everything a lot easier on the day. The reception was a five-minute walk away and a restaurant very welcoming of families.
Forget the high street, when it comes to bespoke invites the best and most unique invitations can be found online. Etsy have a great selection of original designs, like these ones (ten for £6.50). I’m also a fan of Not On the High Street, and shortlisted these Noah’s Ark Prints (12 for £18.60). However, in the end, I opted for a very simple picture of my son, designed and printed on Amazon (12 for £10).
It’s refreshing and surprising to know that the Church has no rules about outfits. The only pre-requisite is a white shawl for symbolic effect.
If there’s one thing we’ve learnt from K-Middy standing on the stairs of the Lindo wing, it’s that a shawl maketh an outfit!
I wanted a beautiful detailed shawl that would be elegant, soft and comforting. I found exactly what I was looking for at JoJo Maman Bebe
It was such good value and looked more expensive than it was. It also looked remarkably like the one Princess Charlotte was first photographed in. Boo loved being swaddled in it during the ceremony and it looked fantastic in all the photos. The great thing is that we’ll be able to use this again as a baby blanket, making it a great investment. Be sure to open it up and wash it beforehand, as there’s a few creases from it being folded. (‘Traditional Newborn Shawl, £22 jojomamanbebe.co.uk )
Underneath the shawl you’re going to need a snazzy outfit. There’s no shortage of traditional gowns, frilly dresses and cute romper suits, if you’re into that thing. But they’re not exactly cheap – this unisex pure silk smock dress for instance will set you back £60 (Marks and Spencer). I also toyed with this pretty awesome little romper suit from John Lewis, which was only £35.
However, I’m a modern Mum, so love this M&S three-piece set (see picture) or this super cute bodysuit-shirt and dungarees set get my vote (£17 from Vertbaudet.co.uk).
To top the outfit off, I wanted some snazzy shoes. I admit I did look in a few shops, but was pretty underwhelmed. I should’ve stuck to online, which had much more to offer.
All my christenings came at once when I discovered these beauties from My 1st Years AND they can be personalised! They arrived speedily in the most gorgeous turquoise box reminiscent of those Tiffany’s folk. A lovely keepsake, and the boots – well they perfectly completed the outfit giving it a fun modern look.
Having his initials on the side gives them a special feel and there were lots of compliments on them. Also, since they had laces, they stayed on ALL DAY. Winner!
We ordered size 0-6 which were a little big on him, but on the upside we’ll get lots of use out of them in the months to come.
(Personalised High Top Trainers – £20, www.my1styears.com)
If you’ve ever been to a wedding, you’ll know that the food and drink is all that people talk about. Christenings are no different.
I was starting to feel glad about my online experiment, as there’s no way I’d have the time or inclination to get my Mary Berry’s together and start baking!
Instead I found Baker Days – an online bakery with a cake for every occasion and picked this cake with a traditional Victoria sponge filling. It could be personalised, so we had little Boo’s name printed across it – just incase you didn’t know it was all about him! The design was cute and it was reasonably priced, so I thought I’d give it a go.
It arrived promptly three days before the baptism (they last up to two weeks), smelling divine and packaged well for transporting.
We opted for the small cake, which perfectly provided 12 portions for our guests. As the cake was small, it wasn’t a centrepiece, so if you’re hoping for something eye-catching, go for the medium size. Also, while the design was lovely, the printing was pixilated close up.
They say they proof is in the pudding, and it did taste good, but more supermarket quality rather than homemade. Nonetheless, it saved me having to get my baking gloves on!
(Small christening cake £26.99 – Baker Days)
We didn’t have a gift list, because baby has been spoilt rotten. However if we had, I would have suggested this online jewelers that` produce teeny-weeny fingerprints of your loved ones on jewellery. Plus they’re a small little British company, so I’m all for supporting them – Lastingtouch.co.uk
A FEW OTHER BITS
You could spend a lifetime online, so here’s just a few other websites that came in handy…
We didn’t want to go overboard, with the decorations, but if you’re looking for something fun, it’s worth saying hello to Hello Party
If you’re looking for some alternative words to say, then these readings might come in handy – Classic FM – Readings
If you decide to carry the after party on at home, you’ll need some fine Proseco (naturally!) and Waitrose cellar stock them for £7.99 – Waitrose – Prosecco
So there you have it. One big fat baptism organised from the comfort of my home, and I’m so glad I did. When your strapped for time, on a budget and want to do things with a bit of personality, there’s nothing that quite beats the web.
If you’re an online fiend like us – you can follow the suppliers mentioned above at:
@jojomamanbebe | @amazon | @etsyuk | @notonthehighst | @vertbaudetuk | @marksandspencer | @bakerdays | @my1styears | @lastingtouch | @hellopartyuk | @waitrose
Milk Drunk Diary is an editorial blogzine based in the UK. We buy, borrow and receive products to test and review. Our opinions are always honest and our own.