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Published: Verve Magazine, Fashion, April 2008

Fresh out of a designer baby soirée, Sitanshi Talati-Parikh contemplates the exclusivity of a generation soon to be born, who will probably never feel the warmth of a granny-crafted bootie or bib


I gasped the very instant I got a formal, evite to a baby shower. The little brats were crawling into my inbox now? The cutesy, ballooney, floral evite exploding with colour was reminding me that the clock was ticking – my grandmother-in-law’s reproving face hovered before my eyes, and I sighed, replete with the knowledge of the irrefutable truth that the pressure would mount and until I either became one of those aunties-that-never-had-kids-but-kept-attending-baby-showers, or even worse, one of the radiant, peachy-pink mothers that had cutsey baby showers thrown by a bunch of excited girlfriends. Ick. This was what life was reduced to. Shopping for babies and attending haute couture baby parties.

Mustering up courage, and looking like this was just another day, I spent my only free day of the week shopping for the tiny tot. As I entered the shop that held promise and words of encouragement for the little-somethings soon to bless your life, with absolutely adorable Anne Geddes’ baby pictures floating enticingly on the walls (wreaking havoc with your sanity if your baby dared to look any less cute), I was accosted by long counters that stretched before me and I suddenly felt a strange discomfort. Sliding down the nearest aisle, my jaw dropped as I looked at a myriad range of baby products that seemed to leap at me from the shelves. Juniper bath wash and serendipity powder, fluorescent rattles and luminous baby oil; help!

Flash forward into a chic SoBo home, where a baby shower is being organised – with larger than life helium balloons in every kiddie shape, little soap bubbles floating around, and guests floating around in bandana bibs sipping passion fruit champagne from Vera Wang crystal flutes. The celebration is under way! As I sit down, I am accosted with large 24-carat gold-tipped diaper pins, and told to get in the groove with all the baby games that have been cleverly concocted by the discerning would-be mama’s coterie. I can only think of the fact that as the baby enters this world – she is certain to be a part of the imported Russian-performer-and-celebrity-lion-birthday parties and potentially even worse, salon-and-spa bashes for the precocious five-year-old.

Nudged into sipping some sugary concoction out of baby bottles and match-ing baby names against celebrity mamas, in a test-your-celeb-prowess-contest, I quietly conceal my ignorance by downing one more flute of the bubbly and practising recently acquired knowledge of a yoga relaxation technique. My creative friend concocted a time capsule for the baby – all the invitees arrive with something of a landmark nature and surrender this to a little capsule that will keep time stagnant – until the baby is old enough to figure out what shattered the earth in the Year Of Her Birth. Bless the child that discovers that just as she was about to step into the world, daffodil yellow rocked Spring-Summer catwalks and Tamil Nadu gave way to the third sex, ForceIndia came into being and SRK got his own IPL. Whoo-hoo!