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1st Birthday Party Ideas

Posted By Kate Degen


Don’t save the best for last— make it 1st! Here’s our 1st birthday party ideas for your #1 baby!

Wild One Animal Party
Was the first year a wild whirlwind? Celebrate with a Wild One Animal party! Create a dessert table with a neutral tablecloth and a paper banner with elephants, giraffes, deers, bears, or any of your favorite wild animals on it. For a classy look, get plastic animals and spray paint them gold or silver to decorate the table. Make animal print sugar cookies or cake pops with bear ears! Get a cake with metallic accents and wild animals on top. Don’t forget the smash cake! Buy the birthday boy or girl a “Wild One” t-shirt and a headband with animal ears to wear while they dig into their first birthday treat! Make a playlist of animal songs like “Eye of the Tiger” or “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” and let the little ones dance the day away. They were born to be wild!

Circus Party
Your little one is the ringleader of this party! Have a circus bash that will send everyone over the (big) top! Fill the room with bright colored balloons with stars and stripes on them. Use a red tablecloth to design the treat table and use a cake shaped as a circus tent as the centerpiece. Offer elephant cookies, bowls of animal crackers, and cracker jacks. For the backdrop, get light up marquee letters to spell out the birthday boy or girl’s name. Get everyone in on the fun and hand out clown noses for kids and parents to wear! Buy a ringleader hat and striped top for the birthday babe to wear as they dig into their cake. For fun, create a ball pit with bright plastic balls in a kiddie pool!

Fun to Bee One Party
Beeing one is so much fun! And this beeday party will be all the buzz. Hang black and yellow balloons or paper lanterns around a dessert table with a yellow tablecloth. Decorate with vintage-looking jars of honey and watering cans full of fresh flowers. Get a beehive-shaped cake and make bee-shaped cake pops that are placed in a green grass frosting tray. If cupcakes are more your style, bake chocolate cupcakes and ice them with yellow frosting. Draw black frosting stripes across the top and add candy eyes and wings. Serve sweet nectar lemonade with striped straws and give everyone black and yellow-striped party hats! Give the birthday boy or girl a yellow striped onesie, a bee antenna headband, and wings. For favors, paint white bottles of bubbles with black and yellow stripes and add eyes to the cap for bubble bees!

Twinkle Little Star Party
Your little one is the twinkle of your eye, so make them a star! They’ll shine at this Twinkle Little Star party. Buy white and gold star-shaped balloons and hang them along with gold streamers to look like shooting stars. Create a golden dessert table with a white tablecloth and “ONE” letters painted with gold glitter. Use gold frames to display your favorite photos from the first year. Set out star-shaped sandwiches and watermelon cut into stars with a cookie cutter. Get a tiered cake with glitter star bunting along the top and a smaller star-shaped cake for the smash cake. For a girl, give her a headband made of gold stars or for a boy, a gold top hat! When everyone is sleepy from the fun, wind down the day with a “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” sing along or a reading of “Goodnight Moon.”

Over the Rainbow Party
If your baby brightens up your day, this Over the Rainbow party is a perfect fete! Get red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple balloons and hang them in rainbow order behind the treat table. Use a simple white tablecloth and get a rainbow ombre cake. Dip strawberries and pretzels in white icing and top them with rainbow sprinkles—take it up a notch by serving them in plastic pots of gold! Set up platters of rainbow fruit skewers or veggie sticks. Get a smash cake with tie dye rainbow frosting and hang rainbow tulle or streamers from the high chair. Dress your little one up in a rainbow tutu or rainbow suspenders and tube socks. Send everyone home with a baggie of rainbow crayons and a pad of rainbow construction paper.

Under the Sea Party
This party is sure to make a splash! Bring the sea to life by twisting green streamers and taping them to the wall to look like seaweed. Hang a pink paper lantern from the ceiling, paste on eyes, and hang 8 pink streamers to create an octopus. Use a teal tablecloth on the treat table and decorate it with seashells and fishnet. Create beachy cupcakes with vanilla icing and cinnamon sugar on top to look like sand! Create a crab smash cake by frosting a vanilla cake with red icing, adding Twizzlers for legs, and sugar eyes. Give a little mermaid a mermaid onesie or a green “tail” tutu, or give a little merman a sequin green bowtie and a metallic green crown. Hang paper garland shaped like seahorses from the high chair.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s Party
Is your little girl just fabulous? Throw her a classy Breakfast at Tiffany’s bash! Use a Tiffany green tablecloth to set the scene and create a teal pennant banner with the birthday girl’s name so it reads like “Emma & Co.” Hang teal and white paper lanterns from the ceiling and set up a “Powder Room” sign near the bathroom. Get a teal cake dripping in fondant pearls and bows. Stand teal and white cake pops upside down and tie tulle bows to the top of the sticks. Serve diamond ring sugar cookies and pretzel rods dipped in teal frosting and silver glitter sugar. Give the birthday girl a black tutu, pearls, and a crown to wear as she smashes into her teal Tiffany box-shaped cake. Create a chalkboard sign using white and light teal chalk to write out the birthday girl’s first year milestones like things she loves, things she can do, her height, weight, and how many teeth she has! Give everyone a little stuffed orange cat to take home.

Winter Wonderland Party
Have a winter baby? A Winter Wonderland party will be so cool! Use silver hanging garland behind the white dessert table, or if you’re crafty, string together paper snowflakes! Decorate the table with silver trees and snow globes, and if you have your holiday supplies nearby, string white lights along the front. Stand silver glitter letters along the back to spell out your baby’s name. Serve penguin and polar bear-shaped cookies, white chocolate covered pretzels, and a blue and white cake with fondant snowflakes. Serve hot chocolate for the parents and cold chocolate milk for kids. Use a small cake with light blue icing and silver sprinkles for the smash cake, and hang white tulle from the highchair. Dress a little girl in a white tutu, a shirt with a glitter “One” on the front, and a snowflake headband. For a boy, give him a polar bear ear headband and a silver bowtie. Send everyone off with some gingerbread cookies tied in a cellophane bag with silver ribbon.

Catch the Big One
There’s nothing fishy about this party—catch a big one with this bash! Create a tablescape with a blue tablecloth and green and blue balloons. Offer fish-shaped sandwiches, rainbow goldfish cracker trout, and gummy worms, and use tackle boxes as serving plates. Use upside down crates to set up bait & tackle cupcakes—bake vanilla cakes with chocolate frosting and cover them with oreo “dirt.” Top them with gummy worms or bugs. Add in some bobber cake pops by frosting half in white and half in red frosting. Fill up a kiddie pool and let everyone play with wind up fish toys. Serve juice from a fish bowl and have bobbers float at the top. Bake a fish-shaped smash cake and hang toy fishing rods off the sides of the highchair. Give your little guy a fishing vest and hat to celebrate becoming o-fish-ally one!

Car Party
Start your engines! A car party will take the celebration from 0 to 60 real fast! Hang race flag pennants and create a refuel table with red, yellow, and green stoplight plates. Get a cake shaped like a vintage car and create a roadway runner with black construction paper and white paper strips down the middle. Don’t forget brownies with stoplight-colored candies and a jar of nuts and bolts (peanuts and m&ms). Serve fuel juice in gas containers (clean ones of course)! Get some toy cars and let everyone play on the floor together! Buy a tire-shaped smash cake and have the birthday boy wear a onesie with a “1” car number, a red bow tie, and checkered suspenders. Make “we’re wheelie glad you came” gift baggies with chocolate frosted doughnut tires.

Mister Onederful Party
Is your little guy totally wonderful? Then throw him a charming Mister Onederful tuxedo party! Go classic glam with black and gold decor including balloons, a gold sequin tablecloth, and big letters spelling out the birthday boy’s name as a backdrop. Get a tuxedo cake with a bowtie, and serve bowtie sugar cookies and brownies shaped with a mustache cookie cutter. Use a gold frame to display a stats board with the birthday boy’s favorite things, milestones, and more! Hang mustache garland from the highchair and give him a top hat, a tuxedo t-shirt, or a bowtie with suspenders! Go DIY for the smash cake by baking a sheet cake and cutting out 2 triangles and one small circle. Ice them together to create a bowtie shape and decorate the knot portion with gold glitter sugar. For favors, send everyone home with their own adorable bowtie or hair bow!

Little Ladybug Party
What’s red and black with spots all over? This adorable Little Ladybug party! Set the treat table with a burlap tablecloth and surround it with red balloons with black spots drawn on them. Serve up a white and red tiered cake with a ladybug on top. Dip strawberries in chocolate on the end and add chocolate dots to create little ladybugs, or dip thick pretzels into half red icing and half chocolate icing and add candy eyes! Serve red juice with black and red polka dot straws. Instead of party hats, give everyone ladybug antennae headbands! Hang red tulle from the highchair and give the birthday girl a red onesie with ladybug spots, ladybug wings, and an antennae headband for when she digs into her red polka-dotted smash cake! Have everyone create a keepsake craft—dip each babe’s hand in red paint and print it on a white piece of paper. Have the parents help add black dots, antennae, and write each guests name.

Kate wants her work to impact the little but important moments in people’s lives—like birthdays, anniversaries, and family celebrations. She loves coming up with witty copy that might inspire someone to create an awesome t-shirt!

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    • Connie

      A theme of owlets with pink and gold and someone to do twistingballons for older skids

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