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Planning Their First Birthday Party (Checklist)

Planning Their First Birthday Party (Checklist)

It’s finally happening. The year has flown by and now your sweet baby is about to have their first birthday! No doubt, you have been both dreading and looking forward to this day! Still, however you are feeling, the day will come to pass, whether you are ready for it or not. To help you prepare the best you can for this momentous occasion, Ruffles and Tutu’s has created a checklist for you!

1. Pick a Budget

Planning birthday parties for your children (especially your very first one!) can get expensive and fast! In a world filled with social media, we are constantly filled with images of these grand parties being thrown for one year olds. If that is the direction you want to go in, that’s great! We would love to see pictures, and are sure it will be beautiful! If that’s not necessarily your style though, that is great too. 

Whether you are working with a budget that allows for a small gathering at home, or a large occasion in a rented space, the important thing to remember is that this day is special because you are celebrating your littles’ first birthday, and that is a truly momentous occasion! 

2. Pick a Theme

This is one of the most fun parts of planning the whole event as it drives everything else forward. It may be difficult at this time to determine your child’s favorite things (most don’t have favorite shows or colors or animals yet) so this could be the only birthday party that you get to make this decision completely on your own! 

Some fan favorites include a Princess Party or Minnie Mouse, but often times, a color scheme is simply chosen. Maybe your theme is just surrounded by pictures of your baby and all that their first year of life entails.

3. Decide on Decorations

Once you have a theme and location, this part should be kind of easy. If you’re doing a minimalist party, this will be really easy! Fun paper plates, a few balloons, and some table clothes - boom! You’ve got yourself some decorations! 

If you’re planning to be a bit more extravagant, this is the part that can get really expensive (but it’s so much fun)! There are so many great finds on Etsy, and there are lots of things that you can make yourself! 

It’s become fairly typical to have pictures of your child at each month displayed at their first birthday party, along with pictures of special moments throughout the year; their first holidays, their first time meeting different members of the family, etc. It’s also become popular to have some sort of decoration for their high chair (you’ll probably want to take lots of pictures of them while they’re sitting in their high chair eating their first birthday cake!). This can be anything from a simple banner, to a super cute tutu! Anything to spice it up a little. The eating of the cake is such a fun part of first birthday parties. Will the baby be afraid of it? Will they smash it in their hair? We never know until we find out!

4.Decide on What Food to Serve

This kind of depends on the time of day you have your party. Are you planning on serving a full meal or just snacks? 

If your motto is, “Go Big or Go Home” enjoy going all out on the food! This part can be really fun to and is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Thankfully nowadays, we have the internet, which is chock full of food ideas for every party theme! It has made it so easy to plan themed food for a party! 

If you’re looking for more modest servings, fruit trays and pizza are always a crowd pleaser! Hot dogs and hamburgers are super easy too. Whatever you decide, just keep those people fed! 

Of course, you can’t forget about the birthday cake! This is a staple and oh so delicious! Do you plan on serving cupcakes or a whole cake? Do you want your little to have their own “smash” cake or the same thing as everyone else? Cakes vary so much at parties. Some people make the cakes themselves, and some have several different types, ranging from cake pops, to cupcakes, to a full cake, just to make sure there is enough! Whatever you choose, be sure to snap a photo of your little having their first bite! It is a picture sure to be cherished for years to come! 

5. Entertainment for Young and Old

One year olds are still very entertained by being held by loved ones, so what is there to do at a one year old birthday party? It might just be a small gathering of friends, without much need to plan activities, it might be at a park where the playground is the activity, or you might plan out more for older kids. 

While your one year old may not enjoy a piñata or a bouncy castle, other kiddos might. Traditional birthday games like Pin the Tail on the Donkey (or a similar game that fits with your theme!) can be fun for multiple age groups. With warmer weather around the corner, water balloons are also super fun! 

If all else fails, put on some fun music and serve the cake, everyone will be happy!

6. What Will Your Little Wear? 

With this being the first birthday party (possibly even for your first child) you’re going to want to take LOTS of pictures! What your little wears on this day is something you will be looking back on for years to come, so make it count! 

Ruffles and Tutus has your back on this one, as this is our particular area of expertise! ;) Choose from one of our remade outfits or custom order one. We love working to help you with whatever you need! We offer a selection of sweet accessories as well. Want them to wear a crown on their big day? Leg warmers? We’ve got you covered! 

However your little one’s birthday party turns out, at the end of the day, you and your family and friends will have celebrated something truly monumental! Your little has blessed this earth for an entire year! That is a tremendous occasion! And truth be told, they couldn’t have done it without you, so don’t forget to give yourself a pat on the back as well! 

We’d love to see how your little’s first birthday party turned out, so be sure to leave your favorite picture in the comments!


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