This was my daughter's first toddler party (not exactly her birthday party) and because it was in November we stuck to the Winter ONEderland theme. I have always been inspired by my sister-in-law who holds one or two parties each year for her kids and their friends exclusively and she goes all-out in them too. The party was exclusively for kids, mums and aunts partly because our place wasn't big enough to accommodate all the men that came in the same package and partly because I thought this was turning out to be quite a girly event. I must confess too - I never got around to having a baby shower so a lot of the decoration ideas were on my wish-list since the time I was pregnant and wishing for a surprise baby shower :D
Aelya was born on the 24th of November and it was especially really cold then. I wanted to celebrate her first year taking inspiration from snow flakes, penguins and winter warmers.
Contemporary with the colors being predominantly silvers, ivories, gold and whites with pinks and blues being the punch factor.
- Pinterest is a great way to start for ideas on theme parties or decoration and even menu. I used a secret board to collect my ideas for Aelya's party, only making the board public after her party was over.
- I started planning and buying materials a few months in advance so that I didn't feel pressured at the last minute and also so I didn't like I was over-spending on the party.
- I did most of my shopping online from Amazon or Ebay as the variety of things on these are fantastic and you have a range of affordable prices available too.
- Snowflake Window Clings - Used these we have large windows in our open-plan living room where the party was held and a front window by the main door. We live in a rented property so what I loved about these was that it was easily removable and only needs to be applied with soapy water so doesn't leave marks on the windows.
- Silver balloons left all over the ceiling with white ribbons hanging from them to give the effect of ice and snow. Found a great deal from One Stop Party Shop for those of you in London.
- Ordered online ivory, silver and gold snowflake table toppers (with space to display menu item on them). Instead I hung these from white ribbons off the ceiling amidst the balloons. I asked guests to write a little note for Aelya on these so as to keep them in her baby book.
- Tissue pom poms from decopompoms (seller on ebay) in colors light pink, hot pink. light yellow and white. These sellers do a beautiful range of ivories, silvers, greys and unordinary colors so highly recommended.
- Snowflake Confetti in Gold and Silver - Found them on ebay again and used these in the party giveaways, on the dessert table, and even in the envelopes sending thank you notes.
- Snowflake Cupcake Toppers - Edible in sugary white and blue which went great with silver, and grey flakes on pink icing bought from the local store.
- Winter themed paper plates and napkins
- Snowglobe borrowed from a friend who collects them. If you have older kids, there are great snowglobe DIY tutorials which can become a fun party game and giveaway too.
- I have absolute white wardrobes and kitchen fittings as the kitchen is open plan. Hung Aelya's baby socks and mittens from these.
- The menu was very brrlicious and the colors here were thought out to go with the Winter ONEderland. I used a lot of crystal and white and blue ceramics to serve these as crystals gave the perfect icy touch.
Menu for Desserts Bar:
- The focus was the desserts bar. We had pizzas and chunky chickens on the side which I left on the kitchen hob so as not to hinder with the decor. They were delivered fresh and hot and surprisingly went well again as the focus was more on getting sugar high later!
- Cupcakes with snowflaked themes. Made at home.
- Hot chocolate made at home with Belgian chocolate, cream, and hot cocoa. I wanted the really thick Italian style hot chocolate which could be enjoyed with marshmallows. Placed these in thermos and decorated shot glasses and espresso cups around them. Placed pink and white marshmallows in a big mason jar next to them.
- Parfaits - With chocolate chip and oreo cookies made the perfect color combination. Served these in crystal wine and champagne glasses.
- Candy-canes to go with the holiday season and white and blue bon bons in mason jars.
- Coconut flakes to decorate.
- Penguins stuffed toys for the toddlers bought from a local charity shop of a cause which I support. I placed these in boxes with blue owls and together they complimented the wintery ambiance.
- Also used disposable champagne glasses, placed cotton in them and silver and gold snowflake confetti and topped these with a few silver and gold Hershey's kisses. Made very chic and theme-friendly party giveaways for the mums and aunts.
Photography was by a dear friend Makhmoor-ul-Hasan whose work I am absolutely in love with!
The tissue pom poms which I have decided will always be an element in all my future parties and the dessert bar pulled together really well which I am really proud of.
Stick to a couple of stand-out items and the rest of the ambience will pull together itself. Over-thinking or over-doing can sometimes boggle your brains too much and in the end you end up not feeling satisfied with your efforts. Most importantly - enjoy it as that will be the lasting memory.