Ainslea's first birthday bash was full of whimsy with hints of Spring. We kept things simple by having a family get together, serving a buffet lunch, mimosas and of course, birthday cake! I made/collected all of the decorations myself and actually reused a lot of items that we had in our home already, or had used for other occasions (like our wedding!). Ainslea's nursery is decorated with tones of peach and ivory, so we stuck with that theme for her party and added some flair with touches of gold.
We wanted Ainslea's party to be bright and fresh like a sunny Spring day. Since her birthday happened to fall on Easter weekend, we decided to tie in some seasonal decor - like tulips, bird cages, Easter eggs, rabbits, etc. I found a lot of great ideas online through Pinterest and the Project Nursery blog, and I created everything piece by piece as I found things I liked.
I would call my decorating style simple but well thought out. I wanted Ainslea's party to be special, but not overdone.
I love to repurpose decorations, so I wrote a welcome message for the front door on the easel from our wedding. The head table backdrop from our wedding got a colour makeover and was used as the backdrop for her cake smash.
I made a first birthday board and a "happy, happy birthday" chalkboard to use as photo props, and then as decor during the party. We got her monthly photos printed and I used them in a banner across our fireplace. I also created a digital image to display on our tv screen (rather than have a big black screen in all of our photos!). Other decorations included a paper high chair banner, a first birthday crown, photo frames and wall decor borrowed from the nursery, peach and gold confetti, and painted wood block letters.
We served peach mimosas in mason jars with paper straws. Ainslea had a peach ombre smash cake, and I also made a larger version to serve. We topped the cake with a paper bunting, and salt dough letters painted with edible gold dust adorned the plate. The white chocolate covered pretzels with coral sprinkles were a huge hit!
Here is a list of project sources:
Banners, backdrops, bunting, confetti, garlands, stationery, signs, birthday crown: DIY
Birdcage, ivory chalkboard: HomeSense
Easel, white plant pots: IKEA (my husband added the trim to the easel, and we painted it white - super easy DIY!)
Burlap: Triple Tree Nurseryland
Multi-photo frame, white vases: Michaels
Cake supplies, paper straws: Scoop n Save
Balloons: Single Source Party Rentals
My favourite addition to her party was the guestbook cards we asked everyone to fill out. I designed a page with space to answer five different questions my husband and I came up with, and printed them on card stock. They'll go in a pocket in her baby book so that when she's older, she can read through everyone's memories from her first birthday!
Take your time! I knew that I was going back to work shortly before Ainslea's birthday, so I started collecting ideas and making notes about a month prior. It helped to keep a running list of "things to look for" on my phone so that any time I was out doing errands, I could quickly bring up my list and pick up anything I needed. I aimed to complete one project a week, and that helped me focus on making a couple of really beautiful elements, rather than going overboard and cluttering the space with unnecessary decorations. Don't get so caught up with the details that you forget to have fun! (...because that's what it's really all about!)
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