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First Birthday Party Ideas, Activities & Tips

Fun birthday party ideas for the 1st birthday party

We've collected our favorite party ideas for the first birthday on one page to make it easy to find ideas that will work with your party, theme and budget. 

1st birthday party ideas

1st Birthday Invitations
A
nnouncing the special day with birthday invitations is a great way to let family and friends know about the very important 1st birthday!  A first birthday invitation will not only serve as a reminder that the birthday is approaching, but will also be a keepsake for family and friends after the party is over. 

1st Birthday Party Tips

Try to plan the first birthday party for just after nap time so your child will be awake and happy.  If this isn't possible then try and have the party as early in the day as you can.  

The length of the party should be between 1 and 1 1/2 hours.

Make two cakes - one large cake for guests and one small cake for the one year old to smash.   The smaller cake, or "smash cake" can be a mini replica of the larger birthday cake.

Plan to do as much of the party decorations, food preparation, activity and game set up the day before the party.  Trying to do it all the day of the party is stressful and makes everyone cranky. 

Plan a few things or activities that guests can help you with during the party.  Planning ahead for the "what can I do to help?" question will ease your day and make things run smoothly. 

First Birthday Party Activities
These activities will help the first birthday party be something you'll always remember and keep guests involved

Fill a photo album with pictures of the first year.
Fill a photo album with pictures of your child's first year.  On the margins around the pictures ask party guests, family and friends to write special thoughts, memories or wishes to the birthday child.

  Scrapbook Page  
Create one or two scrapbook pages for the first birthday celebration. 

Leave blank spots for the party pictures so you can insert them after the party.  Set the pages out on a table with plenty of pens and markers. 

Ask guests, family members and friends to fill the pages with handwritten messages and well wishes for the one year old.  Insert the pictures from the party and add any special embellishments you choose.  

Time capsule
Create a special time capsule of the first birthday that your child can open at their 16th or 18th birthday.  Fill a sturdy box with pictures from the party, receipts, pictures of your house, a favorite toy, birthday invitation, handprints, birthday candle, decoration, etc. 

Set out note cards and ask guests to write a special note for the time capsule.   Include out of town relatives by asking them to send a special first birthday note and including it in the box. Then seal up the capsule and write or attach tags with two dates - the date of the first birthday party and the date 15 years (or 17 years if you want them to open the capsule on their 18th birthday) from the first tag. 

Place it somewhere safe and then when the years have passed you will have a wonderful surprise for your child and something they will treasure forever.  

First Birthday Party Ideas

Make a shirt with a large #1 on the front.  This is great for photos!  You can draw this on a shirt with a permanent marker or find an iron on transfer.  Many craft stores sell iron on transfer paper that allow you to print out a transfer directly from your printer. 

Buy large foam #1 fingers for guests to take home as a party favor.  They'll always remember who's Number One!

#1 Piñata -  You don't have to break it open ... they just look great in pictures! 

Tie helium balloons to the high chair to create a backdrop for pictures. 

Drape a colorful vinyl tablecloth over the high chair to create a colorful sitting place for the guest of honor sit, eat cake and take pictures.  The guest of honors face will show up better in pictures if the tablecloth is a solid color. 

1st Birthday Party Games 
 Fun 1st birthday party games especially for the first birthday and younger guests.  



Party themes - Over 200 fun birthday party themes to choose from.  All with free ideas for games, invitations, decorations, activities, food and more! 


 

   




    We've listed our favorite kids birthday party ideas, tips, themes, b day party celebration ideas and advice for kids birthday parties sent in by parents with years of experience - we refer to them as the experts!  Fun birthday party, party planning and ideas that really work for boys and girls, kids, tweens and teenage parties. Real simple birthday party ideas for kids for home parties. © Kelula 2007 - 2016