I’m not gonna lie, one of the most exciting things (for me) about having kids is the perfect excuse to plan fun, etsy’d out, parties. Adults just don’t get into tutus and themed party props without a little one motivating the celebration (and cheers to you exceptions, ahem San Franciscans, Bay to Breaker participants, etc!!). That said, I started dreaming up ideas for OBG’s first birthday long before she was born. My husband looked at me like I was insane the first time I asked him, excitement and concern in my eyes, “WHAT on earth will we do for her first birthday?! It’ll be in winter!” I was about 3 months pregnant. Coming from a family of entirely spring and summer birthdays and outdoor parties, I was at a total loss.
Thank God for Google. It wasn’t long before I stumbled across adorable ideas for winter-themed first birthday parties (check out my “December Baby Birthday Parties” pinterest board). I settled on a Winter ONEderland with a mint and silver color pallet. We went ALL out and transformed a big community room into winter. Here’s what we did:
Invitations. I am pretty handy on Photoshop, so I made the graphic myself and uploaded to Paperless Post. I LOVE Paperless Post because the delivery is so cute, the way the envelope opens like real mail, and because you can easily track opens, RSVPs, send messages to guests, etc. If you aren’t handy on Photoshop, they have tons of cute already made designs that you can customize with a photo.
Wardrobe. It’s not a party without three wardrobe changes, right?! OBG was baptized before her party, so she had a white baptismal gown, an Audrey Hepburn inspired tule dress (you can buy on etsy here, but my sister made this by attaching long strands of tule to ribbons that are used as sleeves) and last wore a “ONEsie” with DIY mint tutu (see tutorial here), snowflake leggings, crown hair clip and silver “Gracie” shoes by See Kai Run.
Hot Chocolate Favors. These are so cute, delicious and pretty simple to make … but time consuming. Using 8 oz mason jars, I followed this recipe, printed and cut out instruction and thank you tags, tied it all together with ribbon and snowflakes and finished it off with a snowflake circle die cut on the top. See the full tutorial here.
DIY Photo Booth. I love love love photo booths but don’t love the cost of hiring a photo booth team. Instead, I bought super sale fabric from Joanns, pinned it up on the wall in a well-lit corner and tacked different types of snowflakes all over it. In the corner we added a table full of little props (which we spray painted mint, silver, and glittery white, of course). Love the way it turned out! This would be fairly easy to do and attach to pvc pipes, too, like the way soccer banners are hung.
Frosty & Glittery Decor. There’s no such thing as too much sparkle at a Winter-themed Party! We stuffed glittery sticks and branches in tall square vases (hobby lobby), glittery christmas trees (see the tutorial here), mint, silver and glittery white garland (see tutorial here), a Winter ONEderland banner, spray painted signs and frames with glitter, even the cupcakes were glittery with mint colored frosting and snowflake toppers. Like I said, we went all out!
Photo Strings. To personalize the space, we hung black and white photos of OBG on hemp string with little clips. We offered for everyone to take their favorites home with them before they left the party and it was so fun seeing everyone flock to the wall.
Soup Bar. Bummer we never got a pic of the soup bar, but we made several batches of soup the night before, which made it pretty easy to keep simmering in big pots to replenish cute white soup server bowls throughout the party. We served a Hungarian Goulash, Southeast Asian Butternut Squash Bisque and a White Bean and Ham soup. All family favorites and big hits at the party!
Wisdom and Wishes Book. We asked everyone to share a special wish or words of wisdom in a book for OBG to turn back to whenever she needs a little guidance in life. This was so easy to make on shutterfly. I just selected about 20 favorite photos and printed one per page, leaving plenty of white space for people to sign.
I’d love to hear from you! What’s your favorite idea for a winter party? I have so many more to plan and could use your help!