5 Great DIY First Birthday Party Decorations

boy with balloons
Image via Mindi Stavish

The first year of your baby's life will go by much too quickly.  Before you know it, his or her first birthday will creep up.  Will you throw your soon-to-be toddler a birthday party?  My husband and I are big on celebrations, so we did with our first two kids and will with baby number three as well.  I love birthday party planning.  Between Pinterest and magazines, there are endless places from which to draw inspiration while planning your child's first birthday celebration.  

Birthday party costs can add up in a hurry, depending on how many people you will invite.  You don't have to spend a whole lot of money on party decorations.  Handmade party supplies are adorable and unique.  After you decide on a first birthday party theme, it's time to plan your decorations, shop, and start crafting. Here are are some ideas for handmade decorations that will save you money.  

first birthday picture collage
Image via Mindi Stavish

First birthday picture collage

Gather photos from each month of your child's first year of life.  Using these photos, create a photo collage based around the party theme to hang in the main area of the party.  

birthday banners
Image via Mindi Stavish

Birthday Banner

Birthday banners make a big impact on a room and are easy to make.  You can make one using various materials including card stock, scrapbooking paper, poster board, or pre-cut pennant card stock.  Once you create all the letters, string them together by punching a hole on each side of the letters, using a single hole punch.  Then string the letters together with 1 inch wide ribbon.  If you are handy with a sewing machine, you can even sew a pennant birthday banner. My favorite part about making a fabric banner is that you can repurpose it for a room decoration after the party.

paper lantern decorations
Image via Mindi Stavish

Large Entry Way Decoration

When decorating for a birthday party, I love creating a big statement with a large decoration, as guests walk through the door.  To achieve this, I decorate paper lanterns based around my theme and then hang them from the ceiling in the entry way.  Paper lanterns are very inexpensive and can be found through many different online retailers.  Here are just a few examples of how you can make a big impact using paper lanterns. 

entry way table for birthday party
Image via Mindi Stavish

Gift or entryway table decorations

If you have an entryway table, place a few framed pictures of your child on the table, along with a few small theme related decorations.  Pull in colors from the birthday party, using a variety of frames in those colors.  If you don't have an entryway table, you can do the same thing on the gift table.  

owl felt basket
Image via Mindi Stavish

Party favor baskets

Instead of using plastic or paper boxes that will likely get thrown away, put party favors in felt, tin, or plastic buckets that can be reused.  I shop the dollar bins at stores year round for small containers that I could use at a birthday party.  You can always decorate the container using felt or stickers to personalize them for the birthday theme.

Will you be throwing your child a first birthday party?


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5 Great DIY First Birthday Party Decorations

Mindi is a working mom with three boys ages 4, 2, and an infant (born June 2013). She spent her first 8 years of her career in Speech-Language Pathology at a Children's Hospital. She currently works with adults and children in home health. The real fun for her happens when she is at home with her boys, chasing them around and pretending to be a super hero. She blogs about life as a working mom at Simply Stavish. Her weekly feature, Words in the Sand, teaches parents how to grow their child's s ... More

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  1. Profile photo of Yolanda Yolanda says:

    It was a great life saver for me and my newborn who was born a month early and had difficulty latching on

  2. Profile photo of Jeannie Jeannie says:

    I love the lantern ideas, and the decor on the gift table! <3

  3. Profile photo of Erin Erin says:

    How do you fasten the lanterns to the ceiling?

  4. Profile photo of mommy nhoj mommy nhoj says:

    Might go for picture collage! I haven’t started on her Watch-Me-Grow frame.

  5. Profile photo of Shericial Shericial says:

    I really loved the picture idea. I have tons of pictures of my little man so this is a great idea for his first birthday party in November.


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