Your sweet (and likely sassy) baby girl is one! It’s time to celebrate.
Whether you’re a Pinterest-loving party planner or you prefer low-key and stress-free, choosing a theme is half the fun. Since they’re still so little and, let’s face it, won’t remember anyway, their first birthday party might be your last chance to pick the theme before they get more opinionated. Enjoy picking an adorable, subtle, or chic theme before they become obsessed with Disney characters or Blippi.
Keep in mind that you want to be able to enjoy the gathering, not spend the whole time making complicated appetizers or directing a bunch of games. You’re your baby’s favorite person, after all. Here are our favorite tips and ideas for a memorable and photo-worthy first birthday party for your little girl.
Party planning tips
While a first birthday party doesn’t have to be stressful, it will go more smoothly if you take some time to plan. A few things to consider are your budget, guest list, location, menu, and theme.
It’s typically wise to keep a first birthday party pretty small since one-year-olds tend to be overwhelmed easily by unfamiliar faces. Choose a time of day when they’re most likely to be happy and well-rested (or as close to it as they get). Location ideas include your house, backyard, indoor play places, parks, pavilions, or a local church or hall. As for the theme, that’s where we come in!
Party ideas for 1-year-old girls
1. Winter onederland
Perfect for babies born during the winter months, you can go all-white for this one or put a spin on the ever-popular woodland theme. A lot of fellow parents featured baby deer on their invitations and decorations, and it could not be any more precious. Include wood accents, soft pinks, and a white balloon arch for a girly, wintry wonderland.
2. 1st bee-day
If you’re looking to steer clear of pink and purple, choose a bee theme and go yellow, white, and black. Flowers in mason jars, yellow and white balloons, white and black checked tablecloths, and yellow paper lanterns make this a perfect outdoor party. This theme has become more popular recently, which makes it easy to find decorations and adorable Etsy outfits.
3. Beach party
Umbrellas, water guns, popsicles, and lemonade – this one practically plans itself. If you have usable outdoor space, you can set up a kiddie pool, sandbox, or water table. Burgers, hot dogs, and corn on the cob make for an easy and kid-friendly menu. Hand out sunglasses and beach balls for usable and inexpensive party favors.
4. Little cutie
A play-off of the delicious clementines that are perfect for snacking, little cutie is a citrus-inspired theme that includes bright colors and a fresh menu. Get inspired with orange balloons, clementine garland and cupcake toppers, and of course, actual clementines. These adorable decorations on Amazon are a great place to start. Fruit themes are a sweet and fun way to celebrate a first birthday party, and you can go with lemons, limes, watermelon, peaches, or strawberries.
5. Donut grow up
Who doesn’t love donuts? Donut balloons, a donut tower, a donut as the ‘O’ in ‘One’, there’s a lot of fun to be had here. Decorate with sprinkles, a pink and purple balloon arch, and lots and lots of sweets! Get inspired with this impressive donut-themed first birthday party and this perfectly sweet tutu and onesie.
6. It’s some bunny’s 1st birthday
A bunny-themed first birthday is about as adorable as it gets. Pastels, sweet little bunny noses and tails, bunny cutouts, and bunny garland, what’s not to love? While perfect for a spring baby, it can definitely work year-round. There are also plenty of bunny dresses for your one-year-old, and you can hand out bunny ears for a little extra cuteness. Check out Sienna’s first birthday party to kickstart your planning.
A popular theme for baby showers and first birthday parties, a boho-chic party is easy to throw together and turns out gorgeous every time. You can focus on blush and teal and decorate with dream catchers and feathers. The quickest way to turn this vision into reality is to have flowers and floral decorations everywhere. We love this party complete with boho-inspired desserts. If you know you don’t have a lot of time or money, you can definitely keep this theme very simple.
8. Rainbow baby
A rainbow theme is a surefire way to bring color and happiness to the party. Even sweeter if your one-year-old was your rainbow baby, a rainbow party is loads of fun. From rainbow-colored snacks and desserts to balloons, streamers, and plates in every color, this is a party that will come together quickly.
Go vintage with this fun twist on a carnival-themed first birthday party. You can serve carnival-inspired foods or even get a snowball machine or food truck if you’re going all out. Decor ideas include a carousel birthday cake, cake pops with a horse on the stick, and beautifully understated gold and blush-colored decorations. Check out this link for some inspiration.
10. Alice in Onederland
Alice in Wonderland is one of those movies that you either love or hate. If you’re one of the former, then this theme is all you. Have fun creating a wild and wonky Alice-inspired tea party complete with clocks, checkers, bold colors, and recognizable movie quotes. It will make for great pictures and a memorable party.
11. Butterfly garden party
We love this magical and feminine theme on Time 2 Partay. Create a butterfly garden party with butterflies and florals, whimsical fairy lights, and wooden branches. Decorate with cake stands and teacups, as well as light pinks and gold tones. This is perfect for a backyard party or a pavilion or park.
12. Autumn harvest
Choosing an autumn theme for your baby’s first birthday is a gorgeous way to celebrate your fall baby. You can choose rich reds, oranges, and browns, and decorate with leaves, mums, acorns, and mini pumpkins. Serve apple cider, caramel apples, chili, or soup to really get into the cozy fall spirit. Check out this autumn-themed first birthday party to get your planning started.
13. I love you to the moon and back
A popular book and phrase used by parents, this theme is original and conveys the love you have for your baby. Go with dark blue, gold, and silver for the color scheme, and decorate with stars, moons, and planets. These super creative desserts over at Pedaller Designs include moon pies and perfectly decorated macarons.
14. Barn party
Decorate with pigs, cows, horses, and hay bales, and have everybody wear cowboy hats and boots. Make or order a barn cake with farm animal cupcakes. While you can rent farm animals, there’s plenty of fun to be had with this theme without committing to goats in your backyard. If you know of a local farm that hosts parties, that’s also a fun option that means you don’t have to clean your house.
15. Wonder Woman
Or should we say, Oneder Woman? Decorating with blue and red, gold streamers, and foil-wrapped stars can make your party space come to life. Some ideas include golden tiaras for party guests to wear or as cupcake toppers, and using cityscapes as centerpieces. You can even make a blue tutu and golden lasso to wrap around your daughter’s high chair if you’re really feeling ambitious.
Go tropical with a bright and happy flamingo-inspired first birthday party. Fun ideas include umbrellas in drinks, flamingo yard ornaments, palm tree decorations, pineapples, flamingo cupcakes, and hula skirts. Decorate with bold pinks and greens, and get as creative as you want with the menu and drinks.
It’s worth mentioning that not every little girl (or mom) loves the stereotypical “girly” stuff. Feel free to step away from the pink, purple, and glitter and go with something you and your daughter enjoy more, like dinosaurs, racing, or a camping theme. Get creative and have fun with it, because that’s what it’s all about.