We recently celebrated my son's first birthday. The first birthday party is always such fun. And, as I'm sure anyone who has had kids can relate, reaching that first year milestone is definitely something to celebrate. Every parent wants their child's first birthday to be special and personal while still keeping the cost under control. Therein lies the challenge. Here are a few things I did to help maintain a reasonable budget while still maintaining that ever-important element of cuteness for my son's big day.
Thanks to the help of some Martha Stewart craft paper and some ribbon I purchased at Michaels for $1.99, I was able to create a super simple "Happy Birthday" banner. I just printed the letters on a color printer, then cut the letters and coordinating paper with a paper cutter. I put strips of Glue Dots Lines along the back edge to glue the ribbon to the back of the cards. Took me a total of about 15 minutes. So easy! To help keep things festive, I took some snapshots of my son at various times throughout his first year and used those to decorate. I just backed the photos with the same craft paper I used for the banner and put them in cheap acrylic frames which I also purchased from Michaels.
Everything we used at the party was disposable. I picked up some coordinating solid color paper napkins, plates and cups from our local party supply store. To help personalize, I created stickers out of some photos of my son. I did this with some round labels that I purchased from an office supply store. I then affixed these labels to the cups and created napkin rings out of the craft paper secured with the photo stickers as well.
I also decided to give away a birthday mix cd to all of our guests. I've done this in the past for parties we've thrown for my daughter and they've always been a hit.
All told, this party cost just about $100 (minus the cost of food). To make things easier on myself, I ordered the cake from our local bakery but you could just as easily make your own cake or cupcakes. Happy birthday baby!