DIY first birthday party

When my daughter turned 1, I pulled out all the stops. Since I went to school and worked as a graphic designer for several years, I have to design everything myself. I feel like it goes against everything I know to buy cards or invitations from a different source. Fortunately it’s something I love to do anyway so I usually jump at the chance to design things in my free time. I have an excellent local printer that I used when I did my wedding invitation business. They still give me amazing deals, and it’s worth it for them to print and cut everything to size.

My daughter’s first birthday theme was ladybugs. We called her “Bug” and I love red, black and white together. They are classic colors that will always look good together. The first thing I designed was her invitations.

Front of Birthday Card

There’s so much you can do with polka dots. I loved that I could use this design element in all of her birthday decor.

Inside Birthday Invitation

The inside of her birthday invitation. I made a cut at the bottom of the outside to resemble ladybug wings and let the black and white polka dots underneath, peek through.

I splurged a little bit on her birthday party because when you save in other areas you can do that occasionally. And since it was the big “1”, I felt it was warranted.

Ladybug smash cake

I made bookmarks with a list of my daughter’s milestones to stick into party boxes. With one of them, I cut off the top part to stick into her smash cake.

Ladybug Gift Boxes

You can see the bookmarks poking out of the gift boxes.

This party was only for family members, (you may think it’s insane to go to this much work for just a family party; but if it’s not labor intensive, I want no part of it) so silly things like a list of milestones actually made sense. If it had been for friends, I probably wouldn’t have done that because they probably wouldn’t have cared to have a keepsake like that.

DIY ladybug cupcakes

DIY ladybug cupcakes. You don’t need to know much about cake decorating to do these. I made some red frosting, then used one of those spray frostings to do the piping and antennae. Then I bought some plain white M&Ms at Michaels and dotted the eyes with a toothpick and some of the remaining black frosting.

These cupcakes were so easy to make and fun too. I had them resting on leaves just for fun.

Ladybug Napkins

I splurged on some cute themed napkins. I think it was worth it.

This is the way the table looked with everything on it:

Ladybug Birthday Party

Ready for a family party!

You’ll notice a few extra touches as well. I purchased ladybug party cups online from Amazon. I also bought the red balloons with the black polka-dots online and mixed them in with some solid black ones. And I couldn’t resist getting some black and red M&Ms since I already had a bunch of white ones left over from the ladybug eyes. The black and polka dot tissue paper is from Hobby Lobby (always use a coupon if you have the app or get the newspaper).

It was a really fun day for everyone.

My happy 1 year old.

My happy 1 year old.


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