I think first birthday parties are so special for a variety of reasons. For me it was just as much of a one year anniversary of surviving childbirth as it was celebrating my daughter’s first year with us. Parties are also a great way to bring everyone you love together into one room, which is probably why I constantly find myself planning and hosting parties.
Last Summer when Ellie was about 6 months old, I started browsing Pinterest for party themes and ideas. This was the first time I was throwing a first birthday party, so I really wanted to blow it out of the water. After hours and hours of browsing your typical rainbow colors or princess party themes, I found exactly what I wanted: a tea party in “ONEderland!” While I wasn’t big on the idea of Alice in Wonderland characters, I loved the tea party aspect. Clocks and tea pots and fancy hats? It was going to be perfect.
One of my best friends, Courtney, is my go-to girl when it comes to decorating and planning, so after her wedding in November, we got to work. We teamed up with her mom, Cindy, of Miss Milly’s Event Rentals & Design and picked out some of their amazing pieces to decorate the clubhouse where we’d throw the party. If you’re planning a party, wedding, or even a photo shoot in the Atlanta area, you aren’t doing it right if you aren’t using Miss Milly’s– they are the BEST in the business and I highly recommend them.
Pulling off this party was a major group effort and so many people deserve credit for their help. We combined my vision with Courtney and Cindy’s design skills, my mom’s decorating and delicious cooking, Matt’s cousins’ artistic minds, and my mother-in-law’s baking. The morning we set up, we also had the help of my friend Katie and my sister-in-law Courtney. It made me realize (even more than I already had) that so many people love and adore our baby girl.
Now that you’ve read all the boring stuff, we can get to the goods: PICTURES!
Chalkboards from Miss Milly’s:
These were beautifully customized by Matt’s cousins, Bethany and Mary Claire. The two on the left are hand drawn with regular chalk and the right with chalk pens. They did an amazing job with these boards and they turned out exactly like I had pictured them in my mind!
Buffets & serving trays/dishes from Miss Milly’s; China from my mom and Miss Milly’s:
The tables were decorated with a simple variety of tea pots and tea cups and looked absolutely gorgeous. Special thanks to my mom and mother-in-law for cooking and baking most of the food, which was beautifully displayed on Miss Milly’s serving pieces. Courtney and I made the paper banner on a silhouette machine.
I probably printed nearly two hundred pictures of my baby girl’s first year. It was so hard to narrow them down and I knew I’d spend way too much time deciding, so I enlisted the help of my sister-in-law. She displayed the pictures in various spots around the clubhouse using twine, clothespins, and a variety of paper pennants. I thought it was a very special touch!
Cakes by the amazingly talented Rachael of Rach Makes Cakes:
Rachael does an amazing job with cakes, as you can see in the photos. I approached her about possibly doing a 3D teacup or teapot for Ellie’s smash cake, not really knowing if it was possible. She exceeded my expectations and I highly recommend her work if you need any cakes in the future!
Other Details– Paper decor; Alice in Wonderland guestbook; Kids tea party area:
Backdrop/photo area from Miss Milly’s; First Birthday outfit custom made by me:
This first picture is very special. It is four generations holding my great grandmother’s tea cups, so essentially five generations represented in one photo.
Ellie’s highchair from my parents; Highchair banner created by me and Courtney:
Everyone loves a good CAKE SMASH! Except my baby girl. Everyone singing really got her worked up, but it was her party, so she can cry if she wants to. After the tears subsided and the cake was tasted, all was well in her world.
Party time with friends!
While most of the party was adult family and family friends, I’m glad a few other tiny humans could make it out to play with Ellie for her birthday. She spent a lot of time flirting with these two cute boys, but can you blame her?
Everyone loves presents!
Except one-year-olds. They just love the paper. While Ellie wasn’t very enthusiastic about opening gifts at the party, she sure does love playing with all her new toys at home. We even had to turn our basement into a playroom to fit everything from our amazingly generous friends and family who spoiled our birthday girl 🙂
So there it is– Ellie in ONEderland. It was a great day surrounded with some of our favorite people. We are so thankful for everyone who took the time out of their day to celebrate our little girl. Now to start planning next year’s party 😉
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ELLIE ROSE. WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH!
So, what did you think of our party theme? What are some of your favorite party themes, foods, and ideas? Let me know in the comments!