I wanted to subtitle this post: How to Outsource an Entire Birthday Party because in essence, that’s what I did. I fretted about it for about a minute; after all, I can use scissors and glue and could probably have made pinwheels and decorations myself, but given that we just moved, have a new nanny, have had too many illnesses to count, have a stove with a finicky oven (meaning no way was I going to attempt a cake), etc., etc., it seemed wise to just buy everything. But — and here’s the catch — I didn’t want it to look like some pre-packed party from the party store. I wanted it to look creative and unique and just like I did it all myself, which many of the partyÂ goers thought. Haha! Fooled them!
The Occasion: My son’s first birthday
The Location: Our temporary rental (while our house is being built). 2BR, teeny tiny, so we limited the guest list to 20.
The Theme: My son loves anything that spins so I came up with the idea to do pinwheels. I also wanted a “color story” and focused on orange and yellow with pops of red.
The Planning: I did nearly all my research online (surprise, surprise) and used Evernote to keep track. You can see my notebook here. There are all sorts of random pinwheel things I found, including pinwheel jewelry (I contemplated wearing some) and shirts for Hunter to wear. I’m a HUGE fan of Evernote and will tell you more about it next week for Tech Tuesday.
- Email invitations: I contacted Ariana at Becoming-Mom, because she just opened an Etsy store and she designed some darling pinwheel invitations for me. (If you haven’t read her blog, yet, you should check it out. It’s one of my favorites.)
- Pinwheels, pendant banner (with pinwheels), pinwheel favor boxes: Twirlie Whirlies Etsy shop. She could not have been more pleasant and fun to work with. I picked four papers from her selections and she made pinwheel after pinwheel for me. They were “real” pinwheels, too (meaning they spin) and the pendant banner she made is SO cute that we’re putting it in Hunter’s room. The stuff was perfectly packaged and really, really cute.
- Photo banner (also with pinwheels!): This custom banner was made by MaryHadALittleParty’s Etsy shop. When it arrived and my husband saw all the photos of Hunter, he got very choked up and quietly asked me if there was a way we could preserve this for him some day. I emailed her pictures from each month of the last year and she picked the ones that worked best in her format. She stuck with yellow, orange and red circles and added some pinwheels to the end. Really sweet.
- Pinwheel repositionable wall decals: These were a stroke of luck: bright, colorful pinwheel wall decals from Flair4All. I also bought some alphabet decals from them to spell out things like “Happy Birthday.” These are all going in his room as decorations. (I figure even though we’re only here for six months, I can totally use a lot of this stuff to decorate his room!)
- Food/Cake: The cake was made by a local woman who works with a friend of mine, so I don’t have a link to share with you. I gave her very little direction beyond “pinwheels” and love what she came up with. The food came from SouperJenny’s, which if you’re here in Atlanta, you probably already know about. The only catch with the food is that the party was on Sunday and they aren’t open on Sunday so we had to pick it all up Saturday. Our fridge is WAY TOO SMALL so we had to drop it all off at a friend’s house. The same friend who knows the Cake Lady. Good friends.
- Lollipops, candy: I found all the candy at a local candy store and got the jars at the Container Store. If you don’t have a candy shop locally, Google “whirly” or “swirly” lollipops. Lots of folks sell them online. I also got the favor boxes at the Container Store.
The Result: My dad, sister-in-law and niece came in for the party which was soooo nice. My best friend, who is insanely busy with her own kids, was able to make it (we held the party on Sunday to work around her kids’ schedule), as were several other close friends. Hunter was a bit overwhelmed by all the people. He did NOT smash his cake. Just kind of looked at it like, “Huh? What am I supposed to do with this?” All in all, a fun time.
OK, enough talk. Time for some pictures!
Today’s post is a two-fer, meaning I’m including it in both the Works for Me Wednesday series AND the Wordless/Wordful Wednesday series. For more great Works-for-me-Wednesday tips, check out WeAreThatFamily. And for more great pictures, go to SevenClownCircus, 5MinutesforMom, and WordlessWednesday.