DIY

Penelope’s 1st Birthday!

Penelope’s 1st Birthday had no real theme, other than the colors yellow and teal. I originally wanted to do a Fall colors theme and go off the colors of mums, like purple, orange and lime green. But then I saw this fabric and fell. in. love.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
Here is the birthday girl in the dress I made and matching hair bow, which she promptly ripped off her head. I double lined it with a thick cotton, for extra warmth, and I made a bit big so she could wear it for as long as possible. Here are a couple of other pillow case dresses I have made.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
Yes, that’s right, I was color coordinated.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
All the kiddos, hanging out in the backyard. It was such a surreal experience to see them all running around in our backyard and playing-and it made us realize we need to get a swing set or sand box or something other than a vegetable garden for them to play with! It was a beautiful day and to have our back yard full of kids and families we love, made my heart oh, so happy. It really was the perfect party.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
Home-girl did not like her cake! I made the tastiest cake, all organic and homemade, but it did not please her highness.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
View from the front of the house. We tied a big bunch of balloons to the mailbox. Papa and Omi were on balloon and cupcake duty that morning, good job guys!
Penelopes 1st Birthday
This is the what the sign on the front door looked like. It matched the Footprint Decoration I had on display on the back wall in the play room.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
Here are the play room decorations. It was the area for her gifts and the party favors I made. I made the banner in the background. It was very simple to make. I just cut out triangles with pinking sheers and stuck them inside yellow bias tape and sewed a straight line.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
I even had color coordinating wrapping paper for her gifts from us, which made me feel very Martha-like. I actually just happened to have it on hand, which was cool. And I had tons of tissue left over from making her number 1 sign. I got that idea here. I taped the fabric to the canvas to easily take it off and I also hot glued the tissue paper to a paper number one and then lightly taped that to the fabric, so once I get up the nerve to take it apart, I can use the fabric to make something else later.
Penelopes 1st Birthday
I had yellow flowers of all kinds throughout the house. We bought them a few days before, so that they were in full bloom the day of her party. That was actually a tip from my husband, he is an engineer, and apparently a closet, flower designer. Who knew?
Penelopes 1st Birthday
A close up of the Footprint Decoration. Everyone loved looking at her pictures and tiny footprints!
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The party favors all wrapped up. Remember when I made these way back when? I put three flower crayons in each box, lined with yellow tissue. Then I cut out a piece of cellophane, then laid down a piece of tissue and wrapped it up and tied with a piece of teal ribbon.
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The food. I just did a couple of appetizers, I did Feta Black Bean Dip and Raspberry Cheese Spread from the cookbook I helped put together,  A Thyme to Celebrate, and then of course we had cupcakes and cake. We had her party in the late afternoon, so it was perfect.
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I got as creative as I could using things around my house in order to do this party on the cheap. This table cloth is actually a shower curtain! I also took down a picture from from her bedroom to use as decoration and used mason jars for the flower vases. Then, I went a little bow happy and tied bows to everything I could.
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I made the cake, but we ordered cupcakes from the Cake Shop. I added teal blue sprinkles on one bunch and yellow ones on the other myself…apparently they don’t do any icing coloring for you…

I got the little elephant platters at IKEA years ago. We were in there to get something very specific, but when I saw these plates my heart stopped and I had to have them. They matched perfectly with decor!
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Here’s a close up the of the flowers at the food table. I LOVE mason jars!
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The cake! And borrowed cake stand. I must, must, must buy a cake stand soon! Oh, and the glass in the background has lemon drops candy in them.
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Her highchair all decked out with her mini banner and balloons. That butterfly still has air in it, I kid you not.
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I used three different fabrics throughout the house and on her decorations. I could just stare at this fabric all day long. It makes me happy! I made her invitations with the same fabrics as well.
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This is not exactly a masterpiece. The party date was looming and I still hadn’t figured out what to do with her hat, so I just came up with this last minute. Whatever, it wasn’t a showstopper, but it was cute and color coordinating.
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The drink station. We bought teal blue plates and cups and yellow napkins at Party Station. I happened to have the drink tub on hand, and I think I got it at Target. The drink dispensers we got at Bed Bath and Beyond. I ended up taking them back because they didn’t dispense very fast.
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I used 12 organic lemons in the glass jar as the centerpiece. I debated about not getting organic lemons, since they were just decoration and all, but I am so glad I did, because my common sense kicked in after the party and I made fermented lemonade with them!
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This is the view from the backyard. Those pom-poms were pretty annoying to make and store, but they looked gorgeous.
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Here is the tutorial on how to make them. Do not stack more than 8 sheets. I tend to over exaggerate when following directions for crafting and cooking, but stay inside the lines on this one folks.
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And lastly, I had some left over flower petals from her decoration in the play room above, so I hot glued them to some wooden sticks and made an easy, cheap flower arrangement.

I modpodged this $5 glass vase from Micheal’s, I have the need to modpodge anything I can now, it’s really addicting!

That’s all folks! My beautiful girl’s first birthday!
I am so proud of myself that I pulled it off and managed to stay calm. I kept reminding myself to enjoy the moment and in the end, I did. I loved the whole process, I started crafting and planning, months and months in advance and did everything is slow bits. I hope when Penelope looks back at these pictures one day, I hope she feels loved, not by the end result but by the thought and care that went into each thing.

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  • Shannon, EJ, Gabe and Hannah
    November 20, 2010 at 6:14 PM

    Love her dress!!

  • Ali
    November 22, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    I LOVE her cake face!

  • Mary
    January 5, 2011 at 3:21 PM

    Steph, I'm turning 27 this year. Want to throw my birthday party? lol

  • sarahjahr
    July 30, 2011 at 3:26 AM

    Super cute! I really like the tissue flowers. We are having a meet the baby party at the end of September. It might work better to store them by making them up to the "fluff" stage? You could just fluff the night before.

  • Stephanie
    July 30, 2011 at 12:18 PM

    @sarahjahr….that sounds fun. Yes, you could totally just put them together and fluff them the night before. I have a pretty big storage closet, so I just put them in there, I didn't want to be doing 5 million things the night before her party. 🙂

  • The Glover Family
    August 27, 2011 at 8:34 PM

    I just LOVE the material of your sweet little girls dress! Did you happen to get it here in Tallahassee?

  • Stephanie
    August 28, 2011 at 2:54 AM

    @The Glover Family…thank you! It is a fabric by Heather Bailey. I ordered it online, but the Bernina Connection, on the north side of town next to The Fresh Market, has a small selection of her line.