I can’t wait to share with you the pictures from the little Man’s first birthday, courtesy of Niraj Gandhi Photography. This post is picture heavy, but I can’t wait to share with you all the fun details behind his jungle safari themed party. Picking a theme was easy for us, the little Man with his long hair is a mini Mowgli from the Jungle Book, thus we landed on a safari/Jungle Book theme for this 1st birthday soiree. With a little help from some amazing Etsy designers and our friends and family, we celebrated the little Man’s first birthday in true jungle safari style.
Invitations: One of my favorite details from the little Man’s first birthday were the amazing invitations created by one of my incredibly talented friends at PS Paper Couture. She pulled together beautiful details to create a passport style invitation, including the customs stamp from our most recent trip. I couldn’t think of a more stunning way to invite guests on a safari adventure.
Base Camp: As the little guests entered their jungle safari adventure, their first stop was base camp. Here they picked up their safari passes, with a fun itinerary that included: a photo in the safari jeep, searching for a herd of zebra, a romp in the quicksand pit, and they gathered their supplies like binoculars and safari hats. For slightly older safari adventurers, I created a custom activity book. The guest book, a copy of Disney’s Jungle Book, and favors were also featured at “base camp”. I know guest books aren’t typical for first birthday parties, but I love the idea of the little Man reading his signed copy in years to come, and it’s another wonderful addition to his library. The favors, stuffed animals from the Kohl’s Cares collection, were housed in a vintage crate. I love that they doubled as favors and were a great way to give back.
Party Details: The centerpieces consisted of fun framed photos of the little Man with several safari animals. I love the look of gold safari animals and achieved this with a simple coat of gold spray paint. The favorite things poster by Moulage Collection is one of my favorite party details. I love how it turned out, and we received so many compliments on it. I can’t wait to frame it for his nursery; it’s the perfect way to capture his first year.
Food: We kept things simple for food and served salad & pizzas. In addition to the usual appetizers we had a cheese plate and a fruit tray with a double pineapple tree. At the beverage station, or the watering hole, we served jungle juice, water, juice pouches, Izzes, and of course milk.
Dessert Table: The dessert bar featured a safari cake, which sat on top of a vintage suitcase, with the most adorable gold elephant candle holder, thanks to Gnome Sweet Gnome Shop. The goodies on the dessert table included: rice krispy treats, cake pops, jello cups, ants on a log (with animal crackers), and delicious personalized safari hat cookies from Rollin’ in Dough. The backdrop consisted of zebra print fabric, the happy birthday banner, which hung from a bamboo frame, and animal prints from Lisa Kay Designs. Green moss, large leaf prints, and a raffia table shirt, polished off the dessert table.
Play Zone: Since we had wide age range of party goers, I tried to accommodate all ages with the party activities. The safari rides photo booth came to life with several yards of burlap, the safari jeep, and a few jungle friends from the little Man’s nursery. The Mister built the safari jeep using a cardboard box, and after several coats of paint and some quick glue gunning, we had ourselves a fun photo prop. Using an inflatable pool filled with plastic balls, we created the “quicksand pit”, which was by far the most popular play area at the party. The “zebra herd” consisted of several inflated mylar zebra balloons, the inspiration behind the zebra herd was this Land of Nod design photo. With several floating zebras around the party, our little guests could spot them with their binoculars, or take them for a walk.
Smash Cake: Tying in the Jungle Book theme, I found an adorable orange diaper cover for the little Man to wear. I love how he looks like a mini Mowgli here. Thankfully he was overjoyed at by the opportunity to destroy his smash cake, and loved the subsequent sugar-high from all that frosting.
In celebration of the little Man’s first birthday, we have a fabulous giveaway featuring all our Etsy vendors. Enter to win a $10 gift certificate to both Lisa Kay Designs & PS Paper Couture, a dozen Easter mini cookies from Rollin’ in Dough, and a candle holder from Gnome Sweet Gnome Shop. The giveaway starts today, March 25th and ends Saturday March 29th at 3pm CST. Winner will be chosen at random, contacted via email and have five days to claim their prize before another winner is selected. And for all our Chicago readers, our photographer Niraj Gandhi, is offering a 55% discount on newborn or family photo shoots booked by Monday, March 31st. Mention ‘The Wise Baby’ when making booking your photo shoot.