Eliana's Spring Flower-Themed 1st Birthday Party (with Brass Band and Balloon Art)

eliana birthday

I can’t believe our sweet baby is one. I will get into her party in a moment — but just want to acknowledge that I’m using her name online for the first time since it’s in all the photos. We love her to the moon and back and originally planned to celebrate her first birthday with a cake smash and a simple and intimate party. We ended up with both a cake smash and full on, amazing floral spring-themed party and I’m happy to share all the details.

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All vendors and brands marked with an asterisk (*) were kind enough to offer a discount to my readers. I also list those vendors at the end of this post. Head to my exclusive promos post for promo details.

Past Birthdays

For my son's first and second birthday, I kept things pretty simple.  For his first birthday, we had an amazing cake smash and a  simple yet festive joint party for five babies and the parents.  For his second birthday, we had a small family party and some cupcakes plus a frolic in the park on the actual date. For his third, I went all out with elaborate custom decor with a circus themed. For his fourth, I planned an emoji-themed pizza party that was fun for the kids but pretty traumatic for me for reasons beyond my control.

After all the pizza party drama, I thought I would keep this party really simple and intimate but am glad it evolved into something amazing!

If you’re looking for cake smash ideas, be sure to check out the tips that I includes in both Sam’s and Eliana’s cake smash posts.


All party photos were taken by the wonderful Lissie Photo*.

Musical Entertainment*

Hanging with the band!

Hanging with the band!

This is a mini NYC love story. Sam was mesmerized by the Flowmingos* from the first time that we heard them in Washington Square Park. They are an incredible four piece brass band with a unique and energetic sound. They’re entertaining and fun both for kids and adults. We chatted in the park after their set and kept in touch on Instagram. I took a gamble hiring them without knowing anyone who used them. I’m glad that I trusted my gut because they were amazing!!

Head to my Instagram page and click on “Birthday” story highlights to see them in action.

To add to the fun for the kids and for a pop of color, I ordered these two toned dancing scarves.

The Venue

I’d heard about the new The Daily stroller from Lalo* and went to check it out at their showroom in Soho, which turned out to be a beautiful loft space. I’d already secured a permit for a party in Washington Square Park but was a bit nervous about the weather. Michael from Lalo very generously offered me use of the space.

They have a beautiful mural, which was the inspiration for the floral theme and color scheme.

FYI, the Lalo stroller seems amazing (they’ve thought of everything, including incorporating a phone charger). If you purchase the stroller they offer use of their space for your baby shower (I also have a nice discount on their stroller in my exclusive promos post)!

Balloon Decor and Entertainers*

I originally hired Twist Entertainers* just to entertain the kids for an hour.

twist entertainers

I was going to separately order a few simple helium balloon arrangements elsewhere, but I saw some of Twist Entertainers’ amazing balloon installations on their Instagram page and asked if it’s something they could do for my party.  I really gave very little direction and was blown away (no pun intended) by what Rami and Atrina created for us. 

Rami and Atrina were amazing with the kids too.

Additional Decor Elements

Twist Entertainers did an incredible job on the decor. I added some personal touches.

Milestone photos

Lalo already had this clothes line up, so I couldn’t resist hanging Eliana’s monthly milestone photos

You can also buy a clothesline photo set on Amazon and hang temporarily with command hooks.

Framed photos

I loved how our cakesmash turned out and the colors were on theme so I framed a cakesmash photo as well as a newborn photo and displayed them in lucite frames.


I already had this lightbox from Sam’s emoji party and involved Sam in the party prep by having him set it up. He wanted to include a 4 to represent his efforts, but I somehow dissuaded him.

Lightboxes can add a nice personalized touch for any theme and be reused endless times.  I like my lightbox because it comes with black and colored letters as well as a huge assortment of emojis and other images.

Personalized Blocks

We got these blocks as a favor at an event last year. They are really simple — just plain wooden blocks with adhesive letter decals.

I placed the blocks on the savory table and moved them to the sweet table just before we lit the cake.

I placed the blocks on the savory table and moved them to the sweet table just before we lit the cake.

High Chair Decor

I ordered this first birthday high chair tutu pretty last minute on Amazon. It turned out to be a really nice touch (people were surprisingly obsessed with it). You could also use it for a simple cake smash shoot.


To add to the fun for the kids and for a pop of color, I ordered these two toned dancing scarves.

The Savory Spread / Catering

party catering

I got a few catering platters from Breads Bakery and supplemented with a cheese platter, fruit, hummus, pickles and other finger foods.  The easier food was to pick up, the more people took.  So the crudites, mini fruit cups and cheese plate were the biggest hits. 

I bought a tiered display and mini cups for the fruit as I find adding height makes a table more interesting. This is something I plan to use again and again for all kinds of parties.

I make cheese platters all the time, but Laura (who made the cake) helped me by assembling it and did a better job than I would have. I brought an inexpensive platter (similar platter) that’s a lot lighter than the one I use at home.

I added a personal touch and some dimension with lucite framed photos (more info above).

The rose gold paper goods are all from Target. I used the same set in red for Sam’s third birthday. They are nice quality, inexpensive and you can easily return any extras.

The mini disposable bowls were from a previous event, but you can find similar ones here, the flatter hammered stainless steel dishes are souvenirs from our honeymoon in Sri Lanka (similar dishes here).

I put the plates and cutlery in this great little acrylic caddy (which I’ve also recommended in my third trimester to do list. You can also repurpose this for a sensory activity if you have your preschooler transfer items such as pom poms between compartments with tongs (look out for my upcoming post on ideas for at home play).

The Cake & Sweets

My friend Laura Ramirez is an amazing chef and pastry artist and generously offered to bake a cake for Eliana’s birthday.  I knew it would be beautiful and delicious (check out a dinner party that she made for my friends), but didn’t expect it to be more amazing than my wedding cake! 

Me, Laura and Eliana!

Me, Laura and Eliana!

A bunch of people commented on how delicious the pink and white cookies are.  Eliana agreed — she swiped one as we were lighting her cake and was focused on it entirely while all the attention was on her.  The cookies were from Trader Joe’s (I think they were $2.39) and my party version of mixing high and low fashion. 


eliana spring birthday flower cake

I filled an “E” candy dish (available in every letter) with pale pink and pearlescent blue jelly beans (FYI, 1 lb is more than enough to fill the dish).

1st birthday cake

I also put out Hershey’s Kisses (in retrospect, I should have ordered pink kisses) with coordinating first birthday stickers (the stickers were just OK as they were hard to read).


I ordered custom water bottle wrappers here. This site does a great job on and is affordable for custom and semi-custom printing. I used them for signs for Sam’s circus-themed 3rd birthday party and emoji-themed fourth birthday party. I was afraid they wouldn’t arrive in time so also ordered these and these from Amazon (totally cute and easier to read but I sent them back because the personalized ones did arrive in time).

I brought wine and ordered ice for delivery from Drizzly, which I highly recommend (they deliver alcohol and other party items like dips and chips).

I have two blue mason jars (similar here) and use them all the time for flowers, cutlery or straws. I used them at Sam’s circus party too!


I had a mix of one and four year olds and was afraid the four year olds would get bored.  I scratched my head to figure out a craft that they could do with minimal supervision without making a mess.  I ended up getting foam sheets and adhesive foam alphabet and shape stickers, which were a real hit.  Four year olds are into spelling out their own names, which is what most of them did.

I also got a really affordable tree sticker craft just in case. I figured it could serve as a craft for the party or a goody. Each tree came individually wrapped in plastic but I transferred them to organza bags (these fit them perfectly if I inserted them upside down) for a more polished look. FYI, these organza bags are also amazing for storing small parts from toy sets, as well as organizing your arts and crafts supplies (more organizational tips here).

I also brought a thin marker for the kids to label the craft.


I got play dough and stickers from The Dough Project and wrapped them in those same organza bags. Chelsea from the Dough Project made the dough in the theme color and printed custom labels, which were a nice touch.

All the big kids got a tree sticker craft to take home.

I had also intended to hand out the dancing scarves but forgot!

I really don’t think that favors are necessary but I do like to give something useful and on theme. See our circus-themed 3rd birthday party and emoji-themed fourth birthday party for what I gave at other parties.

Crown*, Headband,* Romper and Shoes

Eliana wore the sweetest romper, which I included in this clothing roundup. She was comfortable and able to move around easily, which is what every one year old deserves!

Her headband is handmade from Sweet Scarlett Blooms* (who also made the flower headband that she wore in her monthly milestone photos).

I bought the crown* knowing that Eliana would wear it for five minutes, but I think it makes a nice keepsake. I have held on to Sam’s first birthday hat too.

Eliana wore these sandals. I wanted these but ordered the wrong size and couldn’t get the exchange in time.


A number of the vendors were generous enough to offer discounts to my readers. I list the vendors below, but to keep me from having to update many blog posts regularly, discount details are on my exclusive promos page.

Check out my exclusive promos post for promos from these and other brands.

Comment below with how you celebrate first birthdays!

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