Your little one who was once small enough to stay tucked inside of you is now cruising about the house, with their very first birthday on the horizon. With all of the tears, trials and tribulations that come along with having a brand new baby, nothing compares to the feeling of finally being able to celebrate their first special day. But what items should you consider purchasing for a one year old birthday gift, and how should you go about planning their first party?

We’ve got information on all of that and more, so if you’re ready, let’s dive in.

What Do You Get a 1 Year Old for Their Birthday?

What makes a great present for a 1 year old doesn’t have to be rocket science, but it doesn’t have to be boring either.

Toddlers of this age are still learning to develop their motor skills as they gain stability and learn dexterity. Furthermore, your one year old child is likely to be gaining a sense of words and what they mean, all while trying to mimic what you’re saying, and doing, in the process.

As such, there are a variety of toys that make excellent birthday gifts that can cater to these newfound skills. Gifts such as push toys, pull toys, imaginative play items and see and say learning “objects” are great places to start.

Additionally, children of this age have the ability to engage and turn pages in a board book, and may even surprise you by handing a book over to you to read. Because of this, investing in bold and colourful reading materials will be of great use, especially if those books include sensory opportunities, such as flaps, textures and sounds.

Tempted to buy your kiddo clothes and toddler bedroom accessories? Go right ahead, but keep in mind that, though necessary, those gifts will likely be more pleasing to you than your toddler, at this age.

What Do You Get a 1 year Old for Her 1st birthday?

When buying gifts for a girl, it’s easy for moms to get caught up in glitz and glam. From pink tutus to baby dolls, and even much needed toddler hair tools (such as baby brush and comb), it’s easy to neglect the more physical and educational gift options that are available. Thankfully, you have options that cater to both!

1 Year Old Girl Birthday Gift Ideas

Here are few of our best gift ideas for 1 year old girl:

Le Toy Van – Petilou Wooden Educational Rainbow Cloud Walker

Educational, colourful and inviting, this push toy will have your little girl glowing with excitement as she develops her ability to walk and stabilise.

Crafted with traditional wooden blocks included, this makes a great gift for Montessori lovers and those wishing to give their child a cognitive and physical boost.

labebe – Baby Rocking Horse

Who doesn’t love a toy that provides a little extra bang for your buck? If that’s you mum and dad, this is the gift to get.

Aside from being outrageously adorable, this plush pink rocking horse can convert into a chair on wheels that can be easily pushed around the house, beach or park.

LeapFrog 603203 Musical Rainbow Party Pretend Play Educational Tea Set

Who said learning can’t be fun? Present this light-up musical teacup set to your sweetie, and she will benefit from over 80 songs and phrases to teach her colours, matching, numbers and more!

YGJT Baby Balance Bike

A girl’s got to ride in style, right? With this modern take on a classic baby bike, your toddler can build strength while practising balance and coordination, all while looking good doing it.

Renfox Coloured Crayons Palm Grip Crayons

How about some gifts you can store in a baby time capsule?

Though your cutie might not quite have the fine motor skills needed to handle those skinny crayola crayons, it doesn’t mean that she has to miss out on the joys of colouring. Buy her these palm crayons made in 9 non-toxic colours, to bring out her inner Picasso!

What Is a Good Birthday Gift for a 1 year Old Boy?

When you think of the best birthday present for 1 year old boy, what comes to mind?

We’re willing to bet that it’s probably images of tiny cars, wee bikes, miniature dinosaurs and more.

There are countless ways to foster his creativity and gross motor development, while also catering to his intellectual needs and desire for play.

1 Year Old Boy Birthday Gift Ideas

The following are a few of the best birthday present ideas for a 1 year old boy:

TOP BRIGHT Wooden Car Ramp

Made of high quality wood and attractive colours, this simple, yet entertaining, car set aids in hand eye coordination and would make a great addition to your little boy’s toy collection.

VTech 2-in-1 Sports Centre

Encourage your little guy to take it to the hoop with this fun and educational sports centre set that comes complete with a hoop, net, two balls and even an LED light up screen. Score!

Mega Bloks Classic Big Building Bag

A toy collection’s not complete without a set of blocks, right? Why not set your little one up with a block set that he’ll love from his toddler years and beyond? With Meg Bloks, your little boy will be encouraged to use his imagination to build up, and knock down, any structure that his tiny hands construct.

TOP BRIGHT Wooden Activity Cube

Got to love a toy that serves multiple functions, especially when those functions are educational! This colourful play cube is an attractive, high quality and traditional gift that is sure to have your little one squealing with delight. The cube comes with a variety of learning functions from colour recognition to shapes and more, to expand your child’s mind while improving coordination and fine motor skills.

Pewi Walking Ride On Toy

Did we save the best for last? Quite possibly! This ride-on push bike allows for free leg movement to allow your little guy to practise those ever-important balancing and stability skills, while taking a little tour of the house, or park, at his own pace.

Top Tips for Planning a 1 Year Old’s Party

With gifts out of the way, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty of planning the party, itself. If the thought of planning makes you break out in a sweat, relax mum and dad!

Your one year old’s party doesn’t have to be elaborate, and your little one will likely be too young to remember it, anyway.

Nevertheless, with a little effort and preparation in advance, you’ll be able to throw a birthday party that both you, your 1 year old and your guests are sure to love!

  • Decor: Most parties have a theme of some sort, and even if they don’t, they tend to at least have matching decor. When planning a party, you can control how simplistic or elaborate the party will be, based on your comfort level, and no one has to notice. For example, if planning and decorating isn’t your thing, try scoping out the party section of your local dollar store to see what themes are already available to you. Then, simply mix and match items and designs you like. Or you can pick a colour, such as pink or blue, and set out to buy a variety of cups, plates, napkins, balloons and streamers all of the same colour, but of varying shades. This will add depth and interest to your child’s birthday decor without expending too much effort.
  • Size: When planning a party, it is vastly important that you take into consideration the size of the party you are planning, and how many guests you want there. Consider making a list of the people you want to invite, and then, ensure that you’ve got enough cake, supplies and space to accommodate a party of that size.
  • Venue: Once you’ve got an idea of the size of your party, go ahead and begin to plan your venue. Be careful in this area though. You’ll want to make sure that the venue fits the occasion. So, unless you’re planning a party where there will only be adults in attendance, you may not wish to host it at your favourite quiet local restaurant.
  • Invitations: Now that you’ve got the venue and decorations underway, it is time to go forth with inviting your guests. If you’ve picked a theme of some sort, go ahead and take this opportunity to weave the theme into your invites. Catchy phrases and slogans that relate to the theme are always fun, and be sure to ask that guests RSVP by a certain date so that you can prepare to accommodate the amount of people that plan to be in attendance. This might also be a good time to ask that people who plan to be in attendance inform you of any food allergies they have, ahead of time.
  • Outfit: Who could forget this one? Now’s the time to pull out all of the stops and have your little princess, or prince, looking like royalty. Whether you choose to deck them out according to theme or wish to outfit them in their very best duds, today’s the day you have an excuse to go overboard with embellishments. So, go on. Do it!
  • Gifts: Don’t want a bunch of gifts, or looking for attendees to bring something specific? Don’t be afraid to mention it! There are tactful ways to go about it, so don’t let it be an added source of stress. Statements like “Your presence is a gift enough” or “Please consider donating a new or gently used book upon arrival” are all great ways to communicate your gift-giving expectations.
  • Food: Here’s where the real money is spent, right? Maybe. First, consider the time of day that you are throwing your shindig. If you have the party early enough, you may be able to skirt by with snacks and light refreshments. A party that is later in the day, though, may require a bigger meal, but it doesn’t have to be at a great expense. Depending on your taste, you may consider throwing a few burgers and hot dogs on the grill, or keep it simple by ordering pizza. Whatever your desire, just be sure to check in with any guests with food allergies. You’ll want to make sure that everyone gets a chance to enjoy delicious eats at your baby’s first!
  • Cake: What’s a party without cake, right? Depends on who you ask! Pick a cake that’s right for you and your baby, whatever that may look like. A true cake, a cupcake or no cake at all! Be flexible and open to ideas. Some parents would rather their baby smash into a giant slice of watermelon than a slice of cake. And guess what… that’s okay!
  • Games: As for entertainment, the choice is up to you. Classics such as Pin the Tail on the Donkey, prise walks, balloon pops and more, are all great ways to celebrate your child’s first while keeping your guests entertained.
  • Plan Ahead: Stressed yet? Planning ahead is going to be your best bet. You can even purchase a weekly planner to help keep your thoughts and ideas organised. Whatever you do, try not to procrastinate on something like this. Doing so might wreck your ability to enjoy your child’s first birthday the way you ought to, due to the unnecessary stress and headache of planning a party last minute.
  • Allow Your Baby to Enjoy It, Too: Remember that your little one, is…little. Though you and your guests may be having a smashingly good time, the truth is that your baby, now toddler, may not find what adults think is fun very interesting. Provide opportunities for stimulation and excitement that are just for him or her, throughout the party.

Tips for Surviving a 1 Year Old’s Party

Now that you’ve got the party planned, let’s delve into a few other helpful tips to kick this special day into overdrive.

  • Keep It Short: Remember, although your baby is now encroaching upon toddlerhood, he or she can still experience the negative effects of overstimulation as a result of a party that’s gone on way too long. Try to keep the party to a couple of hours at most, then, politely, give your guests the boot.
  • Plan Around Naptime: Along with that, when setting a start and end time for your child’s first birthday, be sure that it coincides with when your baby is awake for the day. Again, a sleepy toddler during his or her first birthday isn’t ideal. It’s their party and they’ll cry if they want to! No, seriously. They will.
  • Avoid Choking Hazards: Besides being a risk to your own child, choking hazards could also be a risk to other babies that are in attendance. Keep watch for items placed down low that children of any age can get access to and put in their mouths.
  • Don’t Overload Yourself: Be nice to yourself on this day, mum and dad. This could be your first planned birthday party or your tenth, but whatever the case, be sure to keep the party simple enough that you enjoy the day right along with your kiddo and the guests.
  • Make Sure There’s Help: Don’t try to take on the load of running a birthday party on your own, if you don’t have to. It may help to delegate some of the tasks to those nearest and dearest people in your life: husband, friends, moms and aunts. You’ve heard it once and you’ll hear it again…don’t be afraid to ask for help!
  • Take Pictures Before the Party: From cake smash to rolling in dirt and grass, we’re sure that your baby will have ample opportunity to ruin that cute little outfit you painstakingly picked out. Do yourself a favour and snap photos before the festivities begin, but if you can’t, you can always take advantage of an on-the-go grooming kit to quickly polish up your baby up before that impromptu pic!
  • Make and Maintain a Budget: No matter what your budget is, you’ll want to stay within the limits you’ve set for yourself, ahead of time. Don’t have any financial parameters set? Well, unless you’re rolling in the dough, you might want to create some, quick! Who knows what “cute” things you might see that, in the end, may end up costing you hundreds, or maybe even thousands!
  • Set an End Time: Never send out invitations with open end times. This is especially true for a one year old birthday party. Otherwise, you may have guests that linger… and linger, still.
  • Keep It Simple: Not everything in life has to be complicated, and you might be surprised at how simple party planning can be. For a quick and effective option, buy a huge “1” balloon and let that be the focal point of the party in the colour of your choice. Use this decorative piece for photos and you’ll have the perfect backdrop that was simple, easy and cheap!
  • Delegate a Photographer: In the midst of all of the fun, it is quite possible that you’ll forget to snap photos. Doh! But don’t worry. If you delegate a photographer, he or she can spend time capturing all of the best moments and share them with you, thereafter. Don’t want to delegate one person to be the photographer? Tell everyone to snap photos, and then, host a digital postparty online where everyone can upload and share the pics they snapped. This is a fun, frugal and convenient way to share memories, without the worry of not having captured the moment!

Craving even more party tips? Check out more first birthday party survival tips und first birthday party tips for even more amazing ways to add more oomph in your child’s first birthday party!

Savour the Moment

In this post of one year old birthday gift ideas, we hope we gave you a good picture of what to get for your little one’s first birthday.

Yet with all of the hubbub of planning, make sure to savour this moment with your little one. They won’t be small forever, and their first birthday is a testament to how fast time can fly.

Relish the memories, take lots of pictures and celebrate the fact that you, and your little one, made this far… together.