REAL PARTIES: A Day in the Garden

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garden themed birthday party ideas

This adorable “Day in the Garden” themed party – created by hwtm reader Dana Nussbaum for her daughter Maddie’s first birthday – is full of SO MANY creative details!

There’s a touch of the whimsical garden theme in absolutely every element of the party… from butterfly lollipops in the dessert buffet to garden themed board books and snail/butterfly finger puppets in the favor pails to themed activities like “flower potting” and “ladybug relaxation” stations.

garden themed birthday party ideas

I’m especially loving this bright & colorful cupcake tower and all the garden-themed accents worked into the treat buffet!

garden themed birthday party ideas

Read on for lots more pictures and all the creative details, as told by Dana

garden themed birthday party ideas

“The theme was inspired by my daughter’s absolute love for our backyard and all things outdoor/garden… flowers, ladybugs and everything in between!

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

These added so much whimsy and color to the party and were so easy and fun to make! Each centerpiece was made with a brightly colored tin bucket and 3 multicolored pinwheels. A little green tissue paper grass added the finishing touch!

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

Each child received a flower headband upon entrance (a great find in the Target $1 bins!)

garden themed birthday party ideas

The party site was decorated with pictures of Madison from each month of her first year. I framed them in brightly colored frames I found at Ikea and labeled each one with the corresponding month using scrapbooking labels.

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

A giant ball pit was the hit of the party!
I custom made ours with a large inflatable pool selected in the colors of the party and then filled it with over 1,000 colored playballs.

garden themed birthday party ideas

In addition to the ball pit, kids had the choice of three stations to choose from:
• Flower Potting Station – kids potted and watered their own pots using miniature gardening tools and tiny painted pots found at Target.
Handprint Station – each of the kids made their handprint on a mat board customized with the slogan “Oh, How I Have Grown!”  and took it home as a keepsake.
Ladybug Relaxation Station – for kids needing a break from the action, I set up a special Relaxation area with a giant ladybug beanbag and flower tuffets; there was a small table featuring a terrarium with ladybugs and toy bugs / dragonflies for the kids to play with.

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

Since this was a sunny day, a special Sunscreen Station was set up with sunscreen wipes and a pair of sunglasses for each child that they could also take home with them (easy to find in the party favors aisle; I embellished mine with floral stickers to match the theme).

In addition to taking great traditional shots of the party, our amazing photographer (Jen St. John) also took a Polaroid of each family and we put them in customized embellished folders so each guest could take some memories home with them.

garden themed birthday party ideas

We are a big dessert family so we set up a dessert table with garden theme goodies such as gummy ladybugs, butterfly lollipops, caterpillar sugar cookies, giant pixie sticks and a tower of baby-sized cupcakes! (also see image #3, at top)

garden themed birthday party ideas

Baby Snack Bar
Since we had many babies in attendance at the party, I didn’t want to leave the lil’ ones out…we featured a baby snack bar with glass containers of baby-friendly fare like Yogurt Melts, Organic Puffs and Dried Fruit, along with miniature multi colored snack cups so their parents could fill one up and take it outside to the garden.

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

-The inspiration for these was a collection of Madison’s favorite things, all with a garden twist…
• Personalized sand pails (found for $1.00 each at Michael’s and easily customized with stickers)
• Miniature Bubbles
• Little Twig Bath Care Goody Bag (Bumble Bee bath mitts with a selection of sample-sized bath products)
• Renee & Jeremy CDs (this is Maddie’s favorite musical duo!)
• Garden Themed Board Books
• Playtex Straw Cups customized with garden theme stickers
• Handmade flower hair clips for the girls (a great find on Etsy!)
• Butterfly / Snail finger puppets (found for under $1.00 at Ikea!)
• Personalized Name Labels for each of the kids (with garden theme designs like butterflies / bugs)”

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas

garden themed birthday party ideas


Vendor Credit
  • Send in the Clowns: Party Entertainer, Party Assistant, Handprint Station
  • Mary Had A Little Party: Invitations, custom signs, favor tags, birthday banner, cupcake toppers
  • Barbara Neely Designs: Caterpillar Banner
  • Chickabug: Labels; Dessert Bar & Potting Station
  • GlitzGlamBowtique:  Custom Birthday Hat
  • OrangeKisses:  Custom Tissue Poms
  • Jen St. John Photography:  event photography
  • Crumbs Bakeshop, Calabasas – mini cupcakes
  • Susie Cakes, Calabasas – birthday cake
Alternative Text
POSTED BY:jenn s.JENNIFER SBRANTI is the Founder and Creative Director of Hostess with the Mostess®, a hip and modern party planning resource.

35 responses to “REAL PARTIES: A Day in the Garden”

  1. kira says:

    Dana did such an amazing job…every detail is so thoughtful and whimsical. I love the sunscreen station idea and the lady bug resting area…I want a lady bug resting area!!! Where did she find that fun acrylic(?) box with the polka dots on the dessert table?

  2. What a great job by Dana-the bday mom(and our lovely client)! SEND IN THE CLOWNS LA provided a variety of entertainment elements: Custom Hand Print Station, Oodles of bubbles, & Fairy Fun–just to name a few!
    Thrilled to be part of this well-executed event for a darling 1yo!

    Leesa Zelken, CEO (Children’s Entertainment Organizer TM)
    SEND IN THE CLOWNS “Bravura kiddie party planning”

  3. Ann Marie Buckley says:

    This is just so cute! Thank you for sharing! I have a list of your really cute ideas. And Madison is stunning!!!

  4. Joyce says:

    Love this!! So many great ideas!

  5. Maribel says:

    Love, love, love the baby snack bar station…I’m stealing, I mean borrowing this idea along with the sunscreen station for my son’s upcoming birthday party. Great job Dana. You’re so creative!

  6. Kristin says:

    Really well done. Love how you incorporated DIY ideas into your plan so your own style would shine.What memories those stunning pictures will tell in years to come!!

  7. Betty Islas Velazquez says:

    OMG!!! I love it!! So many inspirations for my daughters 2nd Birthday!

  8. Those invitations are super cute! Love the individual flower petals.


  9. What a spectacular celebration! The little ladybug relaxation station is beyond cute!!! Love how no detail was left unattended. Adorable! :)

  10. Jen St. John says:

    Everything turned out super adorable and the itty bitty’s had such a great time! Thank you for making me a part of this special special celebration, Maddie’s 1st Birthday!

  11. Natasha says:

    Love all of the ideas and I too will be borrowing some. Did you buy or make the flower lanterns hanging outside over the table and chairs?

  12. Jen says:

    Everytthing turned out so perfect and the itty bitty’s all had such a great time! Thank you for sharing such a special celebration with me!!


  13. Malinda says:

    Oh My Goodness! I love this party! It is simply adorable!

  14. Pam says:

    Love the arrangements and the photos really capture the fun, playful, colorful party theme. Good job all.

  15. Wow! Just A D O R A B L E!!!!

  16. keecam says:

    Can you please please tell me where did you got the multicolored pinwheels? I’m in love!!!

  17. jring10 says:

    i also am in love with the pinwheels! where did you find them? super job on everything -what a spectacular party!

  18. Dei West says:

    So cute! Do you know the name of the font used on the cake? I love that!

  19. So sweet! I love it all! The pinwheels are spectacular, the cake, the favors, the sweet table!