Look, it’s a 1st birthday. It’s more for mom and/or dad than it is for baby. They can even be a bit controversial. Is it worth it to spend money on a first birthday? I mean, as Chandler says, “If only she were one and didn’t know what the hell a birthday was.”

However, I’m here to tell you that yes, it’s perfectly wonderful to celebrate a first birthday and go way over the top if you want. If you don’t want, you can still do just 3 1st birthday decorations that make keepsakes you can save long after the party.

Recently, I celebrated with best friends the first birthday of their little boy.  It was “little monster” theme and I got to design everything from invites to banners. I loved it.  

What I also loved was that my best friend, Cassie, asked me to make items that I think could be kept forever and easily. I loved that she spent money wisely (I mean, whenever you by from me it’s wise) on things that really make a difference in the party. She didn’t do favors or even fancy cups, plates, and napkins, but the things she did do turned out so cute.

First birthday decorations

Today I’m sharing several items that can serve as keepsakes as well (either in photos or to save).  My designs are monster theme, but can be adapted to any birthday theme.

You’ll also find the supplies you need for each sign listed as well so you can make at home.  

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Three Birthday Decorations You’ll Want to Keep

1. Happy Birthday Banner

The first banner is kind of obvious, but still lovely. It also folds up easily so you can keep with the baby book for years to come. Plus, how can you have a birthday party without a “Happy Birthday” banner?


 2. “I Am One” Banner

Little Monster "I Am One" Banner
Little Monster “I Am One” Banner

Next up is a banner that is great for photos. It’s a personal favorite of mine. The “I Am One” banner is perfect for the high chair and looks great in photos too.


3. Monthly Photo Banner

Monster Themed Birthday Banner | Monthly Photo Decor for First Birthday Party | 12 Month Birthday Banner for Photos
Monthly Photo Banner in Monster theme

This last one turned out so darned cute! Show off the first year of your baby’s life with a monthly banner at their first birthday.  Just attach clothes pins to the bottom of each square and you can easily hang your photos.


Supplies You’ll Need

Each of these banners can easily be made a home with just a few tools. I’ve listed them below if you want to DIY it.

— Card Stock: I use 100 to 110 lb card stock which is very heavy and won’t go through normal printers.  You can use any card stock really as long as you use the following product too!


— Chip board: This magical stuff can be easily glued to any card stock and will make your banners much more thick and sturdy. This one below is a really great deal for the price.


Glue Stick: Get one that is extra strength and you won’t be sorry.


— Paper Cutter: There are a lot of different paper cutters out there, and if you don’t do a lot of crafting, it’s fine to go cheap as long as it’s strong enough to cut through the material you’re using.  However, if you do a lot of crafting, then get one that’s better. I love the one as it cuts through chip board easy-peasy and folds up nicely.


— Hole Punch: A “crop-a-dile” will change your life. It will go through very thick materials so you can stack up several pieces of the banner and easily punch the holes you need.


— Ribbon: Here’s where you can be creative. Choose your color and run with it. I used brown with the designs here.


Save on the Birthday Party

Now, that’s three items you can either make or purchase that are great 1st birthday decorations and you’ll want to keep them. No need to over stress on the party, just keep it simple.

1st Birthday Decorations You’ll Love to Keep Forever
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