I’ve been so M.I.A I apologize. I still have Christmas pictures I would like to share as well as an 11 month post but those will have to wait as I wanted to share Parker’s invitation for his first birthday which is rapidly approaching!
When thinking of a theme I jumped around a lot. I was having trouble finding something I liked that made sense for the middle of winter and having to be indoors. I debated a circus theme, ninja theme (with Asian cuisine) and woodland theme. I was pretty set on a winter woodland theme (with an emphasis on foxes) when as I was browsing Etsy I came upon an invitation for Where the Wild Things Are and a lightbulb went off. I’ve spoken before how Eric and I were both English majors and love books and how 2 of my baby showers incorporated a storybook theme so it only made sense I carried that on. As I did further research on the book and party ideas, I came across so much inspiration and I loved how a couple quotes from the book – “Let the wild rumpus start” and “I’ll eat you up, I love you so” could be incorporated. I also thought how neat it would be for Parker’s copy of the book to be the guest book and I plan to have all the guests write a note on the inside as they arrive. This also sparked an idea how I would like all our future birthday parties to be based on a book so that when they are older they have all the books signed by the people that came to celebrate them. I realize as kids get older I won’t necessary have a say in theme but my thought is even if they want like “batman” or “cowboys” you can always find a book to go with it.
So once the theme was set I moved on to the invitation. There were many on Etsy but I had a hard time finding one I loved. I really wanted something modern and clean looking. Everything I found had either too much going on (looked too commercial for my taste), was too simple (looked like something I could have made myself) or too expensive (many were digital files which was what I wanted but some the seller printed and you had to pay per invite which would have been like $100 or more – I don’t think so!) so I kept hitting dead ends. It got to the point where I almost switched my theme back to woodland because there was one fox invitation I kept going back to in an Etsy shop called BonjourBerry. I just loved everything about it. I was then browsing the rest of her shop when I noticed she would do a custom design for only $20! So I immediately messaged her and she happily accepted. I gave her a few ideas. My decor is still going to be woodland-esque since the book is set in the forest and I also told her what his smash cake was going to look like and she took it from there. The funny thing is she asked me if I had a color scheme and I didn’t at the time but then while I was waiting for her to send the design I decided I’d like to focus on red, gray and white and so I was pleasantly surprised when those were the colors she had decided on herself as well! I think it’s fun I can say Parker’s invitations were custom designed from someone in Australia! She was incredibly easy to work with and allows three proofs before she basically tells you “stop being so damn picky” 🙂 Luckily I was happy with proof one. The only thing I had her change was the hair color. She had it dark brown to match Max from the book but I asked her to lighten it up so it would look like Parker’s hair. After that she sent me the file and I went to Staples (with my own paper since its cheaper) to print. After seeing them printed I came up with the idea to buy red paper to place behind it as a border to fancy it up and make the invites thicker. I also had a little handheld paper punch to make the corners round – don’t even think for a second I did those freehand! In the end I put together and mailed out 34 invitations. I did a mini budget breakdown for those interested below. The envelopes were free because when we received our Christmas cards (which i really meant to blog about – dang it I’m so behind!) there was a printing error that wasn’t our fault and when they sent back the corrected ones they resent envelopes too so I had double the amount I needed. I really lucked out as they were nice, thick envelopes so I’m glad I didn’t have to buy any.
Invitation Design: $20
White Paper: $4
Printing at Staples: $9
Red Paper: $3
Total: $36 or $1 per invite
So not too bad for custom designed invites! I’m definitely going to keep BonjourBerry in mind for future parties and encourage others to check her out as well!
Of course I have lots more ideas and planning in the works but all that won’t be shown until after the party! We are going to do P’s professional 1 year photos right before the party so our photographer is going to stay and take pictures of the cake smash and decor for us too. Can’t wait!