First birthday party favors will be a breeze with this handy guide!
After barely pulling together my oldest’s first birthday and having attended many of her friends’ parties over the years, I feel like I’ve learned a few party-planning tidbits along the way.
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Trial and error is the way this whole parenting thing works anyway, right?!
I’m prepped and ready to tackle my youngest’s party in a few weeks.
I’ve curated this list to hopefully help ease some of the pre-party stress. So, if you’re wondering what to include in 1-year-old party bags, check out this list of items that kids and parents will love.
Top 5 First Birthday Party Favors
1. Fubbles Bubbles No-Spill Bubble Tumbler
- The liquid stays “relatively” contained in the containers which minimizes mess.
- I’ve yet to meet a toddler who isn’t fascinated with bubbles! It’s sure to be a hit.
- There is still a possibility for a mess! But, in my experience, it’s a no-mess activity more often than not.
- The bubbles do run out after ~30 minutes of play. Which is usually about 2 bubble play sessions in our house.
2. Melissa & Doug My First Temporary Tattoos
- BUDGET PICK: Temporary tattoos are lots of fun with little ones! Parents will love how affordable they are!
- This kit has lots of options to mix and match
- These can be tough for littles with sensitive skin.
- The tattoos will naturally wear off after a few days. It will take some scrubbing to get them off sooner, rubbing alcohol speeds up the process.
3. Lego Duplo – My First Growing Carrot
- Duplos are engaging toys that promote age-appropriate developmental skills.
- There are lots of options to choose from. You can probably find something that matches your theme.
- These are more expensive party favors. But they will last longer.
- Be mindful of the age range on the sets as some can contain smaller pieces which may be choking hazards.
4. Woodland Animals Coloring Book
- Coloring books encourage creativity.
- You can likely find one to match your theme.
- Buying the books in bulk makes them affordable.
- You may need to include crayons or markers which are an additional cost.
5. Animal Stickers
- Kids love stickers!!!
- These are an affordable option with lots of variety to choose from
- Stickers will stick to everything! You might find a few stuck in less-than-ideal places…
- Stickers are a single-serving activity.
15 More of The Best 1st Birthday Party Favors
1. Bath toys
Enhance the bath time fun for 1-year-olds with exciting toys!
- Enhances bath time fun.
- Wide range of options available.
- Quality may vary between products.
- Some may retain water and need regular cleaning.
2. Bath Bombs
For a trendy, different idea, consider adding a toddler-friendly bath bomb to your 1-year-old party favor bag! After the color and fizz, a small toy will be left for the 1-year-olds.
- Adding some fun and excitement to bath time is something parents and kids both love.
- There are tons of different kids bath bombs out there and some even come with toys inside.
- Kids with sensitive skin may not be able to enjoy these.
- If there is a toy inside be mindful of the size as this could be a choking hazard.
3. Unique Crayons
Add custom crayons to goodie bags, matching the theme or guests’ initials.
- Enhances the coloring experience.
- Can be personalized.
- May be pricier than regular crayons.
- Could be considered too special to use.
Check out these Etsy sellers:
4. Hair Scrunchies
With 1-year-olds sprouting longer hair, and the trendy return of scrunchies these are a fun party favor for a girls first birthday.
- Scrunchies can be used many times and are super cute.
- There are lots of patterns and colors to choose from.
- Not all children will have hair long enough to use a scrunchie
- This wouldn’t make a good party favor for the boys at the party.
Including items that match the season are great practical goodie bags that parents will really appreciate
5. Fall: Mittens or Hat
Mittens or hats make practical goodie bags that parents will appreciate. They are easily sourced from dollar stores or sales. Extra pairs are always appreciated, we all know how easily they get lost at daycare!
- Seasonally appropriate and useful.
- Can be found at affordable prices.
- Sizing may vary.
- May not be used immediately depending on the weather.
6. Summer: Sand Toys – Bucket and Shovel
A bucket can be used as the party favor ‘bag’ and you can fill it up with more sand toys or your other favors.
7. Spring: Watering Can, Umbrella, Rain Boots
Spring offers many choices for 1-year-old party favor items!
A watering can for spring flowers, an umbrella for rainy days, or even rain boots can be filled with stickers and crayons tied off with a cute bow.
- Encourages outdoor exploration.
- Seasonally appropriate.
- Can be pricier (especially rain boots).
- Sizing and preferences can be difficult.
8. Winter: Ornament Craft
You can package this bulk set of wooden cutouts and markers into individual craft kits.
- These can serve as a party activity and a party favor
- Ornaments are fun to look back on as the kids get older
- Crafting can sometimes be messy with little hands!
9. Coloring Books
Coloring books are a great 1 year old party favor and they can be customized or personalized to match your theme.
Do a quick Amazon search to see if they have a book in your theme.
Or Google your theme + coloring and see if there are any downloads available that you can print at home to give your guests themed sheets.
For example, if you are doing a Woodland/Wild One theme these books would be a great party favor.
1 year olds LOVE stickers! Try to get ones that are raised to help little fingers lift them off the sheet. If they match the theme, even cuter!
11. Temporary Tattoos
Tattoos are a great, safe, and fun addition to your goodie bags. 1-year-olds will love the novelty of them and they can last for a few days.
You can give out whole sheets or individual tattoos.
12. Bouncy Balls
Large bouncy balls can be a fun addition! Make sure they are large enough to not be a choking hazard, these are 3″. Simple, colorful, and can be used in so many ways.
Including magnets is a fun, safe favor option for 1-year-olds.
Just make sure the magnet is one big piece that can’t come loose. My favorite brand is Melissa and Doug. Buy a set and give each child a few different ones.
DIY Party Favors
14. Play Dough Party Favor
Make homemade playdough and put it in small, decorated gift jars. These make fun, practical party favors for little guests to enjoy at home.
- Vegetable oil
- Food coloring
- Small jars or containers
- Fabric or paper for lid covers
- Ribbons or twine
- Custom labels or tags
- Optional: Small cookie cutters or playdough tools
- Make the Playdough:
- Combine 2 cups of flour, 1 cup of salt, 1 cup of water, and 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.
- Mix until a dough forms, adjusting flour and water as needed.
- Divide the dough into portions and add food coloring to each, kneading until the color is evenly distributed.
- Package the Playdough:
- Place each color of playdough into a small jar or container.
- Optional: Include a small cookie cutter or playdough tool in each container.
- Decorate the Jars:
- Cut fabric or paper circles to cover the lids of the jars, securing them with a rubber band.
- Tie a ribbon or twine around the lid, covering the rubber band.
- Attach a custom label or tag, perhaps including the child’s name, the date of the party, or a thank-you note.
- Arrange the playdough jars on a table for guests to take as they leave or incorporate them into the party décor.
- Consider placing them in a small bag with a thank-you note for a special touch.
- Safe & Non-Toxic: Homemade playdough is safe for little hands and mouths.
- Engaging: Provides a fun, sensory activity for little guests to enjoy post-party.
- Personal Touch: The DIY aspect adds a personal, heartfelt touch to the favors.
- Customizable: Can be tailored to match the party theme through color choices and decorations.
This DIY playdough party favor is not only a delightful memento from the party but also provides an engaging, safe, and creative play activity for little guests when they get home. Plus, it adds a personal and thoughtful touch to your child’s first birthday celebration.
15. DIY Coloring Book
Create a mini coloring book with simple, age-appropriate images and include a small pack of crayons as a party favor. This DIY project is not only a fun keepsake but also an engaging activity for little ones.
- Paper (preferably a bit thicker than standard paper)
- Stapler or ribbon
- Small bags or envelopes
- Stickers or labels for personalization
- Optional: Custom drawings or images
- Create the Coloring Pages:
- Choose or create simple, age-appropriate images that little ones can enjoy coloring. Consider images that align with the party theme.
- Optional: Create a front page with “Happy 1st Birthday [Child’s Name]” or a similar message.
- Print and Assemble the Coloring Book:
- Print the images onto the paper, ensuring they are sized appropriately for your mini coloring book.
- Stack the pages and either staple them together or punch holes in the sides and tie them together with a ribbon.
- Package the Crayons:
- Choose small packs of crayons or create your own by placing a few crayons in a small bag or envelope.
- Ensure the crayons are safe and suitable for 1-year-olds (e.g., jumbo crayons that are easy to grip and not a choking hazard).
- Personalize the Favors:
- Attach stickers or labels to the coloring books and/or crayon packs, thanking guests for attending and commemorating your child’s first birthday.
- Consider using labels that match the party theme and color scheme.
- Place the coloring books and crayons in a designated area for guests to take as they leave, or hand them out during the party.
- Optional: Include a small thank-you note inside each coloring book.
- Engaging: Provides a creative activity for little guests during and after the party.
- Memorable: Serves as a keepsake from your child’s special day.
- Customizable: Can be tailored to match the party theme and personalized for your child.
- Safe & Age-Appropriate: Ensure images and crayons are suitable for 1-year-olds, considering safety and ease of use.
This DIY personalized coloring book is a thoughtful, engaging, and memorable party favor that little guests and parents alike will appreciate. It provides a creative activity and a lovely memento from your child’s first birthday celebration.
What Is A Party Favor?
Kids’ party favors are small gifts or treats that hosts give to guests when leaving a child’s birthday party or other celebration. Also referred to as loot bags, goody bags, or gift bags, these take-home items serve as a party memento and thank you to each child for attending.
Party favors usually have cheap, fun items like stickers, tattoos, bubbles, crayons, Duplos, and custom trinkets.
Beyond just being prizes, well thought out party favors can:
- Extend the fun mood of the event with cool take-home activities. Bubbles, playdough, and coloring books are great for this.
- Incorporate elements tied to the party’s theme, interests, or activities. Superhero masks or princess crowns work for themed events.
- Include items guests can easily use like snacks, juice boxes, or stickers. These make favors more enjoyable.
- Contain small keepsakes like photo frames or a mug with the child’s name. These become cherished mementos.
- Have an educational or creative aspect through books, crayons, or craft kits. These favors nurture skills.
Party Favor Bags to Match Your Theme
Customizing your treat bags to fit with the theme of the party is a fun way to keep the party going!
For example, with the Teddy Bear Picnic birthday party theme the 1 year old party favors included a copy of the Teddy Bear Picnic book.
For more theme inspiration check out my post on first birthday party themes for boys!
First Birthday Party Favors to Avoid!
|Items to Avoid
|Reasons to Avoid
|– Potential allergy issues among children.
– Choking hazards for small, hard, or sticky foods.
|– Can create unnecessary cleanup for parents.
– Potential to stain or damage property.
|– Can be disruptive and annoying for parents and other attendees.
– May scare or irritate some children.
|– Choking hazards for young children.
– Easy to misplace or lose.
|– Can unnecessarily raise party costs.
– May set an unintended precedent for future parties.
|– Risk of breaking and potential injury.
– Disappointment if broken quickly.
What Can You Give Instead of a First Birthday Party Favor Bag?
While party bags are traditional, for a unique 1-year-old party favor, consider alternatives like theme-tied, age-appropriate books for each child.
- Books – For example, on my daughter’s 1st birthday, we had a unicorn theme party and gave touch-and-feel books to all her friends.
- 2. Pajamas – 1-year-olds are still napping and get to wear the cutest pajamas. If you see a sale at Old Navy or Target grab a bunch and hand them out as guests are getting ready to leave.
- 3. Sensory Bin – Create your own sensory bin or pick up a small one from Etsy or Amazon. 1-year-olds are ready to start exploring and little sensory bins are a unique and personalized parting gift.
What to Consider When Choosing a Party Favor?
When selecting party favors you should choose ones that are safe, enjoyable, and appreciated by both the little guests and their parents. While also sticking with the theme and budget of the party.
- Age Appropriateness
- Ensure the favor is safe and suitable for 1-year-olds, considering their developmental stage.
- Choose items that are free from small parts to prevent choking hazards.
- Ensure the materials used are non-toxic and comply with safety standards.
- Select favors that are engaging and suitable for a child’s attention span and interests as one year olds.
- Educational Value
- Consider items that can stimulate cognitive and motor skill development, such as simple puzzles or soft toys.
- Practicality for Parents
- Choose favors that are useful and won’t create unnecessary clutter in homes.
- Consider items that parents can utilize in their child’s routine or play.
- Theme Consistency
- Ensure the favors align with the theme of the party, creating a cohesive experience.
- Allergy Awareness
- Be mindful of potential allergens in edible favors or materials used in toys.
- Consider eco-friendly options that are biodegradable or can be reused, reducing environmental impact.
- Choose favors that are delightful yet stick to your budget.
- Personalize favors, if possible, to make them memorable and add a special touch to the celebration.
- This can be a DIY option with a sharpie!
- Opt for favors that can withstand a bit of rough handling from little ones to ensure they last beyond the party.
The Benefits of Giving a Gift
While this is specific to holiday gifting, the same principles apply to giving small gifts at any time of the year.
According to Nationwide Childrens, “Giving also provides many health benefits to children. When done regularly, the act of giving to others in need boosts physical health, happiness and sense of well-being.”
Party Favors for 1st Birthday Wrapped Up
Party treats for 1-year-olds can be a fun addition to any birthday celebration. Take the time to consider some creative ideas and you will make the special day even more memorable.
Throw in some colorful wrapping and embellishments, and you’ll have a great-looking bundle that your 1-year-old’s friends are sure to love! As we all know, every child is different so make sure to purchase something appropriate for their age level and interests. Remember that it doesn’t have to be expensive; just pay attention to detail and keep safety in mind as well and you’ll be well on your way to choosing a great first birthday party favor!
Finally, enjoy this special occasion with family and friends, and don’t forget to take lots of pictures! Celebrating milestones with our little ones is such a beautiful thing—party favors can only sweeten the moment!
Frequently Asked Questions
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