Pinterest-Inspired Mickey Mouse 1st Birthday Party on a Budget

Our little miracle boy turned one this summer! And yes, I’m very late in posting his birthday party… but that’s about how things go around here! I want to share with you everything I did for his party, because we were certainly planning on a budget!

Let’s start with the decorations.

For all the tables (eating, food, drinks/cake, and gifts), I purchased black and red tablecloths from our local dollar store. I also purchased red, yellow, and black crepe paper. As you can see, the tables we ate on had the crepe paper (opposite colors of the tablecloth) twisted down the center. The food tables had it twisted and scalloped on the edges. I purchased red, yellow, and black balloons to decorate the table corners with. You can also see in the picture some confetti. I borrowed a Mickey Mouse hole punch from a friend and punched my own confetti out of 12×12 cardstock, which I purchased by the sheet when it was on sale at our local craft store. I only needed about 3 sheets of each color. And as you can see, Munchkin’s various toy Mickeys are scattered around!

For the wall decorations, I used some ideas I found on Pinterest.

I loved this month-by-month picture decor that I found on Fraises et Tartines.
Even though I never got around to doing staged pictures with those cute onesie stickers, I still found plenty of cute monthly pictures of my little man. It was almost hard to put together though, because I kept getting tears in my eyes! Just so you know, I purchased more cardstock, ordered my pictures in 5×7 size, and bought some white ribbon. After using some tape runner that I already had in my scrapbooking supplies to attach the pictures to the cardstock that I’d cut into 6×8 rectangles, I punched holes in the corners and strung my ribbon all the way through. I then used my tape runner to attach the ribbon on the back so that the pictures wouldn’t budge. Realizing I didn’t have any way to designate each picture’s age (again, no cute onesie stickers), I pulled out some scrapbooking stickers and added the age.

I made my own sign for beside the door after seeing some wooden signs available on Etsy. I wasn’t willing to pay $30 for a sign I’d use once, so I designed the sign on the computer, printed it on cardstock, and used some tape runner to attach it to some polka-dot ribbon.

I also loved this idea for a personalized banner from That’s What She Said. The blog’s author makes a blank template available to download and print. I simply took that, opened it in Microsoft Publisher, added the needed letters, and printed it out. Then it was just a matter of cutting them out and attaching them to more white ribbon using more of my tape runner!

I designed some basic signs (which I forgot to take pictures of…) designating the gift area, drink area (“Mouske-drinks”), and the different entrees (“Hot Diggity Dog Bar” and “Clubhouse Sandwiches”).

I also decided I wasn’t willing to pay over $15 for a personalized birthday shirt for Munchkin. I knew this shirt would only be worn once (seriously, when else can he wear a shirt like that?). So, I used my Publisher program again to design a personalized iron-on transfer using some transfer paper I already had. I loved how it turned out, and to be honest, I was a little sad when I had to trash it because I couldn’t get the food stains out!

Now let’s talk food!

We had 22 people, counting Munchkin. I purchased WAY too much food, but oh well! I gave everyone two options – club (“Clubhouse”) sandwiches (which I purchased from a local deli to cut down on the time spent getting ready) or hot dogs (“Hot Diggity Dogs”). I got a count from people when they RSVP’d. I took one large and two small black bowls and taped them into a Mickey head to hold the chips (and of course, failed to get a picture, but I got the idea from here).

This absolutely gorgeous cake was made by one of my best friends!
This was the most expensive element of the party, but it was worth it! She does such amazing cakes! And they taste great too! You can visit her blog to see some of her amazing cake creations.

The cupcakes she made also worked wonderfully for Munchkin. I just couldn’t handle all the money, time, and energy that would have gone into a smash cake, so I loved the idea of giving him his own cupcake. And he was so cute! He didn’t have a clue what to do with it until his uncle put some in his mouth. Then he figured it out very quickly!

And finally, here’s a picture of a couple of our guests wearing their party favor – their own Mickey/Minnie Mouse ears!
These were super-easy (stiff felt, cheap headbands, and red polka dot ribbon!) and Disney’s website teaches you how to do them! Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m AWFUL at making bows (seriously, I have a boy, what do you expect?), and my mom did an amazing job making great Minnie bows. (And you may have noticed that Munchkin didn’t have one – my MIL purchased a personalized authentic Mickey Mouse hat for him.)

When I was planning Munchkin’s birthday party, I quickly realized there are basically two kinds of people in the world: people who will spend thousands of dollars on a child’s birthday party, and people who won’t. I want to give my child amazing, memorable birthday parties, but I’m not going to spend thousands of dollars to do it. I simply don’t believe that’s good stewardship of our money. However, that doesn’t mean that his parties can’t look and be amazing! And considering the compliments from family and friends, I believe his party was a complete success, even though it was on a budget!

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