Laelia’s First Birthday

Laelia’s First Birthday

I can’t believe Laelia’s birthday was already a month ago! I feel like it was just yesterday that we were rushing all over the house and then all over town getting everything ready! I have to admit, I was pretty stressed out right before, and I had a pretty good cry right before we started to set everything up; I was over an hour later than I had wanted to be; I was already running late, and I had to get gas (for some reason, this is my least favorite chore), and then my the zipper on my dress broke on when I sat back down in the car. I should have known better; I was wearing a vintage dress that I had modified myself (à la new dress a day), but the zipper had already broke once, and I am probably 20lbs heavier than when I was when I originally modified the dress! So obvious huge sadface there… (but I will be revealing the dress on this site one day! With a NEW zipper! lol). There are a plethora of things that I wanted to do that didn’t happen. I forgot to order the paper straws, I left my freshly painted ornate frame at home (so much for lucky number 13 on my inspiration board!), and I didn’t have all the candy prepared for the candy jars…

Tyler left earlier than I did because 1) we couldn’t fit everything into one car 2) I needed to finish some stuff up and 3) he was going to make a claim on the spot we picked out weeks before. It was probably the first amazing day we’ve seen in a while in Los Angeles, so Griffith Park was packed! We didn’t get our spot but we got this little cove that I  was secretly hoping we would get, despite the lack of easy access to bathrooms. (I even think it  would be a magical place to get married). We had a medium size helium tank, and we ran out of helium before we finished blowing up all of our balloons! We had 3 left over 36″ balloons, and the entire bag of 12″ balloons… We were still setting up when our first guests arrived, but everyone was happy to help! We quickly forgot all of our early setbacks as things started to get going. :)

My awesome brother Nick and his awesome girlfriend Katie volunteered to pick up the cake from Porto’s in Glendale. If you live in the area and haven’t ever been there, please do yourself a favor and make the trip. Everything there is muy delicioso and they have such great prices! We ordered the chocolate parisian cake for the lower tier, and the white cake with strawberry cream filling for the top tier. The white cake was specifically for Laelia, and whatever other (freaky) people out there who don’t like chocolate… My awesome mom brought some homemade guac and deviled eggs and watermelon and all sorts of other goodies, and my cousin-in-law Becky (of the nature shower invites) somehow managed to cook up some tri tip, with 4 kids under four (including her newborn twins!), and a sick husband! I’m sure her teenaged daughter Marin helped a little though (she is sling riding in a photo below).  Katie and my bestie helped me and Tyler put together the pinwheels and the tissue garland the night before… And of course Andy came through with some AMAZING photographs to capture it all (if you’d like to see more, check them out on flickr)! Laelia’s birthday wouldn’t have happened with out these people!

We are so grateful for our friends and family that came together to help us celebrate Laelia’s first year of life. Love you all! xoxo

Other posts regarding Laelia’s First Birthday:
– (2/09/11) 1st Birthday Fete – location, location location!
(2/21/11) First Birthday Inspiration Board
(2/28/11) A Name for a Chair
– (3/38/11) Pinwheels and Balloons

(4/06/11) High Chair Reveal
(4/21/11) Pinwheel and Balloon Invitations
(4/22/11) A Laelia Outfit #4: Birthday Dress

(4/28/11) Pinwheel Tutorial: Materials
(4/29/11) Jesyka’s Pinwheel Tutorial
f you like Laelia’s first birthday, please check out Laelia’s Second Birthday!

*All photos (except the group photo with the large balloons) were taken by Andy Richards of Inkoeht Design*


62 Responses to Laelia’s First Birthday

  1. andy says:

    you would have never known all that ruckus happened before the party by the way it turned out! yay YOU! :) one of my fave baby parties yet!

  2. Thanks for sharing the behind-the-scene stories. I loved the pin wheels, favor bags, hula hoops and overall vintage vibe. What a lovely party. Looked like everyone had so much fun.

  3. Kristin says:

    LOVE the balloons! Where did you get them? They would be perfect for a party I want to throw for my son. Everything you did was darling!!!

  4. @Christine- Thanks so much!
    @Kristin- I ordered all of the balloons from They are listed as either 3′ or 36″. Ziggos was the cheapest I found them, between 2$ & 3$. Many other sites charge 5$ a piece! :)

  5. Sarah says:

    What a sweet party! Would you mind explaining how you made that adorable garland? It is so festive looking!

  6. Hailey says:

    I absoltuely love this party…fabulous job! I’m actually using it as inspiration for a baby shower, and I was wondering where you got/how you made the pinwheels? Any insight would be greatly appreciated – thanks!!

  7. Hailey says:

    Fabulous – sorry I missed that! You are so talented…thanks for the inspiration!!

  8. Alisse says:

    I am planning my daughter’s first birthday, and if I could re-create EVERY detail of yours I would love it!! Ok, getting technical here- I can’t find those balloons on ziggo’s with the polka dots- the cutest part! I found the 3′ but no dots… and do you remember if it was “robins egg blue” or “tropical teal”?? I want your exact ones! :)

  9. Alisse says:

    Oh my goodness, how sweet are you to look up the actual link for me?! I love it. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

  10. Oh, no worries, you’re very welcome. I genuinely enjoy helping people!

  11. Patricia says:

    This is so beautiful!! Good job!!Happy birthday!

  12. alea says:

    Hi there!!

    Such a super sweet party!! Would you by any chance be able to share where you got the striped hula hoops?? they are awesome!

    • What’s great about the hoops is that I didn’t even plan on them! My mother just picked them up from the dollar tree the day before because she knew I would love the colors, and we just thought they looked adorable around the cake! My mom is obsessed w/ dollar tree, she always gets great little goodies from there. :)

  13. alea says:

    thats awesome!! thank you for sharing that info with me!! I will be scooten right on down there to see what I might find!! much joy!

  14. nicolle says:

    What a fabulous party! I love the balloons and the garland and the goody bags and I guess I could go on forever. Little Laelia is a lucky girl. Now, I am wondering.. will you share the font that you used for the polka dotted bags? I think the names pictured were Ocean, Brooklyn .. I am a font fanatic and I love the way this one looks. thanks

    • Thanks so much! Yes, I’m also a font fanatic, lol. The font I used is called Candy Script, by Alejandro Paul. I just love his work! He is my favorite contemporary typogropher! He also made affair, which is the font I used to say “Happy Birthday Laelia” on the first photo of this post. These are both very popular script fonts right now. I used affiar in my wedding invitations & other stationary. I get such a wonderful feeling from it. :) Normally I include what fonts I use in my posts and I didn’t here! Strange.

  15. christine says:

    Yes, I am planning my daughter’s 1st birthday and I love that garland! Please Please share a tutorial!

  16. […] the full post here. Share this: This entry was posted in Baby, Party. Bookmark the permalink. ← I saw this […]

  17. saniel says:

    love all the cute touches, where did you find the vintage natural sodas?

  18. […] behind those great ideas—and the people that pinned them! :) Another huge inspiration was little Laelia’s first birthday party. Shooting that party pushed me in the right direction in getting all those itty bitty details […]

  19. Mary Ellen Bell says:

    I am loving everything about this party! Great job! I was wondering where you got your three tiered cake stand (you mentioned it in your inspiration board). I liked how you could take it apart or use it as one stand. Thanks!

    • Hi! It’s a Martha Stewart Macy’s cake stand set, from the white ware collection. I’m not sure if all three sizes are still available, but there are some square ones I’d love to add to my collection!

  20. Nancy says:

    Love what you did with the favor bags! Where did you find the favor bags? Lovely party!!!

  21. kristin says:

    what an adorable party!! found you via ohdeedoh, and just started following your boards on pinterest. i love your taste.

  22. karyn says:

    hi! where was this location in griffith park? my daughter’s bday is in a few weeks…help!!

  23. Jessie says:

    Everything is perfection!!

  24. kristin says:

    Getting ready for my daughters first birthday, love all that you did for your daughters!
    Where did you get her napkins? i’m having a hard time finding any that color…

  25. kristin says:

    Thanks so much!!!
    Also, where did you get her party hat? So simple but so adorable and the confetti garland?
    Thanks this is a huge help!

  26. I made both the party hat and the tissue garland. I have a tutorial on my website here, or you can buy them from confetti system directly.

    The party hat I made w/ one regular party hat that I covered w/ glitter paper I bought from Paper Source, and I used tissue for the little pom-pom on the end. I never thought to make a tutorial for that, should I?! :)

  27. […] everything turned out well. I didn’t get to see a few of my ideas come into fruition (hello Laelia’s birthday all over again), but I got to see at least a few of them executed! I wanted to try adding newspaper […]

  28. Amy Domingue says:

    Where did you get the balloons?

  29. Amy Domingue says:

    Yeah I saw them just a minute ago. I missed them the first time around. Thank you so very much

  30. Mui Khamsy says:

    Hi Jesyka…I love love love everything about Laelia’s party..the colors are so pretty! I’m trying to put together my baby girl’s first bday party as well and your’s will be the inspiration for it. Where did you get your gift bags and do you have any ideas on what to fill it with? Thanks!

  31. Mui Khamsy says:

    Nevermind about the gift bags..just saw the previous post.

    • Hi Mui! I had a hard time coming up with items to fill the bags with that are also age appropriate–I gave everyone some bubbles and silly pink or aqua glasses, and then I also gave out chalk, and some candy to the older kiddos. Everyone also got a handmade pinwheel too, of course!

  32. julie burgin says:

    hello:) – Just saw this post of your daughters party and it’s so wonderful. I saw were you could see more photos on flickr so I checked them out. Where did you get the invitations? Such a great party!!


  33. Dani says:

    Where did you get the blanket with the birds on it?

  34. […] via Kathlyn on […]

  35. […] amazingly enough, a year ago was Laelia’s first birthday! But a year before that, she born (funny how that works). That story has yet to be told. Until […]

  36. Ashley says:

    where did you get that blanket? It is beautiful!

  37. Kathy Wright says:

    L.O.V.E this!!! The exact party colors I’m doing for my daughter who turns one this month!!! Where did you find the goodie bags???

  38. Joy says:

    I had a question if you don’t mind me asking… but what size helium tank do you recommend? I love the big balloons and was thinking of renting a tank but don’t know if its worth it? You said that you ran out so was wondering if you rented one or got the ones from party city. Thanks for your input and any advice you can give. I just love the look of this party. well done.

    • We rented a medium tank from Party City. Since this point, they have raised their prices and they rent tanks in farrr fewer locations and they do not do reservations anymore! We recently bought a tank, despite my grumblings about waste and recycling, for my husband’s 30th birthday. We have yet to dispose of it, although it was much more “convenient” than calling all the party cities in a 10 mile radius first thing in the morning to see if they even had them in. However you go about it, you will need at least a medium tank, but probably a large one to fill 15 three foot balloons! :)

  39. JZ says:

    I know it’s a year later…but where did you buy the 36″ balloons?! I must have some for my daughter’s 2nd birthday next month. Your party inspired me to do a pinwheel theme!

  40. Valentina says:

    Wow. This party is great! :D

  41. […] credits: balloons, polka dot straws, bride and bridesmaids, pink boots, polka dot bags, daisy cake, pink daisy field, […]

  42. […] bought some 36 inch “clear” balloons (like the giant balloons from her first birthday), and filled them with large confetti, (I can’t find a link to them, but they are always at […]


Welcome to Visual Vocabularie! My name is Jesyka, and I am a designer, artist, mom to Laelia and Luca, wife to software engineer and UX designer Tyler, coffee lover, and all around enthused person. This is my blog; here I share my personal projects, whether it's a furniture makeover, a new painting, a birthday party, an invitation I designed, or a favorite outfit for my little. You’ll also catch a glimpse into our family life in Los Angeles.

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