When Hazel was only a few months old, I already knew that I wanted to do a Peter Rabbit theme for her first birthday. In all honesty, I don’t particularly like cartoons or any cartoon themed party set up. I like things to be a little bit more elegant and classic. Peter Rabbit has just the perfect amount of whimsical and yet, it remains such a classic children’s book. I love that all of the imagery in the book seems to be water coloured, with very muted down tones, and just a touch of realism, as opposed to the super bright and weird looking cartoon characters these days. I know that once Hazel is older, I will have no choice but to host a birthday party with her favorite cartoons, but, since she still doesn’t have an opinion yet, I will continue to chose classic and timeless themes – while I can!
The Set Up
Due to covid restrictions, we did a very small get together with family and just a few friends. I decided to do it in “Hazel’s Garden”, better know as our back yard. This, to me, went perfectly with the Peter Rabbit theme, since the animals live “outdoors”, and it also tied in with the element of Mr. McGregor’s garden. I wanted something really feminine, so I added the floral element and chose gingham fabrics in soft pastel colors. I found the pastel tones went really well with the colors of the imagery of the books.
For the main table, I went with a neutral tablecloth (beige), as I was going to be adding florals and other colored elements. I figured if I used a colored tablecloth, the other elements wouldn’t pop as much. I bought a gingham table runner in pastel blue at Dollarama, it was just $4 and it really helped me set up the stage for the centerpieces. Along with the table runner, I also found really cute bunny figurines and a citronella candle to help repel mosquitoes. It is summer time and mosquitoes are everywhere these days! As for the floral centrepieces, I collaborated with Studio Foliage in Pointe Claire. They created the beautiful vases in what they called “jam jars”, and they chose a selection of florals reminiscent of a secret garden in soft hues of pink, blush, purple and whites.
Since I knew the theme very early on, I was able to get a lot of elements during easter time, when bunnies are all the rage. I scored the beautiful Peter Rabbit paper plates and the bunny shaped bowl at Winners/Homesense. For those of you in the US, these are the equivalent of a T.J. Maxx /Marshalls or Ross. Because the paper plates were square, I was not able to find a charger plate that would work. All the charger plates I own are round or they didn’t really go well with the other colors. So I decided to leave it as is and place the napkins over the plate to create a bit more depth, as opposed to leaving it flat. Finally, I added a few books from “The World of Peter Rabbit” set by Beatrix Potter to tie everything together.
The napkins I chose where a gingham fabric with a mix of pastel colors. They come in a set of 8, and I figured they will become my easter napkins later on. I bought them on Amazon and I have added them to my Amazon Canada Storefront as well as my Amazon US Storefront in case you want to purchase them. They also have a matching tablecloth in different sizes, but I opted not to purchase it, I felt it would be too much gingham and the other elements wouldn’t stand out as much if I did.
I used a beautiful yellow flatware set that has clear handles. I thought it matched really well with the colors of thee books, paper plates and napkins. I used melamine water glasses and rimmed them with some sprinkles from Fancy Sprinkles – if you are interested in purchasing any of their sprinkle blends or molds, you can use the promocode SUGARANDSTORYTIME for 15% off your purchase.
The Sweets Table
I decided to do the sweets table and food table indoors – honestly, I wanted to avoid the heat and the bugs!
I used our tall glass table and set up the Peter Rabbit cake (read more about the cake here), the sugar cookies and the Suspiro Limeños (a Peruvian custard topped off with a sweet meringue). I purchased some cute label templates and I used them as labels for the Suspiro Limeño. To decorate everything, I added the hand made banner and 3D “ONE” made by Creations by Jazzmine Rose, the beautiful florals by Studio Foliage, and added a few Peter Rabbit books and cute ceramic bunny.
Other Small Details that Completed the Set Up
One of the statement pieces that I purchased from Zadabug, was a beautiful, embroidered set that included a banner for Hazel’s high chair and a crisp and delicate bib. Both pieces are made out of linen and are embroidered with Hazel’s name and one of Peter Rabbit’s sisters (they wear a pink coat and Peter Rabbit wears a blue one). Ronda, the shop’s owner, was kind enough to gift us two additional pieces to complete the set, a party hat and a linen towel for the guest bathroom. I intend to save these pieces as heirlooms for Hazel, who knows, maybe her children or grandchildren will be able to use them in the future.
Needless to say, this entire birthday party was a huge labor of love that would not have been possible without the help of my husband, my mom, my family (who drove 6 hours to make be here for Hazel), and, of course, without the help of some pretty amazing suppliers who give their all to make their beautiful creations!
Now tell me, how would you have made this party different? Are there elements that you would have liked to see, or maybe things that you wouldn’t have included?