Sock Monkey Themed First Birthday Party Ideas & Decorations

entry table sock monkey decorations and cookie party favors


I’ve been noticing that two of my old posts about Finn’s two year old Elmo Party and three year old pirate party are getting a warm reception, so I took some time to dig out the photos from his sock monkey themed first birthday party.  I hope you find lots of ideas and inspiration.

Deciding on a theme for a party for a one year old is hard because they usually haven’t expressed a strong preference for anything yet.  Whatever you choose, it’s guaranteed that by the time their birthday actually comes around they’ll be into something else anyway.

As before, all the credit for the planning, creativity and execution of the sock monkey theme goes to my wife.  I mostly just took the pictures.

entry table sock monkey decorations and cookie party favors

The printable were from Designing for Peanuts, as were the toppers in red and white polkadot metal buckets. The party favors were sock monkey sugar cookies in bags with red and black printables tied on with ribbon.

I’ve learnt that for a child’s birthday party the decorations actually start outside the house.  And that once inside a welcome table greets guests – themed of course.  That’s where we put our party favors – usually a bag of something sweet like these sock monkey sugar cookies.


The birthday boy got a red trav-ler wagon for his first birthday. We bought this massive travesty of a fake sock monkey for about a quarter of the price of a real one. The sign came with our printable set from Designing for Peanuts and we put it in a red frame from Hobby Lobby.

Unlike a theme like pirates or superheroes, one of the disadvantages of a sock monkey birthday party, is that sock monkeys don’t actually have much character.  There a wonderfully iconic design and color scheme, but it’s a challenge to take the theme much furhter than decorations and colors.  That said, the colors are bold and fun.

Here are some of the decorations we used to support the theme.


Red white and blue party poms, also from Etsy, were clustered and strung up around the house for colorful, fun decoration.


White flowers and red white and blue helium balloons.  “Happy first birthday Finn” cake toppers.


Red and black ribbon on a wreath


Shelving with newborn and three month photo canvases, sock monkey and red and white polkadot number one and plate.



A giant homemade white and red polkadot number one, in the arms of a genuine sock monkey (on the shelf).


I’m in awe of my wife’s ability to plan so many details into a party and bring everything together to give a familiar location (grandma’s house) a magical feel.



Sock monkey water bottle labels and drinks chilling in red white and a blue water balloon ice bucket.

The water bottle labels were yet more printables that came with our set.  This was a really nice touch.

I filled red white and blue water balloons and froze them a few nights before (it can take more than a night depending on your freezer) and we used them as decorative ice.

A couple of tips here: don’t fill the water balloons too much or they will burst in the freezer when the water expands as it turns to ice; also, you will still likely want to buy a bag of ice and use that to ice the drinks too, because the balloons don’t touch many drinks and do a poor job of keeping them cool (trust me, I used to be a caterer).

first-birthday-sock-monkey-tshirt 2

First birthday sock monkey t-shirt from Etsy.

We let things slip a little on the sock monkey theme outside, where we had a pirate water table and a giant turtle sand pit with construction vehicles (which were his true obsession by the time his first birthday came around). We ran out of sock monkey theme ideas for games that are appropriate for one year olds, although there are some on this blog and here are some more.

When it came time for Finn to blow out his one candle, we ferried him (and all our guests) into the dining room, which we’d set up for photos.


The birthday tables, with cupcakes, a sock monkey cake, toppers, banners and a birthday book.

One of my favorite ideas my wife had was to buy the Dr. Seuss book Happy Birthday to You and have all of our guests write a personal note to Finn.

I have read him that book the night before every birthday since, and though he makes me skip all the notes at the front, I know there will come a time when he appreciates them.


Chocolate and vanilla cupcakes and sock monkey toppers. And one final detail – a sock monkey happy birthday hat on the back of his high chair, with a big blue one.

So there it is – our sock monkey themed first birthday party for Finn.  I hope it will give you lots of ideas for fun decorations and touches that will make for a magical day.  We certainly had one.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also enjoy my wife’s pirate themed party, or her Elmo themed party.

2 Comments, RSS

  1. […] plunder Pinterest for good ideas and she loves to throw amazing birthday parties (see her Elmo and sock monkey parties)- this time it was a pirate themed birthday party for our now three year […]

  2. […] See also this post about our pirate themed party ideas, and our sock monkey birthday party. […]