The very best 1st Birthday presents!

Rhona Maxwell

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The Family section on Small City Big Personality recently celebrated one whole year of existence (Woohoo!!) and it got us thinking….what are the best 1st Birthday presents for tiny humans?

When baby Freya (yes I know I'm going to have to stop calling her that one day!) celebrated her first birthday earlier this year she was lucky enough to recieve some very special, thoughtful and fun gifts but it's also important to remember that not everything needs to cost a lot of money to be precious. We did a shout out for ideas and our Small City Mummies and Daddies came up trumps again. I was bowled over by some of these great ideas- and I’ve even nicked a few!

For the sentimental amongst you…

Who isn’t sentimental when it comes to your baby’s birthday? Whether it’s their 1st or their 21st it’s lovely to be able to give them something to keep forever and pass down the family.

Birthday Presents kilt pin blueKilt Pin

It’s a world renowned fact that boys and men are more difficult to shop for than the female of the species. A friend of mine’s little boy was given a personalised Kilt Pin when he was born, a lovely Scottish gift which I’m sure he’ll get good use out of when he’s older! The wonderful Linda Byers at Byers & Co on George Street can make these for you.

Birthday Presents charm braceletJewellery Charms

A piece of jewellery is always a winner! Collecting a special charm to represent each year, and when they’re older a bracelet or necklace to show them off on. I love this idea! Silver Linings Jewellery Design Studio are able to make a beautiful selection of charms for exactly what you need. 

Write them a letter

One of our mummies told me how they’d got each of their children a wooden box with their names engraved on. Each birthday she writes them a letter and puts it in the box. She writes about the year, tells them what’s happened and includes some silly facts like the price of milk. As soon as I read this I knew I’d do it; I grabbed a pen and paper that afternoon and scribbled down Freya’s first letter while slept. With any hope the tears will have dried and it’ll still be legible by the time she reads it! You can find lots of perfect little trinket boxes at Underneath The Arches on Princes St.

Birthday presents seesawTraditional….

I’m a sucker for simple, thoughtful and often old-fashioned present ideas. To me early birthdays and occasions are a great chance to start a new family tradition. It’s true what they say- the oldies are often the goodies!

Wooden Toys

We’re big fans of Wooden Toys; they look lovely, age well and stand the test of time (most are virtually indestructible).  Wood can be a nice break from all the plastic fantastic madness that can seem to breed in your house overnight at this age- Freya’s are never packed away, they’ve just become part of the furniture. Precious Sparkle has the most magical basement floor bursting full of special wooden toys (so good we dedicated a whole article to it earlier this year), including different activity cubes. They're also just about to take delivery of a newly released dual see-saw and pull along cart (basically a kind of dream piece for little ones!). The functional design of this sturdy little truck makes it possible to simply turn it over into a seesaw and climb aboard! 

Birthday presents toy boxPersonalised Toy box

I wish I’d thought of this! A toy box is something that will last for years, and they can put all their new treasures in. JoJo Maman Bébé sell the most gorgeous wooden toy boxes in plain/white wood, or with safari characters on which you can personalise with their wooden letters from the shop (it's also free delivery!).

Mini Library

This is a brilliant one for parents, grandparents or aunties & uncles. Start a library of books for them to read when they’re older ; it could be ones that you enjoyed as a child or that nieces and nephews had when they were growing up. You can add to it every year on birthdays and Christmas. If you’re ‘handy’ you could even build them their own bookcase or book shelf for front facing books like they have in 'proper' libraries! You can find lots of books, including one of Freya's favourites 'The Big Brown Lazy Dog' at Fun JunctionThe Works, or Waterstones

Birthday presents TrikeToys glorious toys….

You can of course make your own ‘toys’ out of just about anything at home, but it’s inevitable that you’ll need to invest in some toys that your little one wants or needs at some point. These ideas are a great investment;

First set of wheels

If you walk around the Inch in summer you’ll see lots of toddlers out in their Trikes. These ride on tricycles come in all shapes and sizes but most do up to age 3(ish). Freya was the lucky recipient of a rather nifty purple one for her 1st birthday and can often be seen out on ‘parade’ in it giving the royal wave to passers-by (for some reason that’s come naturally to her). You actually push the Trike along by the handle but the little ones think they are steering themselves which can be rather amusing. We hear you can buy a clip on bell too!

Garden Toys

A spring/summer birthday is a great time to invest in a few garden toys, and there’s lots on the market that adapt to grow with them. A slide, a seesaw (you can get 1 or 2 seaters) or a sandpit are the classics. Sandpits are available in lots of places and you can also buy the ‘magic sand’ which sticks to itself and is less messy.

Birthday presents wendy houseWendy House

This is a classic and I can’t wait for Freya to have one of these! A Wendy House can be outside or inside and seems to satisfy the incredibly strong door opening and closing urge most 1 year olds seem to have. Role playing, Wendy House parties and games are all guaranteed.

Out the box….

From the eccentric, maverick, blue sky thinker parents amongst us (that must be you, it’s certainly not me), here’s some genius off the wall ideas;

Toy Library Membership

An annual membership to the Perth Toy Library is the perfect way to make sure a little one has a fresh stock of toys to entertain them (and all their pals) all year round. It works just like a normal library- you can borrow up to 6 toys for 3 weeks at a time and they have everything indoor and outdoor your heart could desire. Read our story on Perth Toy Library here>>>

Make a Sensory Board

I've seen these on Pintrest and was so impressed to see a friend had made one for their little boy.  His has a mix of household bits n bobs on it such as light switches, a door chain and plastic golf balls on a string. You can have wooden letters attached by velcro so they can pull them off then stick them back on to spell things out, and even a wee flap that lifts up to see a picture underneath. There's no need to buy lots of expensive things- if you're at all crafty you'll be able to make a great one from things you have lying around. Birthday Presents sensory board

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