A few weeks ago my friend Rachel–an old pal from elementary school–posted a few pictures of her identical twin daughters’ 1st birthday party on Facebook, and I almost died they were so gorgeous.

Among her many amazing and creative gifts (which I’m still trying to convince her to let me share!), Rachel is an extremely talented photographer.  How she manages to not spend all her time photographing those two adorable, precious girls is beyond me.  They are SO cute!

butterfly-themed-1st-birthday-partyHere are Rachel’s hints for how she kept her stylish soiree budget friendly:

  • She borrowed her  mother-in-law’s Cricut machine to cut butterflies out of two sided scrap-booking paper, then folded them and hot glued them two at a time to hemp cord for the butterfly garland. It still hangs on that wall as a decoration.
  • For the monogram cake toppers she bought plain white letters at Michael’s and painted them with acrylic paint, then sealer. They had pre-drilled holes for doweling so she could anchor them in the cakes. She hot glued a body and antennae onto more paper butterflies, then glued those to the top of each letter.  The letters now serve double-duty as decor for the girls’ room!
  • She bought a package of inexpensive multicolored party hats and hot glued a butterfly to each one. The kids got to take them home after the party.
  • She used scraps of fabrics left over from other projects to make the bunting. To make them double sided and to give them some weight, she  sewed two triangles of fabric back to back and then used pinking shears to trim the edges. It was a quick way to finish them & gave it a nice texture.  She then folded over the tops and sewed pockets so they would thread on the cord when finished.  Because the flags are removable, they can be added to or rearranged for another party. In the mean time they hang in the girls room as decoration.
  • For cake stands, she upturned some plastic bowls she bought on clearance the year before,  then placed a couple small vintage Texas-Ware plates she inherited from her grandparents on top. They all just happened to be the perfect color.
  • The highchairs were found at two different garage sales for $10 each. She used about three cans ($15) of spray paint per chair so the total price for both chairs ended up being around $50 total.
  • Rachel’s husband Jamie made the frosting, cakes, and cupcakes & she decorated them. They used 40% off coupons any time they needed tools (cake pans, decorator tips etc.).
  • Instead of getting ideas from magazines, Rachel signed up for a free Pinterest account which allowed her to ‘pin’ photos from all over the web onto virtual pin-boards. After looking at her ‘board’ full of photos she realized she had a lot of butterfly ideas.
  • The butterfly cupcakes were found on Pinterest, but were originally created by Martha Stewart.
  • Rather than buy napkins, cups and plates that had the literal theme on them, Rachel got ones that coordinated with the party colors, which means the leftovers can be used again.
  • Rachel & Jamie have their own helium tank so they were able to blow up as many balloons as they needed on site. She used raffia ribbon for balloon string and after the party cut the ribbon off to be reused for other projects.
  • Rachel’s oldest brother is an artist by profession so he volunteered to do face painting, which fit in nicely with the party theme.  (If you don’t have an older brother  who is an artist, get this Klutz Face Painting Kit.  It is amazing and practically foolproof–one of my best purchase EVER!)


If you live in the Pacific Northwest (Bellingham WA area)  & are looking for an awesome family photographer, check out Rachel’s website:

Snappy Trails Photography

{Great Job Rachel & Jamie!  Thank you so much for sharing with us!}


Ever feel like you just can't keep up? Our Living Well Starter Guide will show you how to start streamlining your life in just 3 simple steps. It's a game changer--get it free for a limited time!

If you love this resource, be sure to check out our digital library of helpful tools and resources for cleaning faster, taking control of your budget, organizing your schedule, and getting food on the table easier than ever before.