Whimsical Woodland Deer Birthday Party

I began this post last summer and I am ashamed to say I never finished it! Until now that is. I guess I did better than with her first birthday which had a "country fair" theme. I never finished that post at all. Maybe I still will...hopefully before she moves out of the house :)

If you have a party to plan this spring or summer and are looking for whimsical, woodland inspiration, you have come to the right place. The whole party came together with lots of help from extended family and turned out beautifully. I have left what I had originally started writing, only added on to it. 
Hope you enjoy (even though it is so late!)


My sweet little girl turned two back on June 30th, 2013. Hard to believe our once three pounder is growing up so fast. 

Her favorite animal for the longest time before her birthday had been deer. She saw them often in our backyard and really enjoyed watching the movie Prancer with me (it's my favorite so I didn't mind watching it all spring and summer).

When it came time to plan the party, I thought, what better than a deer party. A little odd perhaps, but  Hazel was excited (telling everyone she was going to have a "deer party" is another story. You should have seen their faces).

The first thing I created was the invitation. I love doing my own graphic design work, so this is one of my favorite parts to hosting a party. I incorporated some photographs I had taken of Hazel earlier in the year with vintage graphics from The Graphics Fairy.
My mom makes banners and party decor in her Etsy shop AlteredEcoDesigns, so I asked her to make some pennant banners for the party. They turned out beautifully (and are now hanging in our playroom).
I made a little area where I thought Hazel and the invited girls (one cousin and three neighborhood friends) could hang out and play although it didn't end up happening because it was too hot and filled with mosquitoes under the tree (at least it didn't rain though). They had more fun swimming in the pool anyways. 

The day of the party, my step-dad, actually helped me hang up some vintage curtains and the banners. We had lots of fun even though decorating isn't really "his thing".

Hazel has a thing for chandeliers, so we had one of those out there too (purely a prop - no lights!).
I found a target deer on the side of the road one day while driving with my husband and made him stop, so we could pick it up (yes, you heard that correctly...thankfully he is a very obliging fellow and gets my "crazy" ideas). 

Turns out this thing scares kids though...namely the birthday girl. So, I tried dressing her up a bit, but we still kept this pretty lady at a distance just to be on the safe side and avoid any tears. 

I made a "2" out of fake flowers that I simply pinned to the side.
It worked. By the end of the party, Hazel actually approached her...for about a minute. 
 Thankfully, Bambi didn't seem to offend anyone.
We had marshmallow sticks with sprinkles, deer cookies and fresh fruit.
The stunning cake was made by my sister-in-law and it turned out exactly how I hoped. I wanted a "naked cake" (no frosting on the side). I thought that would fit with the rustic, woodland theme. It had a hazelnut mousse frosting. So delicious! 

(My mom also made the cake banner and my step-dad found the adorable deer at Walmart). 

The "cake stand"? A vintage hat box.
There were many deer and other woodland friends around...
I created simple party favors with brown paper bags that I wrote each girl's name on. (Trick to get it to look so nice? Print off the names with a font that you like on the computer and copy it!) I added decorative stickers and deer stamps.
Inside, each one had a "flower wand" made by mother similar to the ones offered here, along with other small treats and treasures.
For the birthday girl, I made a special pair of "antlers" just for the occasion. (I will share a DIY tutorial on these in the near future.)
Of course, getting her to look at me while I take her picture is a definite challenge these days.

Well, looking and smiling anyways. Sigh.
And here is the sweet moment when our girl blew out the candles (with a little help from Daddy)...
So even though this post comes quite a bit late (Hazel is already "planning" her third birthday party!), I hope that you enjoyed seeing how it all came together. 

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Till next time,
~Alice W.


  1. Absolutely darling and charming! I love it, even scary roadside deer. :) My little one turns 7 at the end of this month and she had been planning her party since January, it's good to hear she is not the only one getting a head start!

  2. Wow, you did a fantastic job. What a great theme for a kid's party. I hate all those commercialized parties where everything matches and the theme is Disney princess or another character that's trendy. I love the invitation which sets the stage for things to come. The cake looks phenomenal and so delicious. It really did look like a wonderful woodland setting in the backyard. And those antlers are so cute on your sweet daughter. Love that Daddy/daughter shot.

  3. Oh Alice, that is the sweetest little party I have ever seen!... Hazel is so precious and I love that she already cares about Nature... the banners your mama makes are beautiful, I am going to look at her Etsy shop... and that cake!... yum!... you are making so many precious memories your children will carry in their hearts their entire life... xoxo Julie Marie

  4. That was beautiful Alice!! I love her little antlers...so creative. But now I am really missing summer!! haha

    1. I know, right? Me too! Thanks for visiting!

  5. How adorable Alice!!! I think I saw this on facebook...at least a few of them, but this post is gorgeous!! What a fun birthday for a beautiful little girl! I love to do things like this also...thus the fairy party and carnival I had for my grands the past two summers. I think I will take a break this year. lol

    1. I did share some pics on FB! Yes, these things are a lot of hard work. Someday maybe we will keep it more low key - it is so hard for me though...I always have a million ideas! Although this year Hazel wants a "Megamort/Mickey Mouse Clubhouse" party haha. We shall see how that turns out :)

  6. What an adorable little party! Your little girl is beautiful!

    Gigi @ Old World Patina

  7. So adorable! I love the cake, the invitations and your sweet little girl. Looks like she had a fab party. The pictures are gorgeous.

  8. Yay! This is such a beautiful post, brings back memories of a really fun party, it really turned out great! I can't decide which pic is my favorite the one of Hazel blowing out candles with daddy or the one with "the look" at mommy taking another picture! hahaha Love it all, thanks so much for mentioning my work and my shop, what a nice surprise!!!

    Love you all so much,

    1. Well of course I would share your work here :)

  9. Such beautiful attention to the smallest details. Love the woodland them. My favorite would have to be the dressed target deer. So clever!

  10. This is all so adorable, Alice! Love the decor and the cake from your sis-in-law is pretty amazing looking!!

  11. World's best mom award goes to you! What a fabulous idea and amazing party! Hazel is adorable!
    P.S. My hubby would have screeched away in horror is I made him stop for that deer!!!

    1. Aww thank you so much Kelly! Yeah, my husband had a look on his face when I said I was serious...but he still went and got it for me :)

  12. I just adored this post and all of its creative beauty. So much so, that I'm featuring it on Fridays Unfolded this week! Thanks for sharing!


  13. This party is adorable, just love it, its so beautiful. What a lucky litle girl.
    Thank you for sharing it with us.

    Stina Sæm


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Thank you for your comments! I love to hear from you! ~Alice W.

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