Chinese New Year 1st Birthday Party – Year of the Rabbit

chinese new year birthday party - year of the rabbit

Chinese New Year 1st Birthday Party

February 3rd kicks off the two week long Chinese New Year celebration – The Year of the Rabbit. Kelly Lyden of The Party Dress & WH Hostess submitted this vibrant and fun Chinese New Year 1st Birthday Party! Kelly and I spent some time together at the Martha Stewart Dreamers into Doers Event in NYC last month, and I am even more inspired by her! She is gorgeous, classy, and yes, “well heeled” :) Kelly designed the invitations and other party goodies for Melisa Fluhr of Project Nursery.

chinese new year party decorations table

Melissa shared lots of the details with us, “Being that my son Chase is ¼ Chinese, what better way to celebrate his first year than with delicious Chinese Dim Sum, tasty Chinese sweets and a themed cocktail party for our close family and friends. Unfortunately, I am not the best planner and with the hustle and bustle of the holidays consuming me, I gave the amazing Kelly of WH Hostess a mere two weeks to execute and assemble my vision for a modern, bamboo themed first birthday party that would involve red rabbits! She was a trooper and of course exceeded my expectations by custom creating a yellow bamboo pattern we could carry throughout the party and her paper goods.

good luck mandarin oranges for chinese 1st birthday

Melissa shared one of her favorite DIY details with us!

“One of my favorite DIY projects was creating the backdrop for the dessert table. I often wonder how the party pros create such lovely backdrops for their photo shoots (and what does the top of the backdrop really look like?). I honed in on my nursery design skills and decided I could save a couple hundred bucks by stretching my own canvases. Kelly sent me her bamboo print in a file that I had turned into canvas at  After a quick visit to the art supply store, I stretched the canvases on canvas bars. I now have permanent wall art and hip graphic prints I can enjoy year round!”

chinese new year's birthday party

Melissa says, “Catered Dim Sum was a delicious way to keep my adult guests intrigued. The kids were kept happy munching on potstickers and best of all, it’s a low maintenance meal that I could simply steam and serve.  Clean up was a breeze since guest enjoyed eating their finger foods with chopsticks out of Chinese take out boxes.

I had the most fun with the sweets bar however. I went with authentic Chinese goodies and candies such as Moon Cakes, Sesame Balls, Wintermelon Cakes, Lychee Candy, Haw Flakes, Candied Water Chestnuts and more! Of course, I could not forget to include the popular Magnolia cupcakes and their famous banana pudding.  The birthday cake was red velvet and adorned with red and yellow fondant shaped fortune cookies. Vanilla sugar cookies with lemon frosting by Angela from Queen of Tarts Cakes tied in the entire presentation thanks to her edible wafers designed to match my invitations.”

chinese new year's birthday party

“Because the party from held from 5pm-7pm, the children arrived in their PJ’s or “Mandarin Suits”. The big kids watched “Mulan” and “Kung-fu Panda” while making Chinese paper lantern crafts. Adults sipped on fun beverages thanks to a fully stocked bar. And what one year old party is complete without a signature drink or two?

Burning Mandarin Martinis were hot but I think I had one too many Lychee infused champagne cocktails myself!  In the Chinese New Year tradition, guest went home with additional favors such as Mandarin oranges for luck, take out containers filled with candies and a lucky red envelope from the decorative centerpiece to ward off evil spirits!”

chinese new year desserts

chinese new year's party favors

Thanks Kelly & Melissa for letting us share little Chase’s 1st birthday! What a fun theme with a cultural twist!

Invitation + Paper Goods – WH Hostess

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  1. Isn’t this in a little bit of bad taste?
    Fortune cookies aren’t even Chinese.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Jaime. Melissa pulled together lots of her favorite treats for her son’s 1st Birthday, fortune cookies happened to be 1 of them.

  2. Adorable! Great ideas and love that the children were in pj’s watching movies. Too cute!

  3. This is amazing!! Wow you were right when you tweeted about this yesterday! Love it!

  4. This is extremely creative and colorful, and not your average party. What a great idea, and I must say, quite tasteful.

  5. Thank you so much for sharing with your readers Courtney! I really appreciate it. It was great fun to do something a little different and special to us for my son’s 1st birthday.

    1. Thank you Melissa, such a fun party theme! It was an honor to share it! Chase is too cute!

  6. my mom n i love haw flakes (! when she was a kid she kept on eating hawflakes… and when she went for a pee, she was shocked cuz her urine was kinda red. haha.. she ate too much haw flakes!!

  7. Kris Malabatuan says:

    What souvenir items did you include in the loot bags?


    1. This is a party feature so you’ll have to look at the credits to reach the actual party host.

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