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First Birthday Gift Guide

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First Birthday Gift Guide
First Birthday Celebration
Gift Ideas for a First Birthday Ultimate Guide
Rudie Nudie Designs Flamingo Picnic Mat
Little Play Club Membership
Cubie Silicone Puzzle Toy
Wooden Castanets Toy Musical Instruments
BioDough Modelling Dough and Rolling Pin
Lindon Handmade Wooden Sailboat
Mix & Match Bath Mates
Happy Hopperz Gold Giraffe
Wooden Cubby House
Kids Picnic Table
Micro Mini2Go Deluxe Plus Ride-On Scooter
Globber Explorer Trike 4-in-1
Hornit Airo Balance Bike
Magic Painting Kit
Handmade Wooden Hedgehog Puzzle Keepsake
Gift Boxed Musical Donkey Kaloo
Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Block Set
Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Stacking Toy
Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Stacking Toy
Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Block Set
Petilou Wooden Stacking Veggies
Felt Play Food Donuts by Juni Moon
Wooden Toy Toaster & Coffee Machine
Wooden Toy Blender & Fruit Set
Felt Play Food Ice Cream Sundaes by Juni Moon
Sunny Doll Family Wooden Figurines
Bookywoo Busy Book Quiet Activity Fabric Books

THE ULTIMATE FIRST BIRTHDAY GIFT GUIDE

A comprehensive list of gift ideas for a one-year-old,
to suit every budget.

A first birthday is a momentous occasion, signifying the transition from infancy to toddlerhood. Although one-year-old's can't grasp the concept of birthdays just yet, parents and loved ones will joyfully make a fuss, take all the photos, and celebrate this wonderful milestone of turning one. Traditionally this will include first birthday gifts their little one will enjoy or even cherish forever.

What To Consider When
Choosing a First Birthday Present

Safety : Safety should be the top priority for any item that is intended to be accessible for small children. Your gift should be made with non-toxic, durable materials, with no small parts, and safety tested to high standards.

Developmental Stage : Many babies of this age are beginning to walk, talk and eagerly explore their world. Look for toys that encourage them to develop their motor skills, language, senses, and problem-solving abilities.

Quality : Materials and craftsmanship are important if you want an item to last and be enjoyed, especially with heavy use from toddlers. Cheap, plastic items are not the way to go when there are so many other great options for all budgets.

Life-span : It's a great idea to aim to find a gift that will be used for years to come. Consider items that are not only durable but will grow with the child developmentally.

Family's preferences and needs : Take into account what you know about the family, what they may already have, the space they have at home, and what their values are.

Ethics & Eco Cred : The toy industry is one of the most plastic-intensive in the world, and present-day consumer culture sadly drives us to make unethical purchases. Take the time to think about whether the workers who manufacture a product are treated fairly, and whether the materials, packaging and processes used are sustainable.

Practical Gift Ideas for a First Birthday

Given that a one-year-old may be more interested in the box and wrapping paper than the gift inside, a practical gift of something the parents may need or find useful is a great option for a first birthday present.

FEEDING & BATHING

CLOTHING & ACCESSORIES

MEMBERSHIPS / VOUCHERS

HOME & FURNITURE

  • bedding
  • step stool
  • booster seat
  • white noise machine
  • night light or projector
  • black out blinds
  • play table
  • toy box
  • book shelf
  • learning tower
  • kids table & chair set
  • toddler chair, recliner or fold-out couch
  • play mat or rug

OUT & ABOUT

Sensory Play Gifts for a One-Year-Old

"Sensory" play is a bit of a buzz word lately. Babies explore and discover using their senses, meaning they are naturally drawn to this type of play. Any activity that engages the senses is considered sensory play and is full of learning benefits. Here are some gift ideas along these lines:

WATER PLAY & BATH TOYS

One of the best types of sensory play (and most enjoyable for many one-year-olds) is water play. Although many bath toys are made using plastic, neoprene or foam (which are all bad for the environment), these can be avoided by opting for modern bio plastics, silicone or other materials. Children should always be supervised in and around water.

  • floating toys & boats
  • squirting toys (make sure you choose ones that can be cleaned to prevent mould)

First Birthday Gifts for Active Indoor Play

  • modular play couches
  • indoor play gym : montessori pikler sets (climbing frames), arched ramp, wooden slide, rock/climbing wall
  • ball pit (personally, I'm not a fan, but didn't want to leave this popular option off the list)
  • soft play foam blocks of various shapes
  • rocker / rocking horse
  • fabric cubby house table cover
  • walkers & pushers - NB these can have a short life as they are only used for their purpose for a couple of months. If gifting a walker, choose one that converts to a ride-on or doubles as an activity toy, like a block cart.
  • push cart / trolley
  • pull-along toys
  • balls of various shapes, sizes, textures, materials

Outdoor Toys for a Child Turning One

Craft Materials for a One-Year-Old

Toddlers don't yet have a great attention span for arts and crafts activities but they will certainly enjoy exploring art materials for short periods. At this age, the activities should be about the process rather than an end result. Here are some crafty gift ideas for a child turning one :

  • crayons (chunky for toddlers to grip)
  • chalk (as above)
  • washable non-toxic paint (try tempera)
  • liquid water-colours
  • tempera paint sticks
  • glue (squeeze bottles to stengthen little hands)
  • spill-proof paint cups
  • various brushes, rollers, sponges
  • easel (chalkboard/whiteboard/magnetic)
  • waterproof smock
  • papers of all kinds
  • stickers, pompoms, pipe-cleaners, yarn etc.
  • paint with water sets or water doodle mat

Keepsake Gifts for a First Birthday

If you would prefer to give a more meaningful keepsake or sentimental gift for a child turning one, you should definitely choose something that will last. You could also consider handing down a special personal item rather than buying new.

PERSONALISED BABY GIFTS

These days you can purchase many items that are personalised with your one-year-old's name or other details - either engraved, embroidered, laser cut, or custom printed. Here are a few examples :

  • plush or wooden toys
  • baby blanket
  • story book
  • name puzzle
  • decor
  • jewelry
  • photo frame
  • cups & plates
  • night light
  • memory box
  • toy box
  • trinket/jewelry box

There are also toys and books available that incorporate your personalised voice recording. You can even have an original song written for the birthday girl or boy!

OTHER SENTIMENTAL GIFT IDEAS FOR A FIRST BIRTHDAY

  • guest book for the birthday party
  • charm bracelet to add to each year
  • photo book of baby's family & friends
  • a teddy handmade from outgrown baby clothes
  • growth chart

Learning Toys For A One-Year-Old

Keeping in mind that ALL play is educational, choose a first birthday present that is age-appropriate and takes into account your child's development. Learning happens when children are actively engaged, so look for open-ended toys that will spark your one-year-old's imagination and provide opportunities to acquire and practice new skills.

  • child-friendly kitchen & cooking utensils
  • marble run or marble tree (with a large ball - small ones are a choking hazard)
  • toys with pop ups or doors (to explore object permanence)
  • busy board or latch board
  • activity table/centre/cube
  • flashcards - eg. colours, letters, shapes, emotions, Auslan, animals
  • threading toys to practice fine motor skills (make sure they are not small choking hazards)
  • chunky wooden puzzles or peg puzzles
  • stacking & nesting toys
  • shape sorters
  • colour matching toys
  • hammer toys
  • block sets - Duplo or Megablocks are fantastic but consider also fabric or silicone blocks, and the classic choice of course is a wooden block set which will be used for years to come and can be added to over time.

Pretend Play Presents for A First Birthday

Around the time they are turning one, children begin to engage in imaginative play that incorporates symbolic thinking and social understanding. Toddlers also love to emulate what they see their adults do. Here are some examples of pretend play toys that would make excellent first birthday presents:

  • finger puppets
  • cleaning set
  • toy vacuum - some of these even work!
  • doctor's kit
  • pretend lawn mower or outdoor tools
  • pretend hand tools
  • kitchens, play food & utensils

Books - The Perfect One-Year-Old Birthday Gift

A book is an excellent choice of present for a child turning one. Board books are probably the way to go, as toddlers can be a bit rough on paper pages. Very young children enjoy learning to turn the pages themselves, and working on their language development. They love interactive books with pop-ups, puppets or sensory elements. Write a birthday message inside the front cover and it becomes a keepsake to treasure.

Here are our top picks for books to gift a one-year-old :


DISCLAIMER : Some links in this article are customized affiliate links. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase within a certain time frame, The Toy Chest Australia will earn a small commission. The commission is paid by the retailers, at no cost to you.

The Ultimate First Birthday Gift Guide

A comprehensive list of gift ideas for a child turning one, to suit every budget.

First Birthday Celebration

A first birthday is a momentous occasion, signifying the transition from infancy to toddlerhood.

Although one-year-old's can't grasp the concept of birthdays just yet, parents and loved ones will joyfully make a fuss, take all the photos, and celebrate this wonderful milestone of turning one.

Traditionally, this will include first birthday gifts their little one will enjoy or even cherish forever.

VIEW PRODUCTS

Considerations When Choosing a First Birthday Present

Safety : Safety should be the top priority for any item that is intended to be accessible for small children. Your gift should be made with non-toxic, durable materials, with no small parts, and safety tested to high standards.

Developmental Stage : Many babies of this age are beginning to walk, talk and eagerly explore their world. Look for toys that encourage them to develop their motor skills, language, senses, and problem-solving abilities.

Quality : Materials and craftsmanship are important if you want an item to last and be enjoyed, especially with heavy use from toddlers. Cheap, plastic items are not the way to go when there are so many other great options for all budgets.

Life-span : It's a great idea to aim to find a gift that will be used for years to come. Consider items that are not only durable but will grow with the child developmentally.

Family's preferences and needs : Take into account what you know about the family, what they may already have, the space they have at home, and what their values are.

Ethics & Eco Cred : The toy industry is one of the most plastic-intensive in the world, and present-day consumer culture sadly drives us to make unethical purchases. Take the time to think about whether the workers who manufacture a product are treated fairly, and whether the materials, packaging and processes used are sustainable.

1st Birthday Bunting

Practical Gift Ideas for a 1st Birthday

Given that a one-year-old may be more interested in the box and wrapping paper than the gift inside, a practical gift of something the parents may need or find useful is a great option for a first birthday present.

We Might Be Tiny Silicone Tableware

FEEDING & BATHING

We Might Be Tiny Silicone Icy Pole Moulds

CLOTHING & ACCESSORIES

EcoNaps Award Winning Reusable Cloth Nappies

OUT & ABOUT

Rudie Nudie Designs Flamingo Picnic Mat

HOME & FURNITURE

  • bedding
  • step stool
  • booster seat
  • white noise machine
  • night light or projector
  • black out blinds
  • play table
  • toy box
  • book shelf
  • learning tower
  • kids table & chair set
  • toddler chair, recliner or fold-out couch
  • play mat or rug

MEMBERSHIPS / VOUCHERS

Little Play Club Membership

Sensory Play Gifts for a One-Year-Old

"Sensory" play is a bit of a buzz word lately. Babies explore and discover using their senses, meaning they are naturally drawn to this type of play. Any activity that engages the senses is considered sensory play and is full of learning benefits. Here are some gift ideas along these lines:

Cubie Silicone Puzzle Toy

Wooden Castanets Toy Musical Instruments

WATER PLAY & BATH TOYS

One of the best types of sensory play (and most enjoyable for many one-year-olds) is water play. Although many bath toys are made using plastic, neoprene or foam (which are all bad for the environment), these can be avoided by opting for modern bio plastics, silicone or other materials. Children should always be supervised in and around water.

Lindon Handmade Wooden Sailboat

Mix & Match Bath Mates

First Birthday Gifts for Active Indoor Play

  • modular play couches
  • indoor play gym : montessori pikler sets (climbing frames), arched ramp, wooden slide, rock/climbing wall
  • ball pit (personally, I'm not a fan, but didn't want to leave this popular option off the list)
  • soft play foam blocks of various shapes
  • rocker / rocking horse
  • fabric cubby house table cover
  • walkers & pushers - NB these can have a short life as they are only used for their purpose for a couple of months. If gifting a walker, choose one that converts to a ride-on or doubles as an activity toy, like a block cart.
  • push cart / trolley
  • pull-along toys
  • balls of various shapes, sizes, textures, materials

Happy Hopperz Gold Giraffe

Outdoor Toys for a Child Turning One

Wooden Cubby House Kids Picnic Table

Micro Mini2Go Deluxe Plus Ride-On Scooter

Globber Explorer Trike 4-in-1 Hornit Airo Balance Bike

Craft Materials for a One-Year-Old

Toddlers don't yet have a great attention span for arts and crafts activities but they will certainly enjoy exploring art materials for short periods. At this age, the activities should be about the process rather than an end result. Here are some crafty gift ideas for a child turning one :

Magic Painting Kit

  • crayons (chunky for toddlers to grip)
  • chalk (as above)
  • washable non-toxic paint (try tempera)
  • liquid water-colours
  • tempera paint sticks
  • glue (squeeze bottles to stengthen little hands)
  • various brushes, rollers, sponges
  • spill-proof paint cups
  • easel (chalkboard/whiteboard/magnetic)
  • waterproof smock
  • papers of all kinds
  • stickers, pompoms, pipe-cleaners, yarn etc.
  • paint with water sets or water doodle mat

Keepsake Gifts for a First Birthday

If you would prefer to give a more meaningful keepsake or sentimental gift for a child turning one, you should definitely choose something that will last. You could also consider handing down a special personal item rather than buying new.

Handmade Wooden Hedgehog Puzzle Keepsake

PERSONALISED BABY GIFTS

These days you can purchase many items that are personalised with your one-year-old's name or other details - either engraved, embroidered, laser cut, or custom printed. Here are a few examples:

  • plush or wooden toys
  • baby blanket
  • story book
  • name puzzle
  • decor
  • jewelry
  • photo frame
  • cups & plates
  • night light
  • memory box
  • toy box
  • trinket/jewelry box

There are also toys and books available that incorporate your personalised voice recording. You can even have an original song written for the birthday girl or boy!

Gift Boxed Musical Donkey Kaloo

OTHER SENTIMENTAL GIFT IDEAS FOR A FIRST BIRTHDAY

  • guest book for the birthday party
  • charm bracelet to add to each year
  • photo book of baby's family & friends
  • a teddy handmade from outgrown baby clothes
  • growth chart
  • birthday crown
  • quality soft toy or doll
  • piggy bank
  • foot / hand casting
  • a tree to plant
  • begin a collection to add to each year
  • heirloom quality wooden toys
Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Block Set Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Stacking Toy
Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Stacking Toy Euca Toys Australian Handmade Wooden Block Set

Learning Toys For A One-Year-Old

Keeping in mind that ALL play is educational, choose a first birthday present that is age-appropriate and takes into account your child's development. Learning happens when children are actively engaged, so look for open-ended toys that will spark your one-year-old's imagination and provide opportunities to acquire and practice new skills.

Petilou Wooden Stacking Veggies

  • child-friendly kitchen & cooking utensils
  • marble run or marble tree (with a large ball - small ones are a choking hazard)
  • toys with pop ups or doors (to explore object permanence)
  • busy board or latch board
  • activity table/centre/cube
  • flashcards - eg. colours, letters, shapes, emotions, Auslan, animals
  • threading toys to practice fine motor skills (make sure they are not small choking hazards)
  • chunky wooden puzzles or peg puzzles
  • stacking & nesting toys
  • shape sorters
  • colour matching toys
  • hammer toys
  • block sets - Duplo or Megablocks are fantastic but consider also fabric or silicone blocks, and the classic choice of course is a wooden block set which will be used for years to come and can be added to over time.

Felt Play Food Donuts by Juni Moon

Pretend Play Presents for A First Birthday

Around the time they are turning one, children begin to engage in imaginative play that incorporates symbolic thinking and social understanding. Toddlers also love to emulate what they see their adults do. Here are some examples of pretend play toys that would make excellent first birthday presents:

Wooden Toy Blender & Fruit Set

Sunny Doll Family Wooden Figurines

Books - The Perfect One-Year-Old Birthday Gift

A book is an excellent choice of present for a child turning one. Board books are probably the way to go, as toddlers can be a bit rough on paper pages. Very young children enjoy learning to turn the pages themselves, and working on their language development. They love interactive books with pop-ups, puppets or sensory elements. Write a birthday message inside the front cover and it becomes a keepsake to treasure.

Here are our top picks for books to gift a one-year-old:

Bookywoo Busy Book Quiet Activity Fabric Books

1st Birthday Bunting

VIEW OUR COLLECTION

DISCLAIMER : Some links in this article are customized affiliate links. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase within a certain time frame, The Toy Chest Australia will earn a small commission. The commission is paid by the retailers, at no cost to you.

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