11 - 12 Months

Our favorite gifts for baby’s first birthday

Baby celebrating their first birthday

Your toddler’s first birthday is a great time to celebrate how much they’ve grown — from a tiny baby to the charming person you’ve gotten to know over the last 12 months 🙂 

Your 1-year-old will never remember how many gifts they received for their first birthday, and there are countless other ways to celebrate. Mostly, they just want to be with you ❤️ If you do choose to mark this occasion with a special gift (or gifts) for your toddler, or if someone close to you is looking for ideas, this list has everything from paint brushes to our Play Tunnel.

Art supplies

Chunky crayons, sidewalk chalk, and paint brushes are great tools for developing fine motor skills as your toddler’s coloring evolves from their first faint marks to bolder, circular scribbles.

Bubble machine

Bubbles create a special kind of magic for babies and toddlers, who love to chase and try to catch them. A bubble machine always makes a great addition to a party, but an afternoon outside can be the right occasion too.

Memberships to local attractions

Zoos, children’s museums, and indoor playgrounds are a lot of fun, but they can be expensive—especially if you have to cut out early for one reason or another 🙃 Having a membership means you can stay for as long (or as not-so-long) as you like, without feeling like you wasted a day pass.  

Montessori Play Shelf

Research shows that rotating toys keep them fresh for your toddler and promotes deeper, more meaningful play. Our two-in-one shelf lets you reap these benefits, with an added bonus of hidden storage to keep your play area uncluttered.

Learning tower (step stool)

Your 1-year-old loves to see what you’re up to in the kitchen, and including them in simple cooking tasks builds both skills and confidence. Bring them up to counter-height with a tall step stool and give them real tools like measuring cups, whisks, and wooden spoons to explore. 

Toddler shoes

Going barefoot is best but when shoes are needed, look for lightweight ones with flexible soles, says Rachel Coley, Lovevery’s pediatric occupational therapist.

Push toys

Once they figure out how to stand up and move, 1-year-olds love to go, go, go 🙂 Practicing with a wagon or play stroller might even be just the thing to get them walking on their own if they aren’t doing it quite yet. A favorite stuffy or Baby Doll can add some extra weight for stability.

Riding toys

If it isn’t clear by now, movement is the name of the game for your 1-year-old. Riding toys are great for scooting around indoors and out, and can be loved year round.

The Organic Cotton Play Tunnel

Your 1-year-old will love crawling through this colorful tunnel, developing gross motor skills that support walking in the process. While they explore inside, you can stick your face at the opening at either end for a game of peek-a-boo ❤️

Water table

Sensory play is so good for your toddler’s developing brain, but it can get messy 🙃 A water table keeps materials like water, sand, and even mud in basins you can remove for easy cleaning.

Education fund

Whether used for preschool, college, or something in between, an investment in your child’s education is a gift that will benefit them well beyond their first birthday.

Foam playmat

Foam playmats like these from Little Nomad provide firm support for playing, are easy to clean, and come in a wide variety of styles to blend in with your home’s decor.

Pikler triangle

A Pikler triangle provides just the right amount of challenge as your child learns to walk, run, and climb. You can even add on accessories to turn the triangle into an indoor slide or give your toddler a change to practice rock climbing.

Nugget play cushions

The soft-but-sturdy cushions of an indoor activity set are ideal for creating forts and obstacle courses. Rearrange them to give your growing toddler new and challenging ways to build their gross motor skills. Link the cushions together with the Pikler triangle or Lovevery Play Tunnel for even more fun.


Toddlers love having an impact on their environment—especially a noisy one 🙃 A musical instrument capitalizes on this new fascination with cause and effect, and supports fine motor and cognitive development at the same time.

Learn more about Lovevery’s learning and development toys for 1-year olds.


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Posted in: 11 - 12 Months, Milestones, Birthday, Child Development

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