Big Top Birthday Party Gift!


There's only one baby, other than my own, that I love this much! And he just turned ONE! His super creative mom put together a cheerful circus themed party for her little man - so I couldn't resist personalizing his gift...Big Top style.

Here's the short story, longggg.

This smiley giggler is downwind from 3 older brothers so he has never really needed clothes, and he definitely didn't need any more toys...but he L.O.V.E.S. balls (and I know how bad his mom wanted me to draw his silhouette - wink, wink K!). The circus themed birthday party seemed to be the perfect time to hit all the high points for my friend's one year old to be.

Once I spotted it, I knew I could transform the giant cheeseball tub from the junk food isle into the perfect container for the cart of whiffle balls I hoarded back at the party store. Then, I swear I heard angels singing when I reached the clearance toy section at Target (shhhh) and was face to face with an adorable tiny elephant whose trunk was curled up as if it was begging me to glue a yellow ping pong ball to it. The ball, I wrapped with a slim blue ribbon to make my circus elephant come to life.

My plan was coming together beautifully. Cheeseball containers have the perfect red top to glue a circus elephant to (plus it is a durable plastic, and at $4.99 can you really beat it?).

Next, I personalized it with a vintage circus poster inspired label!

The process...there's always a process.

First, I researched old time circus posters. I settled on a few to help inspire me to create a personalized label for the birthday boy.

Second, I cranked out his sweet. It was late night as I was drawing and it hit me. I have known this baby since the day he was born, traveled across the world with him (to Finland - an impromptu trip just for moms and babies - leaving behind 5 others between us) and seen him at least every week of his entire life. We are undeniably bonded. ( sweet)
Third, I started looking around for the fonts I needed for my project to come together. 
Free fonts? Free fonts! Free circus fonts!
Puh-lease. I love free fonts. I found these safe free font downloads from
You can click on the examples below to go straight to the download page for each font.

Lastly, I thought about all the words and phrases that I would use to describe this very loved little boy. And here is what came of it all!
Normally, I would be horrified if I made one of my friends cry - but it was the sign of success when my friend realized that it was her little boy on the label and that this was definitely a keepsake from his first birthday party - Big Top style!

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by mlekoshi