10 First Father's Day Gifts That Dad Will Treasure
The first year of your child's life is filled with many firsts. One of the biggest "first" moments of all is Dad's first Father's Day. Though new dads will undoubtedly relish any form of fatherly flattery, more seasoned ones say that they value presence more than presents. But the preference toward quality time over gifts wasn't always the case. In fact, buying Dad a new shirt or tie is a big part of the reason Americans celebrate the holiday in the first place. Much like its predecessor Mother's Day, the very first Father's Day celebration involved distributing roses to dads. Before long, however, the idea of a holiday for fathers piqued the interest of clothing manufacturers, who touted special sales designed to lavish our favorite guy. By 1920, neckties were the number one Father's Day gift, and the holiday has largely maintained its retail roots ever since.
These days, Father's Day is the perfect opportunity to incorporate a little of both—family time and something special to unwrap—and for first-timers, it's a chance to pepper in an extra helping of nostalgia. From desktop supplies decked with your baby's adorable little face to memory-filled mementos of your new family's earliest adventures, these thoughtful projects are also an excuse to finally transfer that archive of photos from your phone or camera.
All it takes is a little creativity and the ideas we've rounded up here to commemorate dad's first Father's Day and create a poetic record of your child's first year of life.
Glass Votives and Vases
What to do with all of those childhood photos? Turn those memories into water-slide decals that can be applied to tabletop decorations at home or desktop supplies at the office.
Découpaged Paper Weights
Another idea? These decoupaged rocks make for the perfect paper weight on Dad's desk. By printing the images on thin, textured rice paper, the image takes on a naturally weathered, vintage look.
Here's a great memento for Dad and baby when they've had marvelous adventures. Cover a notebook with a cute snapshot of the two of them and fill out the first few pages with memories that Dad and baby share together, like their favorite bedtime story, favorite activity, or favorite song.
Keepsake Book Box
Here's a sweet—and surprising!—way of starting a collection of childhood mementos for baby and a gift for Dad. Start a keepsake box filled with trinkets and treasures, including pictures and his first-ever Father's Day card. Stain the entire surface of a modern book box with diluted paint; let dry. Then, use undiluted paint to add designs like stripes and diamonds. Using craft glue, you can line the inside with velvet or decorative paper.
Photo Placemat Pocket
At this year's Father's Day brunch, make the guest of honor feel extra special. Take one of his favorite photos and have it printed onto to a placemat pocket. These sheets are made of lightweight cotton, so it's easy to feed them through a printer.
Shop Now: Jacquard Cotton Inkjet Fabric, 8 1/2" by 11", $18 for 10 sheets, michaels.com.
Family Tree Wall-Art
There's been a new addition to the family tree this year! Just in time for Father's Day, add it to this beautiful family tree wall mount—don't worry, we've included the template too. Download the tree and label templates; save it on a USB flash drive, and take to a copy center to print on a piece of watercolor paper. Our poster fit a 22-by-30-inch frame, but you can print it on a single sheet of paper sized to fit your frame.
Baby's Time Capsule
Create a time capsule of your baby's first year, highlighting their special moments with Dad. It's something he'll love looking back on for years to come.
Shop Now: Studio Décor White Shadow Box, 16" x 20", $60, michaels.com.
Parents always love whipping out their wallets to show off pictures of their kids—especially Dad. So why not make him a wallet-sized brag book of the new baby to keep with him for just such an opportunity? To make a cover, cut a piece of heavy-stock art paper (or the wallpaper from your baby's room) to the same height and twice the length of your closed accordion book. Fold the paper in half (or bind together two separate pieces—one for the front cover and one for the back—with a zigzag stitch), and glue the last accordion panel to the inside of the back cover (leave the front cover unattached). Punch a hole midway up the right edge of the front cover, and thread it with a ribbon to serve as a wraparound bow closure.
Shop Now: PPD Inkjet Iron-On Light Transfer Paper 11" x 17", $20, photopaperdirect.us.
Embroidered Tote Bag
Embroider on your baby's first scribble or a picture of your family and fill the bag with goodies from the baby for Dad on Father's Day.
Framed Photo Card
Put a smile on his face every time he sits down at his desk with this framable photo card that delivers two gifts in one—a sentimental note and a picture of his new child.