we did big first birthday parties where we invited friends and family. we both have big families and just both our immediate families ends up being 30 people, so that's all we invite now. we don't invite any of our friends, except for a couple of close friends with kids the same age and we don't invite any preschool friends. i'm not sure how i'll do it in the future, maybe have a small thing on a weekday with school friends and a separate family get-together.
i don't find anyone getting their feelings hurt. if you're just having immediate family, then it's more of a get-together than a party imo.