Bored of balloons, banners and little black dresses? You’re probably pondering how to make your party original. Well, there are plenty of ways to get your event to stand out and get people really involved. The key is to choose a theme which is quirky and interesting, but not to the extent that it is almost impossible to dress up for – sure, deep sea animals sound like an innovative idea but how feasible is it to dress up as an octopus or a crab? Not very, so take a look at some of my suggestions for a unique and practical theme…
Are you convinced that your friends and family won’t be keen on dressing up in silly costumes or smearing themselves in face paint all in the name of the childish novelty of fancy dress? Then why not issue a colour scheme, where your guests can only wear certain colours? Give them a choice out of two so they have an option – black and white is the most obvious choice, but you can be creative – pink and white, red and black or blue and green would also work well.
Just imagine the photographs you could take – crowds of people in different shades of complementary colours would be awesome! It will also give your partygoers a chance to get stuck into a theme without really putting too much effort into it – there won’t be any whinging relatives or stuck-up acquaintances refusing to commit to fancy dress – the most they have to worry about is which colour will suit them the most.
Something that is sure to get the banter brewing and the chuckles coming is the notion of switching genders for the night. Let your macho neighbour lose his dignity by surrendering his masculinity in favour of some red lipstick and high heels, and encourage your glamorous sister to embrace the perks of manliness by investing in a fake moustache and a tweed suit. Why? Just for the fun of it. It’s silly, but it allows you to embody styles you wouldn’t usually and try something refreshingly different for a change.
Picture the fun you would have getting prepared for such a party – transforming your friends will be highly amusing and will probably create entertaining and effective results (Kodak moments for sure) – so get stuffing those socks down your bras, boys!
To be honest, this theme would be best suited for smaller occasions such as a house-warming party or a random get-together, because let’s face it girls, a manly suit and tie combination won’t make for the most glitzy birthday outfit (even if you do look incredibly handsome as a boy)!
For the lazy, carefree sort, pyjama parties are the best. You can roll up in your finest nightwear, remain cosy all night and then go home straight to bed. No time wasted choosing smart dresses or suits and then having to carefully take them off and fold them up later. You can even wear slippers or fluffy boots, and if you’re cold when travelling to and from the venue you can even wrap yourself up in your snug dressing gown. Another advantage is that you don’t have to have a hissy fit if you spill ketchup or cider on your bedtime vest, as pyjamas aren’t as luxurious as the sequinned dress you have hanging up in your wardrobe which you could’ve worn.
Anything but clothes…
Clothes are an everyday necessity of life…but if you wear them to this party, then you aren’t getting in! This theme is simple – you can wear anything, but clothes. Okay, of course underwear is allowed, but other than that, it’s up to you to be as creative as you can. Make a dress out of newspaper, a top out of toilet roll, a skirt out of tin foil – whatever you want! You could play it safe in a towel, get arty with some carrier bags or even turn up in a bin liner; just think of the possibilities. This theme is for the daring and the innovative – you could even issue a prize for the best dressed or the most original outfit to award peoples efforts. This will obviously be a brilliant laugh but you certainly won’t be able to leave your outfit choice to the last minute – it will require thought, and if you don’t want your makeshift dress unravelling after a couple of hours then you will need to spend some time beforehand making it as sturdy and long-lasting as possible!
Of all the characters in all the films, you will be spoilt for choice as to who to impersonate. You could indulge your inner child by wearing a pretty Disney princess outfit, or masquerade as your favourite heroine like Lara Croft if you fancy being a swash-buckling badass for the night. It is likely to be expensive to buy full-on replicate costumes so why not improvise with second hand accessories or have a mooch on EBay for reasonably priced alternatives? You could even cheat with cheap interpretations of a character. For example, wear a blue dress and buy some face paint and you can easily become a smurf, or purchase a leopard print towel and you can create a cheeky loincloth and become the lovable George of the Jungle (okay, maybe that is a little daring).
A pirate party is a really easy theme because you don’t have to put in much effort or expense to dress up for it. Wrap a scarf around your head, wear an eye-patch and layer on the gold necklaces and you are good to go! There’s plenty of pirate themed songs to get you in the ‘yo ho yo ho’ mood, just make sure to stock up on the rum!
Have a blast from the past with a historical themed party. Go retro with neon for the 90s, go punk with big hair for the 80s or go hippie in the 60s with paisley and tie dyes. Whatever decade you choose, there will be signature styles you can play with and people will more than likely enjoy having a little taste of history in a fun and experimental way. Compile a playlist appropriate to that time period and boogie on down to some classic grooves from back in the day.
I will put my hands up and admit that this idea stemmed from a bar crawl I had at university in my first year, but hey, it’s a brilliant idea so why not share it? For those who like their men in uniform, this is definitely the theme for you! Have a venue swarming with firemen, doctors and policemen, all fully kitted out in the correct attire. Even if you are on a budget, you can create a look which at least partially resembles one of these – for instance, I wore a white t-shirt, white shorts and I used a scrap of white material to make a nurses hat which I positioned on my hair using clips. A red felt tip to draw on some first aid crosses onto my top and hat and the look was complete. Of course if you want to get into the theme you can buy the proper costume, but you can still stick to the dress code even if you aren’t willing to splash out on fancy dress. This theme gives you the chance to feel authoritative for the night; even if you are slurring your speech and dancing robotically after drinking a few glasses of fruit punch…