5 Party Theme Ideas & How to Pull Them Off

When it comes to party theme ideas, it’s sometimes hard to find that perfect concept which you have both the creativity and resources to pull off. Hosts can often find themselves exhausting their abilities, with the finished product falling short of the high standards they set themselves from a design point of view.

That’s why the CEP team are here to help. We understand thinking up themes for parties isn’t the easiest job in the world – let alone gathering everything you need to make your shindig one to be remembered for decades. Luckily, we’ve put together a list which will help you not only pick the perfect style for an event, but also gives you a guide of how to put it all together.

The five party theme ideas we cover could theoretically work for any type of event from wedding to birthday bash, or even a corporate gig. Sit back, and let the trained entertainment professionals at CEP provide you with a host of ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

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1. Masquerade Ball

Made popular in Italy during the 16th century, masquerade balls were a fantastic way of having good, clean and wholesome fun with a relative stranger. These days there isn’t much mystery when it comes to who’s who at a masked ball. That doesn’t mean you still won’t have a barrel of laughs.

If you want to keep the theme of the night prevalent throughout, your best bet would be to ensure a strict ‘no mask, no entry’ policy on the door. Alright, we know that sounds a little harsh – but if someone has the cheek to turn up to your mask-themed event without one, they’re already pushing their luck a touch.

Naturally, once inside, you can make certain sections of the room mask-free zones. This will allow people the chance to catch their breath, and prevents them from finishing the night covered in sweat, with blotchy and red skin around their faces.

What you’ll need: Masks. Lots of them. While we told you to make sure your guests bring their own, some silly so-and-sos will no doubt forget theirs. Keep an ample supply of basic mask designs with you at all times.

You’ll also want to hire out performers who can serve drinks and perform dance routines throughout the course of the night. Specialist masquerade services have been set up to deal with such a need.

Checklist:

  • Extra masks
  • Masquerade performers and artists
  • Roaming masquerade champagne tables
  • Ballroom décor – with a possible Venetian theme

Food & music suggestion: If you want to take the ball back to its roots, you could decide to serve a wide range of canapes with an Italian theme. While we might advise giving pizza a miss, the likes of olives and cheese from the region wouldn’t be a bad idea.

When it comes to music, you can vary things up a tad. Strike a fine balance between contemporary songs everyone knows and loves, and popular ballroom numbers. It might seem confusing at first, but your guests will soon get used to the swiftly changing dancefloor moves.

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2. Las Vegas

What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. If you’re looking to really spice things up at your event, you could decide to use a party theme idea which takes inspiration from one of the wildest places in the world.

Las Vegas is notorious as the place to go for a good time. Some say it’s the town that never sleeps – so what better place to base your theme around? While we wouldn’t encourage the crazy debauchery you normally associate with the Nevada strip, you can still bring all the fun of the casino tables to your soiree.

Organise games, with special prizes handed out instead of cash rewards. If you want to make it a kid-friendly event you can, but this might mean cutting down on some of the elements which make Vegas what it is.

What you’ll need: What would a Las Vegas themed party be without showgirls? Tasteful options are always available, with the girls serving drinks or putting on a show for you and your guests.

As well as these more traditional accompaniments, you can also make the most of services which add an extra layer of depth and atmosphere to an event. The likes of giant bird cages and martini glasses do this perfectly – providing bespoke entertainment that’s totally original and unique.

A crowning glory comes in the form of the many different casino-style machines and games you can also provide for guests to get stuck into.

Checklist:

  • Casino tables
  • Roulette wheels
  • Las Vegas showgirls
  • Giant bird cage
  • Giant martini glass

Food & music suggestion: We’d highly recommend playing tunes which keep the party atmosphere pumping all night. That doesn’t mean club anthems – but rather songs which get people off their feet, or even just put them in a good mood.

When it comes to nibbles, you could either decide to put on a spread of delicious American junk food, or provide a Vegas-styled all-you-can-eat buffet. It might be wise to tweak this somewhat and make sure there’s a two-plate maximum for everyone, or you could run out of grub quickly.

 

3. Great Gatsby

This classic, penned in 1925 by F. Scott Fitzgerald, has experienced something of a second-coming in recent years, thanks to the 2013 movie adaption starring Oscar-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio. We’re grateful to Leo for bringing the 1920s back into fashion, because it really was one of the most fun periods in history.

The roaring 20s are here again, with flapper girls and dandies on hand to transport you back to the glory days of the US – before the Wall Street Crash saw all the fun and games come to a very abrupt stop.

You won’t have to worry about those dark times however, as everyone laughs it up at a bash which exemplifies all the crazy fun of this wild time in history. Who knows, you may even find your very own Jay Gatsby or Daisy Buchanan to share the dancefloor with.

What you’ll need: Charleston dancers are the call of the day when it comes to livening up this type of gig, while the addition of performers dressed as mobsters – who could even put on a chase routine with the cops – serves to add that extra subtle 1920s nuance.

There was booze aplenty during the famous parties of Mr. Gatsby, so it stands to reason you should centre a lot of your event around the stuff. You can do this by hiring out strolling champagne tables and our old friend the giant martini glass.

Checklist:

  • Charleston Dancers
  • Mobsters
  • Strolling champagne tables
  • Giant martini glass

Food & music suggestion: This is an easy one. When it comes to the music you should play, keep things strictly 1920s-based. While the 2013 movie tried to splice in some contemporary beats, it didn’t really work. There are plenty of amazing tracks from the past century which you’ll be able to keep your guests entertained with all night.

On the food front, you can offer up a series of delicious high quality canapes, before serving everyone a sit-down meal. This doesn’t have to be 1920s related, but if you can find recipes from the time which sound nice enough, go for it.

 

4. Sci-fi

If there’s a more on-trend theme than science fiction right now, we’d be amazed. Sci-fi fever has gripped the nation thanks largely to the third series of Star Wars trilogy movies beginning their run at the backend of 2015.

This, along with the ever-popular Marvel and DC superhero movies (okay, we know these aren’t technically sci-fi, but they do come close), has contributed to a completely new stance being taken when it comes to our attitude towards the ‘nerdier’ side of life.

If anyone tells you your Ewok costume isn’t cool, or you’re a bit of a weirdo for coming dressed as C-3PO, they clearly aren’t aware of just how awesome you really are. Regardless of whether people like sci-fi or not, this type of theme is something everyone can have fun with when they let their inhibitions go.

What you’ll need: Lots and lots of performers walking around and pretending to be iconic characters from science fiction movies. Darth Vader, Captain Kirk and the Terminator are just a few names who should ideally be making an appearance.

As well as the trademark characters we all know and love, you can also provide that additional level of ambience with the likes of generic sci-fi traits. Gigantic robots are always a good option, while flashing neon lights serve to provide an other-worldly feel.

Checklist:

  • Giant dancing LED Robots
  • Darth Vader performer
  • Stormtrooper performers
  • Ghostbusters
  • LED glowing lights
  • Spaceship props

Food & music suggestion: The music is a little harder to nail when it comes to an event like this. You can either head down the route of simply playing easy-listening songs everyone can enjoy, or perhaps be a little more niche and tune the event to play anthems with a sci-fi theme. In contrast to both of those ideas, you could even exclusively play theme music from movies and TV shows in the genre.

When it comes to food, try to be creative. Serve blue milk, protein packs or any other type of unique bites which you’ve only ever seen in the movies. Failing that, you can always put on a buffet of foods you might eat while watching a film – such as burgers and French fries.

 

5. Alice in Wonderland

We’re through the looking glass on this one. When it comes to party theme ideas, there’s perhaps nothing more open for customisation than an Alice in Wonderland event. The beauty of this type of theme is the manic nature of the Lewis Carroll original novel – which lends itself to you being able to do whatever you want with your event.

Let’s face it, a story about a girl who falls into another world, with giant talking cats, maniacal murderous queens and animals which double up as household items, is already a little out there. When you factor in the slightly unhinged nature of the story, you’re left with a world of possibilities from a design point of view.

However crazy or reserved you want to make your special day, this is a party theme which gives you the chance to really think outside the box and provide your guests with an experience they won’t get anywhere else.

What you’ll need: The key necessity with this theme is a creative mind. You’ll certainly be able to find performers who dress as the Queen of Hearts, The Mad Hatter or the White Rabbit, but you’ll need to think a little differently to really transport your guests to Wonderland.

Consider serving some crazy cocktails, or setting a code of dress which sees people having to come as something utterly unique and random – but which also isn’t a well-known character (like Batman). If everyone is kitted up in random garb, it’ll add to the crazy and random feel of the day.

Checklist:

  • The Mad Hatter
  • The Queen of Hearts
  • Tweedle Dum & Tweedle Dee
  • Alice
  • Roaming champagne tables

Food & music suggestion: There isn’t necessarily a set track-list which naturally works with this type of theme, so you wouldn’t be remiss just opting for whatever you and your guests are most likely to enjoy. If you want to try and push the boat however, you could always search for anthems which relate to the concept of ‘craziness’.

When it comes to food, your best bet is to serve the type of grub you’d be likely to find at the Mad Hatter’s tea parties. This means a wide range of smaller bites, as opposed to a large meal – warn your guests about this before they come. No-one likes to be disappointed. Luckily, with these ideas, you and your guests will have endless fun.

 
Have these five party theme ideas provided you with inspiration for your next event? If so, feel free to get in contact with the CEP team. We’ll be happy to turn any of these provisional thoughts into a reality for you and your loved ones on your special day.