How to Throw a 1960s Theme Party
What's more fun than throwing a party? Throwing a party that is 60s-themed! This decade was a transitional period, full of changes and excitement. From hippies to modmen and everything in between, the 60s saw various bold styles of fashion and music emerge from the shadows of the 50s.
Check out these ideas for decorations, food, costumes, and more! Whether you're going for a hippie style or mod style, you'll find some great inspiration here.
If you're going for a hippie-style, finding decorations and supplies for your party is going to be a cinch. Think tie-dye, peace signs, and bright whacky colors, and you'll be in that groovy mindset! Did you live through this decade? Use your memories as inspiration for your décor. If you didn't live through it or can't quite remember (as is the case for many of you who lived through this decade), here are some quick and easy ideas to get you started.
For a Hippie Theme:
- tie-dye wall decals and tablecloths
- peace sign plates, cups, napkins, and utensils
- photos or posters of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, the Beatles, and other famous 60s musicians/bands
- lava lamps
- big yellow smiley faces, peace signs, trippy-looking decorations
- VW Econoline Hippie Van stand-up or centerpieces for the tables
- replace your light bulbs with groovy colored bulbs
- give love beads and flowers to all of your guests to wear
For a Mod Theme:
- multicolored balloons (yellow, red, blue, and orange as in the picture above)
- simple mod-style party decorations (you can even go vintage if you have the money to spend and the time to collect!)
- crystal or sparkly chandeliers
- champagne flutes (if you don't want to do champagne, don't forget the punch bowl and matching cups)
- Pop Art posters on the walls
- British flags
- Chinese lanterns
- you could even go Space Age with moons, rockets, and stars
If all else fails, watch Austin Powers and get inspired! Yeah, baby!
Food and Drinks
Your choice of food and drinks can revolve around the specific 60s theme you're going with.
You could make brownies and call them "magical brownies." Hippies also usually love greens, so various salads will be perfect party food and you could include a large fruit bowl and fruit punch. Get creative and put peace signs on cupcakes, smiley faces on potatoes, and etc.
If you're going with a more mod-themed party, food and drinks can be a little bit classier. Skim through recipes from the 60s online, or borrow some vintage cookbooks from your local library or from grandma! Create a beautifully mod buffet featuring the decade's finger foods and cocktails.
Finger Food Ideas:
- cheese and fruit on toothpicks
- nuts of various kinds
- lunch meats
- cocktail sausages
- shrimp cocktail
- quiche lorraine
As for the cocktails, go with basic beer and wine, but you can also include cognac, martinis, etc.
- strawberry parfait ring
- marble cake
- angel food cake
- jello molds
- peanut brittle
Everyone's favorite part of a party is the costumes!
For the Ladies:
- Hippie costumes can be found online for reasonable prices, or you can put a costume together by gathering a pair of bell bottoms, a brightly colored shirt with a fringed vest over-top, headbands, and crazy big sunglasses (check local thrift and consignment shops for vintage or retro-like pieces).
- If you want to go for a classier feel, search modcloth.com for a 60s mod dress or go to pinupgirlclothing.com. Check out eBay, Rustyzipper, and Etsy for authentic vintage mod dresses.
For the Gentlemen:
- Go for a "Mad Men" look complete with suit and tie and hat by searching for vintage suits at thrift shops. You can also find "Mad Men" costumes online.
- If you want to go for the hippie look, search nearby thrift and vintage shops for bell bottoms, old rock band T-shirts, fringed vests, headbands, and sunglasses (don't forget the platform shoes).
If all else fails, grab a long-haired wig from your local costume shop and slap on a ratty T-shirt and ripped jeans...INSTANT HIPPIE!
Questions & Answers
© 2013 Nicole Canfield