How to Throw a 1960s Theme Party

Updated on February 2, 2017
kittythedreamer profile image

One of Kitty's dream jobs is to be a party planner. She finds joy in planning parties for children and adults alike!

For your 60s Themed Party, go Mad Men style!
For your 60s Themed Party, go Mad Men style!

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.

Decorations

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.

Potato Platters
Potato Platters | Source

Hippie Theme

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.

Mod Theme

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
  • tomatoes
  • radishes
  • olives
  • 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.

Dessert Ideas:

  • strawberry parfait ring
  • marble cake
  • angel food cake
  • jello molds
  • fudge
  • peanut brittle

Strawberry Parfait Ring
Strawberry Parfait Ring | Source

Costumes

Mod Tuxedo Dress
Mod Tuxedo Dress | Source

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.

Source

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!

Hop on the bus!
Hop on the bus! | Source

Questions & Answers

    © 2013 Nicole Canfield

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    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      Thanks!

    • WiccanSage profile image

      Mackenzie Sage Wright 5 years ago

      This looks so fun. Cool ideas.

    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      Awesome!

    • eaglecreek profile image

      Jason 5 years ago from Vilonia , Arkansas

      I love it! now I feel like throwing "Animal House" in the dvd player.

    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      Absolutely, Nell! Come on over, lady!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Love this idea! I always felt that I missed out on the 60s look, too young, then when it came back, too old! haha! can I come to your party? lol!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 5 years ago

      What a great idea! Everyone loves a themed party. I think I'd go for the Mad Men look myself. Great hub. Up and Awesome.

    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      Good idea! I'll have to throw that one in sometime. :)

    • eaglecreek profile image

      Jason 5 years ago from Vilonia , Arkansas

      You need to write an article on how we can throw a "rocky horror picture show" party!

    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      eaglecreek - Peace!

    • eaglecreek profile image

      Jason 5 years ago from Vilonia , Arkansas

      groovy.

    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      randomcreative - You're too sweet. Thanks for reading! I love your hubs too, ya know. :)

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I love your party planning ideas! Thanks for the great range of detailed suggestions.

    • kittythedreamer profile image
      Author

      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      Crystal - That is a good idea, too! Thanks for reading.

      rebeccamealey - Yes, I've written a 1940s theme party hub too, along with every other decade from the 20s to the 60s. :) Thanks for reading.

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 5 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      What a great party theme! I'll be the 1940 's theme would be interesting. All those gangsters and glamour girls!

    • Crystal Tatum profile image

      Crystal Tatum 5 years ago from Georgia

      This sounds like so much fun. I'd love to do this and show a movie from the 60s! Voted up and awesome and shared.

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