Everyone looks forward to parties, but sometimes when the planning falls to you, it can be difficult to choose a theme -- especially if you are hosting an event for a group of acquaintances, rather than close friends content to watch movies together in their pajamas. Even so, you can throw a memorable party, not only showing your guests a good time but cultivating quality mingling and new friendships.
This party theme is is a natural for acquaintances, as interesting costumes provide excellent icebreakers and conversation topics. Send out black-and-white invitations explaining the theme, which requires everything at the party -- from decorations to food to attire -- to be black and white. Black-and-white parties have a classy vibe. They are aesthetically unique while allowing for casual socialization. To decorate, use black-and-white construction paper cut out in geometric patterns and placed along walls. Black-and-white streamers will give the event a festive flair. Food ideas include cheesecake with dark chocolate, pasta with olives and white corn tortilla chips with black bean dip. Encourage guests to be creative with their outfits, the only requirement being black-and-white attire. Black-and-white parties can also provide striking photo opportunities; just be sure to use black-and-white film.
Host a costume party that encourages guests to dress up as someone they are not -- ideally, someone famous and recognizable. For example, a couple could arrive dressed as Sonny and Cher. This party theme is ideal for acquaintances, as it includes individuals familiar with all aspects of popular culture, from music to movies to famous heiresses. Costumes can act as conversation pieces and acquaintances will become friends as they guess which celebrity each guest is imitating. Decorate as if you are throwing a celebration for a milieu of the rich and famous, incorporating disco balls, decorative tablecloths and cheese plates. To make the party especially enjoyable and social, place disposable cameras around the room for guests to take mock paparazzi shots of one another.
Whether your setting is rural or urban, you guests will appreciate this foray beyond ordinary life as you embrace all things Western and rustic in your party planning and costume specifications. Encourage men and women to arrive dressed as cowboys and cowgirls. Throw a plaid or gingham tablecloth on your dining room table, add a bale of hay outside your front door and you're ready to go. Set up a horseshoe ring to give acquaintances an opportunity to engage in friendly competition. You can even rent a bucking bull for guests to ride. Hand out toy sheriff badges as party favors, and remember, cowboy hats are required.
Any party designed to help acquaintances mingle needs a central touchstone to which the majority of the guests can relate. To get your guests talking, choose the season's biggest movie or your favorite classic as a theme for your party. Let the movie guide your decoration choices and the party favors you distribute. Feature your selected movie playing in the background during the event and encourage guests to dress up as their favorite characters.
- "52 Totally Unique Theme Parties": Patty Sachs: 1993
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