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How to Throw a 1950s Theme Party

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

The 1950s Rocked.

In the 1950s, everyone seemed happy. Parties were thrown for almost any reason, including when there were new Tupperware products! So why not throw a 1950s theme party for yourself or a loved one? Use the 1950s theme for a birthday party, anniversary party, graduation party, Halloween party, retirement party, or just for the heck of it.

A 1950s theme party can be as eccentric or as tame as you want it to be. Let your retro creativity flare and get the party started!

Continue reading to learn some hip tips on 1950s theme party decorations, costumes, food, and more.

1950s Theme Party Decorations

There are a couple of different 50s party themes you could choose from, or you might choose to mix these themes for your rockin' 50s party.

Go with a fully rock n' roll theme. Think Elvis Presley, sock hop, rockabilly, and a ton of records! Hang record decorations all over the place. Make the floors checker-board with a room roll or carpet, put up posters or pictures of Elvis in the 50s and other rock stars. Guitars are perfect for the 1950s rock theme, so hang guitar decorations everywhere, and use them as centerpieces on the tables. Do not forget the jukebox. Whether you put up a fake jukebox or rent a real one, this is essential to really set the mood of a 1950s rock n' roll party.

Another 1950s theme party idea is to make the party look like a soda shop. How much fun would that be? Serve all drinks in the vintage-style soda shop cups (like the ones pictured below), serve all soda and ice cream-themed foods and beverages. Cherries and candy décor can be used in your decorating, which are fairly easy to come by. Hang 50s soda shop signs at the entrance of the party, as well as in and around the party area. You can print these out from the internet on glossy photo paper, if all else fails. Grab a 50s soda shop room roll to make the entire party area look as though you are all sitting in an authentic 1950s soda shop. Neon lights are also fun to use at a soda shop party and can be found online and ordered.

Check out the decorations at this party:

1950s Theme Party Costume Ideas

The most exciting party of planning a 1950s theme party is deciding on costumes. Both men and women, girls and boys will enjoy getting dressed up for a 50s theme party. Here are some easy and fun ideas for people of all shapes, ages, and sizes.

For the demure, classy lady:

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  • the "new look" dress - a form fitting bodice with a full circle skirt, complete with petticoat underneath
  • gloves, purse, and shoes to match the dress perfectly
  • pantyhose or stockings
  • strands of pearls
  • red lipstick, dramatic eyes
  • hair curled and then pinned up
  • or choose a cardigan sweater with a poodle skirt

For the fun, casual lady:

  • go for a rockabilly, rebel look
  • skinny jeans cuffed at the hems
  • big red or black belt
  • plaid button-down shirt or tight white baby tee
  • red bandana in hair with a Rosie the Riveter hair-do
  • red lipstick and black eyeliner
  • cigarette case
  • espadrilles or penny loafers or saddle shoes
  • retro sunglasses

And for the guys, go for the jock look:

  • retro letterman jacket or sweater
  • pair of jeans or khakis
  • penny loafers or converse sneakers
  • slicked back hair or combed to the side

Or go for the rebel guy look:

  • jeans cuffed at the hems
  • plain white tee with leather jacket
  • boots or converse shoes
  • slicked back hair and/or pompadour-style
  • cigarette hanging out mouth
  • wallet chain
  • bandana

50s Party Costumes:

1950s Theme Party Menu Ideas

The menu for your 1950s theme party can be as simple or as complex as you would like to make it. If you're going with the rock 'n roll theme, keep all of your food within that theme. Examples:

  • cupcakes or cake with a guitar or records
  • hamburgers, fries, and soda
  • beer

Or if you're going with a soda shop or ice cream shop theme, stick with those types of foods:

  • ice cream floats
  • banana splits
  • sundaes
  • buttery nipple shots
  • alcoholic milkshakes
  • cocktails with soda

Written and copyright © by Kitty the Dreamer (May Canfield), 2012. All Rights Reserved.

© 2012 Kitty Fields


Kitty Fields (author) from Summerland on June 07, 2013:

Aplethora23 - So happy you enjoyed this hub. Can't wait to read yours! Gotta love the 50s...I'm obsessed with this time period and with the 40s. Blessings!

Angie Power from North Cali on June 06, 2013:

Yes! I LOVE IT! The 50's were hands down my favorite era. Love the styles, and the 50's slang. Thanks to my amazing grandmother and Rosie the Riveter, I have a deeply rooted passion for the 1950s. I have been working on a few 50's hubs myself. If only my grandmother were still here, so that I could ask her all of the questions from a first hand source and raid her boxes of old photos with her. Thank you for posting, I do love it. Voted Up!

Kitty Fields (author) from Summerland on February 12, 2013:

tattuwurn - Very true, thanks!

Eiddwen from Wales on October 20, 2012:

Original and absolutely brilliant. Great work and here's to so many more to follow.


Rich from Kentucky on October 19, 2012:

Tis the decade of my birth, as well as the birth of rock and roll. I've considered myself lucky to have been with it all the way, through it's ups and downs. Take out "pop" and "rap" and it's still going. These are some great ideas for parties. I can see a rockabilly party in the making. Another fun hub here with a lot of great ideas! Great Job, Kitty!

Rose Clearfield from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on October 19, 2012:

You have some of the best party ideas! This would be so much fun.

Kitty Fields (author) from Summerland on October 19, 2012:

Thanks, Carol! 50s Parties are a blast.

carol stanley from Arizona on October 19, 2012:

Lots of fun ideas here. Many years ago I went to a 50s party and it was great fun. Thanks for sharing all this fun information and great ideas for giving a party. Voted UP.

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