Welcome to the fabulous 50s! My little Melody just turned 1, and I thought it would be fun to do something a little different. Since she’s still too young to have an opinion on these things, we decided to skip the “baby” themes and throw a Fabulous 1950s Rock & Roll Party!
Melody’s 1st birthday fell just after Labor Day, when my husband’s family always gets together. We decided to have her party then, with all the family around to join in the fun!
It is incredibly easy to throw a 1950s theme party. Easy and really fun!
How to Throw a Fabulous 1950s Theme Party
The 50s was an iconic era. Poodle skirts, leather jackets, hula hoops, rock and roll music… It all translates really well to a party! So let me break it down and show you what we did for decorations, party supplies, music, outfits, food, games, and prizes!
1950s Party Decorations
We partnered with Oriental Trading to supply our 50s party decorations. They have an awesome selection of decorations and supplies for different era-themed parties.
For our 50s party I chose some hanging guitars, a table skirt with records and cool cars, some 50s style confetti, and a huge backdrop of a 50s style malt shop which was perfect for pictures!
1950s Party Supplies
Again, we relied on Oriental Trading for our party supplies. They have “Fabulous ’50s” plates, napkins, cups, dessert plates, and lots more!
Along with the birthdays (Melody turning 1, and Gramma Ila turning 79!), we were also celebrating the 50th anniversary of Gramma and Grampa Tenney’s wedding. Gramma Ila brought out her wedding album, and we enjoyed browsing the beautiful photos of their special day.
We also got these inflatable guitars for the kids to play with. They loved them!
This one is a no brainer! Use your favorite music app to play 50s rock and roll, and your party will have the perfect background and dance music. Rock Around the Clock, At the Hop, Hound Dog…the list goes on and on! Get ready for some Buddy Holly, Bill Haley, Chuck Berry, and of course, Elvis!
We encouraged everyone to come dressed in 1950s style, and we had almost full participation (out of 30 people, I think we had 27-28 in costume!). About a week ahead of time, I shared some tips on how to dress 50s-style, for men, women, and children, and I think that helped everyone put together their outfits.
We had an awesome variety of outfits- from poodle-skirted teenyboppers, to stylish ladies sporting neck and head scarves, leather jacket-clad greasers of all ages, and collegiate young men.
The cool thing is that it’s not hard at all to put together a 50s style outfit. Guys can get away with jeans and a white t-shirt, and ladies can wear their favorite flared or pencil skirt with a blouse and a neck scarf. Done! Or you can always go all out and get a full costume.
We decided to get a bunch of pizzas for our party, but some iconic 50s food you might serve includes burgers, shakes, root beer floats, tuna noodle casserole, and chex mix.
We did have homemade root beer at our party!
And Aunt Kadi made some adorable “malt shop” cupcakes!
Here comes the fun! Hula Hoops and the Limbo were both really popular in the 50s, so I decided to hold both hula hoop and limbo contests!
We had 3 hula hoops, so we did three at a time, and the last person “hooping” got to move on to the next round.
We had 9 semi-finalists and 3 finalists, and 12-year-old Braden was the winner!
For the limbo contest, we did a kids version and an adult version.
We declared 5-year-old Maeve as the winner of the kids limbo, and after several backbreaking adult rounds, we determined we’d call it a tie between Uncle Jared and ME!
My family also decided we’d give out some awards for best costumes, and we chose a “best greaser,” “best poodle skirt,” and “best-dressed couple.”
We topped off the night with a relaxed round of Songburst, in which you have to finish the 1950s song lyric. We did boys versus girls, and the girls prevailed!
We live near a vintage candy store, and I went there in search of 50s prizes. We ended up getting two different sodas in glass bottles- a Mighty Mouse Blue Cream Soda, and a Ritchie Valens “El Capitan” Cola, for the Hula and Limbo Champions. And I got a package of dot candy (you know, the kind that comes on a sheet of paper, and you usually end up eating a fair amount of paper along with the candy pieces?) to divide up for the other winners.
And that’s it! With some fun decorations, rock and roll music, good food, easy costumes, and simple games, you can throw a party to remember.
We had a rockin’ good time!