Check out all these great ideas for dress up party themes for adults. Throwing an adult dress up party is a great way to be sure your party is a hit and your friends all have a good time.
I have gathered some fabulous creative party theme ideas, so you will be able to find the perfect theme for your next all-adult party. Choosing an event theme lets guests get excited before the party. They are thinking of costume ideas and how they can make theirs the best.
Before you start planning your adult-themed party, be sure and get my FREE printable party planner. This free party planner will make the next party you host fun and easy. If you are throwing a small party or a big event, this planning checklist will simplify taking care of all the details.
You will get all these pages in your planner to help you stay organized and not forget any details.
- Brainstorming and party details sheet
- Guest List
- Grocery List
- Decorations Planning
- Day Of The Party Schedule
- Count Down To-do List
- Party Space Grid Planner Sheet
- Bonus* Free Printable Banner With Letters
To get your planner join my members-only hospitality library.
Next, go through these adult party theme ideas. Choosing a specific theme helps you, the party-giver narrow down decorations, party food, and where to have the party. As you decide, take into consideration these points.
- What event space you can use. Your home, backyard, or rent someplace.
- How difficult will it be for your guest to find or make costumes
- Decide which types of party themes make it easy for you to prepare snacks or dinner
DRESS UP THEME PARTIES
Now the fun part, scroll through these adult dress-up party themes and find one perfect for your next party.
COME AS YOU WERE
Best Costume Prize: Trophies for biggest nerd, most cool, funniest, and so forth.
Pick a time in everyone's life. Something like the day you graduated from high school or the day you started your first job. Have everyone wear what they would have been wearing at that particular time in their life.
Characters: Have everyone dress like a beach bum.
Best Costume Prize: A bottle of margarita mix, margarita glasses
This would be a fun outdoor party. Play Jimmy Buffet music and set up a margarita bar. Decorate like you are on the beach or Jimmy Buffet decorations.
Characters: cowboys, cowgirls, Miss Kitty, Annie Oakley, Mr. Cartwright, Hoss, Little Joe, sheriff, outlaw
Best Costume Prizes: saloon shot glass, beef jerky, toy guns and sheriff badge
This would be a great party to set up the bar with a saloon theme. You could also have old black and white westerns playing on the tv while you play poker. Here are some fun western party decorations.
PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN
Characters: Captain Kidd, Black Beard, Treasure Island, Pirates of the Caribbean, Captain Hook
Best Costume Prize: gold sword, treasure chest, chocolate gold coins
Decorate some coolers to look like treasure chests, fill them with ice and a favorite beverage. Choose some fun adult pirate party decor. This would be a great poolside party.
ZOMBIE OR WALKING DEAD
Characters: Walking Dead, Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead
Best Costume Prize: best zombi medal or trophy, zombie movie on dvd
Turn the lights down low or use some black light to set the mood. This would also be a great outdoor party.
HERO AND VILLAIN PARTY
Characters: Wonder Woman, Avengers, Batman, Joker, Spiderman
Best Costume Prize: gold medal, kryptonite rock, cape
Guest come as their favorite superhero or villain. Check out Fantastic Decorating Ideas for an Adult Superhero Party for decorating ideas.
Characters: James Bond, Pussy Galore, Goldfinger, Q, Tilly Masterson, Aki, Miss Caruso, Mary Goodnight, Log Cabin Girl
Best Costume Prize: James Bond movie DVD
Here is a fun party idea, model the party around your favorite James Bond movies.
BACK TO THE FUTURE
Characters: Marty, Doc Brown, Clara Clayton, Biff Tannen, Jennifer Parker, Dave & Linda McFly
Best Costume Prize: skateboard, back to future toy, back to future bag
Characters: the unknown person because they are behind a mask.
Best Costume Prize: Certificate for most mysterious, pretties mask or funniest mask
This would be an easy party for guests to make costumes. Women could do simple white feather masks or purchase a pretty mask online.
HAWAIIAN THEMED PARTY
Characters: guest dress up in Hawaiian traditional outfits.
Best Costume Prize: Leis, Hawaiian shirt, pineapple
A Hawaiian party is a fun option for warm weather. Set the party up by your pool and have guest wear their best Hawaiian attire. Buy some blow-up large palm trees and set them all around your pool. String lights all around to create a fun atmosphere in the evening.
FIESTA MEXICAN THEMED PARTY
Characters: Friends dressed up in traditional Mexican attire. Ladies can wear a Mexican fancy dress. Men can wear sombreros, serape, and paint on a big handlebar mustache.
Best Costume Prize: Sombrero, Serape (blanket), Mexican beer
Let’s have a Fiesta! Go to my Mexican Party Theme Ideas and Recipes. You will find everything you need to throw a great festive party easily. The best thing about this party theme is the delicious food that you can serve at this party. link to post
COCKTAIL THEMED PARTY
Characters: Friends dress up like their favorite cocktail. This could get wild!
Best Costume Prizes: Bottle of good booze, cocktail glasses, bartenders recipe book
Set up a bar and get out your bartender's recipe book. The focus of this party is to try different and unique cocktails. Have your guest bring the recipe for the cocktail they dress up as and the booze and ingredients needed to make it.
VICTORIAN-ERA STYLE PARTY
Characters: Friends dress up as a person from the Victorian Era
Best Costume Prize: Parasols, long white gloves, tea cups
For fun, Victorian party ideas be sure and visit, How to Throw an 1800s Victorian-Themed Tea or Garden Party
Characters: flappers, gangsters, prohibition officers, Ernest Hemingway, Charlie Chaplin, Coco Chanel, George Gershwin, Georgia O’Keeffe, Bugsy Malone
Best Costume Prize: Chocolate cigar, pearl strands
The '20s was all about glitz and glamour. Decorate with gold, white and black—also, big white feathers and art deco. For party ideas visit, How to Throw a Roaring 20s Party: Ideas for Decor, Food, and Fun.
AGATHA CHRISTIE PARTY
Characters: someone from Murder on the Orient Express, Poirot, Miss Marple, Death on the Nile, Sparkling Cyanide
Best Costume Prize: Spy glass, Agatha Christie book
This would be a good theme if you want to host a murder mystery dinner. Try some of these fun mystery party decorations.
FAMOUS DEAD PEOPLE
Characters: Anybody that is dead and famous
Best Costume Prize: Make certificates or give out award medals.
Have your guest dress up like someone famous that is dead. Make a game out of guessing who they are dressed like and be sure to award prizes.
Characters: Mrs. White, Mrs. Peacock,Professor Plum, Colonel Mustard, Miss Scarlett, Reverend Green, Mr. Boddy
Best Costume Prize: Clue board game, rope, candlestick
This party would be fun to have a Clue game contest. Have several clue games set up, and the winners of each game go head to head in a final match. For more ideas, check out the Diva Girl Parties post, Clue Board Game Party. Be sure to pick up some of these Clue party decorations.
Characters: Greek goddess, Cesar, Nero, Greek mythology character, toga, Roman soldier
Best Costume Prize: Baklava, copy of The Odyssey, Greek olives or olive oil
DISCO DANCE PARTY
Characters: The Bee Gees, Donna Summers, John Travolta, the Village People, KC and the Sunshine Band
Best Costume Prize: Disco ball, greatest hits disco CD
Set up a dance floor and spin some great music from the disco era, and your guest will be dancing the night away. For more ideas visit, How to Throw a '70s Disco-Themed Party (Decor, Costumes, and Food)
BLACK & WHITE BALL THEME
Characters: Guest dressed up in either all white or all black
Best Costume Prize: Trophies for best dressed
This party theme is an excellent opportunity for your guest to get all dressed up for a New Year's Eve party. For inexpensive fancy dresses, head to your local thrift store. For more ideas, visit Entertaining Deva's post, Black and White Party Ideas.
Characters: Big spender, show girl, casino dealer, magician
Best Costume Prize: Deck of cards, roulette wheel, monopoly money
Start to party off as soon as the guest pulls up in your driveway. Have casino signs in your yard pointing to your front door. Set up casino game tables throughout your party and encourage guests to try their hands at each table. For more ideas visit, All In: How to Throw the Ultimate Casino Theme Party
Characters: Guest will dress like they are on safari
Best Costume Prize: Toy lion or jeep
A fun theme to decorate and dress up for would be an African safari. Guest could dress like they are heading out for the safari. Use African animals, leopard prints, or other African Safari decor.
Characters: Friends who love crazy hair
Best Costume Prize: Gold scissors, hair dye
Everyone wears a wig to the party. It could be a crazy look or seriously gorgeous. Decorate like you are stepping into a barbershop or beauty salon.
ITALIAN STYLE PARTY
Characters: Guest will dress in traditional italian costumes.
Best Costume Prize: Bottle of Italian wine, Italian restaurant gift cards
Characters: Gilligan, Professor, Giner, Mary Ann, Captain, the Howells
Best Costume Prize: Coconut, toy palm tree, life saver ring
This is a fun throwback party that would be fun to do in your backyard. Try some of these Gilligan Island Costumes
FAVOURITE MOVIE STARS
Characters: Guest can dress like their favorite movie stars
Best Costume Prize: Oscar trophy
Hang white glitter stars all over for a fun party decoration. Here are a few more Oscar party decoration ideas.
Characters: Nick Carraway, Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan, Tom Buchanan, Jordan Baker, George & Myrtle Wilson, Owl Eyes, Klipspringer
Best Costume Prize: Champagne bottle
A great choice for a dress-up themed party is to do it around a book like the Great Gatsby. Decorations should reflect an art deco feel with lots of gold and black. Ladies can dress up in a 1920s Gatsby Cocktail Sequin Art Deco Flapper Dress
Characters: Guest should dress in traditional Mardi Gra attire.
Best Costume Prize: Fun masks, colorful beaded necklace, booze
This is the party you can go all out with shiny decorations—great your guest with a big glittery sign that says Welcome to Mardi Gras. Or try some of these fun Mardi Gras decorations.
OLD TV SHOWS CHARACTERS
Characters: Andy, Opie, Aunt B or Golmer, Lucy, The Bunkers, Ed Sullivan, Cher, Andy Williams, Denis the Menace, Bever, Hazel, and on and on.
Best Costume Prize: TV Phone Holder
This is a unique party theme. Have your guests dress up as their favorite old-time tv characters. Set the years the shows could be from.
Characters: 1960's hippies
Best Costume Prize: Peace sign neckless
Bright tie-dye decorations, peace signs, smiley faces, and a Volkswagen bus are all great ways to decorate for a Hippie party.
Characters: Danny, Sandra Dee, Pink Ladies, or the ‘T’ Birds.
Best Costume Prize: Toy Thunderbird, hair grease
A Grease party is all about the 50's decorations. Serve drive-in food and play the movie on a big screen in the backyard.
EGYPTIAN PARTY THEME
Characters: Cleopatra, Mummy, Pharaoh, Gods and other Egyptian Costumes
Best Costume Prize: A toy pyramid
Egyption party decorations could be Egypt maps, large palm leaves or backdrops.
Characters: Guest come in their favorite comfy pjs
Best Costume Prize: Pillows, eye masks or fuzzy socks
Ok, I must confess I am most relaxed when I'm in my pj's. This would be a great movie night party. Have everyone wear their favorite comfy pj's, serve popcorn and candy for snacks. For fun, have everyone bring their own favorite pillow and blanket. Here are some fun Pajama party decorations.
ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW PARTY
Characters: Frank n Furter, Magenta, Columbia, Riff Raff, Brad, Janet, Dr. Scott, or Rocky.
Best Costume Prize: Rocky Horror prizes
Ok, this is probably for an older crowd who remembers this cult-like movie. It was so fun smuggling in all the paraphernalia to throw at the screen. Be sure to decorate with rice, confetti, newspapers, water pistols, candles or flashlights, toast, and party hats. For snacks, don't forget the hot dogs and prunes!
Characters: Toby Flenderson, Pam Halpert, Ryan Howard, Oscar Martinez, Andy Bernard, Angela Martin, Jim Halpert, Dwight Schrute, Jan Levinson, Michael Scott
Best Costume Prize: The Office Dwight Schrute Roar pillow
Have everyone choose their favorite character and dress up like them. If you need some party ideas visit Laura at EventOTB post, How to Host Your Michael Scott, Pro-Am, The Office Party
Characters: Any character your guest can find in onsie pjs
Best Costume Prize: Pillows, sleeping aid, blanket
Dressing up for this party is not for faint at heart; it takes courage to walk out of your house in adult onesie pajamas. It's easy to find some crazy ones at your local Walmart or other family clothing-type stores. You can also order onesie adult PJs online.
Characters: Aliens, Star Wars characters, Back to the Future, Star Trek, Avatar, or Men in Black
Best Costume Prize: Alien toys, space ship toys
Outer Space decor theme is a great option to set the stage for this party. Here are a few more Sci-Fi decorating ideas.
WIZARD OF OZ
Characters: Dorothy, Tin Man, Lion, Scarecrow, Wicked Witch, Glynda, Toto, Wizard
Best Costume Prize: Red sparkly slippers
Buy a roll of yellow paper and have your guest enter on the yellow brick road—more Wizard of Oz party supplies.