Want to throw a party that’s lots of fun and brings out the playfulness in everyone? Invite your guests to dress up according to a theme of your choice. Even the biggest curmudgeon in the group is going to step out of his comfort zone and have a blast.

Giving them guidelines about what to wear goes a long way in creating excitement about stepping into a role or playing a part. The drama builds as everyone starts calling one another asking, ‘What are you going to wear?’

Clothes really do make the party, and we’ve got a few basic tips to get you started.

3 ways to invite your guests to dress

1. choose a decade theme

Forget the toga parties from college and pick a decade that made a lasting impression on you, or one for which you wish you could have been around.

Bring out the funk with a ‘60s theme for a birthday party! Bell bottoms and plenty of hair, along with ‘love’ beads will make your party come alive. You dig?

2. dress like the guest of honor

Want to have a birthday party for your best friend? Send invitations out with a request for everyone to come dressed as the birthday gal or guy.

Is the guest of honor prone to wearing black and white all the time, or a special hat or huge sunglasses? Put clothes front and center by challenging your guests to duplicate ‘the look.’

3. provide the clothing

Surprise your gang by having clothing and props available as soon as they ring the doorbell.

Long beads and boas add a festive feel to a girls’ night in, while a fedora works for a mystery solving party and a beret lets guests know there will be art involved.

Cheryl Says

Telling guests how to dress makes theme parties the perfect way to build excitement right up until the big day.