The 1920s was a time of opulence and lavishness. Falling on the heels of World War I and right before the collapse of the global stock market (1929), people wanted to live it up. If you had money, it was a time of decadent spending and elaborate parties. Anyone who’s read The Great Gatsby knows Jay Gatsby was renowned for his wild parties. And if you haven’t read the book, just take a look at Baz Luhrmann’s big screen adaptation, which is a great source of inspiration to theme your birthday party venue.
The Jazz age—whether seeking the Gatsby American version or sumptuous Parisian Café set version—was an age of prosperity. The elements of your birthday party should reflect this in every detail including the birthday party venues you’re considering for your celebration.
If you’re going to throw a Gatsby-esque party, don’t settle for a DJ to hammer out top forty like most birthday parties. Opt for a live band, complete with bandstand and director. The whole night should be dedicated to Jazz, but not the version most people think of that rose to prominence during the 1960s. Hits like that of Cole Porter ‘s Let’s Misbehave, or Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue really set the mood of the hustle and bustle of the era. Popular dances include the Charleston, the Black Bottom, and the Lindy Hop. You might want to have roving characters to teach guests how to perform these simple, yet fun dances bringing the real ambience of the Gatsby Mansion to your birthday party venue!
The mid-twenties was the era of the flapper and sheik. Young women during this time were desperate to break away from the restrictive Edwardian molds of their mothers and grandmothers. The opted for short, bobbed hairstyles (easily achieved with a wig these days), close fitting hats, and short skirts that fell at or above the knee. Young men adopted raccoon coats and bell-bottom trousers.
At a party, you may want to encourage a combination of tuxedos and these interesting suits.
A la Jay Gatsby, your décor should be lush and lavish. Think big centerpieces, chandeliers, beautiful lighting and tables draped in linens. Parisian lounges were also popular. Consider birthday party venues that can offer you these inclusions.
Take your birthday party up several notches and introduce roving character actors to help bring out the spirit of this intriguing era—perhaps even Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan, Nick Caraway, or Jordan themselves. For an even more exciting touch, you could have actors portraying the man who coined the term Flapper, F. Scott Fitzgerald, or the original flapper, Zelda, themselves. Have Cole Porter sing, Happy Birthday, himself. Or have floor shows featuring dancing showgirls. Maybe even consider having a jazz vocalist perform with the band. Birthday party venues with big dance floors are a must, especially to fit in the band and big dance performances.
Food and Beverage
No Jazz era party would be complete without champagne—lots of flowing, amber champagne (excellent for birthday toasts). For a non-alcoholic option, choose sparkling apple cider. Food should be rich and abundant.
Red Scooter offers two packages that can be customized for your next party. We offer a Roaring 20s theme or a Great Gatsby theme—both perfect for birthdays and sure to leave guests talking.