Miss Party’s annual holiday party was SO FUN to prep this year! As you may have already read from previous ‘Behind the Scenes’ posts, the theme for 2012 was “JINGLE MINGLE”, circa 1962 (exactly 50 years ago). As soon as the theme was decided, Miss Party went to town purchasing or digging up vintage invitations, entertaining pieces and mid-century modern home decor. If you’re either a bit vintage yourself, madly in love with the hit tv show “Mad Men” or both, you’ll recognize the cool vibe of this party’s decor.
Feeling the pull to plan a swanky cocktail party a la “Mad Men” yourself? Here is Miss Party’s list of essential items (and what she used for the party in parenthesis) that no self-respecting, mid-century host or hostess would have been without.
For the bar:
-Kromex tiered chrome canapé and tidbit tray(s) or other chrome serving pieces (Miss Party collected Kromex one tier, two tier, and three tier trays and a condiment set.)
-Dorothy Thorpe silver ombre, roly poly-shaped barware, punch bowl or serving pieces (Miss Party was thrilled to find the most AWESOME Dorothy Thorpe tulip-shaped, silver ombre chip and dip set and a fabulous candy dish.)
-Georges Briard barware, ice bucket, or serving pieces (Miss Party purchased a contemporary, bright red, Georges Briard ice bucket for just $7 on Etsy!)
-Vintage punch bowl with glasses in a modern, atomic shape (Miss Party snagged a gorgeous Krista atomic-shaped, hand-blown glass punch bowl set with a glass ladle and 12 punch glasses.)
-High ball and low ball glass barware that comes with a metal rack to hold the glasses together as a set was very popular in the day
-Serv-Ware‘s chrome, ‘Penguin’ Ice Bucket (Miss Party’s family owned one of these and was the first thing she had to have. After losing multiple auctions on eBay, she finally won one that’s in almost mint condition. It’s adorable!)
For the buffet table:
-Chafing dish with candle warming holder (Grandma Party found a nice silver-plated one at an antiques market in Virginia.)
-Glass deviled egg platter (with deviled eggs) (Miss Party used her Grandma’s platter.)
-Pyrex or Fire-King covered glass casserole dishes (Miss Party found a pretty Fire-King 2 qt. covered casserole dish with gold-plating at a local antiques store just before the party.)
-Vintage glass serving bowls and platters (Miss Party used several inherited pieces.)
-Fondue set (sadly, Miss Party never did get this one.)
-Coffee carafe with gold-plated warming stand (Miss Party purchased a fab, mint condition, Pyrex coffee carafe set with gold-plated pine branches. It was made as a promotional item for the Christmas season of 1961.)
-Cloth cocktail napkins and cloth tablecloths or runners (vintage or new-retro style) (On eBay, Miss Party purchased Pottery Barn cloth cocktail napkin sets, a table runner and a silver-plated place card holder set, all in the retro-style ‘Graphic Reindeer’ pattern.)
For home decor:
-Anholt Melamine ashtrays (Miss Party purchased several round and atomic-shaped Anholt ashtrays for tables.)
-Vintage ashtrays (As you’ll see in the pics, Miss Party filled them with boxes of candy cigarettes, Alka-Seltzer, Andes mints and peppermints.)
-Various Danish modern or contemporary 60s home decor from vases to candleholders, to bent glass trays (very popular) that evoke the time period (Miss Party purchased several Dan Baird bent glass travel series trays. They were ideal with the party’s color scheme. Also, found other silver-plated and pewter vases and candleholders made in a modern style.)
-Vintage magazines and books to lay out on cocktail and coffee tables (Borrowed vintage ‘Ideals’ Christmas books and Betty Crocker cookbooks; purchased a great LIFE magazine from August, 1962 and a Betty Crocker ‘Hostess’ cookbook.)
If your party is during the holiday season, you must at least consider purchasing a silver tinsel tree complete with a color wheel! If that’s out of the budget, how about a few boxes of new-retro or vintage Shiny-Brite ornaments. Miss Party wanted her party to have a chic, modern vibe so she really backed off the usual 50-60s kitsch Christmas decor she puts out every year. There was nary a cutesy Santa to be seen except on her traditional Christmas tree.
Want to see a few pics from the party night? Check back in a few days, Miss Party is workin’ on a few posts. It was a classic, hoppin’ cocktail party. Lots of guests came dressed in various degrees of swanky, retro cocktail attire and everyone brought their good cheer! It was SO fun!