Quantcast

Monday, August 6, 2012

126

Lesser-Known Birthday Party Themes

Is your birthday just around the corner? Are you worried about having the same clichéd theme you’ve always had? Tried and true themes like “luau,” “costume party,” and “casual drinks with a few friends” have become pretty stale. Why not liven up your party with some of these unique gems? These themes will have everyone talking about your extraordinary birthday celebration!

Pet Funeral

Not into uncouth behavior in raucous bars? This year celebrate your birthday with the solemnity and grace you’d use in parting with a beloved animal companion.

Shopping List:

  • Animal crackers
  • Pictures of cute animals (for the PowerPoint slideshow)
  • Black clothing
  • Streamers

Overheard at the party: “Wait so she doesn’t even have a dog? I don’t understand. Who are these presents for?”

Stomach Flu

This party takes the grand tradition of pampering the birthday boy or girl to another level! This birthday, why not dance feverishly until your friends cover you with blankets and make you go to bed at 9 p.m.?

Shopping List:

  • Chicken soup
  • Ginger Ale
  • Cookies made out of Ibuprofen
  • Ibuprofens made out of cookies
  • Party hats

Overheard at the party: “Don’t throw up in — oh no, sorry that’s fine. That’s the one we want people to throw up in.”

Oprah

One time Oprah had four different birthday parties, with four different themes, in the same year. Why go through that hassle and expense when you can just have one birthday party where the theme is Oprah? She’s everything and anything you could look for in a theme, plus it’s the only way you’ll compete with your friend’s Ellen-themed baby shower.

Shopping List:

  • Cake
  • “Aha!” moments
  • Magazines with pictures of you taped onto every cover
  • Judith Ripka Eclipse Earrings
  • Ralph Lauren Cashmere Sweater & Cashmere Blanket
  • Lululemon relaxed fit pants
  • Every single other item on Oprah’s Favorite Things List. (Double croissants. She had “croissants” on there twice, y’all.)
  • Baaaaaalloooooooons!

Overheard at the party: “Free shots for anyone living their best life!”

A Hearty Breakfast

What’s the most important thing? Breakfast. So, what could be a better theme for the most important day of the year, otherwise known as your birthday? The breakfast theme is super fun, yet doesn’t lose sight of the gravity behind turning another year older, another year wiser. Too many birthday parties suffer from a lack of vitamin D, calcium, and iron — don’t let yours be one of them.

Shopping List:

  • Eggs
  • Bacon
  • A full glass of milk AND a full glass of orange juice
  • Grapefruit spoons
  • An entire field of whole grains swaying in the breeze

Overheard at the party: “I just don’t understand; how can breakfast be a theme?”

Canvas

Talk about an original birthday party theme! When was the last time you turned off the computer, walked outside, went to the park, picked up the phone, called a friend and had a really, really long conversation about canvas? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Shopping List:

  • Canvas chairs
  • Canvas tent
  • Canvas sneakers
  • Canvas painting
  • Canvas food
  • Canvas decorations

Overheard at the party: “I’m not coming to any more of your parties.”

Laura Jayne Martin lives and writes in New York City. 



126 Comments / Post A Comment

terrific

a breakfast party is actually brilliant.

Heat Signature

@terrific So is the Oprah-themed birthday party, and guess who turns 35 in September? Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

If only there was a way to make that "Oprah gives away bees" gif come to life...or IS THERE?

The Lady of Shalott

@terrific A few years ago I had no plans on my birthday, and my roommate invited one of our friends over and cooked a huge breakfast-for-dinner. We had omelettes and bacon and pancakes and toast and orange juice and coffee and fruit and it was THE BEST EVER, seriously.

I smell burnt toast

@terrific That's what I came down here to say.

ThatWench

@terrific I've long had the idea for (and no patience for the execution of) a "breakfast for dinner party." I've been collecting recipes for savory and/or otherwise dinner-fancy versions of classic breakfast staples (savory oatmeal! herbed waffles! cheese waffles! eggs benedict, essentially unchanged!) and it has always amused me to have everyone sit down, fancy-dinner-party, tablecloth-and-napkin-ring style and then serve several courses of this.

I have been thwarted by the fact that I don't really have a fancy dinner table, and some of these foods (waffles in particular) aren't really suited to "make enough for several people in advance". So maybe the trick really is to have a breakfast-themed birthday party.

Ophelia

Has anyone played Cards Against Humanity?

Because now when I see "Oprah," all I can think of is, "Oprah crying alone into a bowl of salad." And then I giggle like the horrible person I really am.

Xanthophyllippa

@Ophelia You and I could be friends.

Ophelia

@Xanthophyllippa Yes, please. That game made me laugh so hard I peed a little.

Xanthophyllippa

@Ophelia It's a date! I'll bring the Depends.

Megasus

Isn't a breakfast party just brunch?

Ophelia

@Megano! I was gonna say...that canvas party sounds a lot like camping.

Barry Grant

@Megano!
You have to make your guests show up at 8am, in their jammies.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@Barry Grant
I had college friends who would throw 8am dance parties on weekdays! Jammies and breakfast food for everyone, then off class! It was called a "dawn-ce." Haha.

Megasus

@josiahg That sounds...horrible to a non-morning person.

Pinith

@josiahg
Why hello josiahg, I believe we went to college together, as I was a member of Kenwood house when we hosted the dawn-ces and it seems unlikely to me that some other college students came up with that exact same idea. I was so excited when I read your comment that I had to register so that I could reply!

It was a great party. Lief fried up a whole pound of bacon, Tom and Tim toasted an entire loaf of bread. I spent that entire week with the bass line of I Like to Move It, Move It stuck in my head.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@Pinith
Haha I knew this would happen eventually! Look me up on the Hairpin Meetups Google Group (link at the top of this page!) and let's catch up on old times!

mangosara

So I know this is supposed to be a joke, but I think Oprah is going to be the theme of all of my parties forever and ever for all eternity.

Yahtzii

@mangosara YOU get an Oprah-themed party and YOU get an Oprah-themed party and EVERYBODY GETS AND OPRAH-THEMED PARTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mangosara

@Yahtzii But seriously:

-Sweaters
-Blankets
-Yoga pants
-Cake
-An excuse to yell ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING once you get drunk (why yes I do have issues controlling the volume of my voice when I get drunk)

...Although now that I think about it this just sounds like an average Friday night.

Bird Internet

These suggestions may come in handy, since I wanted to play mini-golf at the National Building Museum for my birthday, but no one wants to wait in line for 2 hours to play mini-golf at the NBM for my birthday :(

TheDragon

@Bird Internet I think lines with friends are fun! My best friend and I waited in line for three hours when The Hunger Games came out and laughed the entire time! Promise them games, laughs, and FOOD!

Judith Slutler

@Bird Internet "waiting in line" is another exciting and original birthday theme!

Beericle

@Bird Internet Do you know anyone who has gone? I wanted to go to putt putt at NBM but didn't want to be the only adult with no children.

Daisy Razor

@Bird Internet I would totally wait in line 2 hours with you to play mini golf there. That museum is gorgeous. Also: mini golf!

causedbycomma

@Bird Internet I went to the NBM minigolf. It was cool to be like "we're minigolfing in the middle of the city!" but honestly the minigolf holes were not designed by 1) anyone who knew anything about minigolf or 2) anyone who really cared about the design. And there were some adults, but also about a million kids - one of whom wandered into our group randomly and just hung out until his family came to rescue him about 10 minutes later.

Also my boyfriend at the time said it was an awesome idea but then broke up with me a month later so... now I am having a "my boyfriend broke up with me a week ago" themed birthday party. Last year my theme was Great Gatsby which was probably much cooler.

bluewindgirl

@causedbycomma The only way good to have "broken-up with" themed birthday is to have a zillion friends and be fabulous and laugh a lot and document how marvelously well you are doing on facebook and not talk or think about exes at all.

Beericle

@causedbycomma
I kinda like the 'my boyfriend broke up with me' party. (although, I am sorry your boyfriend broke up with you, but I am pretty sure you are too awesome for him) Make a boyfriend pinata and smack the crap outta it until fun stuff falls out. (I just made a pinata for a bday party, and it was a ton of fun) Also, then go out to bars, and your theme is kiss a bunch of boys, because you are having a my boyfriend broke up with me party.

telling_everyone

@Beericle I thought NBM's mini-golf was really cool, but I'm an architecture/miniature sports fan. there wasn't much of a line when I went and it was mostly adults without children. however, my friend and I definitely got judgy looks from the security guard for acting immature while playing (cmon it's minigolf what do you want from me, museum dude?)

stonefruit

"Cookies made out of Ibuprofen
Ibuprofens made out of cookies"

PERFECTION.

Also, I had a breakfast/brunch-themed birthday-housewarming party this year. Everyone wins!

Alli525

100000% I am having that Oprah party, no joke.

meetapossum

Cat funeral, cat funeral, it was an accident and not entirely my fault

Veronica Mars is smarter than me

@meetapossum Wow, I have zero recollection of that episode, but it still brightened my day to watch that clip.

TheDragon

I kind of want a nerf gun themed birthday party, now that I think about it. I'm serious.

whizz_dumb

@The Kendragon OOH! That sounds awesome. I call the bow & arrow thingy.

TheDragon

@whizz_dumb NERF WAR!!!!
Imagine how surprised everyone will be at the Nerf football booby-trap!

...I'm not rubbing my hands together and cackling. Not at all.

Ophelia

@The Kendragon For my sixteenth birthday, my best friend and my boyfriend planned a surprise birthday party that culminated in a super-soaker war. It was incredible.

TheDragon

@Ophelia You have/had an awesome best friend and boyfriend.

Ophelia

@The Kendragon Still have the best friend, but no longer have the boyfriend :)

TheDragon

@Ophelia Aw I love hearing about long friendships!

Ophelia

@The Kendragon We've been best friends since first grade! She's the best :)

Jinxie

@The Kendragon The Nerf dart guns (the kind with the suction tipped darts) are the MOST FUN EVER. My nephew got a small one for Christmas one year and the grown ups spent more time playing with it than he did. After the holidays, my brother went out and bought himself some machine-gun version and I was SO jealous.

cherrispryte

Wait if I do a breakfast-themed birthday party at night, does that mean I can serve Bloody Marys in the evening? Because if so, that's totally my new birthday plan. WHICH IS LESS THAN A MONTH AWAY.

sceps yarx

@cherrispryte Every single Halloween I have a bloody mary social at my house. In the evening. Because I love bloody marys. The only way for me to not get burned out on it is to have it on Halloween night itself, and not on the weekend before Halloween, because peeps are much more chill when they have to go to work the next day.

Also, in related-to-bloody-marys news, have you guys ever had a michelada? So. Good.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@sceps yarx
And Bloody Maria is my new best friend!

Queen Elisatits

De-lurking to confirm the existence of pet funeral parties with the story of how I once went to party that started with beer pong ended with a turtle burial and s'mores.

whateverlolawants

@Queen Elisatits Once I went to a bonfire that ended with a bike ride to a pond for a snapping turtle release.

Kneetoe

@Queen Elisatits: Burial? Sure it wasn't a cremation?

Queen Elisatits

@Kneetoe it almost was! but there was a vote and burial won

melis

I THOUGHT THE LAST PARTY THEME WAS "CAVES" AND I GOT REALLY EXCITED BUT NOW I AM NOT EXCITED ANYMORE INSTEAD I AM SAD

TheDragon

@melis Caves with blind albino fish and blind albino crickets?!?!? I've been totally fascinated by those since reading a (Trixie Belden) book in middle school.

melis

I LOVE CAVES, I LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT THEM, MY FAVORITE MOVIE ABOUT CAVES IS "CAVES OF FORGOTTEN DREAMS" FOLLOWED BY "THE DESCENT" AND MY FAVORITE BOOK ABOUT CAVES IS "BLIND DESCENT" FOLLOWED BY "CLAN OF THE CAVE BEAR"

melis

When I was in Switzerland I got to go inside of an old cave that goes all the way inside of a mountain and inside there is a GIANT UNDERGROUND CAVE WATERFALL and I thought maybe if I pressed my hands and eyes against the cave wall very slowly and very softly the cave would accept me as part of itself and allow me to roam inside of its dark heart forever, never leaving, never seeing, never stopping ever ever ever.

TheDragon

@melis Does anyone else have trouble replying to melis's comments, because they are just so awesome that you can't even process a reply?
Or is it just me?

melis

do u want 2 come over for a cave party ill turn off all the lights and halfway thru the party we'll throw boxes around til they block all the exits and our great-grandchildren will be born eyeless

temporal_paradox

@The Kendragon Trixie Belden and the Mystery of Bob-White Cave!!! (Just had to give a shout-out to my favorite teenage sleuth!)

Ophelia

@melis I'm only coming if you get some bats.

Xanthophyllippa

@melis YOUR FAVORITE EXISTENTIAL METAPHOR IS PLATO'S CAVE

TheDragon

@Ophelia Bats for all!
Hairpin cave party.

Veronica Mars is smarter than me

@The Kendragon it's not just you

Kneetoe

@The Kendragon: I WANT to respond, but then I get intimidated, and eventually I just cave.

TheDragon

@Kneetoe Exactly. My brain just doesn't function at that level of awesomeness.

Ophelia

@Kneetoe hahahahaha, I see what you did there.

TheDragon

@Ophelia Well. Now I feel too dumb for the hairpin. THAT went over my head

Xanthophyllippa

@The Kendragon Maybe if you didn't live under a rock? :D

Jinxie

@melis Text from a VC Andrews Character?

bluewindgirl

Friends, real talk: I am having an awesome birthday party soon and I am trying to make it epic on the cheap. Any words of wisdom on how to make sure everyone has a really good time and enough to eat and drink and it doesn't feel really miserly and pathetic? Important background: It is at a beach. There will be around 20 people. I am COMMITTED to having petits fours and sangria. I may or may not succeed in constructing a bohemian-style pavilion.

melis

@bluewindgirl Tell everyone you're making hummus, everyone will lose their shit.

Veronica Mars is smarter than me

@melis Look I know I was late to The Twitter, but I just want to say: spinach and artichoke dip on bread, chips, crackers, vegetables, a spoon, my bare cupped hand, whatever... I'm there. If I need something less-boring to put on an extremely-boring food, that is when I turn to hummus.

sceps yarx

@bluewindgirl Tell everyone it's a cooking-on-a-stick themed party, and they all have to bring something to share that can be cooked over a beach bonfire. Sausages? Marshmallows? Shrimp? Bell peppers? Peaches? Whole mackerel? Also, i'm feeling the sangria+beach thing, but the petit fours seem like they would be awkward without lace tablecloths and tea service....

Xanthophyllippa

@Veronica Mars is smarter than me Wow, what on earth kind of boring shit are you eating if hummus is the less-boring thing? Are you eating, like, white bread and gravel, and you use the hummus as some kind of adhesive?

Veronica Mars is smarter than me

@Xanthophyllippa Haha, no, but like... raw vegetables? (which are also more awesome with f'real-real dips, but hummus can work in a pinch)

bluewindgirl

@sceps yarx Yeah, I love the idea of that but sadly the beach by my house has a no open fires thing, and I'd have to drive ages to get to a fire-pit-area :/ I feel strongly that tiny cakes are appropriate for anywhere, but then I went to a women's college where we routinely ate petits fours off lace tablecloths, with tea service. We'll see how it all goes down. Thanks for the advice y'all.

frigwiggin

I'm taking my friend and boyfriend to go see War Horse for my birthday in a month, so the theme will be another good under-utilized one, "Crying My Eyes Out in Front of Everyone."

temporal_paradox

@frigwiggin It's your party, you can cry if you want too. :)

Snicker-snack!

@frigwiggin Oh my god, THAT MOVIE! My boyfriend tricked me into watching it and I ended up spending an entire Sunday afternoon crying.

Kneetoe

@Snicker-snack!: I see--he was crying because he tricked you, right?

sceps yarx

@frigwiggin oh no, is it terribly, horribly sad? I wanted to see it, but tragic movies sometimes ruin me for a week or more.

frigwiggin

@sceps yarx I haven't seen either the movie or the play yet (we're going to see the play), but from everything I've heard and my own understanding of how animal-centric fiction works, it is basically a Crying in Public kind of thing.

Tuna Surprise

The Oprah idea is genius.

At my Oprah party, I'm going to make people jump on the couch to declare who they love. There will be a wagon of fat pulled into the living room. Toy cars will be given out as party favors.

Who's going to dust off her leopard skin velvet jacket and slather on the fake tan to be my Suze Orman side kick? Any dudes willing to put on the bald cap to be Dr. Phil?

Beericle

@Tuna Surprise Ooh, can I be Gayle? I will just sorta hang around near you, and take any left over gifts, or something?

Ophelia

@Tuna Surprise I really, really want to go to this party. Can you make it a 'pin-up?

Kneetoe

@Tuna Surprise: I'll bring the tuna surprise!

Myrtle

@Tuna Surprise I will not wait to be told, to look underneath my chair for SURPRIZEZ

Xanthophyllippa

@Beericle You'll have to spend at least 30% of your time denying rumors, though.

@Tuna Surprise Every so often someone yells "STEDMAN!" and then bursts out laughing.

frigwiggin

All the fucking grapefruit spoons we ever had when I was growing up were right-handed. Made left-handed me feel like my hands were on backwards every time.

TheDragon

@frigwiggin I feel your pain! I'm a righty and spent all Sunday kayaking with my dad's left-handed paddle. It is entirely possible to smack yourself in the head with your own paddle.

Xanthophyllippa

@The Kendragon What is a left-handed kayak paddle? My kayak paddle is universal, both in handedness and in its tendency to smack me in the head.

Veronica Mars is smarter than me

@frigwiggin Wait, grapefruit spoons are something-handed?

TheDragon

@Xanthophyllippa It has one paddle that is at a right angle to the other one, and the shaft is slightly elongated ovals that are also at right angles. It's just really weird for a righty to figure out. I was severely wet from repeated head smacking and dripping before I got the hang of it.

frigwiggin

@Veronica Mars is smarter than me They are if only one side is serrated! I saw the picture up top and had A Moment--parents, whyyyyy didn't we have grapefruit spoons like those? Equal-opportunity spoons! (Man, I haven't had a grapefruit in...a while.)

Xanthophyllippa

@The Kendragon That makes me picture an upside-down V with the blades at the bottom of the V pointing off in two different directions, which I'm preeeeetty sure isn't what you actually described. :D Mine's just a straight shaft with blades -- I don't even cant my blades, so when the paddle is resting across my bow, both blades are perpendicular to the water. Paddling with canted blades hurts my wrists.

Myrtle

@frigwiggin Exactly. As if we haven't suffered enough at your ridiculous right-handed scissors, people.

TheDragon

@Xanthophyllippa Yeah, when it's resting across the bow one is parallel and one is perpendicular.

sophi

My birthday is in a week! My party theme was going to be "feeling sorry for myself", but I might have to reconsider now.

Jinxie

@sophi Oprah would want you to take yourself out for an indulgent spa day, so you should go do that.
{Also, happy early birthday!}

TheDangQuesadilluh

UGH BIRTHDAYS. 30 is Friday and i just can't even. Everyone keeps telling me this is the best birthday and OMG HOW MUCH FUN but i am not feeling on board. OK - crank up some nice fun music, have a drink and stop being so uptight. right?

redheaded&crazy

@TheDangQuesadilluh clearly everybody is wrong because I'm turning 25 on Friday and I fully expect it to be THE BEST BIRTHDAY EVER AND IF IT'S NOT SOMEBODY'S GONNA PAY AND THAT SOMEBODY IS GONNA BE ME, DROWNING MY SORROWS AND DISAPPOINTMENTS IN LOTS OF LIQUOR.

...no really hopefully it will be fun. right? happy birthday, birthday buddy!

redheaded&crazy

@redheaded&crazie i realize i am being melodramatic about a not dramatic birthday year. it will be fun! leos unite! :D

Xanthophyllippa

@TheDangQuesadilluh I'm turning...older than that on Saturday. Never mind.

TheDangQuesadilluh

@redheaded&crazie 25 was a KICKBUTT birthday for me. i expect you will have nothing less than an awesome time. that was the birthday that i woke up with a one size fits all thong and a pregnancy test next to my bed. (SEALED, of course.)

TheDangQuesadilluh

@Xanthophyllippa come over! i'm having bourbon and queso dip and listening to soul records. if that doesn't appeal to you, we can just ask my more in-shape neighbors to strip.

Veronica Mars is smarter than me

@TheDangQuesadilluh You have hot neighbors who strip on command? Can.. can I come over too?

TheDangQuesadilluh

@Veronica Mars is smarter than me - pinup time! this will be a grand ole birthday indeed!

Ruc-Wmj

@TheDangQuesadilluh Late to this, but yaaaaay, birthday twins. :D

TheFang

Damn! My birthday was Saturday, if only...

crookedlegs

@TheFang So was miiiiiine! Happy belated birthday, birthday twinsie!

VDRE

One summer I was subletting a room in an apartment where these 4 friends were living and it was one of their friends birthdays. They decided to have a mock funeral for him so everyone wore fancy black clothes and jewelry (except for him because the funeral theme was a surprise) and his cake was a tombstone but the best part was that he had told them that at his actual funeral he wanted the song from The Neverending Story to be sung and was very specific that only the women should sing the ah ah ah part. So we did that.

Verity

"What have we always said is the most important thing. What comes first?"
"Breakfast."
"Family."
"Family. Right. I thought you meant out of the things you eat."

<3

whateverlolawants

@Verity You beat me to it! Good job.

whateverlolawants

"That’s the one we want people to throw up in.”

Bibo Designs@twitter

Guys my birthday is tomorrow! I'm thinking "Pet Funeral."

Vonnegut Reference

I'm kinda sorta dying to throw someone a Godfather themed birthday dinner. I even have the menu planned! Poached fish, Orange Blossoms for drinks, cannoli for desert and of course, a cake in the shape of a severed horse head. Bullet riddled Sonny Corleone or blown up Apollonia costumes optional. Some day and that day may never come, I will call upon you to wish you a happy birthday.

tcook

Ah! You guys! Birthdays are my favorites!!! I have the same theme for my birthday every year and its BIRTHGIVING. I have thanksgiving for my birthday in march. I make the turkey and everyone else brings their favorite weird thanksgiving sides. And the night before, we have a wine and brine where we get plastered and dip the huge bird into a vat of deliciousness to soak overnight. Last year a 6 foot inflatable penis showed up to the party! I'm telling you, you've never really lived until you've had yourself a Birthgiving party.

sudden but inevitable betrayal

@tcook BIRTHGIVING. Why have I never thought of this?!

shawbaby

Just throwing this out there: Fake Bachelorette Party was the GREATEST. birthday party I have ever had. Never have I ever been hit on as much as when I was pretending to be a bachelorette.

fondue with cheddar

The breakfast party is missing one thing: champagne. For mimosas. This is not an option.

extremely do not

My ex-bf's mom gave me a book on entertaining by the Junior League of Memphis. One of the sections gave detailed instructions on throwing a hobo-themed party for teenagers.

Jinxie

@extremely do not
D:

laurainarizona

It really is my birthday next week. For serious.
I'm drawn to the breakfast party because... well, breakfast food, but I think I might go with a hybrid Stomach Flu/Oprah party. I think I would really enjoy a party that ended with my friends wrapping me in cashmere blankets and putting me to bed with a case of William Sonoma croissants.

katiecrusoe@twitter

So late on this. I want my birthday party to be an homage to that actual day. My friends have to feed me and swaddle me and try aggressively to make me smile by dangling toys i like in front of my face. Then I will spit up on someone.

leonardo23

A person necessarily assist to make severely posts I would state. This is the first time I frequented your web page and up to now? I surprised with the analysis you made to create this actual put up incredible. Wonderful task! vigrx plus reviews

Edmon

Some times its a pain in the ass to read what people wrote but this web site is really user pleasant! vigrx plus

Edmon

But a smiling visitant here to share the love (: vigrx plus

Edmon

Excellent items from you vigrx plus

Post a Comment

You must be logged-in to post a comment.

Login To Your Account