Who doesn’t love to play dress up? Give your friends the perfect opportunity by planning an outrageous costume party.


Start by sending out an Evite invitation, like the free masquerade party invitation below, or this premium Halloween costume party invitation. You can find more costume party designs in our Halloween invitation gallery.

Evite Free Costume Party Invitation


Incorporate classic dress-up accessories like masks, hats and feather boas into your party decorations to add both a festive and practical touch to your costume theme party.

Hang ornate face masks and sparkly top hats on your walls. You can also drape colorful boas and leis over doorknobs and around banisters. Not only will these costume accessories lend atmosphere to your party, but you can also tell guests they can borrow the accessories in case they didn’t come in costume or want to add some finishing touches to what they’re already wearing.

Setting up a vanity table in the bathroom with costume makeup and some crazy wigs will also help your guests get in the spirit of the party. And be sure to leave out a bowl filled with disposable cameras in the party room so your guests can commemorate the occasion with photos.


Instead of a traditional costume party where guests wear whatever they like, try hosting a themed costume party, where you pick a theme and then tell your guests the type of costume you’d like them to wear.

Here are a few theme ideas to get you started:

  • Wild, Wild West
  • Decades like the 60s, 70s, 80s or 90s
  • Celebrities
  • Superheroes or other popular characters

Pick a theme you think will appeal to your guests and keep it flexible enough that your creative friends can do it up right while your more conservative guests can still find something fun to wear that they feel comfortable in.


A costume contest is the standard activity at any costume party. You can spice yours up by setting up a stage (or just a rug if you’re on a budget) and letting your guests walk the runway to be judged for the contest.

Before they strut their stuff, have your guests write down a description of themselves and their costume. Designate an announcer who introduces each guest as he or she works it on the runway. Come up with lots of crazy categories you can award prizes for, like Best Use of Glitter, Most Difficult Costume to Figure Out, Costume Most Likely to Get You Arrested or Best Cost-Efficient Costume.


Serve food that matches the theme — BBQ at a Wild West party or Jell-O molds at a retro ’50s party.

Whatever your theme, make your food easy to eat: Cut cheese and crudités into small pieces so guests wearing masks can nibble on them easily. Stay away from messy foods like dip that can ruin an expensive costume.


Purple Fantasy (serves 1)

  • Juice of 1/2 lime, freshly squeezed
  • 1/2 ounce vodka
  • 1/2 ounce rum
  • Grape soda, to taste
  • Lemon-lime soda, to taste

Fill a highball glass with ice, then add vodka and rum. Top with grape soda and finish with a splash of lemon-lime soda.

For a simple but fun nonalcoholic alternative, dress up sodas and water with ice cubes dyed with food coloring.