12 Fun Christmas Party Themes You Never Thought of Until Now
Give your ugly sweaters some time off and get your Santa hats ready for these creative Christmas celebrations.
Twelve Clues of Christmas scavenger hunt
Transform the popular Christmas carol “The 12 Days of Christmas” into a fun family scavenger hunt. (Take this quiz to see how well you know the words to “The 12 Days of Christmas.”) Hide holiday knick-knacks inspired by the song (like golden rings or a bird toy to emulate the turtle doves) throughout your house and backyard with a clue to the next surprise. The first person who solves the clue gets the gift! Just make sure you leave the clue behind for the other players so they can proceed to the next stop of the scavenger hunt for an opportunity to get a gift. Count your presents at the end of the hunt and whoever has the most wins! For help creating the clues, this list is a good place to start. (You can also plan a fun family activity making these adorable ornaments.)
‘A Christmas Story’ party
If you’re a superfan of A Christmas Story and know every line by Ralphie and Scut Farkus then this party inspired by the iconic classic is for you! Make it an old-fashioned 1940s Christmas by serving candies like black licorice, candy buttons, and Bazooka Bubble Gum alongside a refreshing antique glass bottle of Coca-Cola. Incorporate accents from the movie in your party decorations, like a life-size leg lamp (you can buy these online), sprinkle tinsel on your Christmas tree branches, or play a game, inspired by Ralphie’s little brother Randy, to see who can eat a plate of mashed potatoes without any hands (and don’t forget to oink like a pig when you’re done!). (It’s the most wonderful time of the year to watch these jolly holiday classics.)
Grab your karaoke machine or hit up a karaoke bar and belt your lungs out to your favorite Christmas songs. Try to see which friend can croon like Bing Crosby or hit the high octaves like Mariah Carey. If you have a portable karaoke machine, walk door-to-door in your neighborhood to, in the words of Buddy the Elf, “spread Christmas cheer for all to hear.” No matter how tone deaf you are. Brush up on the 12 Cats of Christmas for your next ‘carol-oke’ session!
Christmas Around the World Potluck
Nothing helps you embrace another culture more than eating their native food. This party’s concept is simple: each guest claims a country, researches the Christmas cuisine there, and cooks it for everyone to taste. As you gorge on all the different flavors and textures, share a few holiday traditions from your adopted nation. Try risalamande, a traditional Danish rice dessert made with cream and almonds, or a linguine dish with mussels to kick off an Italian Christmas Eve tradition called the Feast of Seven Fishes. As an added punch of culture: include these famous holiday traditions from around the world with your signature country’s dish.
Decorate Your Own Ugly Christmas Sweater
Put a new twist on this old favorite and design your own ugly sweaters! Ask your guests to find an old sweatshirt in their closet to bring to the party. Then head to a craft store for fuzzy pom poms, sparkles, fabric paint, felt, buttons, scissors, hot glue, and some mothballs for that rich “grandma” scent. Spread all the craft supplies out on the dining room table or living room floor and you’re all set! Remember, the tackier the sweater, the uglier … and the better! Try adding some friendly competition to the mix with a contest for “Worst Smelling Sweater” or “Prettiest Ugly Sweater.” (Related: Use these hideous Christmas sweaters as your ugly inspiration.)
Merry Grinch-mas party
Take a trip down memory lane with a Dr. Seuss-themed “Grinch Dinner and a Movie” night. Cook a Sunday rib roast for dinner, a special rendition of the Whos’ favorite roast-beast, put your hair up in a wacky Whoville style, and watch both the Grinch cartoon and live-action movie starring Jim Carrey. (Here’s how to stop acting like such a Grinch over the holidays.)
Do Santa proud and dress up as his elves for the day. Ask people to bring a toy over to donate to their local toy drive and get out the wrapping paper, bows, bags, and tags to decorate the gifts. Play the famous song, “We Are Santa’s Elves” from the movie Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer in the background to get you and your busy elf friends inspired to give back to the community. These old-fashioned Christmas miracles will also renew your faith in the magic of the holidays.
Twelve Courses of Christmas dinner
Cook a 12-course feast fit for a belly as big as Santa’s. Make a list and designate appetizers, entrees, and desserts for your guests to bring. Some festive dishes include: spinach-stuffed tomatoes, Christmas tree-shaped pizza, cranberry walnut salad, roasted turkey, maple-glazed ham, and Christmas cookies, of course.
Christmas in July
Throw a beach bash in the middle of winter! Grab some beach balls, blow up palm trees, display tiki torchlights, and blare the Beach Boys. Enforce a dress code that includes: tropical button-ups, hula skirts, sunglasses, and flip-flops. For those of you who already live by the beach, throw a cozy Christmas party. Make a fire pit in the sand for a batch of s’mores and invite everyone to wear their favorite onesie, earmuffs, and mittens.
Christmas Craft and Sip
Tis’ the season for a good ol’ homemade crafting session! Christmas is the best time to hone your inner crafter and make wreaths, wrapping paper, and ornaments. Peruse Pinterest for clever, easy DIY craft-spiration and have guests bring their favorite holiday beverage to sip on while they work away. For the holiday penny pinchers, these DIY Christmas decorations are fun to make and cheap!
Winter Wonderland party
This one is easy! All you need is snow, a pair of snow pants, and a mug of hot cocoa with mini marshmallows. Host a snowy day of fun outside for your kids and their friends, filled with sledding, snowman building, and snow forts. (Your kids will also love these indoor activities for those frigid snowy days.)
Christmas Costume Party
Halloween isn’t the only time of year you’re allowed to dress up like a kooky character. Christmas can be a legitimate excuse too! Tell everyone to come as their favorite Christmas character, like Buddy the Elf, Santa Claus, Rudolph, Frosty, or Ebenezer Scrooge. Throw a costume contest where guests get to vote on “Cutest Christmas Couple” or “Best Dressed Santa.” (Check out these cheap Halloween costumes for next year’s inspiration.)