Great Gatsby New Year's Eve Party - The 1920's Glitz and Glamour

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Prohibition: What A Bummer!

Speakeasy Door CoverWhen you think of New Year’s Eve, you certainly expect there to be plenty of drinks flowing and sweet concoctions of alcohol being made. Back in the 1920’s era however, prohibition was in full swing! The idea of eradicating alcohol from the masses simply made it much more delectably desirable. The story of The Great Gatsby shows the extremes of wealth and decadence during this time frame. Most of those who came into fortune were nouveau riche and acquired their wealth from the highly illegal bootlegging business.

The roaring 20’s was certainly a time of elusive secrecy that formed what is commonly known as the speakeasy. Here, flappers and gangsters mingled with rowdiness and indulged in the well coveted drinks of the time. In today’s day in age, we may have plenty of drinks but to get the true gaudiness of the 20’s, we have to go back in time!

Set the Stage

Great Gatsby BackdropStart your celebration off with a great 20's backdrop that can truly capture the essence of a dimly lit speakeasy of the grand 1920’s. The great 20’s backdrop is a perfect way of starting things off with a bang. The backdrop is made out of a thin plastic material that can easily be hung with your choice of tape or thumbtacks. Simply choose the wall that you prefer the backdrop to be showcased on. To make things even more regal, use two backdrops to meet in the corner of a room to widen the spread of this theme. To give the backdrop a shine that would make any flapper jealous, get yourself some golden metallic garlands. Hang these garlands vertical and in line with the gold columns on the backdrop. These garlands quickly give the space a lift and make everything stand out to the onlooker.

In between the garland columns that were hung, use the pop, fizz, clink, streamers to add to the black space. Instead of stringing the streamer to lay horizontal, keep each letter of the streamer separate and attached vertically to the black space on your background. You want the words “Pop, clink, fizz” to be displayed in left to right order on your backdrop.

For the next part you will have to get a tad bit crafty. Get yourself some clear craft string and use it to suspend the “cheers” streamer from the ceiling and in the center of your set up. The clear craft string helps to give the items you hung a “floating” look. You will want to use the same method to hang the great 20’s silhouettes on both sides of your overall display. We chose to angle one couple under the “pop” and one couple to the right hand side of “clink.” Towards the bottom of the display, hang the jointed great 20’s roadster to pull the look together. This classic car is over four feet long so be sure to account for its size as you plan out the style of your display!

Head on Over to the Speakeasy

With a party theme that is set back in time when drinking was prohibited, you need to be a little naughty and serve up something cold and stiff! Bathtub gin was a common drink of the 20’s. Due to the prohibition, people resorted to making their own concoctions of homemade spirits with highly amateur hands. This left most drinks hard to swallow on their own without adding some fresh lemon and honey to sweeten your sips.

Bathtub GinNeed Inspiration? Check Out a 1920's Speakeasy in NYC.

This is as close as you can get to recreate some 1920’s bathtub gin!

What you will need (Makes one serving):

  • 2 Oz of Gin
  • .75 Oz of honey Syrup
  • .75 Oz of Fresh Lemon Juice

How to make:

  • Simply combine all three ingredients and then shake and strain into a chilled glass of your choice. To add some color to the drink, you can serve it with a lemon wedge or a lemon twist.
  • Half a lime
  • 2 ounces London dry gin
  • Chilled club soda

Another drink that was popular at the time was the Gin Ricky garnished with a wedge of lime.

What you will need (Makes one serving):

How to make:

  • Fill a tall glass of your choice with ice. Next, squeeze as much juice as you can get from a half a lime into the glass of ice. Then fill the glass with gin and a club soda. This drink does not need a simple syrup but can be added based on drinker’s preference. Keep in mind however that this drink was not traditionally served with syrup included.Be careful with the lime when adding to the drink as well. If the drink comes out too green or cloudy, there was too much lime added making it stray from what an original Gin Rickey would have been.

Set The Table

1920's style table decorations

With some decadent drinks to sip on, the display for these drinkable gems should be just as regal. Lay out a plastic white table cover in your choice of round or rectangular. Here we chose a rectangular table cover and laid the printed great 20’s table runner down the center. The table runner matches perfectly with the backdrop that was previously used, giving the room a tied together look. In the center of the table runner, use the great 20’s centerpiece to bring the setup to life. On both sides of the centerpiece, proudly display the drinks that were made for easy grabs from guests.

Get Some Gatsby Swagger

To bring the celebration together, there is nothing better than some unforgettable party favors and props to wear thought out the night! The 20’s masks are a cute and fun way to take pictures with family and friends. Make a statement with our Chairman Gold Assortment for everything you need to welcome in the New Year! This luxurious kit comes decked out with velour chairman styled hats with gold bands that tie in perfectly with the gold and black ambiance of the party theme. Not only do you get hats, the kit also comes with glittered feathered and glittered fringed tiaras as well as party beads and of course the horns for making some noise at the stroke of midnight!

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