20 August 2014

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Party Trend: The 70s


Trends are cyclical: it’s only a matter of time before they pop up again. This year it’s the turn of the 70s, so dig out the disco ball and don your platforms

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At the end of 2013, pop star Rita Ora threw herself a 70s-themed birthday bash, the A-list showed up in their droves and the press were all over it like a cheap polyester suit: an era was reborn. We think the decade of disco, with its vibrant decor and music, lends itself perfectly to a party. Just imagine the costumes.

For ideas, start by revisiting the quintessential homage to disco, Saturday Night Fever, or by checking out David O Russell’s star-laden flick American Hustle. Point guests towards vintage and charity shops – Soho’s Beyond Retro is a safe bet – and have the ladies dig out catsuits, and the lads open-necked, button-down shirts with flared trousers. Oh, and platform shoes all round.

With your guests dressed to the nines, you can’t lump them into any old hole. Somewhere with wall-to-ceiling mirrors, shiny disco balls hanging from the ceiling and plenty of bright colour splashed around the place is what you’re after. Better still, the holy grail: a colour-changing dance floor – believe it or not, they’re still out there.

If you can’t find a venue with the necessaries, book a blank canvas space and pick up what you need from a prop hire company.

No shindig is complete without the drinks and the 70s had more than a few favourites. Harvey Wallbangers – that’s vodka, orange juice and Galliano – and Grasshopper Martinis, a 20s stalwart revived in the disco era (comprising cream, crème de cacao and crème de menthe), are a must. Throw in a piña colada and your crowd’ll be throwing shapes all over the dance floor.

To ensure your guests strut their stuff, you’ll need either a damn good DJ or an extremely tight band whose back catalogue includes everything from Stayin’ Alive to That’s the Way (I Like It). Do your research – perhaps even go and see some acts perform before making a booking – as it’ll be the difference between a good party and a brilliant one.

This article was first published in Square Meal Venues & Events, spring 2014.

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