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Okay, so my Mad Men party is officially scheduled for this Saturday July 21st. It looks like around 12-15 people are showing up which is just about what I was hoping for! I had written a previous post on hosting a Mad Men (or 1960s theme) party, but I'd like to give a few more details since some of you lovelies might want to host one of your own! My main goal: create an atmosphere that is both modern but obviously influenced by the 1960s.

Atmosphere

There are many things that contribute to a party's atmosphere. The hardest part is deciphering what makes a 1960s Mad Men party different from a retro hippie party. A good way to look at it is to think of the 1950s. Mad men and women were still very clean-cut hardworking pavement-loving characters-- not so much the love van grass-smoking type (although one may argue that Peggy and Kinsey are the exception). I'll start with some key components:

Music
Since this is a 1960s party, I wanted 1960s music! You can actually buy the Mad Men soundtrack from Amazon for around $12. You can also find plenty of 60s compilation CDs for a low cost such as 60's Gold.
One item that can really bring that 1960s atmosphere is a record player. You can find them new for around $150 at the store or you can buy an original one online. Just make sure the needle is in good condition! I recommend picking up some 60s records to go along with it: *The Grass Roots *The Cowsills *The Beatles *The Tempations *The Mamas and the Papas *Frank Sinatra. 
Decor
Popular colors in the 1960s were turquoise, jade, mint green, light pink, sunshine yellow, cherry red, pumpkin orange, light blue and black/white. Think bright and modern. See the image gallery I put together for ideas on 1960s Mad Men party decor. 
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For a really cool and personalized Mad Men decoration put the "Sterling Cooper" name label on the front door. Simply cut out letters from black card stock and tape them to the wall. (Or, just use stick-on letters from the craft store)
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1960s record player from cellardepot
Lighting 
The '60s were really about modernizing the home. The use of curves and clean lines in furniture and light fixtures was commonly used. If you have any period or reproduction 60s lighting, go ahead and use it! Other whise, there is a tutorial on how to make your own low-cost string globe lanterns.
Since this is a party, you will want to keep things dim. For the room where people will gather the most, keep the lights at around 50%. For the kitchen or area where food/drinks are served, keep the lighting at around 70%. If you can, have an outdoor area set up with candlit lanterns, string globe lights or 1960s candle holders.
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1960s globe floor lamp GallivantingGirls
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Use plastic homco decorations on your walls! They are actually pretty easy to find at your local garage sale or thrift store. They will instantly add that hollywood regency style that the Mad Men series is so good at portraying.
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TV dinner trays make excellent serving trays for appetizers and snacks. Tuck napkins and utensils below the tray to save space.
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Period magazines are generally a low cost decor that may also serve as entertainment for your guests. Find them at antique stores or etsy. Some magazine titles to look for: Esquire, Look, Life, The New Yorker & Playboy.
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Find low cost 1960s end and coffee tables at thrift stores and garage sales. They will generally have clean lines with formica tops.
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Look for 1960s bar glasses. They will often have a stream-lined or geometric look to them. Look for smaller glasses with silver rims or small splashes of color. You can find these easily at thrift stores and you can give them away as party favors to your guests!
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Decanters will really add that "Mad Men" touch. Find 3-4 decanters you can fill with liquor such as vodka, rye, scotch, bourbon and gin.
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1960s ash trays don't have to be used for cigarettes, but if you do have smokers, place one or two outside on a patio or porch. Other whise they make great candy dishes!
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1950s & 1960s tablecloths are fairly easy to find in the linen section of thrift stores. Look for mod and bright prints to add to the festive atmosphere.
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Op art is perfect to recreate Roger Sterling's office look.

 And don't forget . . . 

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Lucky strike cigarettes-- use them as a prop even if you don't smoke!
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Your camera! Don't forget to take pictures during the party-- buy a 1960s camera for even more of a die-hard Mad Men look.
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1960s Fedora Hats for the Men
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If you have a hard time finding period decor, you can always try your local Target, Walmart or handmade upcycler on Etsy! Vintage & retro decor is in, so it isn't too hard to find 1960s period look-alikes.
 


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