Business Men, Vampires, and Magicians - Oh My! How to Dress for New 2011 Theme Parties

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Togas are so last year, no one really cares whether you’re an angel or a devil anymore, and highlighter parties are just an excuse to write all over each other. New theme parties reflecting the hottest new trends in pop culture for the coming year are already popping up on campuses across the country. HC has some fresh ideas to help you get ready for the new parties you’ll be crashing soon!

Mad Men

“Mad Men,” the show surrounding the glamorous, tormented lives of the biggest advertising moguls and the women who love them, has taken over pop culture, inspiring early ‘60s-themed parties with an extra dash of sex appeal. Essentially, a Mad Men-themed party is a time-period party, but moderation and careful selection will be the keys to the perfect outfit for Joan, Peggy, or Betty!

Anybody can rock Joan’s bombshell look as long as you know how to work your body. Pick out a bright colored dress that accentuates your figure, and also marries business and pleasure. Think business attire with bombshell flair. Transform completely into Joan by donning a red wig and matching lipstick.

Peggy is all about subdued sex appeal. Choose a dress that’s a little more conservative and with more neutral colors (plaid works fantastic!). Tie your hair back in a ponytail and even try wearing a sweet pearl necklace and earring set!

Betty challenges you to get in touch with your inner Grace Kelly! You have a ton of options as far as costumes go - the homemaker dress, a sultry white nightgown, a fun cocktail dress - you name it! To pull the entire look together, check out this Betty Draper Hair Tutorial.

True Blood

Let tweens have their Twilight while you graduate to a “True Blood” obsession! The show’s raw, and sometimes dirty, sexiness can be used to throw a more grown-up vampire party. The best part about creating your look for this bloody rendezvous is that most of the items can be found in your closet already.

Sookie is super costume-friendly. Wear a basic white T-shirt or tank top, a pair of shorts that show off your legs, and your favorite sneakers. Give some more True Blood detail by dressing in Sookie’s work uniform with a Merlotte's T-shirt and a green barmaid’s apron - just be sure to sport Sookie’s signature sassy attitude with both outfits!

Jessica allows you to play naughty and nice as the virgin vampire! Curl your hair and wear ribbons, your favorite sundress and lipstick, and smile your sweetest smile. Jess is famous for seeming totally sweet but really having a deadly bite if you get on her nerves, so have fun and play her part with a little extra attitude!

Pam is a badass vamp with the leather to match. Channel your inner vampire vixen by wearing anything tight and figure-enhancing, pairing black with colors like lavender and pink to balance femininity with power. Try flaunting a corset with Pam’s signature high-heeled pumps as well. Don’t forget to doll yourself up in Vogue-esque makeup with dark eyeliner, dramatic lipstick, and pale foundation.

Harry Potter

You can bet there will be tons of HP-themed parties this spring leading up to the big premiere of the final film, and there are multiple ways to dress yourself in magic! These outfits for Hermione Granger, Luna Lovegood, and Bellatrix Lestrange are sure to leave other partygoers spellbound by your fashionable finesse!

No need to buy a ready-made costume for Hermione Granger - just pair a gray sweater with a matching pleated skirt and highlight the look with deep red and gold accessories such as a scarf, tights or socks, gloves, and jewelry. You could even dress as Hermione out of her Hogwarts uniform with less effort; wear jeans, sneakers, a pink zippered hoodie, and be sure to blow out your hair so it’s thick and wavy. Carry a wand and book in your bag, and you’re good to go!

Luna Lovegood has a crazy fashion sense, giving you a world of freedom to create the most outrageous outfit ever! Try mismatching different fabrics, patterns and colors; Luna is a very organic character, and her clothing matches her personality. Wear your favorite pair of worn-out sneakers, bright colored tights and thick socks under a patterned skirt, a chunky sweater, a plaid jacket, and finish the look with a pair of crazy glasses. Take the look up another notch by grabbing a magazine and covering it with a homemade Quibbler cover to carry as your prop—and don’t forget your radish earrings!

A great Bellatrix Lestrange costume rocks the gothic look while enhancing femininity. All black is a must, maybe with some dark green accents, and your best bet would be to pick a form-fitting dress with a plunging neckline. Add a black, lacy corset around your waist to make your hips pop, throw your hair back in a messy fashion (use hairspray to keep the shape), and accessorize with chunky, silver jewelry.

Super Bowl

The Super Bowl is arguably the biggest sporting event of the year, so why not spice up your party by making it a costumed affair? No need to know who the two final teams in the game will be - everyone can come in their favorite team colors and jerseys. Wear your favorite jersey with cute skinny jeans or shorts. Add some feminine flare to your sportswear by leaving your sneakers at home and wearing a pair of pumps or lace-up booties to show off your legs. If you’re not a huge football fan, you can’t go wrong coming as the referee! Wear a black and white striped shirt, black jeans or skirt, and a pair of black Converse sneakers to pull the look together.

The Academy Awards

Film’s biggest night of the year can be your night to shine as Oscar’s best dressed! Dress up as your favorite star and glam yourself up with your favorite elegant party dress. Marilyn Monroe is a classic choice to epitomize Hollywood glamour - transform yourself into the blonde bombshell by her signature white dress, a short blonde wig, and painting your lips with red, kissable lipstick. Don’t have a favorite star? You cannot go wrong in a sequin cocktail dress, high heels, and a pearl necklace. Go all out on Oscar night and dress up as Oscar himself dawning an all-gold ensemble - you’ll definitely steal the show!

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About The Author

Valentina Palladino is a student of Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, dual majoring in Magazine Journalism and English. While at school, Valentina is the Assistant Features Editor for What the Health, Syracuse University’s health and wellness magazine. This summer, she was busy as an online editorial intern for Fitsmi, an community which seeks to connect and aid teen girls struggling with weight issues, and as an editorial mentor for Teen Voices magazine. Valentina also works at Victoria's Secret as a sales associate. She feels lucky to have been able to travel extensively already in her life, and wants to study abroad as much as she can. In her free time, Valentina enjoys cooking, practicing yoga, drawing, and being with her family and friends... among many other things!