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Celebrate Women’s History Month Comments Off on Celebrate Women’s History Month

Posted on February 25, 2015 by Fancy Dress Ball

s HIstory Month!March is Women’s History Month; there are bound to be loads of great events going on all over the country to celebrate.

A great way to celebrate is to dress up as your favourite woman from history. Here are a few suggestions:

EarhartAmelia Earhart
Amelia Earhart was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic. She also famously disappeared in 1937 during an attempt to circumnavigate the globe.

Elizabeth I
Elizabeth I was the last of the Tudor monarchs, and famous for bringing a period of peace and enlightenment to England. The country thrived throughout her reign, despite many having misgivings about her abilities as a queen.

Pocahontasdownload (2)
Made famous by the Disney movie, Pocahontas was a real woman, princess of the Powhatan Tribe. She helped to establish peace between her tribe and the colonists.

Catherine the Great
Catherine the Great was Empress of Russia and widened the country’s boundaries during her reign. A very powerful Russian Empress, she was of course feared by many and incredibly strong.

Queen Victoria
“We are not amused!” Victoria was Britain’s longest ruling monarch (soon to be surpassed by our current Queen Elizabeth II). The sun neverset on the Victorian British Empire, and she was known for being very tough and in control.

Florence Nightingale
Florence Nightingale was a nurse during the Crimean War – a time when there was really no such thing as a nurse! She is famous as the founder of modern nursing, and for not listening when men said she couldn’t do something!

 

Can you think of any other women from history who would be great to dress up as?

 

 

Win a 70’s or 80’s Fancy Dress Costume of Your Choice Comments Off on Win a 70’s or 80’s Fancy Dress Costume of Your Choice

Posted on February 23, 2015 by Karl Young

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Get Ready for Valentine’s Day! Comments Off on Get Ready for Valentine’s Day!

Posted on February 09, 2015 by Fancy Dress Ball

Get Ready for Valentine's Day

The cards have been in the shops since Christmas, so you could be forgiven for getting a bit complacent about it – but you won’t be forgiven if you actually forget about it! This Saturday is 14th February – Valentine’s Day!

Don’t panic though; Fancy Dress Ball has got your back on this one!

The tradition is to buy a lady a dozen red roses and take her out for a hugely overpriced dinner, in a crowded restaurant where you sit surrounded by other couples, under immense pressure to be romantic and have a good time. We don’t think any of that is very romantic though, or much fun.

We think a much better idea would be to dress up in Valentine’s fancy dress and woo your lover with something a bit different. We love the idea of dressing up as a gangster, from the 1929 St Valentine’s DayMassacre.

Another great idea is to have matching his ‘n’ hers costumes – possibly the one night of the year when this is acceptable! How about being Superman and Supergirl, or a caveman and a cavewoman?

These days lots of places are throwing fancy dress parties for Valentine’s Day – they’ve realised that people would rather go out and have fun than be crowded into a restaurant and pay twice the usual price for a meal.

If you can’t find a Valentine’s fancy dress party locally, why not organise one yourself? There’s still time, and we bet loads of your friends would love to come along.  Why not throw a “red” party where the only rule is that everyone must be in red, or dressed as a red character? This can be great fun as people try to decide what to dress up as.

If you’re single, or have a lot of single friends, you could always throw a matchmaking party – where only single people are allowed to go, and the host or a group of people act as matchmaker for their friends.

For party refreshments, you’ll probably want to go with a red theme! We love this super easy recipe for champagne punch. For food, a great idea is to cut sandwiches into heart shapes. This can work well for anything  really – even shop bought cookies!

If you’re really looking to go all-out with your party, why not take a look at this fab video for some top pointers?

If you do still want to send flowers to that special someone, roses are traditional but not necessarily necessary! We love the boquets in this article; they’re classically beautiful without being stereotypical.

 

Have a fabulous Valentine’s Day, whatever you do… though obviously, your Valentine’s Day will be better in fancy dress!

National Storytelling Week Comments Off on National Storytelling Week

Posted on January 28, 2015 by Fancy Dress Ball

s National Storytelling Week!

 

This Saturday marks the beginning of the fifteenth National Storytelling Week. From 31st January to 7th February we will be celebrating the most ancient art form of them all. Everyone loves a good story; it’s something we learn to enjoy at a very young age, and which never leaves us.

National Storytelling Week celebrates all sorts of stories; from telling people how your day was, to biographies, to children’s books or even TV dramas. Storytelling is something everyone gets involved with, and is something that enriches every culture and every life.

National Storytelling Week takes part in schools, museums, hospitals, and even care homes each year. If you’d like to hold your own event, you can contact the Society for Storytelling and they will send you a pack.

What sort of storytelling event could you put on?

Grandparent Storytelling

If you have children, get them together with a group of their friends and have grandparents take turns in telling stories about their childhoods and how they were different. Children love hearing about “the olden days” – even the 1980s is “the olden days” these days!

Fancy Dress

Our favourite idea, obviously – have a party and get everyone to dress up as their favourite character from a story.  This gives you a massive scope for costumes, since every single character you can think of is a character from a story – Batman, Wonder Woman, Peter Pan. Fairytales, children’s books, heck, you could throw a Hunger Games party – Hunger Games is a story!

Consequences Party

Invite friends over and play a huge game of consequences. Remember that game from childhood, where you write the first line of a story, then fold over the top and pass it to the next person to add their line. It’s a great way of making up a really creative story and having fun, and can work with all age groups.

Put on a Community Play

The most important part of National Storytelling Week is the storytelling part of it. It’s a great chance to hear stories – both made up and real-life, from those around us. Fancy dress is a great way of immersing ourselves in that story; a community play can be a great way to get to know those around you, as well as learn new skills – and dress up!

10 Last Minute Fancy Dress Ideas for New Year’s Eve Comments Off on 10 Last Minute Fancy Dress Ideas for New Year’s Eve

Posted on December 31, 2014 by Fancy Dress Ball

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That week between Christmas and New Year just sort of disappears, doesn’t it! You spend most of the time trying to figure out what day it is, with New Year’s Eve being some mythical date somewhere in the future… and then before you know it, it’s December 31st, you’re going to a party tonight and you’ve just realised it’s fancy dress!

What can you do?

There’s always the option of doing a Wednesday Addams: “I’m a homicidal maniac; they look just like everybody else” – but frankly, that is a cop out and although you might think it seems really cool… all of your friends who have gone to the effort of putting a costume together will not be so impressed!

Here are a few last-minute ideas to get you through that fancy dress party tonight:

1. Put your pants on outside of your trousers, make a mask from a piece of material, and a cape out of a sheet or duvet cover  – and make up a silly super hero name! Who says you have to be one of the ones the comics have already thought of? Think outside of that box, and be your own superhero!

2. Collect up all the discarded chocolate wrappers from the floor (don’t pretend there aren’t any down there!) and fix them onto your jumper; you can go as a box of chocolates! This one has an added bonus: if there really are no wrappers lying about, you have the perfect excuse to eat what’s left of the Christmas chocolates, in order to make a costume!

3. A toga! Grab a sheet from the airing cupboard, and follow these simple instructions:

 

4. Raid your wardrobe. Do you have a suit? James Bond! Some leggings, vest tops, bangles, necklaces? Madonna!  A black dress and some safety pins from the sewing kit? Liz Hurley! It’s highly likely that you have the makings of a passable costume in your wardrobe already!

5. Olaf from Frozen. This is easier than it sounds, and super trendy at the moment. Find a white top and trousers. For a girl, you can make a tutu with a piece of elastic and some netting if you like. (if you don’t have any netting to hand, a net curtain will work at a push) On the white top, stick two or three large black dots – you can cut these out of cardboard or similar. Draw sticks on the arms… to be Olaf’s stick arms. You can make a simple Olaf mask from a paper plate, cutting out eye holes and a smile for the mouth. Simple!

6. Be a zombie! This is perhaps the most simple of all. All you need is some old clothes, a bit of make up and some fake blood. Who doesn’t have those things hanging around the house? Tear holes in your old clothes, make them dirty and dusty and apply fake blood liberally. For your make up, you can go as simple or as gorey as possible, depending on the time and resources you have available.

7. The tin man. Everyone has some of that ridiculously wide foil left over from the Christmas turkey! Wrap yourself up in it, and you can be a tin man, a space man, all sorts. You could even pad it out a bit, and go as a pinball – genius!

8. Draw or print off a “decepticon” logo (from Transformers) and wear it over a normal outfit. You’re a robot in disguise! Obviously, this is only to be used as a very last resort as it’s along the lines of Wednesday Addams and a bit of a cop out!

9. If you have blonde hair of around chin length, use gel or hair spray to stick the front of it up on end – and voila, you’re “Something About Mary!”

10. We saved the best for last… go to the shop and buy some balloons. You need lots of either green, purple or red ones. Blow up as many as you can, and tie them to your clothes to form a bunch of grapes. Genius, right?

 

So there we have it. Ten last-minute fancy dress ideas for New Year.

What have we learned from this? Next time, order your fancy dress costume from Fancy Dress Ball well in advance of the party!

Fancy Pretending to be a Time Traveller? Comments Off on Fancy Pretending to be a Time Traveller?

Posted on December 03, 2014 by Fancy Dress Ball

Pretend to be a Time Traveller Day! (1)

 

Next Monday, 8th December, is Pretend to be a Time Traveller Day.

What do we do on Pretend to be a Time Traveller Day?

… pretend to be a time traveller, of course!

The idea is that we all pretend to be a traveller from a different era for the day – and you can choose any era at all!

The obvious choice for this is Dr Who… but which Doctor will you be?

Or you could be…

  • Marty McFly
  • The Terminator
  • Fry from Futurama
  • The Traveller from HG Wells’ The Time Machine
  • Colonel George Taylor from Planet of the Apes
  • one of Bill and Ted

Of course, you don’t need to be a character from a movie or TV show; you could just be a normal, common or garden time traveller who’s never made it onto the screen. You could choose to be someone from a utopian future where everyone lives forever and there’s no illness – kind of like the future of Bill and Ted where everyone wears those cool glasses and weird pastel outfits. Or perhaps someone from a dystopian future where things have gone really bad and society has broken down, it’s every man for himself and you don’t go out without a gun.

One really fun idea is to be a time traveller from the past – a mad scientist who’s accidentally figured out how to travel into the 21st century. You could dress as a 19th century scientist who’s been fiddling about in his workshop and accidentally opened a door into the future – spend all day flummoxed by automatic doors, traffic lights, mobile phones… everything, really! This can be really good fun, especially any time an aeroplane flies over. Imagine how someone from the past would react to a TV – probably by answering it back, or attempting to look behind it to see where the people are. Steampunk costumes are great for this sort of character – Steampunk is a genre of science fiction inspired by the newly industrialised civilisation of the 19th century and featuring steam powered machinery.

You don’t even need to be a scientist – you could be anyone, from any era, who has unwittingly ended up travelling through time to the 21st century. The world is your oyster!

This is something you can have great fun with, especially if you and a friend opt for the “we can’t tell anyone we’re from the past/future; they’ll think we’re mad!” thing. Have fun with other friends, work colleagues and the general public by being completely confused by revolving doors, jump in fear whenever the tannoy speaks in a shop or train station.

 

 

 

Have a Fabulous Alphabet Party, From A to Z! Comments Off on Have a Fabulous Alphabet Party, From A to Z!

Posted on July 28, 2014 by Fancy Dress Ball

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Alphabet parties are  all the rage at the moment.

Whether you choose B because your name is Brian, or G because your name is Xavier and  nobody will come dressed as a xylophone,  a letter is a great way to inspire people to use their imaginations and come up with fabulous fancy dress ideas.

Of course, with an alphabet-themed party, everyone will be singing ABC-related songs… this one is our favourite at the moment:

A Grade “A” Party

A is a very popular letter for a party theme – because there are so many great ideas!

Here are a few…

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A-Grade Music

If you’re having an A-themed party, you will need to think of musicians beginning with A. Here are a few:

  • Abba (durr, obviously)
  • ABC (this band are good for ALL alphabet parties!)
  • AC/DC
  • A-Ha
  • Peter Andre (don’t pretend you don’t know any of his songs)

A Zed-Tastic Celebration

You might think there aren’t many costumes beginning with Z… really though, you just have to think a little more creatively.

Why not challenge your guests…

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Zedtabulous Music

Can’t think of any musical acts beginning with Z? Fret not; we have inspiration for you right here!

  • ZZ Top (obviously!)
  • Zero 7
  • The Zombies
  • Frank Zappa (oh yeah!)
  • The Zutons

If you’re planning an alphabet-themed party, don’t forget to check out our website for some great ideas!

Movie Party Special Comments Off on Movie Party Special

Posted on March 07, 2014 by admin

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Last week saw the end of this year’s award season with the 86th Academy Awards. If you’re planning a film –themed party to celebrate the winners (and the losers) or just need an excuse to dress up as your favourite character, we’ve got some great ideas to inspire you.

American Hustle

David O’Russell’s 70s flick American Hustle received a whopping 10 nominations at this year’s Academy Awards, yet sadly came away with nothing. But as the film that received the most nominations in 2014, there’s still every reason to dress up in your 70s get-up for your movie-based bash.

We love this great tutorial from Punk Chyaz, which shows you how to achieve a cool Jennifer Lawrence-inspired look from the film.

The Wolf of Wall Street

Martin Scorsese’s tale of 80s yuppie greed didn’t win any awards at this year’s Oscars, but as it’s one of the most talked about films this year, there’s every reason to reach for a massive mobile phone, slap on some khakis, a bright polo shirt and complete with a sweater over the shoulders. Don’t forget to slick back your hair and turn up your collar!

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 The Great Gatsby

Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby came away with the award for best costume design, for its fresh and fabulous flapper outfits. If you’re going for a Great Gatsby themed ensemble, then this gorgeous hairstyle will really finish off your look.

Check out our BAFTAs special for more ideas on how to achieve and award winning 20s style!

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And the rest…

If you’re going for something a little more fun with your costume why not dress in style and celebrate the film that swept the board at this year’s Oscars: Gravity.

Iron Man 3 was also in the list of this year’s nominees, so if you’ve always fancied yourself as playboy and entrepreneur Tony Stark, now’s your chance to become one of Marvel’s most well-loved superheroes!

And the rest#

Just for fun…

Star Trek: Into Darkness was also nominated for an award, but even if you don’t fancy sporting the Spock ears and blue sweater yourself, you might have a furry friend who’d love to be involved in your Oscar celebrations!

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Throwing a movie-themed party this year? Share your ideas over on our Facebook page!

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BAFTAs Special: Get the look… Downton Abbey Comments Off on BAFTAs Special: Get the look… Downton Abbey

Posted on February 03, 2014 by admin

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Get the look… 20s make-up

Film fans will know that we’re well into awards season, with 16th February being the date of the BAFTAs. To celebrate the nominations for the excellent period drama Downton Abbey, we’ve put together a hair and make-up guide to help you get the look for the roaring 20s!

Vintage 20s flapper make-up is a simple look achieved by extending the eyebrows and creating dramatic eyes using a matt eye-shadow. In this in-depth video by BlushBeautyTutor shows us how to create this simple 20s inspired look.

Get the look… Vintage 20s

Create this soft yet dramatic 20s look using a matt black and burned plum eye-shadows and blending them well. Use a black eyeliner pencil to fill the lower lash line to give depth, then curl your eyelashes and use plenty of mascara to finish the look.

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To achieve a classic 20s hairstyle, use hairpins to create dramatic waves. This technique works for both long and short hair and creates an instant vintage style.

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The products

Finish your glamorous 20s look with some false eyelashes with long plumes and a Charleston headband.

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Alternative looks

For a more glitzy flapper look, incorporate some shimmering gold eye-shadow and blend with a matt grey. Use a plum or red lipstick to create a warmer make-up effect.

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Create a softer look with this fantastic up do by pinning soft curls in a shaped, low bun at the back of the head. At the front, pin a large curl up to create a dramatic wave and pin any loose tendrils out of the way.

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Got a fabulous flapper look of your own? Why not share it on our Facebook page!

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Get Gangsta Style in 2013 Comments Off on Get Gangsta Style in 2013

Posted on January 21, 2013 by admin

Big-screen gangsters ooze style and sophistication.

There have been so many exceptional mob films down the years and new release Gangster Squad, featuring Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, is an action-packed crime thriller well worth watching.

With Gangster Squad doing well at the box office and Casino and Goodfellas star Joe Pesci set to turn 70 next month, now seems the ideal time to go as a gangster to that next fancy dress party.

To get the Al Capone look, check out these menacing outfits and accessories.

Straight from a scene from The Sopranos or Who Framed Roger Rabbit, this Massive Mobster Gangster is quite a comical take on the usual mob goon you see terrorising innocent bystanders and getting up to all sorts of mischief.

The inflatable shoulders will ensure you tower over your fellow revellers and if they step out of line then that’s when your inflatable black Tommy Gun will come in handy.

Everyone knows that pimpin’ ain’t easy. This deluxe gangster pimp costume at least means that looking the part is easy.

It’s bold, it’s brave and it’s bound to make you stand out from The Usual Suspects and look as cool as Huggy Bear from hit TV show Starsky & Hutch.

Don’t forget to accessorise with some fruity sunglasses – no matter what the weather!

Cult classic films like The Godfather and Pulp Fiction are all about the three Gs – guns, gangsters and girls!

This sassy little number is perfect for any budding Mia Wallaces out there and will ensure you turn plenty of heads, especially if you add an extendable cigarette holder to your outfit.

Every gangster – whether male or female – also needs a Tribly Hat to complete the look.

Are you brave enough to wear a Morphsuit Gangster costume complete with bushy ‘tasche and a dapper pin-stripe suit?

You’ll be truly Untouchable if you do and look a right Sexy Beast as well!

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