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1920’s Theme Party

Resources for a 1920's murder mystery dinner party: decorating tips, recipes and costumes

1920's Decorating Ideas

  • Color scheme: Black and white, sparkly and glitzy. White and black party streamers, table cloths, napkins and even black and white feather boas along with strings of pearls create a nice look.
  • Dim the lights and add candles to create a speakeasy atmosphere.
  • Use unlabeled wine bottles or even Coke bottles if you can find them for wine on your dinner tables (it was Prohibition after all)
  • Hang posters of 1920’s gangsters and flappers from Amazon. This life-sized cardboard cutout/standee of a gangster and flapper is perfect for photo ops since it has a face cutout for the flapper and the gangster.
  • Music: do a search for 1920’s music on your favorite music app (or Amazon). 
  • Check out these cool 1920’s Gangster Mug Shot Glasses on Amazon as a possible gift idea for your guests.
  • Do a general search for gangster props and 1920s props to see what else you can find on Amazon, Oriental Trading or elsewhere.
  • Also check out our own resource page for cap guns, costume links and so much more.

1920's Costumes


  • Double-breasted suites (pin-strip if you have one)
  • Carnations in the lapel
  • Fedora
  • Hanky in your pocket


  • Almost any sleeveless dress with a drop waist or no waist.  Tie a fringy shawl around your waist for a nice flapper look.  You may find these types of dresses in 2nd hand, used clothing stores.
  • Long pearls
  • Headband* with a feather or without.  *You can easily make this headband.  Go to the notions section of a craft or sewing store and look for piping or edging material.  It’s usually stretchy and has sparkly gold or silver do-dads but anything fancy looking will fit the bill. You can also use a scarf.  Tie the bow part on one side of your head (not the back).
  • Boas
  • Long, elbow-length gloves
  • Cigarette holder

Download this PDF: 1920s Costume Illustrations

And do a search for 1920’s fashion on Pinterest to get more ideas on the flapper look.

1920's Menu Ideas

Popular food in the 1920’s for our large group murder mystery game, The Mafia Murders

Sample Menu:

  • Molded/fruited Jello-salads, fruit cocktail, sliced pineapples & bananas (maraschino cherries)
  • Deviled eggs, celery, olives, olive and sausage kebobs, pickles, salted nuts (almonds, pecans, peanuts, filberts)
  • Bread sticks, Parker House rolls, saltine-type crackers, potato chips
  • Caesar salad, Waldorf salad
  • Finger sandwiches…peanut butter & jelly, ham, turkey, chicken salad, tomato, egg salad, cream cheese
  • Fried chicken, baked ham
  • Pineapple Upside down cake, angel or devil’s food cakes, ice cream & chocolate sauce, chocolate pudding. Canned peaches work well.

Beverage service:

  • Shirley Temples (ginger ale with maraschino cherry juice, decorated with afore mentioned cherries), Ginger Ale, Coca-Cola, Kool-Aid, Lemonade, punch, coffee, cocoa & Orange Pekoe tea
  • COCKTAIL: Cranberry Cosmopolitans
    • 3 Jiggers Vodka
    • 1/2 jigger Grand Marnier
    • lime juice with a small amount of pulp
    • splash of cranberry juice
    • about a 1/4 jigger crushed ice
    • In a shaker crush with lime draw ice from shaker and pour.
  • COCKTAIL: Sidecar 
    • 2 ounces Cognac
    • 1 ounce Triple Sec
    • 1 ounce Lemon Juice
    • Coat the rim of a chilled cocktail glass with sugar.
    • Shake the ingredients with cracked ice and strain into the cocktail glass.

COCKTAIL: Martinis!

These stores (and others like them) are great places to find a lot of what you need for decorating and accessorizing for a theme party:

  • Dollar stores
  • Hobby Lobby
  • Michael’s Craft stores
  • Party City

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Get your 1920’s party started!

We received The Mafia Murders immediately and found the instructions to be very helpful and easy to understand. We ordered the script at the last minute and pulled it off without a hitch. Using the Narrator version with everyone acting out their part as it was read, our evening was a huge success! Many laughs were had and everyone that came to the party said it's the best party they've been to ever and all are asking when we will be having the next one! In fact we are planning on ordering again next year for my husband's 60th birthday. Thank you for providing us promptly with a witty and entertaining script.
Mafia Molls
Kathy and Michael Smith
Boambee East New South Wales

Chief Imagination Officer & Creative Director
Haley Productions’ Games
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