Office parties regularly come in for a bit of a bad rap, and frankly, it isn’t that difficult to see why, as almost everybody you’re likely to meet has been to at least one underwhelming, boring, or outright embarrassing office party at some point in their career. It’s shocking to us that despite the wealth of interesting and unique company party ideas out there, all too many organisers rely on the same tired concepts, year after year, and we’re on a mission to change this once and for all!
Unusual work Christmas party ideas don’t need you to completely rewrite the rulebook, or splash out with masses on money on expensive props or travel costs. In fact, many of the best party ideas can be done on even quite tight budgets - it just requires plenty of imagination, and a willingness to ensure that everyone’s having a good time. Your end of year party ideas just need to reflect the nature of the event itself; this is a time of year for celebrating achievements, coming together as a team, and letting your hair down for one night only… and whether you’re organising a themed Christmas party, a special event or activity, or just something out of the ordinary to get your attendees buzzing and looking forward to the year ahead, there are plenty of different options to choose from!
Here at Mask, we love checking out the latest trends and concepts when it comes to unusual work Christmas party ideas. There’s nothing more enjoyable than watching team members having a drink, having a dance, and forgetting all their worries for the night while clinking glasses, sharing stories, and congratulating each other on their successes. If you can add an element of the unexpected, unusual, fun, and frivolous to that basic dynamic, then you’re onto a winner! With that in mind, we’ve put together eight company party ideas for you to check out, which range from the elegant to the downright crazy… and every single one of them has what it takes to turn a boring office party into a night that will never be forgotten!
Epic office party
Fin de Siecle
If you’re looking for an end of year get-together theme, why not throw a party like it’s 1899? The fin de siecle was a time of decadence, of opulent costumes, of Imperial glamour and deliciously gothic stylings. Moustaches, bowler hats, bow ties and all the trimmings are must-wears for the gents, and the ladies can go all out with frocks and feathers, and anything else that fits the theme!
This party theme has really become popular in recent years, thanks the resurgence in interest and popular culture references to late Victorian opulence (the rise of gin bars and ‘steampunk’ would be two examples to point to) and this theme idea celebrates inventiveness, eccentricity, and flawless sophistication. Bring in costume competitions, have a vintage photo booth, and a live band doing 1900’s covers of popular songs… and you’re onto a winner!
Make no mistake, the day-glo madness of 90s pop culture is well and truly back in fashion, and hosting a work Christmas do based around everyone’s favourite party decade is sure to go down a storm with your team (especially if they’re mainly aged between 30 and 45!). This nostalgic party idea comes with a massive range of options: you could go all-out grunge, and insist on flannel shirts and baggy jeans before inviting everyone to rock out to a Nirvana cover band. You could host an ‘illegal’ rave, and hand out glow sticks and whistles to your revellers as they walk through the door, and start bopping to ‘Born Slippy’. You could have a Spice Girls dress code, relive the Blur vs Oasis days… it’s entirely up to you. Just make sure everyone’s ‘mad for it!’
What You Need: This really is a party idea based around music, dancing, and having fun… so make sure you’ve got a tip-top DJ or covers band set up, and plenty of neon decorations and inflatable furniture for maximum nostalgic appeal!
Game of Thrones
It’s hard to think of a better theme for a costume party that the hit HBO show Game of Thrones. Dragons, knights, evil malcontents, and fair maidens… it’s a brilliant chance to really show off your creativity, and tap into a pop culture phenomenon for real party success!
One way of really making sure your Game of Thrones party hits the high notes is to assign each attendee a ‘house’ to align to prior to the night. Their house will let them know the sort of costume they can prepare, their symbol, their temperment, colour scheme, and motto… and if they can stick (loosely) to character throughout the evening, you’re sure to be in for plenty of fun! Remember to throw a huge medieval-style feast into the proceedings, and be sure to play plenty of dramatic music before hosting a ‘house’ party with dancing, drinking, and merriment aplenty.
What you need: Write up some ‘house cards’ a few days before the party, letting all the attendees know which family from Game of Thrones they are representing, along with some costume ideas.
Wow factor office party entertainment ideas
It’s a Knockout
The hit TV show from the 80’s and 90’s is still a real favourite with those who can remember it, and it frequently inspires the more creative party organisers in the world today. When it comes to wacky office party ideas, getting your team members to run the inflatable gauntlet (while dressed in a ridiculous costume, of course) before battling it out in the sumo ring, and taking part in all other manner of silly games sits pretty high on the unusual work Christmas party ideas list. It’s outrageously fun, utterly nonsensical, and the kind of party idea which never fails to raise plenty of smiles and buckets of laughter!
Great Company Bake Off
Baking contests have been a huge hit over the past couple of years, with everybody seemingly going mad for homemade cakes and bakes, and getting experimental with flour, eggs, sugar, and icing. Bring some of that culinary magic to your next work party, and host your own bake off competition!
You could either encourage your party-goers to come up with their own recipes, or alternatively (and perhaps better from a planning point of view) you could set one particular challenge - for example, to bake a beautiful a carrot cake - and provide the ingredients and recipes for each team to follow. Set the clock, and look forward to a whole batch of stunning cakes to share and enjoy over a cup of tea or (most likely) a classic British gin and tonic.
What you need: In order for this party idea to work, you’ll need access to a kitchen set up, and the ingredients and accessories necessary. Follow it with some cocktails and a disco to burn off all those extra calories!
Slo-Mo Video Station
Ever noticed how everything seems funnier in slow motion? Slo-Mo video stations are the latest evolution of the photo booth trend that skyrocketed at parties and events a few years ago, and we have to admit, we’re pretty huge fans of this latest craze!
Instead of having a standard photo booth at your end of year party, setting up a Slo-Mo video station, where attendees have 5-10 seconds to do whatever they want in front of the camera. Make sure you bring along lots of props, costumes, and items to have fun with, and once everyone’s had a go, you can stitch and splice together a mega-cut which will have the attendees rolling in the aisles.
What You Need: a camera with a good quality slo-mo setting, a dedicated corner of the venue for filming, and plenty of toys, costumes, and props to get silly with!
Escape Room Antics
Escape rooms have proven to be enormously popular in recent years, and all over the country, new ones seem to be popping up on an almost weekly basis. Not only are they great fun, and put us in mind of classic TV shows like The Crystal Maze, they are also ideal activities for kicking off an office Christmas or end of year party! Requiring creative and lateral thinking, excellent teamwork skills, and real perseverance and a willingness to get stuck in, they allow your team to have a laugh while pulling together to achieve a goal. Make sure the fastest escapees are generously rewarded for their efforts, and plenty of fun has been had in the process.
Bespoke Cocktail Craziness
It wouldn’t be the end of the year without some quality drinking time with your colleagues and team members. No matter what your poison might be, getting in on the craft cocktail trend presents plenty of fantastic office Christmas party ideas that are sure to go down a storm. Here are some concepts you could bring into your party, to give it a boozy kick that everyone’s sure to love (remember, you can make alcohol-free cocktails, too!):
Have a bespoke cocktail
Dedicating a signature cocktail to your evening is a surefire way to bring a sense of sophistication to the party. Why not design a cocktail which reflects the ‘vibe’ of your company, or which comes in company colours?
Cocktail mixing classes
Who doesn’t love learning how to mix a classic cocktail? Hiring a mixologist or teacher to train up your attendees in making the perfect Old Fashioned is sure to be a hit… especially as you get to enjoy drinking your creations straight afterwards!
A blending class
Learning how whiskies, gins, and other blended or infused spirits are made is a fascinating process, and classes like these are becoming hugely popular as corporate away days and event entertainment options.
Unusual work Christmas Party Ideas: Give them an evening to remember
When you bring exciting, unusual, and dynamic company party ideas to your next Christmas or new year’s work do, you’re showing that you really care about your attendees having a night out of the ordinary, and that you aren’t going to stick to the same, tired, formulaic concepts we’re all exhausted by. It’s fantastic for staff morale, it’ll leave them buzzing with excitement for the year to come, and it’ll provide plenty of great opportunities for viral social media posts, too. Everyone’s a winner!
At Mask, we love it when events managers and Christmas party organisers take on the latest trends or look outside the box for their party ideas, and it really makes this time of year special for us to see such amazing concepts take off! If you’d like to learn more about unusual party ideas, and approaches to events which are sure to bring about plenty of smiles and laughter, get in touch with a member of our team today!