33 christmas party themes

Choose from unique family-friendly, funny, and adults-only ideas

Christmas Party Themes intro

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No matter what your plans are to celebrate in 2022, we’re sure there’s something on the following list of Christmas party themes you can reference. Whether you are planning a holiday party for your friends, family, neighborhood, or coworkers, we think our inclusive list of ideas and party themes will set you on the right path. Everything from ugly Christmas sweater parties to kid-friendly Christmas crafts to classic winter wonderlands is on the table. Get inspired by your favorite movies, or transport your party to a whole new region of the globe. See our whole list of Christmas party themes below. We have broken our holiday party themes up into family-friendly, adults-only, and funny categories for quick browsing. Click on a theme to quickly learn more about it, or keep scrolling through our post to read through all our ideas. Happy planning!


Family-Friendly Themes

Our first 13 party options on the list are rated "G" and are perfect for celebrating with kids, grandkids, nieces, and nephews this holiday season.


1

White Christmas

Create a monochrome look that’s all white everything, from faux snow on the ground to furry sheepskin blankets on seats. White balloons and paper snowflake cutouts are a classic way to spruce up the place. Have Bing Crosby’s famous song on repeat. White chocolate desserts are your friend, while marshmallow snowmen are a sweet treat for kids. Keep things really classy by making the dress code white tie, or just tell everyone to wear white.

White Christmas

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2

Christmas Tree Lighting

If you are involved at a community center, nothing brings everyone together like a Christmas tree lighting. For an easy way to kick off the festivities, invite friends to each bring an ornament to place on the tree. Or, set up a crafts table for kids to make their own. Read through our list of DIY Christmas crafts! You place each ornament on the tree one by one, to remain socially distanced. When the big tree finally lights up, the holiday season has officially begun. Like with any good tree-lighting event, be sure to have a dramatic countdown from 10 before the lights are illuminated on the tree.

Christmas Tree Lighting

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3

North Pole

Turn your party venue into an arctic adventure! Think life-size cutouts of polar bears, penguins, and walruses on ice floes. Hang paper snowflakes from the ceiling, or create an indoor scene that’s reminiscent of Santa’s workshop. Get kids involved by setting up a crafts table, where they can create their own toys like little elves.

North Pole Party

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4

The Nutcracker Suite

Bring this classic Christmas ballet to life in your home. Think ballerina touches like tutu drink holders or ballet slipper cookies. Create a table centerpiece with a real nutcracker, and make sure your playlist includes Tchaikovsky’s original score. Kids can dress up as ballerinas or nutcracker soldiers, and a classic game of Find the Nutcracker is fun for everyone. The winner gets to take home the nutcracker!

Nutcracker

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5

Christmas Around the World

We love holiday party themes that bring a fresh perspective. For a unique twist this Christmas, consider a party that gathers traditions from across the globe. In a year when travel has been so limited, this party theme might just do the trick. La Befana from Italy brings candy to children, while Père Noël fills French children’s shoes with treats. Decorate with colorful papel picado from Mexico or star-shaped lanterns from the Philippines. It’s a great way for kids to learn about different customs from various countries, or about their own heritage. Joy to the world!

Christmas Around the World

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6

Polar Express

All aboard! This kid-friendly holiday party theme takes everyone on a journey inspired by the beloved children’s book. Start with invitations that double as train “tickets”. Bonus points if you have a model train track, but decorations inspired by the North Pole and locomotives will get the desired effect. After the party, wooden train whistles make cheerful party favors for kids. Consider placing them in cute favor boxes.

Polar Express

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7

Christmas Tea Party

Like brunch, but more festive! A Christmas tea party is an opportunity to break out your fancy dresses, fine china, and Darjeeling tea. Make holiday scones (think currants and cinnamon) and finger sandwiches cut like Christmas trees (that tree-shaped cookie cutter isn’t just for cookies, you know). Invite your friends for the most elegant Christmas party ever. Pick out festive napkin sets to match. Pinkies up! This theme is perfect if you were hoping to host an event during the day or outside.

Christmas Tea Party

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8

Gingerbread House Decorating Party

Whether you bake everything from scratch or make things easier on yourself by getting a kit, gingerbread house decorating is one tradition we see every year. Make things interesting by turning it into a contest with prizes like the tallest house or best use of gumdrops. Keep it classic with peppermint trim and frosting icicles, or go for a theme like Barbie’s dream house or a Halloween haunted mansion. Minted’s personalized kids apron and mitt sets add a unique touch to any baking party. This is also a great virtual party idea; you could circulate the recipe to your friends and family ahead of time, bake at the same time, and show your final creations off on the camera.

Gingerbread Party

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9

Woodland Friends

For nature lovers, there’s nothing like a walk in the woods. Channel that fresh air feeling with natural textures like birch, pine, and burlap. Pinecones and spruce boughs bring a forest scent inside, a classic Christmas party theme that works on any winter day. Review our detailed article on unique Christmas flowers, greenery, and plants for inspiration on items to use in your decor.

Woodland Friends

10

Country Christmas Party

A Christmas tree made out of a hay bale pyramid? You better believe it. If you’re going with a country Christmas party theme, you’ll need to channel your inner cowboy. Pick up some plain cowboy hats and decorate them with string lights, tinsel, or a simple plaid ribbon to get in the mood. Cowboy boots are a must, as are bandanas (ideally in red and green). For decor, think barrel tabletops, saddle blankets, and did we mention hay bales? To completely countrify your party, make sure you’re spinning country renditions of every Christmas song ever.

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Country Christmas Party

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11

Candy Land

This holiday party theme brings everyone’s favorite board game to life. Take inspiration from characters like Mr. Mint to Queen Frostine. Peppermint and snowflake decorations will turn the room into a winter wonderland, while a life-size board game for kids to play on is the ultimate party fun. And of course, don’t forget lots of candy! Giant lollipops, gummy bears, or cupcakes with holiday frosting are a sweet way to celebrate the holidays.

Candy Land

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12

All is Bright

Like an eighties disco theme, but for Christmas! Forgo the classic red and green color palette and invite your friends to dress up in bright, neon colors. Don’t forget glow sticks, glow cups, neon masks, colorful wigs, and a food buffet in every color of the rainbow. Black lights make it a party, while brightly colored cocktails add to the overall look. Spin your favorite eighties Christmas tunes, and have a cup of cheer!

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Candy Land

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13

Feliz Navidad

Take the party south of the border with a fiesta holiday theme. Mariachi music, margaritas, and papel picado are a must. Instead of a Christmas tree, decorate a cactus with string lights and brightly colored pom-poms. Set up an outdoor taco bar for guests to make their own, and teach your kids about Mexican holiday traditions like Las Posadas, a procession through the whole neighborhood where children reenact Mary and Joseph’s search for lodging in Bethlehem.

Feliz Navidad

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Adults-Only Themes

For those above 21, we have organized a few Christmas party themes that are targeted to those that can drink, gamble, and reminisce on previous decades like the 70s, 80s, and 90s. We hope you enjoy our picks!


14

Christmas Luau

Aloha, snowbirds! Even if you can’t escape the cold where you are, you can still turn up the heat by throwing a Hawaiian Christmas party. Grass skirts, leis, and Hawaiian shirts make for festive attire. Tropical cocktails and fresh fruit will warm up appetites, while ukulele music keeps the party going on island time. Turn your backyard into a beach with lounge chairs, swaying palms, and tiki torches that set a relaxing mood. Transform your home into everyone’s favorite tiki-lounge themed bar!

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Christmas Luau Cookies

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15

Scandinavian Christmas

Nobody does Christmas quite like Scandinavia, where they’re just a stone’s throw away from the North Pole. Channel the northern lights by setting up a colorful light display, or hang North Stars from the ceiling. For a new twist on a classic gift exchange, consider swapping books instead of presents. You can even do this virtually by coordinating a mail-in book exchange. This Nordic tradition will be a thoughtful addition to your Christmas party. For a sweet finish, bake some Finnish cardamom cookies that will make your house smell like heaven. Pass around lots of gløgg (mulled wine) for a cup of good cheer. Skål!

Scandinavian Christmas

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16

Après Ski

You don’t have to hit the slopes to get this holiday party theme. Give everyone an excuse to break out that vintage ski gear. We’re talking Day-Glo puffer jackets from the eighties and fuzzy pom-pom beanies (the bigger the better). Don’t worry, you don’t have to wear your ski boots when lounging around the fire. Bring everyone in from the cold with ski-themed treats, like cookies shaped like skis or a cocktail bar set up under a chalet-style stand with winter drinks like hot toddies or spiked cider.

Après Ski party favors

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17

Moody Christmas Party

This is not your grandma’s Christmas dinner. Up the drama this year by creating a cinematic look inspired by Dutch still-life paintings, long winter nights, and starry skies. Midnight blues, wine-toned accents, and gold hardware create a dark and moody look. Set the tone with candelabras for dramatic ambiance. Keep the menu rich and full, like roast duck, decadent chocolate cake, and merlot all around. Do your research beforehand and provide each guest with their horoscope based on their birth month.

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Moody Christmas Party

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18

Vegas Christmas

If friends and family can’t celebrate in Vegas, bring Vegas to them with an adults-only Christmas party theme that plays to gambling, bright lights, and entertainment. Host a poker tournament, set up a blackjack table, and instead of gambling with poker chips, bet with Christmas cookies and cupcakes.

Vegas Christmas

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19

Holiday Comedy Roast

This wild holiday party idea is perfect for celebrating a special guest of honor. Whether it is a family member celebrating a monumental birthday or a colleague celebrating retirement, encourage attendees to line up some funny jokes that can be directed at the guest of honor. As the party planner, you can moderate how raunchy you allow the jokes to get. Continue the “roast” theme over into the dinner menu by serving a Christmas roast of your favorite meat.

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Holiday Comedy Roast

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20

Winter Beer Tasting

The over-21 crowd will love this Christmas theme! Many breweries around the world will release winter brews and themed beer recipes unique to the months of November and December. San Francisco’s very own Anchor Brewing has released a special Christmas Ale every year since 1975. Head to your local BevMo or liquor store and purchase a variety of beers that your guests may have never heard of. Create some note cards detailing flavors featured in each selection. Of course, with anything alcohol-related, ensure your guests are drinking responsibly and have post-party transportation arranged. Or, host your beer tasting virtually by dropping off samples to their door ahead of time and challenging each other on your opinions over a video call.

Winter Beer Tasting

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21

12 Wines of Christmas

If you are promising to pour 12 different wines, you can expect your RSVPs to start coming back “yes.” This adult Christmas party theme can take on many different adaptations. Perhaps you feature only wines from certain regions, grapes of particular varietals, or you can even encourage each guest to bring a wine bottle of their own to add to the sampling assortment. Pair your tastings with an impressive charcuterie board of world cheese, cured meats, and crackers.

12 Wines of Christmas

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22

Hollywood Mixer

The movie and television industry has not been able to pump out new entertaining content at the quality and quantity we have grown accustomed to before the COVID-19 pandemic. Play homage to some of your favorite celebrities and fictional characters with a costume party that encourages guests to dress like someone that normally appears on the screen. As an icebreaker, instruct partygoers to guess the identity of everyone at the party. Investigate some fun cocktails to pour for everyone in attendance. You can start your research with our list of Christmas cocktails featuring gin, vodka, or whiskey.

Hollywood Mixer

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Funny Party Ideas

For those that like a good chuckle, we have arranged some funny Christmas themes bound to leave an impression on your guests. They will come to your party camera-in-hand ready to document the laughs and embarrassing moments.


23

Carol-oke

Isn’t the name of this Christmas theme catchy and clever? Host a karaoke night dedicated to all our favorite Christmas carols and songs. Mail out party invitations a month or so in advance to allow guests to start stretching their vocal cords at home.

Choose to rent a karaoke machine or simply print out lyrics to all your favorite tunes that party attendees can reference. Add to the entertainment and production value by dressing up an area of your backyard to look like a stage, complete with streamers, a spotlight, and string lights.


24

Santravaganza

Get it? We combined the word “Santa” with “extravaganza”. Various cities throughout the U.S. hold Santa races in December where runners are all dressed in red suits and white beards. Copying that trend, host a holiday party where all guests are instructed to dress up as Santa Claus. Minted has quite a few Santa-themed party invitations and holiday cards that would work perfectly for getting the word out!

Santa Flaus by Baumbirdy

Santa Flaus designed by Baumbirdy


25

Christmas Movie Marathon

Everyone has that one friend who’s never seen It’s a Wonderful Life. So take advantage of a snow day and invite them over for a Christmas movie marathon! From old classics like Frosty the Snowman to more Hallmark movies than we can count, there’s something for everyone. Start a movie trivia contest, drinking game (every time someone mentions “Christmas spirit,” drink!) or sing-along. Pop fresh popcorn and invite guests to add their own toppings. For even more fun, set up your own outdoor theater in the backyard and invite friends to bring their favorite lawn chair. You can even mail out homemade tickets with your party invitations.

Christmas Movie Marathon

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26

Ugly Sweater Party

Of all the funny Christmas party themes, this one takes the cake. Make it a contest by offering prizes, from best home-made sweater to most sparkles. Bonus points for anyone who recreates their parents’ (or grandparents’) retro Christmas outfits from happy golden days of yore. And don’t forget to take lots of photos—you want to make sure you can look back on those ugly sweaters for years to come. Bake some sugar cookies in the shape of sweaters and allow party attendees to decorate their own ugly sweater-themed cookie!

Ugly Sweater Party

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27

Christmas in July

So you want to throw a Fourth of July party, but you’re five months late, or seven months early. Enter: the Christmas in July party (or would that be Fourth of July in December?). Either way, celebrate the US of A with star-spangled decorations mixed with Christmas red and green. Fire up the grill and make some good summer BBQ food, because at this point, we don’t blame you if you’re bored of candy canes and Christmas pudding. Create a song list of some of the most patriotic tunes to play as well. You can really have some fun with this Christmas theme.

Christmas in July

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28

How The Grinch Stole Christmas

Turn your home into Whoville! This classic Dr. Seuss book makes the perfect funny Christmas theme. From green-hued treats to DIY grinch decorations (basically green fur everywhere). Kids can make crafts inspired by the Grinch’s growing heart, or spend the afternoon watching the hit movie. Or, make storytime a group activity by having everyone read a page each from the book. Either way, it’s quality time spent together. After all, “Christmas doesn’t come from a store; Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”

Grinch Party Ornaments

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29

White Elephant

It’s either the perfect excuse to re-gift that weird fruit bowl or a chance to pick out an outrageous gift that you kind of want to end up with by the time the game is over. Either way, this funny Christmas party theme is the silly holiday staple everyone looks forward to. Set a price range so it’s a fair game, then sit back and see what everyone came up with. We bet a novelty cookie jar or something shaped like a dinosaur is involved. For additional interactive game ideas to keep your holiday party guests engaged, be sure to read through our post on 28 fun Christmas games.

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Falala by Baumbirdy

Falala designed by Baumbirdy


30

Flannel Fun

What exactly is a flannel holiday party, you ask? Anything you want it to be, as long as it involves flannel. We think this holiday party theme is perfect for a cabin getaway with friends, where all that’s on the agenda is lounging in your flannel. But if you really want to get in the spirit, head to the fabric store to pick up strips of flannel for decorations and easy touches. Nothing says holiday cheer like plaid bows mixed with evergreen boughs and your favorite cinnamon-scented candles. You can even round out the event with rustic personalized stockings, such as this Painterly Plaid design.

Flannel Fun Party

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31

Rudolph the Red-Nosedd Reindeer

Bring to life the beloved characters of this classic Christmas film! Pass out light-up red noses for guests to wear, plus reindeer headbands for the perfect photo op. Create adorable reindeer treats like cookies with pretzel antlers, or make DIY reindeer drink stirrers for a charming touch. Set up kid-friendly activities, like pin the red nose on the Rudolph or ring toss with “antler” branches. Let the reindeer games begin!

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Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer rice crispy treats

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32

Pajama Party

Make it a cozy night in and break out the matching pajamas. Keep everyone warm with flannel blankets for an outdoor party, or come in from the cold and sit by the fire to make smores. This one is also a perfect theme for a virtual party on a cold, winter day, when all you want to do is stay in bed. Be sure to have mugs of cider and hot cocoa on hand, complete with marshmallow snowmen you can craft yourself. It’s fun for all ages, too. If you're running late on Christmas photos, this could be a great time to grab the camera. Pajama parties make for great photos, keeping the kids busy with a fun activity that allows for candid photo taking. See our full list of unique family photo ideas for more inspiration.

Pajama Party

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33

Nightmare Before Christmas

Whether you love or hate Tim Burton’s animated Halloween/Christmas movie, it does present inspiration for a funny Christmas party theme! Encourage your guests to recycle the Halloween costumes they may have worn back on October 31st. Are there ways they can bring fresh life into those costumes with a Christmas spin? Zombie elves anyone? Let your imagination run wild with decoration options like jack-o-lanterns with reindeers carved into them or plastic skeletons wearing Santa hats.

Nightmare Before Christmas party

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Once you have a party theme selected, the real planning begins. We have put together a shopping list of items to consider to ensure your Christmas party is one to remember!

Classic Christmas Party Checklist:

  • Invitations
  • Balloons
  • Paper Decorations
  • Plates
  • Napkins
  • Cups
  • Utensils
  • Tablecloth
  • Beverages
  • Ice
  • Appetizers
  • Desserts
  • Song Playlist
  • String Lights
  • Candles
  • Craft Supplies
  • Printout Games
  • Photo Booth Props
  • Wreaths
  • Evergreen Trimmings