1980s table decorations

Written by christine bartsch Google
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1980s table decorations
Create punk rock centrepieces by adding big hair and heavy make-up to blank mannequin heads. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

When throwing an 1980s theme party, the standard floral table centrepieces just won't do. Have a little fun with the fads and trends from the kitschy decade with found-object table decorations that are purely sculptural. For occasions that do call for flowers, add an '80s vibe to the centrepieces by utilising vintage colour trends and inserting retro decorative elements into the floral arrangements.

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Totally Tubular Trends Centerpiece

Atari, slap bracelets, Pac-Man, Ray-Ban sunglasses -- the "Material Girl" '80s spawned dozens of trends that will bring back fond memories for party goers on sight. Create cohesive centrepieces by filling clear tubular vases with a collection of retro odds and ends. For trendy items too small to simply place in the vases, suspend the items with fishing line from the lids of clear plastic tubes or jars. Mix and match the memorabilia within the centrepieces, or create a theme for each table. For example, one table's centrepiece might consist of an assortment of Swatch Watches suspended in a clear plastic tube, while another table's tube is filled completely with Rubik's cubes. Finish off the look by wrapping the top and bottom ends of the tubes with hair scrunchies and legwarmers.

Preppie Pastel Centerpiece

Sit through one John Hughes movie and you'll see a theme of rich, preppy students in pastel fashions dominating the high school scene in the 1980s. Use the fashion trends and colours from those characters as inspiration for a classy and refined, yet totally retro, '80s floral centrepiece. Select flowers in a variety of pale pinks, peaches and mint greens. Include plenty of Gypsophila, or baby's breath, in the arrangements to echo the floral wreath Molly Ringwald wore in the wedding scene from "Sixteen Candles." Fill the clear flower vases with strands of pearls -- reminiscent of the pearl necklaces preppy girls frequently wore. Add the final preppy touch to the table by tying a sweater around the base of each centrepiece vase as an homage to the sweaters worn around the waists or shoulders of many preppies.

New Wave Neon Art Centerpiece

Sculptural neon light art pieces became all the rage in the 1980s. Bring back the trend with an eclectic assortment of table decorations that are truly electric in colour and power. Scour flea markets and online vintage stores to find authentic, free-standing, neon light art statues from the 1980s that came in an assortment of fun shapes, such as palm trees and pink flamingos. For large budget parties, hire a neon-sign maker to make as many electric neon centrepieces as you need.

Party planners with less cash to spare can assemble wooden geometric centrepieces as an homage to the geometric patterns that dominated fashion and interior design in the 1980s. Paint the sculptures with bright neon glow-in-the-dark colours that will shine under black lights.

Righteous Punk Rock Centerpiece

A headbanging '80s theme party emphasising the heavy metal and punk rock trends of the decade definitely calls for an edgier centrepiece. Capitalise on the kooky hair trends from the decade with table decorations that use mannequin heads as the focus. Bedeck the heads with heavily hair-sprayed neon hair, combed up into Mohawks and side ponytails. Open up the party's theme to incorporate New Wave music with mannequin heads sporting sculptural hairdos inspired by bands such as Flock of Seagulls. Finish off the look by adding flashy '80s make-up and accessories, such as neon shutter sunglasses, spiked dog collars or the big lace bows worn in the 1980s by pop superstar Madonna.

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