1990s birthday party ideas

Updated April 17, 2017

A trend for birthday parties is to focus on a certain decade as the overall theme. This lets guests relive their past, or for younger people, experience a time that they didn't get a chance to be part of. The 1990s have become a time in which people can look back with fond memories. A few benefits of a '90s birthday party are that the decade is recent enough to be easily remembered and many of the popular parts of the decade are still readily available to make planning easier.

Dress Code

While the dress code doesn't have to be formal unless you want it to, it should fit in with the '90s theme. Have guests wear clothes that reflect some of the popular trends of the '90s. This can include baggy overalls, backward caps and plenty of flannel. Female guests can head to the local thrift store or possibly the back of their closets to put on babydoll dresses and platform sneakers, while guys can slip into baggy jeans and get fade haircuts.

Food and Drinks

Food popular in the '90s mainly dealt with either making food as portable as possible or making food low-fat. Pick up some low-fat meals for guests, or opt for fast food like pizza or McDonald's. Fruitopia drinks were a popular choice but may not be readily available. For lighter snacks, set up a table with Baked Lays or Pringles. For a '90s birthday cake, incorporate some trends onto the top of the cake, such as adding an airbrushed image of the Spice Girls or Pokemon. For those with some baking talents or the budget to buy a personalised cake from a bakery, try shaping the cake into a Push pop or a Tamagotchi.


Much of the popular entertainment in the '90s involved electronic gadgets. If you have access to a Sega Genesis, hold a friendly competition to see who can win at Sonic the fastest. Other popular games include Skip-It and Pogs. Music for guests to dance to or just to have playing in the background adds even more of a '90s flare to the party. Opt to play bubblegum pop such as Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears, or go for New Jack Swing like Bel Biv Devoe and Montell Jordan. Challenge guests to a Macarena-off, seeing who can keep up the dance for the longest time.

Party Favors

Thank guests for sharing your '90s birthday with you by handing out gift bags filled with party favours. This can include popular toys and candy from the '90s. Fill the gift bags with things such as Ring Pops, Saved by the Bell merchandise, Polly Pocket toys or Beanie Babies . You can even tailor the gift bags to fit the theme by using bags from popular '90s sitcoms.

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About the Author

Ticara Gailliard is a college graduate with a degree in communications/film and video production from the University of Memphis. She has been a writer for over 15 years and has been published in local writing magazines such as "Grandmother Earth." She also edited two books for her high school.