- Holidays and Celebrations
British Pub Costume Theme
The British Pub Fancy-Dress Theme
If you are looking for a costume theme which is typically British, why not go 'down the pub'?
As regular readers of our costume information pages (on Hubpages, and of course,our own fancy dress website), know, Props n Frocks are the leaders in providing costume themes that you may not have thought about.
Read on and enter the wonderful world of Props n Frocks...
Going down the pub - costume-style!
Although it has its imitators and lookalikes around the world, the pub is an essential part of the British way of life, both as a 'watering-hole' and a centre of social activity (especially when many pubs feature football matches and other major events (such as royal weddings) on large screen TVs).
So how do you do a pub theme party? Well given that both are to do with food, drink and entertainment, you're off to a good start. Beyond that, read further on for some of our quirky pointers for costuming...
The Queen Vic(toria)
Go As The Name of A Pub
The name of a Pub is what separates it from other mere bars. Names like The Crown, The Chequers, The White Lion are shared by hundreds of establishments across the country, others may relate to specific localities or events or be just plain, off-the-wall eccentric (the Slug and Lettuce?). Put 'British Pub' into your search engine and you should get some examples of names and useful inspiration. Some examples:
Royalty-based: : The British have a long tradition of royal kings and queens (although one did lose his head in an argument with Parliament). Sometimes the names are a little vague - The Queen's Head, The King's Arms (which may be related to heraldry- see below), whilst others will name names - The George (there have been a few of those, plus Saint George is Patron Saint of England -celebrated 23rd April) or the Queen Victoria - one of the longest serving British queens. With Victoria being so popular, specific costumes exist, but for most other members of royalty, a crown, a cloak and a regal outfit will do. Below the Kings and Queens there are the Princes and Princesses and here you can have some fun with word-play, so a plain outfit with some pictures of Wales (the country) or Whales (the giant mammals) pinned on gives you the Prints of Wales.
Titled Persons: : The Duke of Wellington (an English military leader who defeated the French forces of the Emperor Napoleon), The Duke of York (there's one in a nursery rhyme known for marching soldiers up and down hills). 'Pub' Duchesses and their costumes are a little harder to find (although there's one in the classic Alice in Wonderland). Other titles seen are those who have been knighted and are known as 'Sir' (hence Sir Francis Drake, a well known sea-captain and adventurer of English Tudor times) and genuine knights, such as the Saint George previously mentioned (although, despite being the patron saint of England, he never visited the country!).
Heraldry: Names such as The Red Lion or the White Horse can derive from the heraldic animals found on Coats of Arms (the pictorial elements which distinguished knights on the field of battle). Furthermore, many pubs are named after such heraldic devices such as the Feathers (possibly depicted in costume by a chicken or a lady festooned with boas!) or the Chequers.
Colourful People: : Aside from the heraldic animals, a number of colourful individuals may feature. The Green Man (or Woman) is a popular folk character associated with Spring (or in the female case, Mother Earth Gaia), although some could cheat with an off-the-peg Hulk outfit. The White Lady is obviously easily depicted as a ghost and the Blue Boy can be a Smurf!
..or any other name you can find: Search the Net, chances are you can find a pub name to inspire you.
Some Pub Costume IdeasClick thumbnail to view full-size
Or Go As One Of The Drinks
There are a wide range of off-the-peg drinks bottle costumes available - Beer, Tequila, Rum, Champagne and Vodka but if that's a bit boring, there are an increasing number of British Breweries producing beers with interesting names. Again, a search around the internet may give you some interesting ideas, but as a starter, there has been an established link between monks and brewing (of beer and spirits) for many years, so beers such as Merrie Monk or Bishop's Finger (originally the name of a type of a signpost in the county of Kent) can be found in pubs both on draught (from the tap) or in bottles. If you can't decide, there's always the Beer Dispenser costume! For the ladies, unfortunately nuns don't seem to have had the same enthusiasm for making alcohol (but there was a brand of wine called Blue Nun,so that is another costuming opportunity!) The way forward might be to create something around the various interestingly named cocktails to be found in some of the classier pubs.
Props n Frocks - THE fancy dress experts - established since 1998
When it comes to pub decorations, if you haven't a friendly 'local' which can help with relevant items such as beer mats or advertising posters and 'ephemera', you can doubtless find plenty of source material off the Internet. Another easy option would be to pin up some red, white & blue bunting to create the British feel.
Try to borrow some stools, stick up 'No Smoking signs' - if you are in the UK. Setting up a Karaoke machine will also create a pub atmosphere and help with the entertainment.