There are a number of ways to "decorate" for your party, but the most authentic way would be to set up your space to resemble a speakeasy. In order to do this, there are a couple of things to pay attention to:
• Have the guests enter by the side door instead of the front-- many speakeasies had secret or side entrances so as not to call attention to themselves.
• Create a back alleyway using a brick wall scenesetter or making your own styrofoam wall (see below).
• Use a peephole in the door before letting your guests in.
• We created this "back entrance" to our Juice Joint and had people enter through the garage. We used a hung door which we purchased from a local hardware store and cut a peephole out of it. For the walls we painted some styrofoam insulation sheeting. Add in the crates we created (templates below) and we had a perfect entrance.
DOWNLOAD INSTRUCTIONS TO MAKE YOUR OWN STYROFOAM WALL HERE
• Have the guests use a secret password to get in. If the guests do not know or can't remember the password, make them do something (sing a silly tune, do jumping jacks, etc.) in order to gain entrance to your private club.
• Have a bouncer 'frisk' your guests at the door-- gun check!
• Create your own crates (boxes) of bootlegged liquor. Included in the Murder at The Juice Joint mystery are 6 label designs. Simply download and print out these labels we've designed for you onto craft paper and paste them onto the sides of boxes. You can place the boxes on the outside or in of your speakeasy to help set the mood.
• Create "WANTED" posters for felons coming to the party - Southside Sal, Notorious Nick and Mugsy Malone - to name a few. (Included with the mystery when you order Murder at The Juice Joint.)
• Set up an actual gun check.
• These printable designs (and more) are included in your Murder at The Juice Joint packet when you order. Simply print them out to make signs for your Juice Joint.
• Serve drinks in teacups or coffee mugs-- As this is Prohibition all drinks are served in a cup and saucer - furtively and discretely.
• Shower your walls with bullethole (clings) to to remind your guests of past events that have gone down at The Juice Joint.
• Chill your beverages in the bathtub (bathtub gin).
• One elegant addition may be a juice fountain for some of your "juice" or champagne cocktails.
• Tea lights placed around your home are an easy way to create atmosphere. Don't forget a few flickering flames out on the patio, but make sure they're secure in a votive glass.
• Set up an intimate nightclub atmosphere. This can also be created outside by using white table covers, hanging lights, candles.
• Flapper accessories, feathers and shiny beads, can also be used for decoration. Maintaining black and white is best.
• Have a small dance floor and tiny stage with a bandstand-- you could even hire a jazz band! Or create your own (shown below)
• Have a fog machine-- to fill the speakeasy with "smoke".
• Play silent and/or black & white movies on the wall-- This is the era of the silver screen. Some suggestions include: Al Capone, Bugsy Siegel, The Great Gatsby.
• Set up tables for gambling-- since the Juice Joint IS where Notorious Nick runs some of his gambling rackets out of!
• Set out oak barrels.
• Create a bar stocked with "old" liquor bottles.
(1) Save empty bottles.
(2) Print out old liquor labels (included with Murder at The Juice Joint mystery packet)
(3) Cut labels out and paste them to your bottles.
Tip: Ask a local bar to save empty bottle for you on a busy night.
• Stage a midnight raid-- by Elliot Ness and his prohibition agents.
• Have a Charleston Contest-- instructions here.
• Take "mug shots" of your guests. See how some of our customers have done this in the past:
• Post pictures of gangsters-- Have them sign "To Rosie--...love, Al' for instance on Al Capone's pict.
NINE autographed pictures are included in Your Murder at the Juice Joint mystery party when you purchase! (pictured below)