Adult's Parties

Seafood Dinner Party with Vintage Fish Dinner Service

For a number of years I have collected vintage fish shaped ceramics, these include dinner sets from Shorter and Sons England to some lovely Australian pieces from Wembley Ware and Darbyshire. These are all vintage pieces from 1950s or earlier and on a crazy whim I decided to see what would happen if I had a seafood dinner party using my vintage fish collection.

And it actually worked, enjoy Julie.

Seafood Dinner Party ideas

The table held vintage fish shaped vases with colourful bouquets of flowers, vintage fish plates, salt and pepper shakers and more. Keeping with the vintage theme we included vintage crystal glasses and decanters.

Wembley Ware Dhu Fish Vase

Darbyshire Salt and Pepper Fish

The pieces used have been collected over a number of years through various trips to antique fairs and markets and the occasional on-line purchase.

Seafood Dinner Party Ideas

I created the menu incorporating my fish display cabinet , the menu is available as a free download . Vintage Crystal and decanters were used for this party and a Shorter and Sons Fish Gravy boat with matching pate.

Seafood Dinner Party menu

Seafood Dinner Party Ideas

This has to be the brightest and most unusual dinner party table I’ve created. It is always fun to experiment with vintage pieces and see what you can create.

Seafood dinner party with vintage Shorter and Sons fish plates

Shorter and Sons fish plates come in a range of colours from the most common cream with green gills and fins through plates in hues of greens, blues and pinks.. This party included matching name places and paper napkin rings, both are available as a free download.

Shorter and Sons Fish plate

Shorter and Sons fish plate

Shorter and Sons Fish Plate

Shorter and Sons Fish Plate

Jim Beam fish decanters completed the look with another large green fish vase and small Wembley Ware fish vases.

Jim Beam Fish Decanters - Seafood Dinner Party

Fish vases allow for great displays of colour.

Seafood Dinner Party Decorating Ideas

Seafood Dinner Party Ideas

The Menu

The menu included four courses and ending with coffee and petit fours. Dishes were simple to prepare so more time could be spent with guests

We served two canapes, the first was a simple prawn with avacado and mayo on toasted pina di casa, this was served on a very large shorter and sons fish plater. The second was natural oysters served on a shorter and sons oyster plate rwith matching salt shaker.

Seafood Canapes on Shorter and Sons Platter

Shorter and Sons Oyster Plate with Salt Shaker

The next course was a seafood chowder, this was served in a shorter and sons soup tureen with matching lid (Not shown)

Seafood Chowder served in Shorter and Sons Tureen

Our main course was spaghetti Marinara with garlic bread, this dish looked great on the fish plates.

Spaghetti Marinara served on Shorter and Sons Fist Plate

We finished with a raspberry souffle with a hidden chocolate truffle, served in a souffle dish on a smaller shorter and sons plate. We finished with coffee and a selection of petit fours.

Raspberry Souffle served on a Shorter and Sons Fish Plate

Seafood Dinner Party Games

During the night we played a few rounds of “Guess Who or Guess What” based on different seafood dishes or sea life. We placed cards in card holders wrapped in black velvet. These cards are available as a free download.

Seafood Dinner Party Games

Seafood Dinner Party Guess Who Games

A set of printable products were created to compliment this party, they include napkin rings, blank name tents and blank cards. Three sets of Dinner party “Guess Who” games are also available as a free download Set 1, Set 2 and Set 3.

Seafood Dinner Party Free Printables

Seafood Dinner Party Game Printables

We hoped you enjoyed our seafood dinner party.

Cheers Julie

Medieval Banquet Dinner Party with Menu, Recipes & Games

This party is both one of my most memorable and one of my most challenging.  The recreation of a medieval banquet while appeasing modern taste required a lot of recipe research.  This dinner party was hosted in full theme with rich medieval characters, we decorated in a medieval style with rich fabrics and tapestries, the dinner party included medieval games and a medieval puppet theatre.

 This party includes a 6 course banquet plan for 8 people with recipes and free printables.

Enjoy Julie

GOT Medieval dinner Party table setting

Creating a medieval table

I went with an opulent table of dark reds and gold, reminiscent of a regal banquet.  The table cloth was a baroque upholstery fabric with a rich floral and stipe pattern.  The central candelabra was gold with vine leaves to which I added red berries and greenery from my Christmas box.

Medieval dinner Party decorating ideas

Banquet tables were often decorated with exotic fruits - or meats disguised as fruits.  For this party I went with real fruit placed in vintage colourful carnival glass pedestal dishes.

Medieval Dinner Party table setting

GOT dinner party table centre piece ideas

Fresh flowers also graced our table, these were placed in vintage copper urns, the centre of the table was full of berry garlands and small gold tea lights.  Dark red velvet tie backs were used on the chairs to add richness.

Medieval Dinner Party

A Medieval menu was created for this party, all recipes are included below.  The party started with a warm mead served in vintage gold and red glasses.

Medieval Dinner Party - Mead Starter

Medieval Dinner Party Menu

The place settings used a gold charger with a vintage red and gold dinner set and gold flatware.  Napkin holders were created with wide floral craft ribbon and gold metal napkin rings.  A red berry and place name topped the plate. Our guest name cards can be downloaded here. (Set 1) and (Set 2)

Medieval Dinner Party Place Settings

Medieval gold goblets with gemstones graced the table with small brass deers.

Medieval Dinner Party Table Settings

The Menu

The most challenging part of this party was the menu.  Just what did the nobility eat in the middle ages?  They ate a lot of meat, including a lot of game. Salads, fruits and nuts when available and a lot of soups.  Hosts liked to be creative in the presentation of meals and great banquets went for many hours with many courses.  This was also a time of plague with many people opting for herbal elixirs to combat the flux.  Our recipes are all included below and you can download our menu

Medieval Dinner Party Menu

Our first course was Salad with herbs, fruit and nuts.  In medieval times salad was called "salat".  We served a version of a Waldolf Salad with edible flowers, this helped make this dish quite striking.  

Medieval Dinner Party Entree - Salad with Herbs and Nuts

Our second course was Pottage with trenches.  Pottage is a soup style dish to which you added anything that was available.  We made a hearty winter soup and added purple cabbage to provide a striking purple broth.  Given the number of courses served this day I went with Grissoni rather that a heavy trench of bread.

Medieval Dinner Party Soup - Pottage

Our third course was scallops on the half shell with sage butter.  We served these using each houses banner.  You will read more on this later.

Medieval Dinner Party entree - Scallops on the half shell

Our fourth course was a herbal plague elixer.  This was a lovely basil and lime sorbet, a perfect fourth course. This was served in a vintage champagne glass with vintage ornate Asian spoons.

Medieval Dinner Party entree - Plague elixer

Our fifth and main course was a crown roast beef served with potatoes and green beans.  You will require a good butcher to create the crown.  The beef was served with a rich gravy, roast potatoes and garlic and a green bean and pomegranate side.

Medieval dinner Party Main Course - Crown Roast Beef

Medieval Dinner Party Sides - Roast Potato

Medieval Dinner Party Sides - Beans with Pomegranate

Our sixth and final course was spiced poached pear with mead.  The mead was served warm in a petite glass

Medieval Dinner Party Dessert - Poached Pear in Red Wine

Medieval party decorating

The trick to this style of party is to plan well ahead so you can slowly collect objects to help transform your home into a medieval castle. It's amazing the effect that plastic stone wall has on a room, while tricky to get in place it really helps to create a medieval castle ambience. 

GOT Medieval Dinner Party Decorating Ideas

An alter was created for meal serving complete with tall wooden candles, tapestries, rich vintage fabric and faux hides. Our Hosts were of viking decent so we included horned helmets.  The medieval people were also deeply religious so a small shrine was included, complete with bible

Medieval Dinner Party Decorating Ideas

Medieval Dinner Party Decorating Ideas

Our deer (bob) fit in really well for this party.

Medieval Dinner Party Decorating Ideas

Medieval Party Games

The party was held in character with the hosts Ragner and Lagetha inviting three formidably medieval couples to a winter solstice banquet.  The night evolved often in character with each couple performing a puppet play and trying to murder the opposition using a "find the card game"  Prior to the party each guest was sent specific party instructions, these included formal character descriptions for the evening, a brief bio on the other guests, some puppets to form a play and a house banner to make.  The party games can be downloaded using the following links:  Game instructions and character overview, Large Banners, Banner cards, Game Cards one, two & three

Medieval Dinner Party Games

The arrival of the house banners represented the arrival of our guests.  Each house was asked to prepare a play for the medieval puppet show, our puppet theatre was made using cardboard boxes, pane velvet and a hand pained backdrop of the country side. House banners were displayed on tall candelabras.

Medieval Dinner Party Banners

Medieval Dinner Party Puppet Show

Medieval card holders were made with vintage style jewellery and velvet. These were used for a game of medieval guess who.  The game included medieval occupations, such as “Master of the Privy” and a “cupbearer” and items found around the standard castle.

Medieval Dinner Party Party Games

Prior to the party, small images of the house banners were hidden through the dining and lounge area, as they were found they were placed on the corresponding house banner, the first couple to receive 12 cards on their banner met an awful death.

Medieval Dinner Party - Party Games

Medieval Dinner Party - Party Games

Medieval Dinner Party Party Games

The invitations were delivered a few weeks in advance, I dressed my children as young vikings for the occasion.  The invitations were secured within ornate flocked paper and sealed with a ribbon and wax seal. The invitations were in a box with party instructions, banners  and puppets.

Medieval Dinner Party - Invitation delivery

Medieval Dinner Party Invitations

The Recipes

For this Medieval Dinner Party we did a lot of research on medieval banquets and the meals consumed by the wealthy in the middle ages, we then applied a modern overlay to transform some potentially unpalatable options to modern times.  The menu also took into account what can be achieved in a normal domestic kitchen and served while entertaining guests, recipes are for 8 guests.

While the recipes were not difficult it did require a good plan to ensure the meals hit the table on time.  I also asked different guests to assist with plating the various courses and this was invaluable help.

How I approached the cooking.

  • Some of these ingredients will not be available at your local supermarket, specifically edible flowers and micro herbs, find suppliers well in advance

  • Start the soup a day in advance

  • Order the crown roast a month in advance and ask your butcher to age the meat

  • Start the plague Elixer a day in advance

  • Prepare the dressing for the Salat a day in advance

  • Ensure the table is all set at least a day in advance

  • Have all the serving ware close at hand and ready to use


GOT Dinner Party Entree - Salat with Herbs, Fruit and Nuts

GOT Dinner Party Entree - Salat with Herbs, Fruit and Nuts

Salat with Herbs, Fruit and Nuts.


  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard

  • 200g creamy Blue Cheese

  • Pinch sugar

  • Salt & Pepper

  • 4 tablespoons lemon Juice

  • 200 ml Olive oil

  • 400ml sunflower oil

  • 4 tablespoons warm water

  • 8 Granny Smith apples

  • 4 Celery Sticks

  • 200g Walnuts

  • Watercress

  • 50 grams creamy blue cheese

  • Edible flowers (Pansies)


  1. For the dressing, cream the egg yolk, mustard, cheese, lemon juice and salt and pepper until smooth

  2. Slowly add the two oils while slowly whisking the mayonnaise to form an emulsion, If the mayonnaise becomes thick half way through add the water and continue adding the oil while whisking. Season if required.

  3. Roast the walnuts in a preheated oven at 180 C for 6 minutes cool completely

  4. Wash and peel the celery, cut into 5 cm long thin sticks, keep them in a zip lock bag in the fridge until needed.

  5. Wash apples and watercress.

  6. When you are ready to serve remove the core with an apple corer, then use a mandoline to slice the apples into 2 - 3 ml thick slices. Keep the apples together to make them look as if they are whole again.

  7. Lightly dress each slice with the dressing and place the apple in its natural shape in the centre of a plate.

To Serve

  1. Arrange the apple in the centre of the plate in its natural shape

  2. Arrange the celery, walnuts and watercress around the apple and crumb the cheese. Spoons the dressing lightly around the plate and add some of the dressing. Place some edible flowers around the plate as a final touch

GOT Dinner Party Soup - Potage

GOT Dinner Party Soup - Potage

Pottage with Trenches


  • 3 lamb shanks

  • 4 litres of water

  • 1 onion

  • 1 stick celery

  • 4 carrots

  • 2 potatoes

  • 1/2 small purple cabbage

  • 1 stick extra celery

  • 1 turnip

  • Salt / pepper

  • Packet Grissini sticks

  • Chives as a garnish


  1. For the stock, place lamb, water, roughly chopped onion, celery salt and pepper in a pan.

  2. Bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook cover for 1 1/2 hours.

  3. Cool the stock and refrigerate overnight.

  4. Next day, strain stock and discard any fat, return the stock to the pan, add the roughly chopped meat from the shanks and ring to a boil

  5. Add chopped carrots, potatoes, turnip, extra celery and cabbage and simmer covered for 1 hour.

  6. Season as required.

To Serve

  1. Place two Grissini sticks and long chives on the side of a vintage bowl..

GOT Dinner Party Entree - Scallops on the half shell

GOT Dinner Party Entree - Scallops on the half shell

Scallops on the half shell with sage butter


  • 24 scallops on the half shell

  • 1 tablespoon olive oli

  • 40 grams buter

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 1 tablespoon chopped sage leaves

  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives

  • Lemon wedges to serve

  • Micro herbs to serve


  1. Heat a medium frying pan over high heat. Add oil, butter, sage and garlic and cook for 1 minute

  2. Remove the scallops from the shells, reserving the shells.

  3. Add the scallops to the pan and cook for 30 seconds each side.

  4. Place cooked scallops back on the shells.

  5. Add lemon juice and cook for a further minute, then add the chives.

  6. Spoon the pan sauce over the scallops to serve

To Serve

  1. The scallops were evenly arranged on the plate with a lemon wedge and micro herbs.

  2. A house banner was inserted into the lemon - you can read more about house banners in the Medieval Games section.

GOT Dinner Party Entree - Herbal Plague Elixer

GOT Dinner Party Entree - Herbal Plague Elixer

Herbal Plague Elixer


  • 1 1/2 cups caster sugar

  • 1 1/2 cups water

  • 2 whole star anise

  • 1 1/4 cups fresh lime Juice

  • 30 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped

  • Extra lime for plating

  • micro basil for plating


  1. Bring sugar and water to the boil in a small saucepan; allow to boil 1 minute, then remove from heat.

  2. Combine the above, lime juice and basil in a blender until they are a fine puree.

  3. Pour the mixture into a container deep enough to allow you you to use an ice cream scoop

  4. Ensure the container is completely covered to avoid icing, then place in the fridge for 2 hours.

  5. Remove from the freezer and place in the blender for a second time until very smooth. Return to the container, cover and freeze until ready to use.

To Serve

  1. I used vintage champagne glasses with a gold pattern around the rim, these were placed on a set of three graduated plates. The spoons were a vintage set from Thailand with a wooden handle and brassy coloured metal spoon.

  2. Using an ice cream scoop, place one scoop per glass

  3. Place a wedge of lime on the glass and some micro basil

GOT Dinner Party Main Course - Crown Roast Beef

GOT Dinner Party Main Course - Crown Roast Beef

Crown Roast Beef


You will require a good butcher for this roast.  I ordered this roast a month in advance so our wonderful butcher reserved and aged the beef.  I used a wing-rib sirloin which the butcher secured into a crown with string.  You will require approximately 12 ribs to form a crown.  Ensure you ask your butcher to chine the beef joint between the upper spine bones so you can easily slice between the ribs.


  1. Remove the meat from the fridge a good hour before cooking

  2. Preheat oven to 240c

  3. For medium/ rare roast at 240c for the first 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 180.

  4. Calculate time using 17 minutes for each 500 grams. If using a meat thermometer cook until internal temperature reaches 65c

  5. Allow to rest for at least 15 minutes in a warm place or double layer of foil

To Serve

  1. We served the roast on a large platter and carved between each rib at the table.

  2. The roast was served with sides of roast potatoes and garlic and green beans and pomegranate and a rich gravy.

GOT Dinner Party Dessert - Poached Pear in Red Wine

GOT Dinner Party Dessert - Poached Pear in Red Wine

Spiced Poached Pear with Mead


  • 750 ml dry red wine

  • 1/3 cup caster sugar

  • 2 whole star anise

  • 2 cinnamon sticks

  • 1 vanilla bean, split

  • 8 Just ripe pears, peeled with the stem attached and base trimmed to stand straight


  1. Combine wine, sugar, star anise, cinnamon and vanilla bean in pan large enough to hold the pears.

  2. Cook, stirring until the sugar dissolves

  3. Add the pears and bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer, turning occasionally for one hour or until pears are tender (note: this can take longer if the pears are very firm)

To Serve

  1. Place the pear in the centre of the plate

  2. Drizzle with the cooking juice.

  3. Add vanilla ice cream

  4. Decorate with small African violets.

  5. Serve warm Mead to accompany the dessert.

Medieval Dinner Party Guests

In conclusion

We hope you enjoyed our GOT Medieval Dinner Party and games, it was a lot of fun, our guests fully participated with lovely dresses and great banter on life in the medieval ages. While we all enjoyed the games, it would also be a lovely party with decorations and food alone.

Cheers Julie

Credits: Ornate Medieval frames were purchased from Digitalya


Halloween Graveyard Party

Who said Halloween is just for the children?  This Halloween Graveyard was definitely created with the adults in mind.  It was a dark and eerie scene, perfect for a late evening post trick and treating party.

For this party I transformed my Dining table into a miniature graveyard including well defined graves and tombstones, skeletons raising from the graves and lots of bones.  As it was later in the evening it was a Champagne and Cheese affair served on crystal dishes which had been embellished with bones and skulls.  I've created a tutorial for the graveyard which will be posted shortly.

I'm also offering the Halloween Printables used in this Party as a free download.  I'd love to see how you have used them for your Halloween Party.

If you want to create something a bit different this Halloween, the Graveyard worked wonderfully.


Halloween Graveyard - Adults Party

The actual graveyard was just over half the length and width of the table, allowing space for Champagne glasses and serving plates.  I used black crushed Velvet as a table cloth and a pair of tall vintage candle sticks gave height to the table.

Halloween Graveyard

I used cobwebs to join the candlesticks and both candlesticks had a combination of spiders and skeletons crawling to the top.

Halloween Graveyard 

Halloween Graveyard 

I positioned some skeletons outside the Graveyard with some spiders who were all trying to escape.

Halloween Graveyard

Given the table was quite dark, I used a number of glitter spiders which added some colour and sparkle

Halloween Candle with glitter Spider

While this party was wonderful in candlelight, it was very hard to capture the detail in photography, so at this point the lights are turned on to show some detail.

At the front of the graveyard I had skeletons standing up on the graves and positioned to jump the fence.

Halloween Graveyard  - The skeleton's have raised from the grave

The graves and pathways were created using different coloured small stones.

Halloween Graveyard - Glitter Skelletons

I loved the concept of the skeletons escaping the graveyard and the spiders leaving with them.

Halloween Graveyard - The Skeletons are escaping

It appears that some our our skeletons decided to stay for some adult fun rather than leave the graveyard. I used a number of different skeleton poses to add interest to the table.

Halloween Graveyard Table - Naughty Skeletons

I dissected a number of skeletons and used the bones, I also used the bones from Halloween necklaces and bracelets.

Halloween Graveyard - use dissected skeletons and small jewelry bones to decorate the graveyard 

For this party I wanted the dishs to hide in the background, so I used vintage glass and crystal bowls and decorated them with different bones and skulls, mostly from Halloween jewelerry which was dissected for the occasion.  I used small amounts of Blu Tack to hold the bones in place and this worked really well.

Halloween crystal and bone serving bowls

Halloween Bowl with Skulls

Halloween Bowls with bone decorations

Hard to go past Vodka Jelly Shots for Halloween.  These printables looked great to add some colour and are free to download.

Halloween Vodka Jelly Shots and Free Printables

We only required simple catering with this party, some lovely cheese and biscuits with printables were perfect. 

Halloween Cheese Platter 

Our free printables include 2 inch circles that I used as Champagne Glass names

Halloween Champagne or wine glass names

Try standing some tall bread sticks amount smaller crackers. 

Halloween Crackers

A simple bowl of Olives with Skull decorations always comes in handy.

Halloween Olive bowl

Gothic Dinner Party

If you are looking for a totally different way of entertaining your guests then step back 160 years to the Victorian Gothic Period and entertain with a flamboyant gothic table setting, a gothic inspired menu, gothic party games with prizes and some good classical music.

To recreate the 1850's I used a lot of silver and crystal pieces for this party.  While I had or borrowed many pieces I managed to find a lot of wonderful vintage silver and crystal at both thrift and vintage stores. This was a real party, all meals and menus are included within this post.

To really set the gothic theme I created a series of Gothic Party Games which are featured in this post and some core printables which added colour to the black, silver and white theme. 

The Gothic Party Games and Printables will soon be available from our on-line shop. While this was a dinner party, it would work really well as a Gothic Wedding.

Gothic party

This was a real party for eight, everyone arrived dressed beautifully in vintage styled attire to enjoy an evening of decadence and frivolity.

Gothic Party Table setting

The Table

I used tiny pedestal silver goblets that were placed then on a larger silver pedestal tray for height.  They were used for a very Victorian Sherry during the evening.

Gothic Party - Silver Sherry goblets

Vintage silver salt, pepper and mustard looked great on a pedestal crystal dish.

Gothic Party - Vintage Silver Pieces

To fit the period I used crystal glasses for this party and complimented with crystal and silver decanters. The Chairs were wrapped with Tulle and a vintage silver napkin ring secured the tulle in place.

Gothic Party - Table style

I used small vintage style black photo frames for name place holders, and embellished basic silver charges with press on crystals.  For this occasion I did use my Black Laguiole flatware which was just perfect for this party. 

Gothic Party - Place Setting

The Name Place Holders and Napkin rings will shortly be available from our on-line shop.  They provided some vital colour to a very Black and Silver evening.

Gothic Party - Printable Products

I used silver coasters under all the glassware, these were easy to find in vintage stores.

Gothic Party - Glass ware

I styled a side board with pieces appropriate to the period, this included a selection of books available in 1850s and Vintage Globe book ends.

Gothic Party - Novels appropriate to the period

I did include a small number of Halloween pieces but only included what could pass as taxidermy or sculptures.

Gothic Party Decorations

I displayed the menu on the sideboard and used the same style frame as the place holders.

Gothic Dinner Party - Framed Menu

The Menu

After much internal debate I settled on a menu of "normal" dish's made to look gothic, I included lots of red dishes and different shapes but everything was very edible.   The menu will soon be available for sale in our store.

Gothic Dinner Party Menu

For starters (selection of holy relics) I included four courses that were served as tasting plates.  The first starter was a wonderful Oyster Shooter served in a crystal sherry glass with a small rat.

Selection of Holy Relics - Oyster Shooters

The next starter was a petite bloody Mary served in petite stemmed glasses and served on a vintage silver tray.

Selection of Holy Relics - Bloody Mary

Our third starter was Prawn with green olive aioli.  These were served in a small cut glass and silver cup on a silver serving tray.

Gothic Dinner Party - Prawn with Green Olive Aioli

The final starter was a simple Bacon and Tomato on Toast, the toast was cut into a crucifix using a cookie cutter.

Gothic Dinner Party - Bacon and Tomato Crucifix

We included a soup course (Broth of sewer Rat served with dead mens' fingers).  This was a warm Borscht served with Italian Bread sticks with almond sliver finger nails.

Gothic Dinner Party - Borscht with Italian Bread

All good Victorian Parties included a palette cleanser. I settled on a dark red Cherry Sorbet, these were served in vintage silver goblets with vintage collectable tea spoons.

Gothic Dinner Party - Cherry Sorbet

The main meal (Rack of suckling Wolf served with Brains and Veins) consisted of a herb crusted rack of Lamb with root vegetables cut into crucifixes.  The Brains were provided via a Cauliflower Smash made in a plastic brain mould and the veins were simple green beans with garlic and butter.

Gothic Dinner Party - Herb Crusted rack of Lamb

Both the Ladies and Gentlemen received a different dessert of Panna Cotta (Breast of Troll and Eye of Ogre).  I used red and blue jelly as the base of the Panna Cotta and food dye as paint.  Final touches included some well placed jewellery.

Gothic Dinner Party - Panna Cotta Breast

Gothic Dinner Party - Panna Cotta Troll Eye

Dessert was served with strawberry and blueberry sauce (fresh plasma).  This was served on ice in test tubes

Gothic Dinner Party - Fresh Plasma

The Games

I incorporated a number of games into this party that were all in line with the period.  To avoid shock on the night of the party I provided details of the games as part of the invitation.  The games included;

  • Each Couple was allocated a famous couple of the 1850 and part of the night was spent in Character.
  • We had Poetry readings of the Raven
  • Various "guess who" games based on household objects from the 1850s or occupations from the 1850s.

I used a small table at the party that held everything I needed to run the games

The party games, including full invitation instructions have been produced as a Gothic Game Package which will soon be available from our shop.

Gothic Party - Games

Gothic Party - Games

I used a black velvet canteen to store everything required for the Gothic Games during the evening

Gothic Dinner Party - Games

Gothic Dinner Party - Games

For this Party I played Queen Victoria and proudly wore my tiara while in character.  I created a number of prizes for guests including the best Poetry Recital.

Gothic Dinner Party - Game Prize

Gothic Dinner Party - Game Prize

Gothic Dinner Party - Games

Gothic Dinner Party - Games

The invitations were delivered a few weeks in advance, I used my youngest child dressed as a Royal Messenger to deliver the invitation and details for the Games.  

Gothic Dinner Party - Invitation

Gothic Dinner Party - Invitation

Gothic Dinner Party - Royal Messenger

Gothic Dinner Party - Royal Messenger

The Party

And yes, this was a real party and my guests all went to so much trouble to source wonderful custumes for the evening.  They all looked absolutely splendid.

Gothic Dinner Party - party in action

Gothic Dinner Party - party in action

I created a relaxed Victorian drawing room to serve starters and Cheese before the main affair commenced.

Gothic Dinner party - party in action

Gothic Dinner party - party in action

The Recipes

For this Gothic Dinner Party I opted for a menu I knew people would like and served it in a way to look "gothic".  I included a lot of red dishes and used shapes to depict a gothic scene.

While the recipes were not difficult it did require a good plan to ensure the meals hit the table on time.  I also asked different guests to assist with plating the various courses and this was invaluable help.

How I approached the cooking.

  • Some of these ingredients will not be available at your local supermarket, try asian food stores and shop well in advance of the party.
  • The Shooter liquid must be made two to three days in advance.
  • Prepare Bloody Mary's late morning of the day of the party
  • Prepare the Green Olive Aioli the morning of the party
  • Prepare the Panna Cotta on the day before
  • Prepare the strawberry and blueberry sauces the morning of the party
  • Prepare the Herb crust the afternoon of the party
  • Make sure the table is dressed the day before the party
  • Have all serving ware close at hand and ready to use.


Gothic Dinner Party - Oyster Shooters

Gothic Dinner Party - Oyster Shooters

Oyster Shots

(Part of the Holy Relics)


  • Dozen Oysters
  • 1 teaspoon wasabi paste
  • 1 litre Mirin
  • 250 ml Sake
  • 80 ml rice wine vinegar
  • 50 ml light soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons wasabi powder


  • Place the miring and sake in a small saucepan and bring to the boil.  Once boiling light a match and burn off the alcohol (be careful).  Set aside and allow to cool.
  • Once cool transfer to a glass jug.
  • Add the rice wine, soy sauce and wasabi powder.
  • Stir until the wasabi has completely dissolved.
  • Store upright in the fridge for 2 days to allow the sediment to sink

To Serve

  • Place an Oyster in each Crystal sherry Glass 
  • carefully fill with the shooter mix
  • The Oyster should float, if required use a small spoon to bring the Oyster to the surface.
  • Place a small amount of Wasabi on each Oyster.
  • Position Shooter Glasses on a silver tray and add a rat for effect
Gothic Dinner Party - Bloody Mary's

Gothic Dinner Party - Bloody Mary's

Bloody Mary's

(Part of the Holy Relics)


  • 500 ml chilled tomato juice
  • 4 tablespoons Vodka
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
  • Tabasco Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • pinch pepper


  1. Mix all ingredients together and store in a sealed bottle in the fridge.

To serve

  1. Pour into small long stemmed glasses
  2. Place on a silver tray 
  3. Add a Rat or Spider to the tray
Gothic Dinner Party - Prawns with Green Olive Aioli

Gothic Dinner Party - Prawns with Green Olive Aioli

Prawns with Green Olive Aioli

(Part of the Holy Relics)


  • 20 green prawns, peeled with tails intact
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup whole egg mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green olives
  • 1 tablespoon baby capers
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • sea salt and pepper


  1. To make the Aioli, place the mayonnaise, olives, capers, crushed garlic, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well.  Cover and store in the fridge for serving
  2. Place the prawns, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a bowl and toss to coat.
  3. Allow to marinate for 5 - 10 minutes.
  4. Cook prawns in a large pan with olive oil for about two minutes each side

To Serve.

  1. Place the Olive Aioli in the bottom of a glass or cup
  2. Add two prawns per person
  3. Place on a silver tray
  4. Add a Rat or spider 
Gothic Dinner Party Toasted Bacon and Tomato

Gothic Dinner Party Toasted Bacon and Tomato

Toasted Tomato and bacon

(Part of the Holy Relics)


  • 1 Pane Di Case bread cut to toast
  • 4 rashed of Bacon
  • 4 large Cherry Tomatos


  1. Heat oven to 180 C
  2. Cut the bread into crosses using a cross cookie cutter
  3. Cut the bacon into strips, equal length and width to the cross and lay on the bread
  4. Cut the centre slice (widest part) from the cherry tomato and place in the centre of the cross
  5. Place on a tray in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes

To Serve

  • Serve on a silver tray
  • Add a rat or spider
Gothic Dinner Party - Borscht with Italian Bread Sticks

Gothic Dinner Party - Borscht with Italian Bread Sticks

Borscht with Italian Bread Sticks

(Broth of sewer Rat & Dead Mans fingers)


  • 600 - 700 grams beetroot
  • 500g ripe tomatos 
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • 1 onion
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 500 ml beef stock
  • salt and pepper
  • 125g greek Feta
  • 2 packets of Italian Bread Sticks (1 plain and I sesame
  • Almond slivers
  • Red gel Pen


  1. Heat Oven to 180 C
  2. Half the tomatoes, drizzle with olive oil and salt  and roast for 25 - 30 minutes
  3. Finely chop the onion and fry in the remaining oil until soft.
  4. Grate the beetroot and add to the onion mixture with the stock and bring to the boil, season and boil for 8 - 10 minutes or until the beetroot is tender.
  5. Stir in the tomato, and transfer to a blender to process until completely smooth.
  6. Place in the fridge until ready to use.

To Serve

  1. Break the Italian Breadsticks in half and attach the almond sliver using the red gel.  Make sure the gel is visible to look like a bloody finger nail
  2. Tie 3 Fingers together using black ribbon.
  3. Reheat the borscht and divide between pedestal crystal bowls (I used the bowls traditionally used for Ice Cream).
  4. Crumble Feta over the top
  5. Place the Borscht, Italian Bread and a rat on a plate to serve.


Gothic Dinner Party - Cherry Sorbet

Gothic Dinner Party - Cherry Sorbet

Cherry Sorbet

(Sorbet of blood letting leech)


  • 6 cups cherries (I used bottled)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon Lemon Juice
  • 3/4 Cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Caster sugar


  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until the mixture is smooth.
  2. Place mixture in a shallow cake tin, cover with cling wrap and freeze
  3. Every 1 hour stir the mixture to break up any ice crystals

To Serve

  1. Remove from the freezer about 1 hour before required, as it starts to melt stir the mixture. If it melts to fast, return to the freezer.
  2. Place Sorbet is silver goblets and serve with an ornate collectable tea spoon


Gothic Dinner Party - Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb

Gothic Dinner Party - Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb

Herb Crusted Rack of lamb

(Rack of suckling Wolf)


  • 4 racks of lamb (3 - 4 per person)
  • Olive Oil
  • Potatoes (4 to 8) *
  • Pumpkin
  • Beetroots (4 to 8)
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 tablespoons English Mustard
  • 8 Slices of day old Bread 
  • two bunches of parsley
  • 1 bunch corriander
  • 1 bunch of thyme
  • 4 Rosemary Sprigs
  • 100g Parmesan Cheese, Freshly grated


  1. Heat Oven to 200.  
  2. Peel the Potatoes, Beetroot and pumpkin.  Slice approximately 1.5 cm wide and using a cross cookie cutter cut cross shapes from all three vegetables. *I used a larger cross for the Potato and a smaller cross for the beetroot and pumpkin.  Make sure you buy potatoes that are large enough for your cookie cuter.
  3. Toss the vegetables in olive oil and sea salt and bake for 50 minutes, turning once.
  4. Season the Lamb and seal in a hot frying pan with the Olive Oil until golden brown.
  5. Transfer to the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, then allow to rest for  10 minutes. 
  6. Tear the Bread into pieces (remove crusts) and place in a food procession.
  7. Roughly cut the herbs and add to the food processor with the Parmeson.  Blend until you have fine crumbs with a green tinge
  8. Brush the lamb with the english mustard and cover with the herb crust.  Return to the oven for 5 minutes.


Gothic Dinner Party - Rosewater Panna Cotta

Rosewater Panna Cotta

(Breast of Troll & Eye of Ogre)


Gothic Dinner Party - Rosewater Panna Cotta

Gothic Dinner Party - Rosewater Panna Cotta

  • 900 ml thickened cream
  • 1 1/2 cups Milk
  • 250g white chocolate
  • 1/3 cup caster sugar
  • 4 teaspoons dried gelatine
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons rosewater
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Essence
  • 1 packet red Jelly
  • 1 packet blue jelly
  • Blue and Red food colour
  • Glace Cherries


  1. I used small Chinese rice bowls for the eyes, they provided a rounded shape rather than a flat top. I also use a product called Sprink from Bakels as a release agent, this is great for releasing items from moulds and does not have any taste or colour.  I made 10 deserts to allow a couple of spares. 
  2. Combine the cream, milk, chocolate and sugar in a large saucepan over a low heat.
  3. Cook string for 5 minutes or until the chocolate and sugar dissolves
  4. Add the gelatine to warm water and wait for it to dissolve, then add to the cream mixture.
  5. Add the rosewater and Vanilla and stir to combine
  6. Pour into the moulds but leave 1/2 cm for the jelly base
  7. Place into the fridge to set
  8. When set, make both jellies according to the package and allow to cool
  9. When cool add the jelly to the panna cotta 5 red and 5 blue

o Serve

  1. Place a small blunt knife at the edge of the panna cotta and gently tip onto the plate.
  2. place a small amount of blue food colour on a saucer and using a round cookie cutter coat the base of the cookie cutter in the food colour, place the cookie cutter in the centre of the panna cotta, this will provide a true circle for you to work with.
  3. Using a paint brush paint the blue dye from the centre of the eye to the outside rim,
  4. Use a new paintbrush and red food colour to paint the veins on the eye
  5. Repeat step 2 and 3 with the red food colour on the remaining panna cotta's
  6. Place a glace cherry in the centre of the breast and pierce with a craft wine glass holder


Gothic Dinner Party - Strawberry and Blueberry sauce

Gothic Dinner Party - Strawberry and Blueberry sauce

Strawberry Coulis & Blueberry Sauce

(Fresh Plasma)

Ingredients - Strawberry

  • 500 g fresh strawberries
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla escence
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water

Method - strawberry

  1. Hull and quarter the strawberries
  2. Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan
  3. Cook stirring until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture thickens (about 10 mins)
  4. Allow to cool, blend in a food processor until smooth
  5. Store in the fridge until required

Ingredients - Blueberry

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blue berries
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla escence
  • 3 tablespoons water

Method - Blueberry

  1. Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan
  2. Cook stirring until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture thickens (5 - 10 minutes)
  3. Allow to cool, blend in a food processor until smooth
  4. Store in the fridge until required

To Serve

  1. Divide mixture between test tubes (with lids)
  2. Place in a silver bowl on crushed ice 


Vendor Credits

Bogan Party (Bogan Bingo)

We recently attended a fantastic school fundraising event called Bogan Bingo.  Bogan Bingo is a night to dust off your '80s bogan clothes (or make a quick trip to an Op Shop), dance to some fab retro music, play Bingo, partake in air guitar, ping pong competitions and watch the all important crowning of the nights king and queen Bogan.

This was a really great night, we had a lot of Shazza's and Dazza's, Mullets, Ugg boots and visible underwear - a very classy event.

The event had self catering so we all got to test our bogan cooking skills.  After much thought and research I decided on a few dishes to grace our bogan table.

Starting at Dessert, any self respecting bogan could not resist a can of VB.  My VB cans were actually Chocolate Rum Ball mixture formed into the shape of beer cans.  I then used green fondant to cover the Rum Ball mixture added a VB with some white icing and used cachous balls to make the rim and ring pulls.

VB Can - Bogan Bingo

Another choice dish was good old cheese, Kabana and Savoy biscuits.  I had a retro pressed bamboo bowl for serving and some classy umbrella's to decorate.

Kabana, Cheese and Savoy's - Bogan Bingo

One of my favourite dishes was bogan canapés.  I used savoy biscuits and topped with cream cheese and slices of cherry tomato, I then added smoked oysters, cocktail pickle onions or slices of gherkin.  Topped with more umbrella's you have another classy dish.

Canapes of Cream Cheese, Tomato, Smoked Oysters, Pickles and Gerkin - Bogan Bingo

For some added extras for your bogan table try Nobby's nuts, classy stubby holders, plastic cockail glass animals, party poppers and a good bubble gum.  Remember to use classy serving bowls, you can easily collect retro wooden bowls at most op shops.

Table extra's - Bogan Bingo

If you do get a chance to get to one of these nights, they are really a lot of fun, so dust of your dancing shoes and find your inner Bogan.