So You Want to Throw a Hipster Halloween Party

Anybody could throw an emo Halloween party. Pin up some old photos of yourself from middle school and play “The Black Parade” album, that would be spooky enough. It takes a creative mind to pull off a hipster Halloween party.

Story by Natalie Heineman

Illustrations by Kaci Lambeth

Here are the basics you will need to entertain your most hard to impress friends. Stay on top of the latest trends and counter-culture, value independent thinking, and appreciate indie art and music, or face the displeasure of your hipster guests.

The Theme

“Undead Poets Society.” A play on the movie starring Robin Williams that every good hipster can quote, but with a zombie twist.


The Guest-list

Invite every person you know who has ever stepped inside an Alamo Drafthouse. That guy you talked to for fifteen seconds at a speakeasy? Invite him. Find your friend who recently snapped an artsy Instagram of her porcelain tea cup next to a Margaret Atwood novel. These people will automatically be quality hipsters.


The Costumes

To stick with the theme, partygoers should be encouraged to dress as the walking dead version of their favorite celebrity. Expect a Shia LaBeouf with grey skin or a Frida Kahlo with dried blood on her famous unibrow.

However, some guests may elect to dress more obscure. Perhaps you’ll see the creepy mirror man from the Arcade Fire “Reflektor” video or a neon sign from a The 1975 promotion. Maybe someone will even show up as a VHS tape of Pulp Fiction.


The Venue

Your party must be held in an abandoned industrial site. Somewhere that has yet to undergo gentrification, but has potential for partygoers to glance around and say, “This place has really great bones. I can see a juice bar in that corner one day.”


The Invite

Enlist a bearded man named Skylar to include the invite in the credit roll of his indie film. Party attendees will sit through a two hour storyline about a mediocre folk musician who just wants to drink whiskey and quote Hemingway instead of maintaining his steady job at a quaint bowling alley. Still, partygoers will write rave reviews of Skylar’s movie on their Tumblrs and walk away with high hopes for your celebration.


The Music

If silent raves are too mainstream now, invite a local EDM DJ to share his sounds. Right before the beat drops, insert soundbites of Bernie Sanders. A solid, danceable beat rife with anticipation leads to brief silence. Bernie’s raspy voice says, “The millionaires and the billionaires!” The beat blasts once more and your guests go crazy.

Note: Do not allow anyone to bring their guitar into the party. Check any and all ukuleles, harmonicas and acoustic guitars at the door. Nothing ruins a party like an acoustic cover of “Creep” by Radiohead.


The Food

There is nothing hipsters love more than a craft beer. Do not pour any liquids in mason jars. Capitalism has ruined mason jars.

Any food with the word “artisan” will be a hit. You can throw the word “artisan” in front of anything and your hipster friends will eat it. Artisan pickles, freshly foraged berries, tacos with too much cheese to ever be authentic, all these should be served as hors d'oeuvres.

Hipsters love fancy donuts. Pink cream inside, shaped like animals, sprinkled with Lucky Charms, it does not matter how the donuts taste so long as you make them look weird.


The Games

Here are a few suggestions for games and activities that hipsters enjoy:

  • Screen exactly four minutes of “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and allow time for discussion.
  • All party goers should write an abstract on how the music industry destroys individuality.
  • A ‘Make-our-Own French Press Coffee’ station.
  • A knitting station.
  • Play Blackjack with the cards printed on the bottom of Pabst Blue Ribbon bottle caps.
  • Hire a man to write short poems on his vintage typewriter for each attendee.
  • A corner for cigarette smokers and a separate corner for cigar smokers. The two mustn’t associate.
  • A photo booth in front of a large black and white tapestry that reads, “In a society that profits from your self doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act.
  • A competition to determine who can say, “I am not a hipster!” the most times in one minute.

If Bill Hader’s Stefon character from Saturday Night Live wouldn’t attend this party, do not bother throwing it.