Masquerade balls were a feature of the Carnival season in the 15th century, and involved elaborate pageants and processions celebrating marriages and other events of late medieval court life. Masquerade balls then became popular in Italy during the 16th century Renaissance. These masked balls were generally elaborate dances held for members of the upper classes, and were particularly popular in Venice. If you were an untitled nobody who had a secret crush on a noble lady, introducing yourself while in disguise made good sense. Famously, Romeo and Juliet meet and fall in love at a masked ball in the opening scene of the Shakepeare play.
Masquerade balls were sometimes set as a game among the guests. The masked guests were supposedly dressed so as to be unidentifiable. This would create a type of game to see if a guest could determine each other’s identities.
The main event at a masquerade mask is the unveiling at midnight, where all guests remove their masks and reveal their identities. But, since this doesn’t happen until midnight, you might want to keep your guests entertained in other ways.
Masked Ball Theme
A masked ball is the perfect theme for a New Year’s Eve party. It’s easy to organise, low cost and there is a huge range of masks for every theme or taste.
- Color Themes – Black and white balls or all black or all white are among the most popular colour themed masked ball ideas. They can be dress down or dress up affairs, which gives them the advantage of being easy to dress for — and decorate for, too. Coming up with costume ideas can also be pretty easy.
- Venetian Ball – When I think of masked balls, I think of the opulent masked balls depicted in movies. Think glittery, jewelled, velvet, lace and feathered masks. This Baroque costume is great for women and a baroque style powdered wig or curly beehive can be worn by men and women.
- Mardi Gras or Carnival – If you like the idea of an all-inclusive event with loads of character, Mardi Gras balls are great fun. Decorate with the traditional colors of green, purple and gold.
Masquerade Ball Masks
We’ve got masks for every kind of masked ball. Below are some of our most popular ones:
Masquerade Ball Decorations
Traditionally Mardi Gras colours and green purple and gold and we’ve got whole host of decorations in these colours to brighten up your event: Mardi Gras drapes, Purple streamers, Gold streamers, Green streamers, leaf garlends, paper fans as well as Mardi Gras themed invites
Alternatively use fabric drapes to create a more intimate space or cover uninspiring ceilings or walls. There is a huge range of drapes to choose from and are the most cost effective way to cover a large space. These black and gold drapes are perfect for any kind of masked ball theme
Lighting is another way to create mood and atmosphere. Use a mixture of fairy lights, LED candles and lamps to create the desired effect.
Masquerade Ball Tableware & Food
Food at a masquerade ball can be tricky. Masks are not always the easiest things to eat in, so you want to make sure you serve small canapés. peoplewont expect a full meal, so go for quality over quantity and select a few savoury options and a couple of sweet options. Ensure that the food fits your theme (for example, if your theme is Mardi Gras, then you want typical New Orleans fare—in mini form, Italian for Venetian theme and black or white food for a colour theme).
Head over to our Pinterest page for more Masquerade Ball and masked party ideas
Enjoy the party!