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Sorority Formal Theme Ideas for 2023

Mar 13th 2023

Social events are a big part of Greek life. For sororities, that includes philanthropy events, socials, sisterhood retreats and more. Of course, it also means semi-formals and formals. Most consider the latter as the ultimate sorority event, so if you're in charge of organizing one, you understand the importance of the job!

Do you need a theme for a formal sorority event or college formal? Our in-house experts on sorority dances and other events at Greek Gear offer this guide to sorority formal event themes to inspire your research. Keep reading for great sorority formal ideas!

The Great Gatsby

Great Gatsby-themed parties are all about the glitz, glamour and high society. Put the roar in the Roaring Twenties with an event that celebrates the classic 1925 novel. All you need is jazzy band music, flapper-style dresses and lots of shimmery black and gold décor!

Mardi Gras Ball

Many people associate Mardi Gras with parades, but there are other traditions, including the big, spectacular Mardi Gras balls. These balls are, of course, formal affairs. If you're following tradition, the men should wear white tie and tails. For the ladies, it should be a floor-length gown with gloves.

For your decorations, go with dramatic but sleek centerpieces. Black balloons painted with gold metallic paint are also a good way to add some Mardi Gras chic to a venue. Or, choose custom balloons that can be unique to your Mardi Gras-themed formal. Customize them with the name of your sorority or whatever else you like!

If you want to add a layer of mystique to your sorority formal, you can make it into a masquerade ball, complete with masks.


Seeing people dressed to the nines make for an unforgettable evening, and a Casablanca-themed formal is a great way to make your sorority event memorable. Urge your sorority sisters to wear their long formal gowns and ask their dates to wear tuxedos or dressy suits.

Add a fog machine to conjure up that World War II aura of mystery and danger that defined this famous movie. For the food, consider Moroccan dishes, such as roasted eggplant and yogurt dips. Moroccan couscous, chickpea salad and Mechoui are also crowd-pleasers.

An Evening in Paris

Fun and fashionable: That's how to envision a Parisian Nights formal party. An advantage to an Evening in Paris sorority formal theme idea is that women can go as classic or as cutting edge as they want when choosing their evening’s apparel. What would you wear on a Paris fashion runway? Let that question inspire sorority members.

If you do want to go classic, think little black dresses in flattering silhouettes. You can also ask the ladies to wear a stole or a shawl if you're going for that 1940s French glamor vibe. Or, go as avant-garde as you like with a totally modern French look!

Sorority Formal Themes - The Takeaway

Gift bags are common at formal fashion and celebrity events. Why not include them at your formal or semi-formal event as well?

Consider our wide selection of Greek spirit items that can be used as party favors to create your sorority formal event gift bags. At Greek Gear, we can customize these items with your sorority’s colors, Greek letters and more.

Whichever event theme you choose, it’s sure to be a night to remember!