We are often asked why some of our mysteries don’t specify how the suspects should dress, and the simple answer is: “Not all of our mysteries have a pre-specified ‘theme'”. While some themes are obvious (for example, A Flapper Murder at the 1920’s Speakeasy or The Masquerade Murder), other mysteries are what we call “Costume Casual” mysteries.

But what is a “Costume Casual” mystery? Here at Shot In The Dark Mysteries, our mandate is to make our hosts’ lives simpler, and make throwing a party in general and a mystery in particular something that is easy to do. We believe your mystery should bend to fit YOUR unique party, instead of you having to change your party around a mystery. That’s why we have a selection of “Costume Casual” mysteries for you to choose from.

“Costume Casual” means that we will not specify exactly what a character will wear. So, for example, where some mystery companies say, “Josephine wears a neon green skirt, a red shirt, purple shoes and a hat with a feather sticking out of it”, we say something like, “Josephine has a penchant for stiletto shoes” or “Josephine is never seen without her smartphone, and is always texting”.

But WHY would we do such a thing? There is always a method to our madness, and here it is for “Costume Casual” mysteries: so that YOU as the host can designate a theme, work our mystery into something else you have in mind or tell your guests to just chill and come as they are.

Here’s an example: Let’s say you’re throwing The Birthday Party Murder Mystery Party, which is designed specifically to fit into any party scenario. But, let’s say your birthday honouree is a fan of…. oh…. The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and you wanted to throw a Rocky Horror Picture Show-themed mystery for his birthday. Now you tell your guests to dress for the theme YOU choose, not something we have pre-defined.

The theme you choose can be as simple as “Black and White”, “Formal”, “Cocktail”, “1960’s”, “70’s”, “80’s”, “Luau”, “Ugly Sweater”… well, you get the drift. The point is that these “Costume Casual” mysteries fit what YOU want, not the other way around – even if what you want is just to have your guests come as they are and do something fun.

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