Monday, September 19, 2011

Spooky Stairwell

The Halloween decorating tour continues!  
Hopefully there will be at least something useful someone can glean from this display.  It's not much, but I'm grateful to get to show off my hard work (we don't get many real life visitors around here!).

First up is the basement doorway framed in black cheesecloth.  I hung two battery operated candlesticks from the ceiling with fishing line so it looks like they are floating on their own.  Fun and VERY inexpensive.  Someday I will do my whole upstairs hallway with these dangling down.

 Next up are the bats.  The bat template can be found here at Country Living.  This idea has been around for many years now and is one of my favorite ways to decorate...especially since you can get black felt for so cheap!  I found that they stay up well enough if you use painter's tape, and it won't damage your walls.  I added my own idea of having some bats hanging upside down from the shelf.  Adds a nice touch, I think. 

Okay so this owl isn't technically in the stairwell, but he fits right in with the bats so I thought I'd throw it in real quick.  I created this owl and branch myself (much easier said than done) and if I have time (and if I remember) I will scan the template and give it out for people to use if they want.  

 The Haunted Mansion picture wall has been my dream for several years I am grateful that it has finally become a reality! (click here for the Haunted Mansion picture story).

 Everything for this was inexpensively done.  Cobwebs, raven, moss, black spooky cloth, and gargoyles from the dollar store;  candlesticks and vase from the thrift store;  black roses ($1 each) and LED votive candles (two-pack for $3.50) from Walmart.  I already had the frame, so the most expensive item was the Haunted Mansion picture itself ($15, including shipping, after applying a LOT of promo codes online).  Not too shabby!

Some close ups:

I have these silhouettes of my kiddos hanging up year round, but I freshened them up with new black and orange damask paper for the background.  The spider came in a two-pack from the dollar store.  I just hung it up with painter's tape and attached it to a string (taken from the dollar store spooky cloth).

The finished product:

 Not too bad!  Now on to the rest of the house!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Haunted Foyer

After a week and a half the decorations are almost completely up!  Here is the front entryway in all its haunted glory...

Hooray!  The candelabra is finally finished!  All cozy in the corner with a raven for a friend.

 Next up is the captured raven (at least he is quiet about it) atop two very old books (circa 1940) found at a thrift store.  If you haven't noticed, I am loving the moss this year.  You will find it everywhere.

 I coined my own potion company (Goin G. Batty Ingredients) and made up some Witch's brew labels.  I got the idea for the label names here on etsy...there are some great ideas on there.  Must give credit where credit is due!  :)  I mod-podged the labels onto some bottles and wa-la...instant decoration.  Some day I will liven them up with a bit of twine around the top...but until then they still look pretty snazzy.

Add a yard sale candle stick and it's not a bad collection!

 Now, I couldn't very well get the Haunted Mansion look without a taper candle wall sconce.   I'd be delighted to find about 10 more of these to put up around the house!  The LED taper candles were found at Real Deals (look for one near you...they are the greatest discount home decor store ever).  They were in the half off section and only cost me a little over a dollar each.  You will also find these all over my house this year.

 You may recognize my "homely to haunted" mirror, with a fresh coating of spider webs.

 Can't forget those dang dollar store rodents skirting around the edges.

(peeking from behind my Kmart witch's broom)

And last but not least...little miss spider hangs out up above.

Now with the lights off and candles on...

Oh how I wish that this was how my front entry looked all year long.  *sigh*

I will continue the decoration tour on Monday.  Get ready for some fun stuff!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Pssst...Avast there!

Some day in the not so near future, our basement will be finished, and we will have an entire ROOM dedicated to pirates at Halloween time.  Ooooh just think of the possibilities!  But until then, all we have room for is a little display on our kitchen desk.

It's a humble offering but serves its purpose well.

Mr. Unlucky Hoarder was purchased at local craft store last year.  (He is currently our only resident skeleton, and is fondly dubbed "the crossbones" by my children.)  I made him a little sign made from a small piece of wood (from a whole bag of pre-cut pieces at Walmart), painted black, of course.  Then I printed out a little ditty on my computer (Blackadder font) and mod-podged it on the wood.  

 Nice and simple.

My husband made me the electric candlestick many years back from a candlestick set that used to belong to his Grandparents.  

 We bought an electric candle from a craft store and cut the wire so he could feed it through the stick (which was luckily hallow).  Then he put it back together using fancy instruments (there actually is a technical term but I couldn't figure out how to spell it...) and wa-la!  Your own fancy pirate looking electric candlestick!  Although you can't tell from the picture, it uses the cool bulbs that flicker. 

Next up is the treasure chest.  

I found this little beauty at a yard sale and decided it was the perfect miniature size for my display.  I put a plastic grocery bag in the bottom and covered it with a little bit of shiny gold fabric to give it a little more volume (Sadly, I don't have enough jewelry to fill it all up). If I'm ambitious I might raise it up a little more, but the jewelry is already placed so perfectly and I'm not sure I'm willing to arrange it again.  :)

The jewelry came from a variety of places, but mostly from stuff I inherited from both of my Grandmothers.  I also had some jewelry from my younger years (back when gold was incredibly popular) and found a few items from family reunion jewelry swaps.  I think I can safely say that I didn't purchase any of the jewelry, which is an added bonus in my book.

Not a bad hoard, matey.

There are so many fun things you can do with pirates for Halloween.  Get creative!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

It begins

I couldn't help myself...

...I got my Halloween decorations out this past weekend.  I know, I know...soooo early.  But I found out that one of my good friends/neighbor had already put up a few things...and I caved in to peer pressure.  :)  Before you judge me too harshly, I will clarify that I am only decorating the inside, not the out.  It is one thing to subject my family to early decorating, it is another thing entirely to subject innocent bystanders.  And I only did it early (yes I'm rationalizing) because I  knew that I could use the extra time.  It literally takes me about 2 to 3 weeks to put up all my Halloween decorations.  Not only because of the sheer number of decorations, but also because I have to squeeze it around normal life and its many responsibilities (if only Halloween decorating could be a job).  Last year I started decorating around the first day of fall, and I was still putting out decorations the week of Halloween.  That was incredibly depressing and so not worth it.  This year I want to ENJOY my decorations!  So sue me if I start early.

So my good-natured husband started the long process of dragging millions of boxes out of the crawl space.  I love to open those boxes and see them stuffed full of lovely decorating treats:

 The downside to starting so early is the confusion it creates for my young children.  My oldest asked me why no one else had their decorations out yet ( one else loves Halloween as much as us?).  And my oldest daughter keeps asking when its time to decorate Halloween sugar cookies and go trick-or-treating (er...not for a couple more  Needless to say it has created many awkward conversations with my kids.  Maybe next year we won't start quite so early.  But on the upside...they are learning delayed gratification, right?

All in all its been good decision.  With our crazy life it has been slow going, so I'm grateful for the extra head start.  Can't wait to share what we've done!

Here's to early decorating!

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