October has made its annual appearance and, with it, comes another year of Halloween fun. This year, we celebrate it on a Monday so festivities, traditions and fun for all ages will keep the parties going through the holiday weekend. In the 1920s, Halloween parties were all the rage – from townhall dances, to social club gatherings – all overwhelmed with a variety of themes and decorations. By the 1950s and 1960s, Halloween parties were held almost exclusively for children, until the 1980s brought back the idea that Halloween is for adults, too.
To keep this tradition alive and bring out the best for your festivities, here are several trends we’re seeing this year that will inspire you to create your own uniquely-designed Halloween holiday.
A Night of Magic and Mischievous Fun
Celebrate the evening with your favorite ghouls and goblins. A party at the haunted mansion is the place to be. Decorate with spooky décor, fog machines, twinkly lights in cloches and a variety of sparkling pumpkins to
sparkle in the dark. Be sure to have plenty of Halloween treats, goodies and drinks on hand for an all-night hauntingly good time!
Dia de Los Muertos
Dia De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a traditional, multi-day Mexican holiday held Oct. 31 through Nov. 2. These days mark the celebration of All Saint’s Day and All Soul’s Day and are a time to honor and remember family and friends who have died. This Mexican tradition has been integrated into the Southwest American Halloween with costumes, festivals, setting up altars to the dead and a variety of special foods to mark this special time. Decorate with sugar skulls, marigolds, favorite foods and beverages of the departed; special altars; skeletons; lots of candles; and tissue paper decorations.
Bewitching Good Times
Witches come together to cast spells, while ghosts and goblins meander around the midnight hour. Decorate with witch costumes, hats and brooms over a backdrop of midnight black. Add layers of accessories
such as witches cauldrons, potions and lotions jars, magically lit crystal balls, and a book of spells. Pile on cobwebs, bats, black crows and a variety of "witchy" décor for a wickedly good Halloween setting.
Fall Festival at the Pumpkin Patch
Nothing says fall like a visit to the pumpkin patch and enjoying a tasty pumpkin treat at the local fall festival. This family-friendly fall activity continues well into November so infuse a bit of the Halloween holiday
into the festivities. Decorate with a multitude of pumpkins, scarecrows, hay bales and cornstalks atop a base of burlap and twine. Feed the party with party-worthy treats such as caramel apples, deep-fried doughnuts and anything pumpkin-flavored. Complete the décor with a layer of colorful fall leaves so your guests feel enveloped in the season.
This summer, the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, Calif., showcased mummies in an exhibition titled "Mummies of the World." This popular exhibit has fueled a trend toward all things "mummy." Set up the scene like a museum at night, complete with a sarcophagus, Egyptian ruins, displays for various museum artifacts and low light to mimic after-hours. Add to the natural history museum ambiance by including faux dinosaur bones and skeletal remains, hieroglyphics and a variety of mummies,all creating an aura of unease for the nighttime party.
'Twas a Nightmare Before Christmas
Tim Burton is a beloved part of Hollywood and his 1993 movie “Nightmare Before Christmas” attained cult status and created a whole new world of Halloween-style characters for our enjoyment. To add to this newer
annual tradition of much-loved Halloween characters, Danny Elfman, former lead singer of 1980s band Oingo Boingo, has teamed up with the Los Angeles Symphony to showcase a live-action feature of the "Nightmare Before Christmas" at the Hollywood Bowl, a famed concert venue in Hollywood, Calif. This upscale event is in its second year and, with tickets selling out fast, is sure to become an annual event.
To create your own "Nightmare Before Christmas," start with surrealistic-styled backdrops, add upscale glittery accessories and artwork, and dress as your favorite character from the movie, creating a magical world
worthy of Tim Burton.
Photo Credit: Sara McLean
Images by iStock and Sara McLean