It's the most wonderful time of the year... NO not Christmas - Halloween! October is my favourite month and I have always loved the 31st for embracing the eccentric, darker, shadow sides of our lives. The most popular window displays with the customers in our shop were always the spooky ones!
Here are 5 ways to embrace second hand and vintage at this glorious time of year....
1. Curate your costume
Want to know something that's really scary? Research by Fairyland Trust shows that an estimated 7 million Halloween costumes end up being thrown way in a single year in the UK. It is seriously time to re-think one-time purchases and start getting creative with what's already in your wardrobe or a second-hand shop purchase.
Accessorise things you already own or treat yourself to a vintage ensemble with pieces you'll be sure to wear again and again. Fancy dress has no rules, you can be whatever character you like! Take a sneaky peek at our Hocus Pocus collection for some inspo.
2. Home decor to die for
We all love a 6ft articulated skeleton this time of year (just me?) but you can also introduce haunted house vibes that still ooze style and magic. Vintage mis matched bottles can make a great apothecary on your mantelpiece, just add cobwebs and dried flowers. Brass candlesticks or goblets give great Hogwarts vibes. Hang vintage faux fur coats, lacy gloves or gowns on doorways for a Miss Havisham Aesthetic. Vintage scarves draped over lampshades will darken the room and change the hue for a spooky atmosphere. Own any vintage paintings? Cut out letters to attach a spooky message from beyond the grave.
3. Embrace Vintage Pop Culture
It's my humble opinion that THE best example of Halloween entertainment is, well, vintage - the 80's / 90's to be exact! I don't go in for gruesome spine-chilling horror personally, but magical, gothic, creative, autumnal vibes. Buckle up and snuggle down - because the list is long.
Buffy The Vampire Slayer TV show (1997)
The Addams Family (1991)
Practical Magic (1998)
Hocus Pocus (1993)
Edward Scissorhands (1990)
The Craft (1996)
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
The Nightmare before Christmas (1993)
Angel TV Show (1999)
Death Becomes Her (1992)
(Okay, so I will make allowances for the more modern offerings of Harry Potter, Netflix's The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and Supernatural TV series). Stock up on Popcorn, blankets and candles folks!
4. Host a Halloween Feast
For a more civilised affair to celebrate All Hallows Eve, you could host a vintage inspired dinner party. Dig out your mismatched vintage plates, teacups (to hold candles) and layer up tablecloths to create a tablescape fit for a fantastical feast. Collect autumnal leaves, twigs and dried flowers to display in old vases and jars, or simply to hang from the ceiling above the table. Use vintage photo frames as place names, and to display the menu of the evening. Use cushions and scarves to drape over chair backs and make your guests comfortable. Use a large tray to create a vintage drinks area, with old glasses and herbs to garnish your cocktails.
5. Delight your Trick or Treaters
Do you have a local trick or treating scene at Halloween? We are visited by lots of sweet young kids and families (So long as there's a lit pumpkin outside our home!) and I love decorating the front of our house to invite the trick or treaters to knock on our door. You can repurpose vintage crates to add height to your pumpkin display, or a wooden stool to showcase any decor. Offer up your sweets selection in an old basket, cauldron or even a small vintage suitcase!
If you own any vintage books, create a faux library in your front window full of cobwebs and storage jars lit with fake candles.
Wishing you a very happy Halloween from Alice HQ