I love decorating for Halloween and Fall. Fall is my favorite season. I love the break from the heat into cool, crisp weather. There are beautifully blue clear skies, a burst of color everywhere with trees, and a feeling of calmness outside as the buzzing and staccato of summer die down.
When decorating for Halloween, I love to use organic items like pumpkins, seeds, gourds, and branches.
There is a farm nearby that we like to visit for food, decorations, and plants. Miller Farms is run by a family of incredibly nice people. It used to be a dairy farm, but a few years back, they decided to try something new. With reading “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” by Michael Pollan, they wanted to run a sustainable, green farm. That is, not to say they won’t use pesticides if they have a bad outbreak because they really depend on the food they produce. But, they raised chickens, and meat cows, and would cycle the animals through different parcels of land for healthy, grass fed eggs and beef. They also grow a variety of vegetables, and carry an assortment of different plants throughout the year. One way they really shine though, is that they took to the new movement for good-for-you local food, and found vendors nearby to sell all sorts of products at their farmhouse. They sell all sorts of meats, dairy products, canned products, homemade breads and sweets, and gifts. I love their homemade scrubbies, and I get some more potpourri every year. I also bought the cheese boxes from them. Recently, in addition to the cooking classes they offer monthly (during fine weather months) they are now doing a “farm to table” meal. Tickets are expensive, but they are worth it. I love this place, and the Millers are trying their hardest to create a wonderful, family atmosphere.
The pumpkins in this picture are from a few years ago. I bought them all at Miller Farms, and love all the different varieties they offer. They have even more this year! I can’t wait to go back and get a wide variety. (I’ll try to remember to take pictures too). A year later, I bought this pumpkin, and thought it looked like an alien head. So I carved two eyes and a mouth, and let it sit out a little too long…
Creepy isn’t it? I’m amazed at how “realistic” it looks. The decaying organic matter really sets the tone.
The shape was perfect. Eeew! :)
Last year, I planted mums in the fall. Mums have never come back for me, ever. So I was very surprised to see some plants growing this spring. And now, they’ve become monsters!
That mum is about two feet wide. Please excuse the unkempt yard creeping in.
Indoors, I like to use fake pumpkins. I don’t want to risk ruining the surface of any fabrics or wood with decaying pumpkins, plus I can use them year after year. I did buy a few little pumpkin gourds at Miller Farms however.
These are tiny, with the largest one being about 4″ wide. They are part of a larger vignette on my fireplace hearth.
Here’s a detail of the pumpkin tealight holder my sister made (in girlscouts?). I thought it was fun and wanted to keep it!
I also picked up a few crazy looking gourds. I think they also look like they could be aliens.
They are so full of movement and life! Here’s the whole fireplace and surround.
In my front hall/foyer, I’ve made another little pumpkin vignette. My original vignette on this space, which I did not get a picture of, was ruined by a very curious kitty. As it was told to me, someone’s claw got stuck on the fabric covering the table, scared the kitty, that took off running, and toppled the table and everything on it. I need to reglue my pumpkin topiary, and it destroyed a little frame and cat decoration. I will try to glue/mend both of these objects, but for now, this little ditty will do. I used a black cloth on the table, and put an antique lace doily on top to mimic a little bit of a spider web. I think my grandmother may have made this doily. I made the pumpkin topiary a few years ago. Before they sold black fake pumpkins, I bought an orange one and sprayed it black. I then hot glued on striped ribbon, some rhinestones, a little black feather boa where the pumpkins meet, and a spiderweb bow on top. I bought the “Black Cat, Salem Mass.” print in Salem, Mass. when I visited my sister two years ago. The little pumpkins I drew on the back of the insert paper for the little frame that I picked up at Michael’s last year.
This year, while perusing Michaels for some inspiration for this years decorations, I came across two ideas that stuck out at me. First, was a project that included chalkboard paint. I will write a post about that in a little while. Second, I found this “gilded” pumpkin on sale. I originally wanted to “gild” my own using some of the new paints from the Martha Stewart Collection, but I couldn’t beat the price on this (on sale, plus coupon). I had bought this plaster urn ages ago, and thought it would look good as a pedestal for my new pumpkin.
I also found the little white ceramic skull for $1. The silver candlesticks are family heirlooms, and the other pumpkins I’ve picked up here and there. Sneak peak of the chalkboard painted pots there.
And here’s another vignette I was playing around with. Unfortunately, my cat wants to eat the craft straw like they’re crispy chinese noodles. She won’t stop, so I mostly have to keep these up and away from little kitties.
I think I’m going to do a second posting on Halloween decorations because I am not finished decorating/crafting yet.
I feel like I finally have enough decorations that I could put on a neat little Halloween party this year. I’m really hoping I can pull it together. :)