- Sophie &Friends
Halloween is one of our most favorite and busiest times of the year!
We typically create more than a dozen full-blown Halloween parties, with new decor, games, and crafts. The way it usually works is our client has us decorate for their event, run the event, and then we take the decor away with us at the end. Basically, we fill a 16-foot truck with all our ghouls and ghosts and take it on the road. We often live out of that truck for about 10 days straight. This year however, we received a unique request. We had a client ask us to come decorate their house for Halloween. They had recently moved into a new neighborhood and wanted to feel a part of what they had heard was a very avid Halloween decorating community.
Now, even though we are constantly adding to our stock and creating new themes every year, we don’t have the inventory to leave decor with a client for 3 weeks. We use all of our décor during the course of our 10 day Halloween season. When I explained this to my client, his solution was very clear. He’d give me a budget and we’d start purchasing and building his own storehouse of Halloween fun. We would store the decor for him over the year, and then add to it next year for however long the trend continued. Being that he wanted the house decorated early, before the madness of the season, I decided to take on the challenge.
I decided I wanted to invest in pieces that could be used in a variety of ways as the years passed, I purchased some high end items from Martha Stewart's online resource Grandinroad. I then started scouring places like Target (who had a great selection this year), Walgreens, and yes, the Dollar Tree. I knew I wanted to utilize the house to it’s fullest potential. The house has so many amazing architectural features. Here’s what we were able to accomplish in one 8 hour day, within our given budget.
Using my newly acquired Cricut (blog coming soon) I cut a welcoming “Boo” for the front door. When I first saw the door, I knew I needed to do something fun to highlight it. It was a completely black, blank canvas! It screamed for stencil decor!
My favorite element of the entry is these two giant plate glass windows that look out onto the street. Using vinyl cut outs that I found on Amazon, Freda created the look of a bats taking off in flight. As you look out the window into the sky, it creates the sensation of bats taking off from a subterranean cave across the street.
At the bottom of the stairs we used another Martha item….witch's legs. These were extremely popular a few years ago. I must say, Martha’s are significantly more durable than the stuffed, stockinged legs of old. These were so heavy, my assistant Steve had to create cement bases to make sure they didn’t topple over. We decided to create a tableau with the legs, telling the story of a not so talented witch making a fatal error during her spell casting.
My client is already telling everyone that Little Miss Leggy was hitting the witches brew a little too hard this Halloween.
My client’s house sports these amazing trees (if anyone knows what type these are, please let me know - I call them “knobbly hand trees”) which made the perfect placement for skeletal vignettes.
The Fisherman - He’s hanging out trying to catch himself a trick-or-treater this using Hershey bar bait.
The Dogwalker - Of course this fella has no control over his putrid pet. He did at least bring a baggie to take care of business.
The Fireman - Brought on by the mangy mutt’s inability to curb his carnal desires, the poor fireman is relegated to rescuing the neighbor’s skeletal cat, who cowers in fear in the branches above.
A Poet - Extolling the virtues of a quiet Halloween, the poet has settled himself upon the branches to read and contemplate the mayhem below.
Miss Selfie - this dear must make sure to document her fabulous costume, and all the rest of the local happenings.
The “Bird” Watcher - Although his binoculars are trained on the skeletal birds in the trees - his real eye seems to be trained on Miss Selfie.
The final amazing area was the raised garden on the corner. This made the perfect home for a ghostly daycare. The poor teacher is trying to round up her little urchins to no avail. Our client has little children, so we opted for something that was less spooky and more whimsical. I’m sure in years to come we will turn that spot into a zombie infested wasteland...but for now, we’re keeping it sweet.
We peppered the entire house with creepy cloth (one of my favorite decorating supplies), plastic spiders, and assorted skeletal pieces.
One of the best parts about working outdoors is all the neighbors who come out to gawk, chat,and take photos. People were slowing down as they drove past, beeping their horns and waving. It was truly a great way to welcome the new neighbors.