Thursday, October 21, 2010

Hocus Focus (Part 2) - The Details

A good starting point for any party is to come up with a focused theme. For this Halloween Party, I wanted a theme that was kid friendly, but also a little more sophisticated for the adults to enjoy as well. My first thought was, "what sort of backdrop was I going to provide for the portraits?" I knew I didn't want to do the standard bales of hay with fall leaves and orange pumpkins, because you could go to the pumpkin patch and get that picture. I was inspired by the Disney movie "Hocus Pocus" and decided to tie everything in to a witch's house.

Top Left:
The set featured a beautiful green, petite french chair from Found, Vintage Rentals. We surrounded it with bird cages, antique books, and props from Inviting Occasion and my own collection. I wanted muted colors so the childrens' bright costumes could pop out in the pictures. Consider using faded fairytale pumpkins and white pumpkins to decorate your doorstep this year for a more vintage Halloween feeling. I found great prices on these pumpkins at Trader Joe's. Roger's Gardens also has a beautiful displays to give you ideas during Halloween, and pumpkins in ghoulish greens and greys.

Top Middle/Right:
On the buffet table, I used apothecary jars to display "potion ingredients." Three heads of cauliflower floating in water with a few drops of green food coloring became zombie brains, a ball of white tulle served as bottled swamp fog, sand doubled as graveyard dust, and a garland of natural vine with fake flies and bugs throughout looked like twisted tigs.
Bottom Left/Right:For the entrance, I wanted a big impact so we went a little more "glam witch" by using luxurious black feather boas as a backdrop for the candy bar and sign in table. I found the purple glittered hanging chandeliers and candelabras that we hung upside down at Target for just $2.99 each! The candy display featured a handmade spellbook (by Larrissa at Inviting Occasion) and various potion bottles filled with water dyed in various colors. Here's a great money saving tip on the candy bar (especially now that it's Halloween.) Buy the value packs with several different types of candy and separate them out by color. It makes a bigger visual impact to have several different sized containers of candy. It's all about the presentation, so stack them on a cake plate, or line them up neatly on a long rectangular platter. Also, try to create different levels when setting out food. Use cake plates and create "risers" using boxes or even cake pans turned upside down and covering them with cloth.

My last tip for your Halloween decor is to create vignettes when decorating. Instead of trying to fill every single spot in your home, just focus on a few areas and group your decorations together. What will your theme be this year?

***Special thanks to Larrissa of
Inviting Occasion for use of her props, assistance with decor installation and set design, Celeste for the mini spider web cupcakes and acting as greeter, Kat and Ashley - my assistant witches, and Mali Workman Photography, Maria Meier Photography, and Jennifer Shultz Photography for taking additional event photos.

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