Last year this Halloween dinner party was featured on Amy Altas just a few days before Halloween. We all know that as soon as its November 1st no one wants to look at Halloween pictures anymore. So I’ve held on to these pictures for almost a whole year!
My party was inspired by vintage Dennison Bogie Books. After deciding that I needed to know the origin of the iconic screeching Halloween cat face that pops up everywhere, I did a little research and discovered Dennison Boogie Books dating as far back as 1912. I fell in love with its wholesome and kitschy suggestions and illustrations of a bygone era. Most importantly I found inspiration in revitalizing the use of crepe paper as in inexpensive decoration material.
I sought out a few vintage Dennison Halloween die cuts and illustrations on ebay to reproduce, ordered a republished copy of a 1926 Bogie Book and a few rolls of crepe paper. The rest of the decorations were from our curated Halloween collection. And of course all the treats were made by me!
The invitation is vintage, sort of, I designed and drew it 8 years ago….pre photoshop knowledge. Back in the day, I loved to make hand cut and one of a kind cards from card stock. A reader informed me that the technique I used to make this card is called typesetting, who knew? I just did what I had to do to get stuff done, I still do! You can check out more about this card HERE and know that you can still create a beautiful invitation even if you don’t have skills of a graphic designer.
What about that about that wall??!!! I love big showy backdrops and I was channeling Dorothy Draper with the black and white stripe fringe crepe paper. Crepe paper can deliver that big of a punch without breaking the bank, it was so easy to create and so inexpensive. I covered a 12 foot wall with just 6 rolls at $2 a roll!
The placemats are vintage Dennison illustrations that were once used on crepe paper banners. The desert plates are crate and barrel and target. We always cruise the thrift shops for Halloween decorations, the older and creepier the better. These candle sticks are brass cast-off that we spray painted black.
The crow curio is a combination of a glass dome sitting and a styrofoam round decorated with fringed crepe paper. You can see an up close how to about it HERE.
The treats included a scary black cat and spider web cookies, mummy Oreo pops and a three-tiered Trick or Treat cake.
A cake this size would easily serve 100 people, so I made two of the tiers as fake dummy cakes. The cake layers features a Dennison Cat made from fondant, silhouettes of dancing witches and a harlequin pattern reminiscent of a paper lantern. I finished the cake off with a witch, moon and bat silhouettes fondant topper. You can see more of the cake HERE. And I have had a request to share the template I used for the dancing witches. Well, there wasn’t one, I drew it! But I might go back through my files and see if I can find the inspiration and my original sketch. If I can I’ll clean it up and share it as a download.
Instead of caramel or red candle apples I came up with “Black Magic” candy apples by coloring the sugar with black gel coloring. Then I dipped it in black sanding sugar for extra sparkle. See more about them HERE.
I had more guest (and more decorations) than one table could hold, so the littlest kids at our party had their own table. Here I used more Dennison inspired imagery. I created a paper chandelier right from the instructions in a Bogie Book and made tussie mussies to hold candy for the the kids to take home.
And just incase you’re wondering, I didn’t rent orange chairs, those are our own dining chairs. We use orange in our home decor so it was easy for our Air Chairs and Panton Jr chair to become part of the party decor.
Each year our Halloween decorations box grows, it grew alot last year and I cant wait to reuse almost all of these decorations this year at our Halloween Open House party. But the questions is do I wait another year to share those pictures or do my readers want to see Halloween posts in November?