The Contemporary New England Witch

The Contemporary New England Witch
Ms Faith

Monday, October 18, 2010

Halloween Decorating and Party Planning Part 2

 Greeting all,

Firstly, let me say a deep heartfelt thank you to everyone who has been reading my blog,  sending their comments and showing their support by becoming a follower of this blog.  It's been a lot of fun for me and I'm glad you're enjoying it along with me.  I've re-set the settings so anyone can post a comment, regardless of what type of email account you have.

I wanted to continue the decorating and party planning discussion we started earlier this week. I love atmosphere!  I  place glass enclosed lanterns in the gardens with candles than can be safely burned within.  I also designed a unique outdoor candle holder. Its an old hanging brass chandelier meant to hang inside a house. I got it from a neighbors tag sale one year. Hanging from a central point, it splays out to six arms with light sockets at the end.  the I cut the electrical cord, and set it on a long steel post in the ground and I put wax candles in the sockets designed for light bulbs.  Set deep in the middle of a garden,with the grasses and plants turning brown and dying at the end of the season, it makes for an eerie yet elegant tableau that catches the eye, right at twilight when the garden is the most beautiful.

 This time of the year is a great time for accenting the garden with fairy lights, candles in glass votives, lantern or other illumination.  With the leaves falling from the trees, soon the full moon will be bright and visible everywhere and then the gardens take on a new drama as they settle into winter.

This is the time I go outside and with a ladder, climb to the top of the May pole, decorated with bright, colorful, happy ribbons last Beltane, this is a spring holiday we celebrate on May 1st.  Now, I cut down the ribbons, as is customary, and burn them in the outdoor fire pit.  It's time to either allow your May pole to rest unadorned for the winter months, the dark half of the year that starts on November 1st and goes until May 1st the following year.  Or if you'd like, you may re-dress your May pole with ribbons the colors of the season:   purple, black and silver. These ribbons will stay on the pole, hanging loosely, not bound around, until May 1st. 

Summer tiki torches take on a slightly more sinister look as we approach this dark time of the year.  Instead of setting them around an eating area or sitting area, as this time of year becomes  too cool for those activities, I set them inside the gardens, or alongside the walk way, but far enough back for safety.  For some reason, with the air getting colder, the leaves falling, perhaps some wood smoke lingering in the air, the presence of live flames gives an area a lovely medieval feel that makes you shiver in delight.  Its perfect for setting a eerie mood for Halloween.

If real flames are a bit daring, daunting or just not possible, decorating in light is also dramatic and adds a special look for the season.  I have an entry way room where I cover all the surfaces with red table covers, the fabric doesn't matter, but satin, silk or similar shiny fabrics reflects the light and makes it even more spectacular an effect.   I put red light bulbs in the overhead triple bulb light fixture and place ruby glass around the room.  There are some table lamps also fitted with red bulbs.  I collect ruby and cobalt glass objects,but if you don't have any around,  there are places like the Christmas Tree Shoppes where you can find tons of great inexpensive pieces.

A room can also be made all blue in a similar fashion, depending on the look you like.  The red room is warm, energizing and exciting and a blue room, complete with blue light bulbs and accessories brings a cooling, tranquil calmness to a person who steps inside. 

If you are planning a party for Halloween, start planning it now.  Rather than rushing and being under lots of stress, pre-party planning is key to a fun, spooky and relaxing holiday party.  Have a notebook where you keep your notes, and carry it with you throughout your day. Have it available to make sudden changes, record great ideas that occur and keep track of where you are and what still needs to be done.

I start with a few simple lists.

Party menu, inside decorating, outdoor decorating.  In addition, it's not necessary, but I always have a theme.

It makes it easier to keep the planning simple. A Harry Potter party won't have you trying to decide if the luau party plates would be appropriate.  I find the themes usually by emphasizing a common image of Halloween. bats, witches hats, brooms, one year it was everything spiders.  Yes!!   I know!!!  I'm not fond of the little nasties, but my aversion was one of the reasons I decided to immerse myself in everything arachnid that year.  I dressed the buffet table with fake spiders of all sorts, textures and sizes.

I wore a spider covered Victorian Gothic red and black lace dress, placed fake beasties in my hair and even went through the night with a tiny fake spider placed on the my cheek.  I could just see it in my side vision, and yes it did creep me out a it, but by the end of the night I was way better with spiders.  It takes a macho spider, with serious attitude,  or if its black and furry,  to really get my attention these days!!

What? Oh .   .   .  you thought  .  .  .  just because I'm a witch, I'd be good with spiders, hmmmmm?  well, I'm working on it.  I've pretty much mastered mice,  bats, black cats and toads.  I'm also pretty good with salamanders, but spiders, weeeell.  .  .  I'm getting better.

A fun Halloween image and indoor decorating concept is to set a small table with a dark covering. Set a candle in a stand and place a tarot card spread on the cloth.  A crystal ball and a few tumbled stones scattered around the cards also adds to the mysterious scene.

Tarot cards are easy to buy, as well as tumbled stones.  For a crystal ball, and unless you're really serious about reading it, and a nice sized real one is several hundreds of dollars, a suitable faux crystal ball will suffice.

Go to a pet store  that carries fish bowls and supplies for fish.  Find a small fish bowl, or round glass vase, spherical with an opening at one end. Next get a small bowl, a silver or silver colored one is ideal, just a bit larger than the size of the fish bowl. Then get some silver and blue glitter at a craft store. Fill the bowl with a mixture of silver and blue glitter and turn fish bowl upside down. Gently 'screw' it into the glitter until the hole disappears and now place it on a dark covered table with a small candle near by. Suddenly your simple little fishbowl takes on a mysterious aura.  The glitter sparkles and reflects the low candle light making a lovely inexpensive crystal ball display with your tarot cads and stones.  Place a witches hat on the chair next to the table and it will look as if the witch just left, for but a moment. 

There are so many wonderful decorating ideas out there this time of year, and entire publications dedicated to such.  If you need ideas, do as I do and go to the magazine rack, and look at the covers and choose the ones that seem more like you and your ideas.  The ideas presented here are my own ideas that I've developed over the years and I hope you find some of them work for you.

Happy decorating!! 

(c) 2010 Enchantments, LLC Portions of this blog post may contain material from my book 'Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies' For more information see

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