Friday, October 24, 2014


Here we are, one week until Halloween, and this lazy blogger is finally getting around to posting my mantel decorations from last year. Yes, I planned ahead. I took pictures of my decos and saved them because I knew that next year I would have my post up in September when we all start thinking about Halloween, and the pictures would have time to go viral on Pinterest before Day of the Dead came and went. But in reality, most of the blogging world has moved on to Christmas already and here I am still talking about Halloween.

So here goes.

I blame Pottery Barn and their recent obsession with skeletons for my mantel this year. Their displays are always so luxe, but in a creepy way, and that's what I was going for. Unfortunately, my decorating budget is less Pottery Barn and more Dollar Tree... and that is where the majority of my Halloween components came from.

I admit I have a love-hate relationship with Halloween spider webs. They do add a bit of spooky ambiance to any Halloween project, but they are such. a. pain. to work with. The only trick I can offer is to work with very small sections at a time. I used less than 1/4 of a ball of webbing on my mantel, cutting out small strips and pulling them as thin as I could stand it.

The small village is a Dollar Store DIY project. I purchased Christmas houses and glassware, then gave them a spooky update with spray paint. I like the way they turned out, but just wish they were a little bit bigger.

In the pic below you can tell how precariously these little houses are balanced on the stemware. I do love the look of the orange light shining through the "mercury glass riser" (stemless wine glass spray painted with Krylon Looking Glass and turned upside down).

It's not really Halloween for me until I've done the Thriller dance, so I thought framing some of the lyrics to that epic song would be a fun way to balance the height of those lit branches. I'd love to take credit for the awesome typography, but they are printables from Kimberly at a Night Owl blog. And I love them.

On to the DIYs. Here is another look at my Halloween village, pre spider webs.

They were pretty simple. I picked up a variety of styles of Christmas Village from the Dollar Tree, then just sprayed each village to about 80% with matte black spray paint. The risers are a variety of glassware that I grabbed the same day, making sure they were all at different heights. After looking at a couple DIY mercury glass tutorials on Pinterest, I sprayed each glass with vinegar, then a coat of Krylon Looking Glass paint to give them a mediocre-at-best mercury glass look.

Last year, Raven feather wreaths were everywhere, and I really wanted one for my mantel, but wasn't going to pay $40 for one. So, I found a boa at Party City in the Halloween Costume section and fashioned it in to a wreath with a little floral wire.

You can see below that the project was pretty simple. I got some heavy duty floral wire and fashioned it in to a hoop, then carefully wrapped the boa around it, securing as I went.

McKinney is lucky that she is a yellow lab, not a black one, because it almost became her lion's mane for Halloween.

She was not impressed.

I hope everyone has a safe an fun Halloween! Maybe next year I'll get this year's decos up here in time to actually inspire people... but I wouldn't count on it.

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