Everyone knows how to throw a great Halloween celebration for kids. The trick is knowing how to make this great holiday a treat for adults. For starters, when the most chilling night of the year rolls around, not just any cocktail-hour standards will do. Dress up your Halloween party with mischievous glamour and grown-up ghoulishness, and guests will delight in a fun departure from the typical haunted-house bash. But, beware: it may be frighteningly fun!
When sending invitations, make sure costume expectations are clear. Think about whether or not you want to narrow the costume theme to focus the style of the party, or if you want to simply state “costumes required” to allow guests to get creative. As the host, your own costume should be creative and complete, but you should remain recognizable.
Consider having a pumpkin-carving contest. You can either have guests bring their carved pumpkin to the party, or you can set up a pumpkin-carving station, complete with specialized carving tools (potters'tools work well alongside knives and melon ballers), aprons, buckets and tealights.
Ask guests to bring their favorite bone-chilling passage from literature. From Frankenstein and Poe to Bloch and King, there's a lot of gothic writing out there that's perfect for casting a creepy spell over the evening. For extra credit, guests can dress as the author or a character from the story and perform their monologue in costume.
Set the tone for the party right at your front door by bringing an eerie sense of movement to your Halloween entryway. Let our winged Faux Crows take flight from a potted vine. Alight pumpkin candles so they flicker in the crisp autumn air. And affix pages from a gothic novel from wire above the door and around windows so they flutter ominously. We used an old copy of Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven, illustrated with wood engravings by Gustave Doré, which we found in a great used bookstore.
It's not just kids who like to trick-or-treat. There's something deeply gratifying about reaching into a jar of treats - even for adults. Place a candy display right by the front door along with a handwritten welcome sign. Group several glass vessels - our Voluminous Glass Canisters are ideal - in a range of shapes and sizes. Fill each one with candy wrapped in harvest-hued paper. In one or two, place corn kernels, nuts or wheat sheaves to vary the assortment.
Using natural twine, hang a broom horizontally above the bar area, suspending our Hanging Mason Jars filled with black sand and votive candles from the handle. Our Encyclopedia Skull & Bones Canvas wall art, featuring vintage anatomical illustrations, lends an ominous feel.
On a mantel or console, display a Glass Cloche with old books underneath. Entrap a long-legged spider object inside for a frightening accent, weaving our Dead Moss Vase Filler between simple pillar candles and Tombstone Candles.
A few key accents like bright orange pumpkin candles or a striking display of black lanterns will transform any corner of your home for Halloween festivities. And, scattered across the front porch or in the corner of a room, our realistic Bottle Brush Animals - rats and cats crafted with sisal hair and glass eyes - are delightfully creepy.
Create a music playlist ahead of time that will help set the mood during the party - or, borrow from ours!
Transform any table or console into a bone-chilling bar with a few key basics starting with our Bat Runner. Use serving trays for organizing wine and liquor bottles, glassware and garnishes. Our Skeleton Hand Condiment Set makes Halloween garnishes perfectly frightening. And don't forget to transform those bottles into a spooky array of spirits with Skeleton Hand & Bat Stoppers.
Our Etched Recipe Shaker showcases ominous designs and features recipes for four exclusive Halloween cocktails: Black Magic, Witches Brew, Red Zombie and Skelletini.
Use Etched Black Tombstone Double Old- Fashioneds for Monster-itas (recipe below)served with “bloody” limes. The glossy black glass creates a stark backdrop to humorous tombstone sentiments. Serve a large batch of Monster-itas in our Glass Drink Dispenser supported by our Skeleton Hand Dispenser Stand.
Serve Ghoul-a-tinis (recipe below)with cocktail - onion eyeballs in our handblown Black Glass Bone Martini Glasses with bone-shaped stems. Print drink recipes on 4 x 6” cardstock and display in frames at your bar station. That way, guests can mix their own cocktails once the party is in full swing.
If you're inviting little goblins to your party, our Cauldron Punch Bowl is perfect for kid-friendly mulled apple cider served in Cauldron Punch Cups with a whole cinnamon stick.
For the spookiest of snacks, serve the same great food you'd typically offer at a cocktail party, only with a frightfully fun twist. Appetizers and dessert can be served on our stoneware Bat Plates. Serve Toasted Pumpkin Seeds (recipe below)in our Skeleton Hand Condiment Set. And pair our Bone Spreaders with a great cheese plate.