Create A Frightfully Fun Halloween Farmhouse
Halloween and rustic farmhouse design are a match made in heaven. Pumpkins, bats, owls–where are they found? On a farm! Just a few well-placed items, unique touches, and some skeleton pets will expertly haunt your house.
Halloween: A Brief History
October 31st is looming. They’re coming from far and wide: tiny ghosts, monsters, princesses, and superheroes to ring the doorbell.
Halloween’s origins are murky and disputed. By most accounts it can be traced back to ancient Gaelic harvest festivals, eventually evolving into a celebration honoring the dead (Mexico’s Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is thousands of years old!).
But really, it’s a holiday Mother Nature herself created: a mystical time of year when days get shorter, leaves turn into blazing oranges and reds, pumpkins and gourds arrive and the landscape transforms into silhouettes and shadows.
While you position skeletons, hang bats, carve pumpkins and drape webs–remember to incorporate a little farmhouse flair.
Here are a few hints for spellbinding style:
Skeletons, Skeletons–and Pet Skeletons!
Skeleton animals are popping up everywhere as one of the hottest new Halloween décor trends. Add them in nooks, crannies, and mantelpiece vignettes for unexpected chills. The more the better!
Life-size poseable skeletons with blinking eyes are great for positioning in front of windows, sitting in an entryway chair, or moving around the house as the “spirit” moves you (wink, wink).
Use What You Have: For a little more fun, “dress up” skeletons with bow ties, hats, jewelry, and more. Use your closet and imagination–the possibilities are endless.
Fun Fact: The skeletons of more than 6 million people are stored in the Catacombs of Paris, an underground ossuary located in the City of Light. It is now a public museum and can be toured.
Spooky Farm Animals – Bats and Owls and Cats, Oh My!
No ghoulish décor is complete without a few appropriately unnerving animals lurking and hovering about. Bats, owls, and black cats are barn animals whose nocturnal instincts give them a creepy reputation.
Capitalize on their spooky presence to create a unique mantel or sideboard vignette. Start by hanging bat marquees as a wall centerpiece. Arrange natural elements, stacked books, wine bottles, and Black Owls for an aged apothecary look. Draped spider webs add the final touch.
Use What You Have: Gather branches and twigs from outside. Use old books and bottles.
Fun Fact: Rumor has it witches are able to transform into black cats or owls…so watch out!
Don’t forget Jack–Pumpkins and Jack-o’-Lanterns are Essential on the Front Porch!
Pumpkin patches are bustling! It’s time to carve, bake and toast the season’s most versatile player. From classic jack-o’-lantern smiles to intricate and unorthodox designs, decorative pumpkins always figure into Halloween. Using pumpkins as lanterns is a centuries-old custom we still observe today. Fortunately, there’s durable décor that doesn’t require cleaning, carving, and throwing away year after year. Metal pumpkin luminaries and lights strings add an eerie glow to porches, mantels, tabletops, or counters. When it comes to lighting, the more the better! Bundle together multiple strings of lights, candles, and lanterns for a focal point.
Use What You Have: Make your house smell like pumpkin pie! Simmer water and pumpkin pie spice in a slow cooker or small pot on the stove. Or, add 2 Tbsp. coconut oil and pumpkin pie spice to a candle warmer.
Fun Fact: Jack-o’-lanterns were also known as “will-o’-the-wisp”, a legendary ghostly light seen on bogs and marshes to entice travelers away from the road.
Add Touches of Rustic Wood
Modern farmhouse style pivots on the use of rustic wood finishes. Adding some as backdrops or accents for your Halloween updates can lighten the atmosphere and bring in some decorator’s sophistication. Oversized wood barn doors can be adapted and changed year-round. For more specific frightful décor, try Halloween cutout shutters.
Use What You Have: Gather large, empty frames to place behind pieces on a mantel or sideboard. Drape spider webs for added effect.
Fun Fact: The popularity of haunted houses in the United States can be traced back to California during the 1950s and 60s when a series of haunted attractions drew large crowds. Walt Disney’s The Haunted Mansion opened in 1969 at Disneyland, cementing haunted houses as a cultural staple.
Oh…and One More Thing, Don’t Forget the Butler!
What’s Halloween without an ominous butler serving up scary epitaphs and treats! He says different phrases, flashes eyes, and stands more than 5 feet tall. Perfect for scaring the little ghosts and goblins gathering at your farmhouse door!
Fun Fact: In 2016, the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup was named the most popular Halloween candy in the United States.