Halloween Decorations Past & Present

gypsy pumpkin
Take inspiration from a talented Halloween artist for collecting and displaying new or vintage Halloween decorations.

Varied Lot

Talented Halloween artist Scott Smith makes lively papier-mache characters in his Michigan workshop, Rucus Studio. To decorate his home for the fall holiday, Scott mingles his new creations with vintage Halloween decorations that often give him inspiration. Try the same thing with your Halloween collections, such as the lanterns displayed here on a rustic shelf next to stacked vintage pumpkin lanterns.

Framed Up

An old dresser-mirror frame gives a fabulous stand-alone Halloween decoration -- such as this jovial papier-mache skeleton that Scott crafted -- playful prominence.

Soft Spots

Throw pillows made from salvaged pieces of worn vintage costumes and fabrics cozy up the great-room, where Scott's wart-covered papier-mache squash stands guard. Choose a favorite piece from your collection to take center stage, then parade pieces of similar theme or material across the mantel. See next slide for ways to elevate different pieces.

Standing Tall

Antique fence posts serve as elevation and interesting backdrops for the moon, goblin, and crow sculptures on the mantel. Faux twigs and artificial florals also add spooky effect.

Natural Attraction

A towering tree adorned with paper lanterns and other decorations makes an impressive focal point in a dining or breakfast room. Scour your backyard for twigs and branches to drill or screw into a coat-rack-type base made from 2x2-inch pine boards.

Holiday Glow

A 1930s Halloween lantern makes a perfect prop for decorating an indoor tree. Or try dangling a collection of classic 1950s cardboard Halloween die cuts from tree branches.

Spooky Display

Artist Scott Smith transforms his dining room hutch into a spooky display case with a taxidermy crow and owl perched on salvaged architectural fragments, antique lanterns, and Halloween collectibles. Incorporate aged books into your haunting vignette.

Season's Eatings

Pumpkin plates, faux vines and leaves, and a host of Scott's art pieces (you can use pieces from your Halloween collection) set the scene for a pumpkin-patch inspired dinner.

Inspiration Points

Scott's studio table is sprinkled with sketches, fabrics, and vintage decorations that inspire him as he works. Create your own imaginative display on a bulletin board or memo board by playfully pinning up Halloween postcards, die cuts, toys, and trinkets.

Fabric Foray

For a seasonal display of Halloween color, fill an open cupboard with stacks of vintage Halloween fabrics or table linens and an old costume or two hanging on display.

Gypsy Gem

One of Scott's gypsy papier-mache creations is embellished with found objects, a finishing touch you can add to any Halloween statuary in your collection.

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