You know that meme that pops up around now that Mariah Carey is slowly defrosting ready in time for Christmas? That’s me with Halloween. I’m ready for the leaves crunching, the pumpkin-flavored everything, the gaudy decorations with distasteful spider webs and the tacky 90s movies that I’ve been watching since early August.
Further than that, I love to host a good themed party: the more ridiculous the theme, the better. Meaning, if you need an expert on how to throw the perfect Halloween party, I’m just the person you need to talk to!
Step One: Pick a Theme
Though it might seem like a silly way to start, I’m telling you the best Halloween parties are cohesive in theme and style. Let’s say you want to do vintage, 1940s style decorations with the cute traditional jack-o-lanterns and whimsical witch hats. Or maybe you want to go straight horror, with some dismembered hands floating in punch bowls and fake blood painted on all the walls. I’m always a big fan of the hyper-specific theme, so I might throw a “Muppets Haunted Mansion” or “Clue” themed Halloween party, allowing for the perfect balance of spookiness and class that makes my apartment the perfect Halloween spot. If you really want to go all out and truly make something spectacular, Goodwill or local estate sales seem to always have cool vintage pieces to truly make a theme pop.
Step Two: Utilize Pinterest
Pinterest is God’s answer to party planning perfection. It’s just simply perfect for inspiration and good ideas for decorations, games, food and so much more. Once you get your theme all secured, type it into the Pinterest search bar and wait as thousands of photos and ideas fill the page. If you had the idea, some mom in the midwest has probably tried it already and there will be sample pictures, a step by step guide and all the ingredients you need. As stated above, Pinterest is good for nearly anything your party needs, but it truly shines in the craft department. I utilized it often when I was a babysitter, and since no one ever outgrows cute craft activities, having a few prepped and ready for your guests is never a bad idea.
Step Three: Food and Beverage
Huge trick here in creating some spooky food and beverages, you can make nearly everything spooky or Halloween-related with very minimal effort. Do you have Oreo cookies? Dip them in white chocolate, throw some cut-up licorice pieces on it for legs and you have a spider. My mom used to take those tootsie roll lollipops, rubberband a tissue around the top and say it was a ghost. I saw one spooky food hack on Instagram where you use hot dogs and crescent rolls to make little mummies. It’s super cute, super easy and super delicious… which is the theme of this section. You just don’t want to be overworking yourself here for any reason! Those fall decorated sugar cookies, with some leaf sprinkles, in the bakery section of your local grocery store will do just fine.
This lack of effort can be seamlessly carried into the beverages. I’m of the legal drinking age, and thus when I stumbled upon a TikTok about making fall mimosas, where you mix prosecco with apple cider, I knew I needed to give it a quick try. I’m telling you, it’s absolutely worth it. Grab a $3 gallon of apple cider, a $10 bottle of prosecco, some caramel for the mouth of the cup if you’re feeling creative and you’ve got a tasty beverage.
I think anything red can look particularly spooky as well. So some vodka cranberry beverages or Shirley Temples make the whole thing a bit more spooky and fun. Orange is a painfully ugly color, even if it’s for Halloween, so no orange juice or orange soda will ever have my blessing.
Step Four: Party Favors
To me, what’s more important than decorations, food, or even party games, it’s how people remember the great time they’ve had, so party favors are key. Especially if we want our party to be the complete talk of the town. I have two suggestions here. One is going to Goodwill, picking up a collection of assorted frames, spray painting them and decorating them with some spooky spiders or glitter. You then take pictures at the party, frame one with the person in it and place it in the frame with a thank you card. Perfect!
My second idea is mixtape related. I love and have loved giving people personalised CDs since I was in high school. You go to CVS, buy a pack of 100 for $20 and then just make personalised playlists for your friends. Burn that playlist onto the CD, decorate the CD and case with a sharpie and you’re good to go. Since this is a Halloween party, we’re talking about the need for Halloween music obviously, but get creative otherwise.
Step Five: Have a good time and drop all judgment at the door!
I love getting overdressed for Halloween, I’ve always loved it, but that doesn’t mean everyone loves it. Halloween can be an expensive holiday to celebrate, so if someone rewears last year’s Halloween costume or wears just their work costume, I’m a judgment-free zone. As long as you try, and still show up to my house to drink and eat and have a good, safe, spooky time, you’ll get no comment from me about your lack of creativity.
Just throw something on, get into the Halloween spirit and pop over to my house. You’ll be more than welcome there.
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