Sunday, October 31, 2010

Skeletons In The Closet!

and now for my latest Halloween creation...

www.chelseadigital.ca/SkeletonsInTheCloset/

Happy Halloween!

As you all are celebrating the best of all eves in the Northern Hemisphere it is already November here in the land of Oz.
We managed to put together a halloween housewarming party despite the many challenges of hosting the dark month in this land of sun and beaches. Some of the compromises included green and blue pumpkins, as the traditional orange ones cost 25$ each here since it is not the right season for them at all. No need to bundle up as it was a hot summer day outside, but we shuttered the windows and lit the lanterns!
The green and blue ones carved up OK, but were very soft and brittle so it didn't allow for any intricate designs. Made me feel pretty good about the whole thing though when a new friend said it was the first time he had ever seen a carved pumpkin in real life! Whoa, blew my mind. For many of our guests it was their first ever Halloween party! Pretty crazy.
I went pretty oldschool for the decor, Jack-o-lanterns, candles, webs and ghosts.
Now I can't wait to see the aftermath of Halloween madness that is happening in North America right now! I can almost hear eerie echoes of trick-or-treats! shouted across the seas...
Happy Halloween to you all!








Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Bereft of a true Halloween

I cannot capture the Halloween spirit.
For the first time ever.
But it's not me, it's where I am. I never would have thought that I could ever make it to October without the fever hitting me, the monster madness, the all consuming passion for the dark month. But I also never truly conceived of what October meant in a place like Australia.
I call it oppositeland for good reason, and the sunny skies, the spring flowers, the flipflops - none of these things say October to me.
I miss the smell of damp earth, the crunch of leaves underfoot, the brisk air and crisp mornings, the fog and pumpkin patches. So I guess I should have always said that Autumn was my favorite season, instead of saying October was my favorite month - but that doesn't work either because Halloween is part of what makes it dear to my heart.
But hard as I may try I feel like it just won't work here.
Case in point - I put some spider webbing up on the door this morning and caught a bird trying to eat the fake tarantula! It makes sense since there are GIANT spiders here - so of course they must be food for someone, but I've never had something prey on my decor before.

The dollar store Halloween section was about a 2 feet square and sadly disappointing. I tried to look up haunted houses and only found listing for actual hauntings!
I will continue to try - but my heart is not in it. I will have to be a voyeur this year and bask in the glory of a true Halloween from afar through all of you dark creatures out there spinning up a dark night for All Hallow's Eve.























a host of little ghosts visiting my apartment.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Friday, October 16, 2009

The fog rolls in...

I couldn't resist setting up the front yard a bit.
I have had a lot of comments so far, even saw a man lifting his daughter up to see over the hedge, so adorable.
Her face was lit up like a kids at Christmas, only as we all know...with a darker sort of light..haha
Perhaps a little haunter in the making.
Funny that this is actually me not doing Halloween!
I painted Skelly with detergent this year to give him an eerie glow.
I had to do something nice for him after breaking his spine in half accidentally!
He just couldn't make it up the stairs this year...













































Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Hey kids...want some candy?

Created a Halloween candy display last night. yummy.
I also made fresh corn chowder and Pumpkin chocolate chip bars.
The kitchen smells fantastic!
So delightful to actually have time this year to do the more domestic Autumn things.
Normally I would be frantically working away in the monster factory.
Alas, no new monsters will rise this year. I will be on a secret Halloween mission all season.



Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

to remember it by...

Some more photos from this years haunt.

http://picasaweb.google.com/danthon/0810_halloween

My biggest regret is that I didn't have time to take some myself.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Pumpkins


















































































































































Thanks to Mike, Lindsay and Lesa for helping to carve all 8 pumpkins in about half an hour!

Haunt photos - the Haunted House

If the kiddies made it through the yard and still had some heart to carry on, we sent them into the Haunted House.
The door was ominously barred with the metal spiderweb my friend Graeme made for me, much to my delight! (and in August too!)
Once the door was opened you could hear the overwhelming sounds of a tinkling nursery rhyme, heartbeats and babies crying. Red strobes revealed...
The Nursery
With it's bloodied walls and gortraits, they would see a woman with long dark hair holding a baby, but what a baby!







































From the Nursery the went into a dark hallway and felt their way through to the..
Dot Room
Mike did a great job of staying hidden until they came right to the end, and then the walls started to move towards them. He was so hidden that there was even one unsuspecting couple that took advantage of being "alone" and started making out. They were quite surprised when the dots started walking towards them!


























He scared them back the way they came, or so it seemed, but then they walked right into...
The Spider Room
With it's spider strings creepily brushing up against them, they walked towards the spider victim, all webbed up. Touch sensitive spiders would drop and then suddenly someone was right there, screaming at them to "GET IT OFF ME!". A woman with a giant spider over her face, trying to rip it off and screaming.
Tonia rocked this room for the first little while, and I took over when she left. Though I couldn't bring the same level of classy spideryness to it, I did get pretty into my role and screamed until my throat was raw. It was the most startling I think from the amount of screams we got from the ToTs. Very satisfying.




















































From the spider room they shot out the door to the outside. I worked the entrance for a bit, and loved seeing the excitement and glee of people coming out. There were a lot of Whoas and Wows, and it really made it all worth it. We ran the haunt well into the night, and even much later for late arriving friends.

By far the most challenging to have built, the haunted house portion was a maze that snaked through my basement. Building it required 100 feet of black Poly and lots of black gaffers tape.
I had to build it to avoid all the furnace ducts and low portions of the basement, and I dearly hoped those walls would hold. I had visions of walls toppling and ducts getting knocked off, but even though people were wary and excited, they were also really respectful.
There was only one group of teenagers that were so scared in the dot room that they ran right through a wall! But after 5 minutes we were repaired and running again! (Thanks Mike!)

Everyone loved it and there were lots of gasps and screams.
I ended up working in the Spider Room for most of the night, and the strobes almost killed me.
I'm surprised I have a voice left from all the shrieking I did at unsuspecting groups of people.
Great to see the wide eyed thrills we gave people though.

Lesa and Mike were invaluable, and they helped make the whole experience a great one.
Thanks you two! I know it was really hard to stay in those dark and flickering rooms for so long.
Dan managed to get great photos even in that crazy place.
Sure made it hard to get to the laundry room for awhile though!

Haunt photos - The Cemetery

I went with my standard Cemetery setup for the yard, except with areas for the Gravedigger and Witch to work their magic. (literally, haha)
Because I was opening the backyard up to the public for the first time, I decided that a hay path would protect the grass and let the ToTs know where to go. It worked really well, and made it so the yard zombies and actors knew exactly when to expect people.














I had my 3 groundbreakers from last year, that I made with help from Mike and Nick, using SpookyBlue's method. This year I made two more, (see previous post) and adopted 2 more, one that crawled and moaned, for a total of 7.


























Walking down the path, people would first be met by Kirsty the crawling Zombie.
She liked to lurk in the fog.


























Next they would come to the Witches Hut.
She was crooked and cackling, stirring her cauldron and mixing her potions.
She had put a spell on her sister that made her unable to move. (see Witch Prop)


























Right after the Witch they ran into the Gravedigger, with his unearthed coffin and his love of bodyparts. He was fantastic, telling them they had beautiful eyes and showing them his bag of bloody eyeballs. He would measure you for a coffin fitting or light fire in his palms. Then he would give the kids a candy body part to take along with them.







































Heading back they would hear and then see a Zombie eerily playing a Saw.
Haunting and beautiful. Another lovely surprise from my volunteers. Thanks Brad!







































Finally they reach the Candy (and Sodapop!) at the end of the straw path....
and if they are brave enough they head on.....
to the Haunted House!