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In Search of Halloween Style

October 24, 2014

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Editor’s note: If you find a house decorated in really cool Halloween or just fall fashion, email them to nancy@mylittlebird.com so we can add them to the photo gallery.


It occurred to me a couple of days ago that it might be fun, even instructive, to find a few examples of tasteful Halloween decorations, being that so many houses are totally tarted up seven to 10 days before the event. And I did find some displays that were attractive, that didn’t make the center-hall Colonial behind them into something akin to a department store or a magic shop.

But as I looked through the images I took, the truth revealed itself: There are ways to welcome autumn with natural displays and with restraint, but when it comes to Halloween, well, there are clever decorations around and funny ones and even inventive new ones. But I don’t think any of them were what Edith Wharton and Ogden Codman Jr. had in mind when they published “The Decoration of Houses,” back in 1897.

Be that as it may, looking around town is still a lot of fun at this time of year, as these pictures show.

If this isn’t enough for your Halloween-lovin’ soul, take a gander at the goings-on at Van Cortlandt Manor in Croton-on-Hudson, New York. The 2014 Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze–with some 5,000 carved pumpkins, including, in this 10th-anniversary year, tumbling-acrobat pumpkins (I guess we’ll have to see that to understand) arranged in tableaux over the grounds of the Hudson River Valley estate.

Lest the style-conscious among us cringe nervously, relax, knowing that Martha Stewart has featured the Blaze on her YouTube channel. For more info, go to the very entertaining FAQs on the Blaze site. But hurry to buy tickets: There are only a few nights in November that are not sold out as of this writing.

No chance of attending, and little skill at carving your own? The Blaze artistes have included a printable template for a reasonably scary pumpkin character right on their site.

–Nancy McKeon


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