Halloween isn’t just for kids anymore. More and more adults are embracing all things spooky on All Hallows Eve, according to a major retail survey. Already the nation’s second most popular holiday, Halloween enjoys even more popularity each year due to increasing adult participation in the form of dressing up or decorating their homes. Your Halloween theme wedding is sure to be a scream for the growing numbers of guests who embrace the spirit of the season.
Glowing candles, grinning pumpkins and a moonlit night. What a great beginning for a Halloween Wedding. Most people can easily turn a Halloween party into a wedding, but consider adding some polish to this special night. Here are some suggestions that pair a touch of elegance with pure Halloween fun.
A slim fitting dress in the “Morticia – Addams Family style” would work nicely. You many also choose to have your gown died black or red. Add a black cape with red lining, black veil and long, sleek black gloves.
Slim fitting black, red, orange or yellow dresses with matching capes. Instead of a regular neckline, consider having a seamstress add a high, stiff collar to frame their faces. Use tiaras in their hair, or matching ribbons. Outfit your bridesmaids in black (much more popular these days, even at non-Halloween weddings), burnt umber or cranberry. Accessorize with arm-length opera gloves, or short lace or crochet hand gloves. Find or make yourself a spooky bridal hat with roses, ostrich feathers, and netting.
Groom and Groomsmen
Black tuxedos with red cummerbunds. Another option would be black shirts, black slacks and a red-lined black cape with high collar.
Carry red, orange or yellow flowers mixed with black roses. If you’ve decided to use orange as a wedding color, you may wish to opt for orange colored flowers
such as: Orange Hawkweed, Day Lily’s, Tiger Lily’s, Orange/Yellow Freesia’s, Orange Roses, Orange Poppy’s. Remember that you can often get a variety of flowers dipped or dyed to suit your wedding colors.
Decorate hollowed out gourds or small pumpkins with black, red, orange and/or yellow flowers. Add a few props to the arrangement, such as small scarecrows, plastic pumpkins, small ghosts, gold stars or moon, etc. Create miniature tombstones from Styrofoam painted dark gray. Add a catchy epitaph and decorate the base with a miniature flower bouquet. Orange and black pillar candles in varying heights placed on small round mirrors. Tie a coordinating ribbon bow around the base of the candle. Scatter a few fake leaves in autumn colors on the mirror. Wrought-iron style candelabras with taper candles.
Decorate doorways and the front of tables with black and orange, red or yellow crepe paper. Or drape with black netting and added contrasting bows where the
netting is secured. Get large dead branches and use as tree props. Add white, yellow or orange miniature Christmas lights to the branches. Secure in pots filled with sand and covered with shiny orange or black wrapping paper. Place around room.
Make a large round moon from cardboard covered with shiny yellow wrapping paper and secure from the ceiling. Add a “flying witch” next to it. Create additional atmosphere with hanging bats and gold stars.
Place a coffin in one corner of the room (you can easily make one from large cardboard boxes and paint it black). Add Dracula to the coffin by stuffing a dark suit with a white shirt, adding a cape and placing a Dracula mask over a balloon. You can also make several tombstones from cardboard boxes, paint in gray, add a funny epitaph and place these around the walls of the room.
Instead of your usual grinning jack-o-lantern, consider having pumpkins carved in unique designs. There are many patterns available and they would provide a unique touch to your wedding. Place the pumpkins throughout the room, but be sure if you are using candles, that they are not near anything flammable and cannot easily be tipped over. Better yet, consider using a battery-powered light or one that can be plugged in nearby.
Cover the top of the tables in black or midnight blue tablecloths. Decorate these with gold sparkled fabric pens in the shapes of stars, suns and moons (use stencils that can be bought for stenciling walls with paint). Place a large cauldron on the main serving table and add dry ice to create a smoke effect. (Do not use this to serve drinks from).
More Spooky Suggestions
Hire a fortuneteller to dress up as a gypsy and give short readings. You can opt to pay for this and come up with a set price for the evening, or have guests
pay for their own readings. Be sure they are kept short (5 to 10 minutes) and that the price reflects this. Have the DJ play songs such as the Monster Mash, Ghostbusters, Thriller and other suitable Halloween songs throughout the evening.
Use the traditional Halloween treat bags and fill with Halloween candy. Give candles, such as novelty Halloween candles, orange/black votive candles in a clear holder, 2 tapered candles tied together with raffia ribbon. Spiff up the candles with small decorations such as plastic spiders, autumn leaves, gold moon and star stickers, etc. Make homemade chocolates or iced sugar cookies in the shapes of ghosts, pumpkins, witches, sun, moon, stars, tombstones, etc. Package several together in cellophane or in Halloween decorated bags/boxes and tie with black and orange ribbon.
Fortune cookies make great favors. You can opt to use the fortunes found in pre-packaged fortune cookies or make your own cookies and fortunes, and insert them into the cookie. (Check the Internet for recipes).
Set up a colorful Halloween candy buffet with holiday favorites like mini-sized Snickers bars, Jujubes and peanut butter cups, plus those that say “Fall,” such as the mellocremes. Put one kind of mellocreme in each jar (candy corn, Indian candy corn, maple walnuts, lemon corn cobs, mellocreme pumpkins) for great presentation. Don’t forget your marshmallow pumpkins, Hershey harvest mix, caramel-filled “Bumpkins” or your foil-covered miniature chocolate leaves. You’ll also want jars of brown and orange M&Ms
Suggestions for Guests
Instead of requesting that your guests dress in any type of costume, consider asking them to find costumes and clothing that are more refined, but still related to Halloween. Basically, instead of dressing like the Wicked Witch of the West or some gruesome monster, they find one that is more fashionable and sleek to fit in with a wedding. For example, women could wear dresses in black with orange or yellow accessories, dress up like Morticia Addams or Elvira, be a sassy devil, an enchanting sorceress or a Victorian vampiress. Men could dress as Dracula, a 1920’s gangster, Jack the Ripper, a medieval cleric or monk, an evil wizard or a werewolf dressed in a suit.
You get the idea. Keep it fun, but more in keeping with a wedding, rather than a typical Halloween party where anything goes. And remember to take lots of pictures and videos. This is one style of wedding that is sure to bring lots of laughter and fond memories over the years.
Halloween Wedding Location
Have your wedding in a gothic stone church, an old barn, or an oversized old mansion — at night.
Keep the light low and use candles everywhere. If your venue won’t allow candles (boo hiss), make due with spooky lanterns and battery-operated tea lights, or use string lights. Hang candle chandeliers from the ceiling, if possible. Use the same tea lights (real or battery) and create a grand entrance with white luminary bags. Make them yourself using a large pumpkin-shaped paper punch for the center, and small heart or leaf-shaped punches along the top.
Use real pumpkins liberally, too. Decorate your tables with mini pumpkins you’ve hollowed out and filled with votives. Cut a slit in the stem of those same mini-pumpkins and insert a paper place card. Decorate pass-throughs and doors with frightful dried curly willow covered in twinkle lights. Scatter the tables with autumn leaf confetti.
You may not want to actually set up witches and tombstones at your Halloween wedding, but a tasteful and equally spooky choice is to use gargoyles. Scatter garden gargoyles around the room, either set on mini Greek columns or tucked in windowsills and surrounded with foliage and flowers (choose gargoyles a foot or taller so they don’t disappear into the rest of your decor). For a bigger spook factor, paint gargoyles with glow-in-the-dark paint. Or fancy them up with a head-to-toe faux gold leaf job.
Instead of carving those leering old Jack’O’Lantern faces, carve your monogram into pumpkins instead, or even your names and the wedding date. You’d be surprised how easy it is to look like Picasso with those two-dollar plastic pumpkin carving sets. Fill some of your pumpkins with candles, and some with floral arrangements of calla lilies, mums, dried wheat, sunflowers and orange, red or yellow roses. Be careful to keep your carved pumpkins cool, and carve them within a few days of your wedding.
Create dual-purpose centerpieces and favors out of gooey caramel apples tied up with cellophane. Turn upside down and place in galvanized buckets; tie with a green or black silk ribbon to make a bouquet. Another idea: fill tall, clear cylinders with climbing bittersweet. The twiny vines, yellow leaves and orange berries couldn’t make a better match for your Halloween wedding. Invest in some spooky metal cauldrons and fill with floating roses or floating pumpkin candles.
Fill clear glass cylinders 1/3 full with cranberries or acorns you’ve spray-painted gold. Fill the rest with water; place a floating candle (pumpkin, rose, or plain) on top, large enough to fill almost all of the horizontal space so it doesn’t drift to one side. Hot-glue a fabulous black Carnivale feather mask to a stick. Anchor in the center of an arrangement of tall ostrich feathers and roses. Go thrift-store shopping for pairs of spooky black boots. Fill with orange-dyed flowers.