Set the stage for an easy and elegant Halloween party with sophisticated black-and-white decorations, intriguing invitations, and delicious recipes.By Jessica Anderson, Jody Garlock
1. Throw an Elegant Halloween Party
With an assortment of candy, colorful costumes, and spooky TV specials, Halloween is is full of fun for kids. But don’t forget, adults can celebrate Halloween, too! If you’ve outgrown cauldron punch, fake spider webs, and gross-out candy, host a sophisticated Halloween party for your friends and family. This Halloween party is full of intrigue and mystery, inspired by carnival masks and crescent moons of New Orleans. Read on for decorating ideas, invitations, recipes, and more.
Impress your guests with these old-fashioned Halloween party invitations. Print the invitation (available below) onto cardstock, trim the design as shown, and mount on a shimmery piece of cardstock. A few special effects give the invitation its twinkle. Cut out the cardstock moon, coat it in glass glitter, and attach it with a pop-up glue dot.
Ravens perched on branches in a black urn ominously greet party guests. Simply fill a black urn with decorative branches and bittersweet. Attach plastic ravens to the branches using wire. Incorporate fall color by setting colorful pumpkins and gourds around the base.
Extend sophisticatedly spooky Halloween decorations to the entryway to invite party guests inside. Bits of bittersweet pop against an ash-color Spanish moss wreath. Cover a straw wreath form with bunches of Spanish moss, using greenery pins or T-pins to secure. Make this wreath part of your Halloween scene by adding bittersweet and a plastic raven.
A planter filled with painted and decoupaged pumpkins provides an interesting and mature alternative to the jack-o’-lantern. To craft decoupaged pumpkins, tear strips from old book pages and apply them to a craft pumpkin using decoupage medium and a foam brush (we used Mod Podge in a matte finish). When the pumpkin is fully covered, seal it with one to two coats of decoupage medium, smoothing out any wrinkles with fingertips while wet.To craft the painted pumpkins, apply glossy black spray paint. Cut leaves from silver crepe paper and old book pages, and attach to pumpkins using double-sided tape or a hot-glue gun set on low.
Paper lantern “moons” hang above the dessert table where black-and-white candies in apothecary jars become edible decorations.
Editor’s Tip: Claim old brass candlesticks and trays from thrift stores and coat them with glossy black spray paint, chalkboard paint, or matte black primer to serve as buffet anchors.
Silhouettes work their graphic magic, turning any backdrop into a spellbinding focal point. Print the silhouettes (available below), and trace onto the back side of self-adhesive shelf liner or vinyl; cut out figures. Adhere the cutouts to white plates or a black tray lined with pages from an old book.
Note: Our silhouettes are the mirror version of what you see in the picture. Print and trace them onto the backside of the shelf liner as described in the caption. When you cut out the figures they’ll face the correct way.
A crescent moon silhouetted against the night sky inspired this moody display. Shadowy silhouettes embellish plain glass lanterns filled with candles sitting in moss and miniature gourds. Print the silhouettes (available below), and trace onto the back side of self-adhesive shelf liner or vinyl. Cut out figures and adhere to lanterns.
An ornate sign attached to a classy silver tray easily identifies the party potion. Tie the theme from your invitation into these handy table markers. Get the pattern below.
Bottoms up! A refreshing Halloween punch serves a crowd without bewitching your wallet. Even better, Harvest Moon Punch pairs perfectly with party appetizers and desserts.
At Carnival, revelers veil themselves with elaborate masks so suitors don’t discover their true identities. While donning a fake mustache won’t fool anyone, it makes for a fun, noncommittal Halloween costume — or as in this gentleman’s case, adds years to a youthful face.
Posters are an easy and inexpensive way to decorate to theme. Here, a poster reciting an old Creole expression is taped over a mirror. Print our downloadable banner (available below) to the desired size, and temporarily attach it to a mirror using double-sided tape, or place it in a frame.
Paper bats “flying” from fishing line festoon the table where guests can dip into the party libations. Print bat silhouettes in various sizes (available below) onto cardstock. To hang the bats, make a tiny hole at the end of each bat and string monofilament through, knotting at the end. Fold along the middle of the body and at each wing to add a dimensional feel.
Shiny flourishes finish off the dessert table. Rich Black Velvet Cake looks celestial topped with a moon and star attached to a skewer. Scatter spray-painted leaves on the table to add luster. As for the cake, imagination is everything. We transformed a black velvet cake and added a hint of orange to the frosting.
Love Halloween parties? Continue with a Ghoulish Gothic Halloween Party.