Gruesome Guide to a Spook-tastic Halloween…
It’s that time of year again when good boys and girls get dressed up as bad ones and things definitely go bump in the night. Whether you stay in or go out this All Hallows’ Eve here are a few suggestions for getting the most out of this year’s night of the living dead.
Halloween is the perfect excuse to dust off your corset and fishnets and go out on the town (or to a party) as your favourite gothic character or creation. The beauty of Halloween is that you can be anything you want to be for one night only, so be creative! Be it a bat, kitty cat, wicked witch or zombie bride there are so many options for the choosing. Don’t forget, if you get stuck, there is always that old white sheet in the back of the cupboard
Tip: Get some inspiration from Halloween costume shops and sites such as: Fancy Dress or check out the past craft posts on CO+K here to make your own DIY equivalent.
Theme Nights & Dark Cabaret
There are plenty of Halloween-themed club nights and burlesque balls taking place all over the UK this year as well as chilling day-trips to be enjoyed. Here are just a few:
- The London Bridge & London Tombs Experience:
A tour full of history and special effects to educate and terrify. Voted the UK’s scariest attraction.
- Halloween Scare Fest, Alton Towers:
Special indoor & outdoor attractions from 17th Oct-1st Nov 2009.
- Club Noir, Halloween Burlesque, O2 Academy Glasgow:
Promises “the most gory, glamorous, gargantuan Halloween burlesque shows”.
- Halloween All Nighter, Rock City, Nottingham
- The Last Tuesday Society, Hendricks Halloween Ball at the Troxy, London:
On October 30th The Last Tuesday Society hold a Halloween ball for ‘the beautiful and the damned’ in the enchanting surroundings of a 1930’s art deco Grade II listed building.
- ‘People are strange’, Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, Lichfield, Staffs:
The lovely ladies of Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang invite you to an evening of gothic debauchery on Halloween night.
- Bill Spectre’s Ghost Trails, Oxford:
Join Bill (dressed as a dashing Victorian undertaker) for an evening walk through some of the historic and terrifying ‘haunts’ of Oxford. Friday 30th and Saturday 31st October.
Atmospheric music can set the tone for your evening either on the move with your MP3 Player or at home on the stereo. Try listening to the dulcet tones of Emilie Autumn, Regina Spektor and the dark cabaret/blues of Harlequin Jones. Fancy something heavier? Sample gothic rock bands like AFI, Marilyn Manson, Rasputina, The Cure, Jack Off Jill, Scarling, The Dresden Dolls or My Ruin to get you in the macabre mood! Failing that create your own Halloween station on last.fm.
Whether you enjoy being scared silly by a slasher film like Friday 13th or Scream or prefer a vampire gore-fest like Lost Boys why not watch something to give you goosebumps this Halloween and get into the spooky spirit.
If you are sick of the traditional horror films with airhead cheerleaders (who seem incapable of turning on lights when entering a deserted house or running without tripping over tree roots and losing items of clothing) being picked off and summarily dispatched by a masked killer or evil beastie then there are plenty of alternatives: think Ginger Snaps, Carrie, The Craft, or Diablo Cody’s new man-eating monster in Jennifer’s Body (On general release this October). Find more film suggestions at Pretty Scary.
With the recent success of Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight series my local bookshop is now awash with Vamp-lite fantasy fare. Halloween could be the perfect opportunity for you to sample the books of Charlaine Harris (the basis for the True Blood television series), Cassandra Clare (‘Mortal Instruments’) or Vampire Diaries by L. J. Smith.
If you’d rather have an early night with a more gruesome book to leave you sleeping with the lights on I’d suggest the far darker horror tales of Poppy Z. Brite, Neil Gaiman or John Ajvide Lindqvist (Let the Right One In).
Tip: The scariest stories are often those from your own imagination so why not try writing your own terrifying short story?
Looking for something a little lighter? Gothic comics and manga are increasingly popular. My personal favourites are Serena Valentino’s Gloom Cookie and I Luv Halloween from Tokyopop.
If all that fails to get you into the Halloween spirit then have a go at carving yourself a pumpkin or bobbing for apples! There are a whole host of free stencils and how-to videos available on the internet for giving your pumpkin a truly devilish grin. Try The Pumpkin Lady, Spook Master or Halloween.co.uk.
Share your tips for a Spooktacular Halloween below?