Trick or Treat Yourself - Things to do for a Frightfully Fun Halloween
With Halloween fast approaching (I can’t actually believe that October is almost over) I thought I’d share some of my favourite ideas for a frightfully fun Halloween. While my heart will always be Summer, if I had to choose a second favourite season it would be Autumn. The build up to all the festivities, as well as the gorgeous low afternoon sun and the leaves turning to gold is something you definitely can’t grumble about. You also can’t beat being able to get all cosy indoors, lighting some of your favourite candles and watching a movie on a Sunday afternoon.
The arrival of Autumn also brings the next big holiday (we don’t really call it a holiday in the UK) but we still like to celebrate it all the same, and our love for all things Halloween seems to get bigger every year. With bigger, more elaborate costumes, plenty of places to visit to get those spooky senses going and a whole week’s worth of festivities, I thought I’d share my favourite things to do for a frightfully fabulous and fun Halloween.
Get dressed up in your coolest costume
It wouldn’t be Halloween without a bit of fancy dress and it’s one of my favourite parts about the spooky season. Love them or hate them there’s definitely something out there for everyone. You can spend a fortune or get creative making your own. (I like a mix of shop bought and handmade) and there’s so much inspiration out there, from your favourite scary movie or TV show, the traditional black cats and witches, and you only have to scroll through Pinterest to find some amazing ideas.
Last year we went to a friends Halloween party and everyone looked incredible. I love the effort that everyone puts in and it wouldn’t be Halloween without getting creative with some faceprint and sequins.
Me and my sister in our Day of the Dead inspired facepaint.
Of course you don’t have to go the whole hog with dressing up either, there’s some great alternatives to full fancy dress if you just want to add something to your everyday wardrobe. Here’s some of my current faves that you’re bound to get back out year on year
Have a Horror Movie Night
No Halloween week would be complete without a Scary movie or two.
I love putting on Hocus Pocus or The Craft, (my limits are quite mild when it comes to scary films) and lighting a few candles while enjoying a glass of red, (the aptly titles 19 Crimes is a favourite wine of ours at the moment). You just can’t beat it. It’s even better if you host a film fright night with friends or loved one. There’s always someone who jumps up on a scary scene and spills the popcorn.
Some of my favourite Halloween TV and film moments are nostalgic ones that remind me of growing up and sure enough we always manage to get them on the box during the month of October. It’s just not the same without them.
Here’s a few I can highly recommend if you haven’t already seen them:
Oh yes Mr We are the weirdos… Simply THE best Halloween movie for a night in with the girls.
Little Shop Of Horrors
The story of Seymour and Mr Mushnik’s flower shop is the perfect out of this world tale, definitely watch this if you’re a musical fan and fancy a sing song.
The Wes Craven classic again reminds me of growing up and its the perfect slasher movie for a Halloween date night (so you can hide behind your date of course).
My all time favourite has to be Disney’s Hocus Pocus - THE best Halloween movie for the whole family to enjoy.
Visit a Pumpkin Patch
Until a couple of years ago Pumpkin patches were fairly rare in the UK but now they seem to be popping up everywhere, of the power of the gram. It’s starting to become a bit of a tradition to head to your local farm shop or garden centre and pick your own pumpkins ready to decorate in time for Halloween. I’ve been lucky enough to visit a different one every October for the past few years, and the sea of orange often set against a golden background it does seem to get you in the Halloween spirit. Here’s a few local to me, as well as a some other ones I’ve visited around the UK. Well worth getting your pumpkins from a farm shop too, as there’s so much more variety than the supermarkets and you’re often supporting a local independent business too.
A few of my favourite Pumpkin Patches in and around the UK
Cammas Hall Farm: On the Essex/Hertfordshire border - Pick your own in the ready to go patch or out on the fields
Crockford Bridge Farm: Surrey - Pick your own and join in the fun with their annual pumpkin festival
Undley Pumpkin Patch: Suffolk - Pumpkin patch picking and maize maze
Farmer Copleys: West Yorkshire - The UK’s largest pumpkin festival
Foxes Farm Produce: Essex - Pumpkin patch & corn maize
Make (and sample) some Halloween Cocktails
As I’ve gotten older I’ve become a bit less is more when it comes to alcohol consumption and I’m all about the cocktails, especially during a celebratory holiday season like Halloween. I don’t need any persuading when it comes to trying out a new tipple and this Halloween will be no different. Anything orange or with a fiery ginger kick are my go tos.
Here’s few of my favourite recipes found from in and around the internet that I hope to try this year. Make sure you let me know if you try any of these and which ones are your favourites.
Go on a Spooky Tour of Haunted Places in your Area
I’m always up for an adventure exploring somewhere new, so if this sounds like you too, why not give your day trip a bit of an edge by visiting a haunted hang out in your area. This is something I’ve yet to do during Halloween week but this year, I’ll be squeezing a spooky tour in somewhere before the 31st October.
Here’s a few I’ve found in around Essex/London where I live, and I’ve added them to my to do list this October. If you’re also local to these areas, be sure to check them out. There’s plenty of places offering a good scary story up and down the UK and I’d love to know of any local to you and I can add them to my list of places to Travel in the UK over on Pinterest.
Spooky & Haunted Places in Essex & London
Tower of London Tower Twilight Tours: Tour the amazing Tower, (one of my favourite places to visit in London) taking in some of the gruesome sights during darkness hours and listen to spooky stories which make it world famous.
The Original Hangman’s Hill Essex Ghost Walk Epping Forest: Located at High Beech, there is said to have been plenty of strange goings on near an ancient tree which is believed to be the site of a hanging either of an innocent man or of three witches. The organised Ghost Walk tours takes you on a journey of local tales and folklore, and you even visit an eerie haunted cemetery.
Bleeding Heart Yard & Tavern, Farringdon: The name alone is pretty gruesome, and this small cobbled courtyard has a horrid history, not a story for the faint hearted. Legend says that a socialite was found murdered here in the 1600s, whose heart was found in the street still pumping blood long after she’d died. Visit the restaurant and get a scary bit of history while you’re there.
Colchester Castle: Located in one of the oldest towns on record on the UK, has plenty of scary tales to keep you entertained this Halloween. The castle is the largest Norman keep that still remains in Europe, and come nightfall stories takes a more sinister turn. You can even spend the night here if you want a truly terrifying experience.
Borley Rectory: Apparently this old monastery site is the most haunted in the UK with numerous reports of ghost sightings and supernatural goings on.
Paint some Pumpkins
Decorating pumpkins is one of my favourite things to do during Halloween and rather than the traditional carving, I like to paint mine depending on my theme or colour scheme for that year. If you’re stuck for ideas there’s some amazing inspiration out there, I’ve saved some of my faves over on my All Hallows Eve Board on Pineterest here.
There’s also some brilliant pumpkin buys in the shops at the moment, ones that you’ll want to keep and get out every Halloween, so I’ve popped a few finds below