It’s that time of year again… cold, dark nights; clocks are turned back (this coming Sunday!); blustery days… Halloween and Bonfire Night are just around the corner. This year we’re having a Halloween party and have asked people to dress up. Aidan and I have got some pretty snazzy costumes to wear – although, as I’m typing this, mine isn’t exactly finished… or started… To get some ideas for the food and drinks, I decided to look up vintage Halloween adverts. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, I wasn’t disappointed. Here are some of my favourites, gathered together in one place. Thanks to anyone I’ve nabbed them off!
I’m not sure I’d want to answer the door to that last kid… My favourite advert out of these is the Pepsi one. Perhaps next year, I’ll be able to copy that costume rather than being restricted to ones of a rotund nature!
There is a definite chill in the air now and that lovely October feeling is starting to steal over me. I adore this time of year: Hallowe’en, Bonfire Night, leaves falling from the trees, woolly scarves and hats, mulled wine. Although we’re still decorating like mad – which means I can’t create my usual Autumn display with West German Pottery, conkers, twigs and pumpkins – I can still select and show off some of the more seasonally-coloured pottery we’ve collected over the years.
We’re hoping to get the majority of the decorating done this week; finishing just before we go off on holiday for a week. Perhaps when we come back I can create some kind of display for Hallowe’n. It’d be lovely to get some of these pieces of pottery out and use them. I feel like they’ve been boxed away for so long!
Suggestions for West German Pottery decorative uses:
- Go for a long walk and collect twigs of varying lengths and crooked shapes. Place inside tall, thin pots as they are or spray paint gold or black for a more Hallowe’en-like effect.
- WGP dishes can hold conkers, both shells and the nuts; dried orange peel and cloves
- Select pumpkin shaped pots to make a display on a sideboard – Scheurich balloon vases are good for this. Intersperse with real pumpkins and squashes.
- For a Hallowe’en party, choose dark coloured pots and cover them with fake cobwebs.
- Use your rumtopf or D&B Saturn punch bowl to hold mulled wine – you never know when you’ll need a cupful!
Please leave any further suggestions for Autumnal decorative ideas in the comments – how are you going to use your pottery this season?
Our display from a couple of years ago… Our friend, Dan, is trying to light his first ever carved pumpkin. Cobwebbed and be-twigged pottery provide the background to his sex-pumpkin!
Tonight is our last night in the cottage in Devon, so we’ve decided to have a Halloween themed evening. We’re drinking real ales by the name of Wychcraft and Warlock’s Brew and have spent an hour or so carving pumpkins. We now need your help! Which is the winning pumpkin? Pride is the prize…
Please vote via the comments function!
It’s a spectacularly rainy day here in Devon, so we decided to take a trip to Totnes. Unfortunately, the pickings were fairly slim in the town’s charity shops. However, we did find this little gem and after some deliberation (and yummy veggie food at the Willow cafe), I decided to buy it:
I got thoroughly drenched on our walk round; my own fault for being stubborn and not taking the brolly with me. It’s lovely and cosy to be back in the cottage now: laptop on, cup of tea and fire merrily flickering away behind me. Even the rain spattering outside is adding to the cosiness. The book is delightful. I’m so glad I bought it. Already, my mind is whirling with ideas of what to do with it. I think some Halloween-themed lessons will be in order next week.
The book, ‘Pleasant Fieldmouse’s Halloween Party’ was written by Jan Wahl in 1974. This edition was published in Great Britain in 1976. The gorgeous pictures are by Wallace Tripp. Other books about Pleasant Fieldmouse have been illustrated by Maurice Sendak, but I much prefer Trip’s whimsical and beautiful drawings. The sleeve jacket reads:
“When swallows fly south and pumpkins turn orange, the forest animals get ready for winter. But Pleasant Fieldmouse isn’t thinking about the cold wind – he’s planning a Halloween party! When the moonlit, spooky night arrives, there are rustling sounds… and sudden, scary noises! The mysterious capers that precede the party guarantee a night of surprises for everyone, including some uninvited guests, and especially Pleasant Fieldmouse. The lively and warm illustrations by Wallace Tripp are a perfect complement to Jan Wahl’s rambunctious and humourous- BOO!”
These are some of my favourite drawings from the book – how cute are the tiny mice in their little ghost costumes? And with the sentence, “Some end-of-year honeybees flew, timidly, as tiny, tiny bee ghosts.” you can’t fail to be captured by the writing as well.
The poor mole – moles are always portrayed as boring and miserable. I wonder why it is? I’ve got quite an affection for moles…
Unfortunately, I’m having huge problems with the internet here. Blame the rural location, horrendous weather or my own ineptitude. Either way, it’s taken two hours to get this far… so I’ll continue with pictures from the next part of the story another day.
This is one of my favourite times of the year. Once half term is over, it’s the countdown to Christmas, Halloween and Bonfire Night. There’s something about the smell in the air at this time of year: crisp, leafy, smoky… it reminds me of walking to school as a teenager, wrapped up in my thick navy school-coat and school scarf. Actually, that doesn’t sound too different from what I’m still doing now – only the colour of the scarf has changed!
Last year, I really enjoyed making an autumn display with pottery in the appropriate colours, garnished with a few pumpkins, unusual-coloured squash, twigs and dried chestnut cases. Something about West German Pottery… it lends itself so easily to a themed display; a result of the multitude of colours and cacophony of glazes.
Tomorrow morning we’re off down to Devon for a week. I am fully intending to do not much more than walking, relaxing in front of a log fire whilst reading and drinking red wine. I’ve already got my stash of books prepared…
- The Fabulous Fifties in Pottery (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
- A Lot On My Plate (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
Since October the 1st, I’ve found a vintage Halloween postcard hiding somewhere around the house or on my person. My lovely, daft boyfriend knows how much I love all things vintage AND Halloween so has managed to obtain some old postcards. As they are so utterly fantastic – and I’m off work with the lurgy – I thought I’d share them.
This was one of our favourite finds from the last German Road Trip. It was in one of the few vintage shops we found over there – very similar to Pop Boutique but an odd mixture of really cool stuff that was quite inexpensive, but then rubbish, really REALLY expensive things. Bizarre. Anyway, this was a bargain; we have a feeling we were undercharged…
Actually, the oddest feature of this particular pot shows up well on that picture: a previous owner has painted over the black underglaze. It’s not that noticeable in real life and still looks amazing. Consideration has gone in to trying to remove it, but there’s always the danger of knocking or ruining the glaze that’s there.
I’m getting the autumnal feeling now. Parents came over for a couple of days and we went to see Manic Street Preachers and British Sea Power. They brought with them some mini Jack O’Lantern pumpkins. Here’s how I’m storing them:
I’ve seen a fantastic Halloween display in this month’s edition of Marie Claire magazine which I’m intending on trying to emulate. I’ve also seen a display with half opened conkers which I like the look of as well. Lots of ideas: need to get some of them implemented.
Which means it’s time for curling up on the sofa in the dark evenings, watching horror films from behind a cushion, and planning what to wear for our Halloween party. I’ve definitely decided to go as Balinese Girl by Tretchikoff now. Yesterday, we went to Blackpool and I bought some green fabric from ‘June’s Fabrics’ to make the headdress/turban. Now I need to find a suitable dress, jewellery and an appropriate method to turn my skin green.
I did have some other ideas for costumes:
Oddly enough, they’re all far more creepy and Halloween-appropriate than what I’ve decided on! I just couldn’t resist the chance to be a living Tretchikoff print…
Having literally just bought some green stage makeup off Ebay, I now need to find a yellow dress and jewellery. I think I’ll probably try and make the necklace from cardboard: then I can paint it so it matches properly. The earrings can be imaginary! Not sure how I would get anything like those beasts through my ears.
Continuing on with the Halloween and owl theme, I thought it was about time I showed you the vintage owl prints I got from Crosby last week. I found the picture above through another Google search. These vintage Halloween pictures are fab: I think next year, I will be decorating my classroom with these before Halloween itself.
These prints are really strangely made: lacquered clear over the prints themselves. On the back of the smaller one is a label for Mullionaires Limited, Made in England. I did a quick search for it online, managed to find another one on an old Ebay listning. There is also a patent on the process of coating the print. The prints themselves are by Basil Ede - who seems to be more famous than I first realised!