Tuesday, October 4, 2016

An Accidentally Scary Halloween Window

Here's one of two* Halloween windows I decorated last year for my friend, Peggy's shop in downtown Rockport, Texas.  This is the scary one.  My goal was to come out with eye-catching windows that wouldn't scare the little kids in town.  Well, I tried.  But it turned out pretty scary anyway.  I got the only not-scary mask in our small town, and when the blacklights came on, he just couldn't help it.  He became scary.  Here's how I made this window:

1. Make an adult-sized dummy by stuffing a long-sleeved shirt and blue jeans with packing material like air bags, bubble wrap, craft paper, whatever you have handy. Set him up in a chair or dress him on a dressmaker's form.  Be sure there is some kind of support for him up through the middle, to attach the head onto.  You can add things to make him interesting, like the cowboy boots, silver-buckle belt, and bolo-tie I used.

2. Get a plastic pumpkin and turn it upside down.  Place a life-like mask on the front of the pumpkin so the opening and handle are at the bottom.  Depending upon the mask, you might need to get some small pieces of paper and draw eyes on them (black dots will do) and tape them inside the eye holes. Then put a hat on him.  I used an over-sized cowboy hat, which is available here in Texas where the sun is really strong.

3. Affix the head onto the body.  You might need a lot of duct tape for this.  Here's where your inside body support is important.

4. Run a straightened-out wire coat hanger through the inside of each arm, with 4 or 5 inches sticking out of the cuffs.  Stuff a couple of rubber gloves--I used purple ones-- and put one on the end of each arm over the wire.  You'll want to put the bottom of each glove down into its shirt cuff and probably do some more duct-taping.

5. Here's the magic: Run a fishing-line from the ceiling down to each wrist and tie so the arms are held aloft by the string.  It's starting to get scary.

6. Place plug-in jack-o-lanterns of different sizes, on each side of your dummy.  For a better look, replace the bulbs with orange or "flame" colored Christmas bulbs, and set them at varying heights.  You can set them on boxes draped with black fabric or t-shirts.

7. At the front of the window, place a blacklight so it shines up onto the dummy.  Then attach 2 blacklights to the ceiling over the dummy, each pointing at one of his shoulders.

8. When nighttime comes, turn off the indoor lights in the room, turn on your window lights, and prepare to be scared.

This was a fun window in the daytime.  It looked kinda cute.  But at night it was downright ghoulish.


*Click here for the other window--cute, even at night.

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