Monday, October 11, 2010

My Frivolous and Green! Halloween

The Green Phone Booth welcomes Lisa Nelsen-Woods, who writes about green living, DIY, and saving money at Condo Blues and presents real food, real quick for real budgets at The Lazy Budget Chef.

I do not practice a nature-based spirituality so when Fall comes around I think of two things.

Pumpkins are in season! Pumpkin flavored everything, especially craft beer, is quickly becoming one of my favorite Fall foods.

Halloween is coming! Yippee!

Some may look down their nose at Halloween and call it a frivolous holiday.

That’s exactly why I like it. Because Halloween IS a frivolous holiday!

Halloween is the one day out of the year that you can pretend you are a superhero (because really what woman with all of her responsibilities, isn’t?), your favorite childhood profession (dressing up as a mad scientist is so much easier than all of the schooling and degrees and tragic situation that drives you mad), or parenting idol (Children’s Services may not appreciate my Mommy Dearest costume but the costume committee at the last Halloween party I attended did enough to award me the prize for Scariest Female Costume!)

I have one closet full of adult Halloween costumes I made and old clothes, wigs, and props that can be turned into costumes. Most are leftovers from my husband’s and my historical reenactor days. I also have a small box of dog Halloween costumes because we attend several rescue Halloween events.

Depending upon our twisted sense of humor sometimes these items are abandoned for other DIY ideas. For example, by wearing my brown pencil skirt upside down, grabbing a colorful scarf, a thrift store pin and a few items I would never normally wear all at once (because they just don’t go) I have an accurate Little Edie from Grey Gardens costume. I guarantee you won’t find that at any Halloween shop!

Of course, if there is something specific that you are looking for, and you can’t sew or borrow, you can always rent a costume. Everyone forgets that green Halloween option.

Shopping Green for Halloween

One of my favorite Halloween activities is to go to stores and look at Halloween decorations and costumes. My husband and I go several times during the season, not to shop the aisles for plastic gewgaws, but to shop for ideas. It’s fun to look. Just because it’s in a store, doesn’t mean I have to buy it. It’s cheaper and sillier than a haunted house, which lost its appeal after spending my teenage years volunteering at a local haunted mill.

When I do buy a Halloween/Fall decoration, I’m thoughtful about it. If I buy something, I make sure it’s a Halloween decoration that will last for several holidays to come. I seriously doubt that everyone throws out all of their Halloween decorations from one year to the next and buys every single thing new, do they?

I layer in live and found objects like real pumpkins, seedpods, and fall leaves with the store bought items. After Halloween, I remove the Halloween themed items and keep the fall items out until it’s time to decorate the outdoors for Christmas. With the exception of the pumpkins, those I bake, puree, and freeze for cooking.

I like that Halloween is a time for me to stretch my creative muscles and now that I have more time for it, to get my Halloween craft on. The best, in my opinion, decorations and costumes are the ones you make yourself. I don’t like to look like everyone else in my everyday life and I don’t want my home to look like everyone else’s at Halloween either.


Erin aka Conscious Shopper said...

I love the witch's broom and sign. So cute!

Green Bean said...

"Just because it’s in a store, doesn’t mean I have to buy it." Love this quote! This is so true and I find myself doing this more and more - shopping (in brick and mortar stores and online - for ideas not actual product. Than I make do with what I've got or make it up and every now and then I splurge on something that will hopefully last me a long long time.


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