When I left you last week, I was rambling on about managing the onset of SAD syndrome by making a start on this year’s Halloween crafts.
It wasn’t my intention to get all deep and meaningful, but I guess if I’m going to write a blog about life on my planet, there’s a very good chance the good will be joined by a little bad and ugly!
Getting back to the fun stuff, I had a brilliant weekend. Crafting aside, women the world over will attest to that other magical cure for depression… retail therapy. Put ’em together and what have you got?
One HELL of a Halloween shopping haul!
I don’t normally post round-ups, but I am SO excited about my shopping trip, I just had to share my spoils with you. That way, if you feel the urge to splurge, you’ll have a head start on where to go for all things Halloween.
Charity Shops are a great source of inspiration
I was on the look out for anything Halloween-y but mainly, I was hunting interesting shaped bottles to add to my growing collection of Halloween Apothecary and with things to decorate them with.
My first port of call was the local town centre. It’s rather over-subscribed with charity shops but I have to say, they are a fantastic resource. I came home with loads of bits ‘n’ pieces, including skull and cat earrings, gothic looking jewellery and a rosary bead necklace.
Oh…and that black bead bracelet?
Apothecary bottle stoppers.
I also bagged 10 miniature houses (think haunted village), a great black candlestick and this amazing ceramic hand.
Just imagine it painted black and dripping in blood…
Cue evil cackle.
In total, I spent about £30, but I got a LOT of bang for my buck! This haul will keep me occupied for AGES!
Sourcing Halloween craft items
Corked vials (£5.73), Metal Frame (£3.00) and Metal Keyhole (£3.99) – Craft Central. Mini Glitter Craft Jars £1.00 The Works. Skeleton Necklace (£1.49) and Vampire Blood (£1.99) – Luvababes Fancy Dress, Derby
I visited all sorts of places on the hunt for crafty bits, including Craft Central in Burton-upon-Trent, where I spent a wonderful couple of hours browsing, buying and talking crafts with the lovely Gina.
By this point, Beloved was beside himself with excitement. He does so love it when I (and I quote) “start talking bollocks with another biddy”.
Update: It’s August 2016 and I tried dragging Beloved back to Craft Central, only to find it has closed down. In its place is a large charity shop that sells furniture. I’m not sure what’s worse for Beloved’s blood pressure!
Where to find Halloween decorations in the UK
Finding Halloween-specific items proved almost impossible. Beloved and I trawled Derby most of Saturday and failed to find so much as a plastic bat. Maybe I’ve simply arrived a little too early to this year’s Halloween party!
However, I did find a few bits, including the ceramic skull moneybox pictured above (£2.99) and the Mache (spell) books below (£3.49, £3.99 and £4.49). All from Hobbycraft.
I also discovered some brilliant skulls in an esoteric shop located in Derby’s Market Hall. I bought two of the plain ones (£3.99 each) and one with the raven, which was £4.99.
Also £4.99 was the (I think, pretty realistic-looking) owl, which I found in Byrkley Garden Centre, Burton-on-Trent. Well… no discerning Halloween scene would be complete without a wise old owl, would it?
It’s amazing what you’ll find in a garden centre. Lurking in the sale section were two gorgeous wooden trays with the most exquisite handles which, in Beloved’s words, “are Ouija Boards waiting to happen!”
He’s good like that.
Black candles are a Halloween staple. So when they’re reduced to 25p each, you pick up as many as you can lay your hands on.
After hours on our feet, with little in the way of Halloween items to speak of, I was starting to lose all hope. Then Beloved said (through gritted teeth), why don’t we go to TK Maxx?
“Oh, OK then”, said I… without much enthusiasm.
OH EM GEE! TK Maxx you absolute blinder!
I cannot tell you how long I’ve a) lusted after pumpkins and b) searched for them online without success. Yet there they were. Shelf after shelf of pumpkins, pumpkins and more pumpkins.
There may have been squealing.
And then there was the artwork.
How brilliant is this for the Apothecary collection?
Spend a fortune?
Here’s the full shopping haul from TK Maxx in case you see any items you like.
Individually, I thought everything was very reasonably priced. Altogether… maybe not so much! Please don’t add it up; the length of the receipt is scary enough!
- Set of 3 Orange ceramic pumpkins £5.99 (not shown)
- Metal Pumpkin Tealight Holder £5.99
- Wicker Pumpkins £9.99 and £7.99
- Mercury Glass Pumpkins £5.99 each (top tip – do NOT pick these up by the stem. Yep. I broke one before I even had chance to play with it)
- Metal Jack O’Lantern Cauldron £6.99 (Other sizes available, which I managed to resist!)
- Orange Glass Pumpkin Lantern £7.99
- Small Art Blocks £2.99 each
- Bat & Skull Art Blocks £5.99 each
- The Owl Inn £12.99
- Queen of Halloween £7.99
The moral of the story? If you’re looking for Halloween decorations in the UK, go straight to TK Maxx.
Do not pass go.
Do not collect £200.
Mind you having said that, I’m kinda glad I found the other stuff first, otherwise I might have stopped looking and spent the rest of the afternoon eating cake.
Whilst that may have been great for my credit card bill (if not my waistline), I’d be chomping at the bit by now to put everything out and start decorating the house already. Although the weather outside may suggest otherwise, it really is still only August!
Instead, I now have tons of Halloween projects to be getting on with and I can’t WAIT to bring them to you.
I hope you enjoyed this post. If you’d like more information about any of my purchases, do drop me a comment below. I’ll still have the receipts for at least the next 28 days!
A hui hou,