The Macabre and the Unusual

Latest

Top 10 Halloween Tips & Tricks for Home Haunters

Decorate your house in style this Halloween! Here are 10 ideas for your home haunt or party.

  1. Choose a theme:
    Stick to one theme and sell it. You can also do a combination theme or one theme per room. Cohesive themes help any story you’re trying to portray as well as help all of the props work with each other. Some popular themes we’re seeing this year are sideshow, asylum, butcher shop and graveyard. With an asylum theme not only can you get an asylum restraint bed but you can throw in a couple straight jackets, get a standing Ms. Blitz, and maybe a few medical instruments on mayo stands. Add some specimen jars on the shelves and lay some bones out for good measure as well. Don’t forget, props from different categories can be mixed and matched!

    ms. blitz

    Ms. Blitz

  2. Utilize your space wisely:
    Whether you have a one bedroom apartment or a four-story mansion make sure that there is enough decoration and props to excite any haunter or party goer and not leave anyone bored. Mix it up with big props and small. Try a jumbo spider or a few skull stacks to add to the space. In a small space? Use the walls and ceilings, hang some creepy portraits, zombie quarantine signs or a Victorian girl for added decor.

    room_size_spider_a_79__30109.1409519999.1280.1280

    Huge Room Sized Spider

  3. Rent Rent Rent!
    Most high priced props are also available to rent. Work with your budget! Looking for a casket or a coffin? Those rent for only $100-$300. What about a standing character like a Zombie or Werewolf? Those are only $250 per week.

    Jawless Zombie Martin

    Jawless Zombie Martin

  4. Don’t be afraid to get messy.
    Fake blood is a great way to make a room go from boring to gory. Worried about the mess? Pick up some EZ Clean blood, a Dapper Cadaver original recipe. It’ll mop up from your floors with ease-but make sure to test a bit first! If you need to leave the place spotless on November 1st you can always use our resin blood pools to create your scene.
  5. Don’t forget the classics:
    Spooky skulls, haunted trees, light up pumpkins, giant scary clowns, tombstones and candelabras will work with multiple themes and make great additional decorations. Add them to the walkway or windowsill or as centerpieces. Add small decor like monkey skulls or a mystic hand to your platters or tables for a classic Halloween vibe.

    Centerpiece Candelabras

    Centerpiece Candelabras

  6. Play with size:
    Big props are great crowd pleasers but the detail is in the smaller items. For example, in your sideshow haunt you can not only have a cyclops and her baby but a two-headed bird and a monkey paw on display. Speaking of displays, using a bell jar or a wire dome makes everything look more detailed!

    Two Headed Parrot in Medium Bell Jar

    Two Headed Parrot in Medium Bell Jar

  7. Stock up on makeup:
    Prosthetics are a great way to look professional and make your costume stand out. Tie your costumes in with your themes. Try this sightless prosthetic for an eyeless zombie look or these vampire gashes to make your get-up ultra realistic.
  8. Mix up the real and fake:
    Having food served at your party? There’s no better way to freak people out than having an ear or a hand next to their plates. Have actors stand with some standing character props that match their outfits so when they move it especially spooks your audience. Try Zombie Kemmler or Ms. Snipper for inspiration.

    Zombie LKe

    Zombie Kemmler

  9. Don’t be afraid to DIY:
    Not everyone is a Pinterest pro and we know that. We make it easy though. Watch this video to learn how to create your own spiderwebs-use one of our candelabras or gargoyles to complete the piece.

  10. Play with sound and lighting:
    Imagine walking into a dark room and all you can hear is someone whispering in the corner. Or flashing lights with horse demon peering out of a closet. Playing with extremes of lighting and sound will not only scare your guests but will mean you can focus on specific decor that will be seen. Try placing a coffin in the corner and have an actor jump out just as the lights are flashing. It will spook and leave people on their toes.

Check out our blog in the coming weeks for more tips and tricks! Check out some of our past posts here for more ideas for your haunt or party.

Any ideas of your own? Post them in the comments below!

Dapper Cadaver is Now Open Saturdays!

Dapper Cadaver is now open on Saturdays! We’ll be open 9-6 Monday-Saturday until Halloween so be sure to stop by for all your horror needs! Not in the area? You can visit our shop and order online at dappercadaver.com.

Congratulations to the 2014 Emmy Winners!

We would like to congratulate all of the Emmy Winners and Nominees in the field of Art Direction!

A very special congratulations goes out to those who we’ve worked with in the past year; Boardwalk Empire, House of Lies, True Blood, True Detective, American Horror Story: Coven, Masters of Sex, The Big Bang Theory, and Modern Family.

Outstanding Art Direction For A Contemporary Or Fantasy Series :

Game Of Thrones-WINNER
Deborah Riley, Production Designer
Paul Ghirardani, Art Director
Rob Cameron, Set Decorator

House Of Cards
Steve Arnold, Production Designer
Halina Gebarowicz, Art Director
Tiffany Zappulla, Set Decorator

Justified
Dave Blass, Production Designer
Oana Bogdan, Art Director
Shauna Aronson, Set Decorator

True Blood
Suzuki Ingerslev, Production Designer
Cat Smith, Art Director
Ron V. Franco, S.D.S.A., Set Decorator

True Detective
Alex DiGerlando, Production Designer
Mara LePere-Schloop, Art Director
Tim Beach, Art Director
Cynthia Slagter, Set Decorator

Outstanding Art Direction For A Period Series, Miniseries Or A Movie:

American Horror Story: Coven
Mark Worthington, Production Designer
Andrew Murdock, Art Director
Ellen Brill, S.D.S.A., Set Decorator

Boardwalk Empire-WINNER
Bill Groom, Production Designer
Adam Scher, Art Director
Carol Silverman, Set Decorator

Downton Abbey
Donal Woods, Production Designer
Mark Kebby, Art Director
Gina Cromwell, Set Decorator

Mad Men
Dan Bishop, Production Designer
Shanna Starzyk, Art Director
Claudette Didul, Set Decorator

Masters Of Sex
Andrew Jackness, Production Designer
Kevin Rupnik, Art Director
Ellen Christiansen, Set Decorator

Outstanding Art Direction For A Contemporary Program:

The Big Bang Theory
John Shaffner, Production Designer
Francoise Cherry-Cohen, Art Director
Ann Shea, Set Decorator

House Of Lies-WINNER
Ray Yamagata, Production Designer
Chikako Suzuki, Art Director
Tim Stepeck, Set Decorator

Modern Family
Claire Bennett, Production Designer
Sam Kramer, Art Director
Brian Kasch, Set Decorator

Silicon Valley
Richard Toyon, Production Designer
L.J. Houdyshell, Art Director
Cynthia Slagter, Set Decorator

Veep
Jim Gloster, Production Designer
Sharon Davis, Art Director
Jennifer Engel, Set Decorator

Outstanding Art Direction For Variety, Nonfiction, Reality or Reality-Competition Program:

COSMOS: A SpaceTime Odyssey
Seth Reed, Production Designer
Johnny Jos, Art Director

The Oscars-WINNER
Derek McLane, Production Designer
Joe Celli, Art Director
Gloria Lamb, Art Director

Portlandia
Tyler Robinson, Production Designer
Schuyler Telleen, Art Director
Katherine Isom, Set Decorator

Saturday Night Live
Eugene Lee, Production Designer
Akira Yoshimura, Production Designer
Keith Ian Raywood, Production Designer
N. Joseph DeTullio, Production Designer

Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games Opening
Ceremony
George Tsypin, Production Designer
Rob Bissinger, Art Director

The Voice
Anton Goss, Production Designer
James Pearse Connelly, Production Designer
Zeya Maurer, Art Director
Lydia Smyth, Art Director
Kristen O’Malley, Set Decorator

Complete List of Nominees and Winners

Odd News: Revisiting a Voodoo Hex

Here at Dapper Cadaver, we tend to catch ourselves talking about some odd topics. Today’s topic was Voodoo.

Found on the blog Report From the Florida Zone an article states that back in 1998 a woman was arrested in Florida for some questionable Voodoo practices. How did this play out? First, a hand washes up on the shore of the Manatee River. Police successfully fingerprint the hand belonging to a long dead and supposedly buried individual who had died months before. Upon exhumation authorities discovered that all of the organs in the body had been replaced with Voodoo dolls and crumpled notes. Even freakier? Each doll had a name of a funeral home in the area etched on it and one with a name of a man. Written on the note was, “be gone and may you rot in your grave…Curse him as I curse him, spoil him as I spoil him, by the fire at night.” Detectives discovered the only funeral home not mentioned was that of an individual named Paula Green-Albritton, an unlicensed embalmer and Voodoo queen. The man on the other note, her ex-husband.

A little more research unveiled this documentary about the case. It is seriously worth the watch. Warning: there are real police images of bodies and body parts.

 

 

mummy_hand_a_52__63959.1390264668.1280.1280

Mummified Alchemy Hand $60

mysitc_palm_readers_hand_22__94595.1323733140.500.500

Mystic Hand $18

 

 

The practices in question were called “Helping Hand” and according to the documentary relates to the symbolism of the hand in many religions. If you’re interested in more things odd we’ve got some curiosities at the shop suited just for that.

 

 

 

 

Green was arrested and charged with one year in prison however she never served her sentence. Why? Well, a news article from the time states the officer questioning her was taped stating she wouldn’t be charged if the rituals in question were performed for a religious purpose and therefore all video of her confession had to be dismissed.

 

deluxe_shrunken_head_86__99572.1399495270.1280.1280

Deluxe Shrunken Head $120

Taxidermy Monkey Paw

Taxidermy Monkey Paw $20

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think of this? Have any other stories worth a share? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Fossils in the News: Prehistoric Fossil Jackpot & New Feathered Dino

We’ve been hearing a lot about dinosaurs and other prehistoric discoveries recently.  From newly found dinosaurs to fossil excavations, here are some news worthy stories we’re reading this week!

In China, a fossil of a four-winged dino was discovered with the longest feathers scientists have ever seen on a dinosaur fossil. This 125 million year old raptor named Changyuraptor Yangi or Great Feather in Chinese will help scientists learn about the flight patterns of larger creatures as well as the evolution of larger flying animals today. Check out some photos of the fossil!

Changyuraptor_S.-Abramowicz

Illustration of Changyuraptor yangi. (S. Abramowicz/ Courtesy of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County) (Washington Post)

Changyuraptor with (right) details of plumage. (Luis Chiappe/ Courtesy of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County) (Washington Post)

(Washington Post)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to the Washington Post it flew, had four wings, and its feathers were one-fourth the size of the dinosaur’s entire body.

How about this one: In Wyoming, a cave that was dormant to human exploration for the last 30 years is finally getting excavated. Trained international scientists will rappel eight stories down into the cave and climb back up. Once they are at the bottom, “they will load fossils into buckets to be hoisted to the surface” (Reuters). However dangerous this climb is its going to be worth it. Inside the cave may be hundreds of undiscovered fossils dating back as far as 100,000 years.

Dangerous cave in Wyoming to be reopened to allow scientists to study thousands of bones of ancient creatures. Access is the first granted since the 1970s. (Photo : Bureau of Land Management) (Tech Times)

Image from the original excavation.
(Photo : Bureau of Land Management)
(Tech Times)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

pterosaur_skull_a_95__85815.1389896082.1280.1280

Interested in getting some fossils of your own? Dapper Cadaver’s got you covered.  Check out our website for the newest in dino skeletons and fossils. How about your own Avian Dinosaur Fossil or a Pterosaur Skull to add to your collection?

 

Have a Horror Themed Dinner Party!

With Halloween coming up right around the corner, some of our friends shared with us their recent horror themed Dinner Parties. From recreating the Vincent Price cookbook to being inspired to create culinary art based on their favorite show, here are plenty of dinner party  ideas to get you in the mood for Halloween!

Vincent Price, the famous voice of horror, also had an interest in cooking. Not only did he write multiple cookbooks, A Treasury of Great Recipes and Come into the Kitchen he had his own cooking show Cooking Price Wise which aired in 1971.

Here he is cooking with Wolfgang Puck:

Any recipe from The Vincent Price cookbook is sure to impress your dinner party guests. Matt Babb, a friend of Dapper Cadaver, decided to do just that.  On his YouTube channel  he creates videos showcasing Vincent Price’s culinary creations mixed with footage of his dinner parties and narrated by Prices audio cookbook Push Button Cookery (if you want to listen, the Fine Art at Home blog posted the recordings). Matt himself acts as Price creating these delectable dishes.

Check out this episode Price of Dinner Maincourse and don’t worry, there’s lots more on his channel to watch!

karloff

Looks like Price wasn’t the only horror actor to have an affinity for the kitchen; Boris Karloff published an article for his favorite guacamole recipe – infused with sherry! (source: badass digest)

hannibal-15

source: Grace Feigh

Looking for other horror inspired dinner party ideas? Try a party based off the food in your favorite show. Dapper Cadaver’s own Grace did just that. Her Hannibal themed dinner party included a menu of Roasted Beet Salad, Kidney Pie, Ahi Tuna, Prosciutto Quiche Cups and for an extra special dessert, Blood Ice Cream. The blood ice cream recipe comes from the book Odd Bits: How to Cook the Rest of the Animal. Check out some photos of her event!

hannibal-16

Delicious blood ice cream! source: Grace Feigh

 

 

Grace was inspired by Janice Poon, food stylist for Hannibal. On her blog, she provides photos of the food and art she makes for Hannibal as well as recipes for the adventurous dinner party host. Janice brings food to a new art form using symbolism as well as intense creativity for the elaborate dishes.

Let us know if you have had a horror themed dinner party or tried a few adventurous recipes!

2014 Emmy Nominations in Art Direction!

The 2014 Emmy Award Nominations have been released and here are the nominees in the field of Art Direction.  Congratulations to everyone who was a part of these productions!

Outstanding Art Direction For A
Contemporary Or Fantasy Series :

Game Of Thrones
Deborah Riley, Production Designer
Paul Ghirardani, Art Director
Rob Cameron, Set Decorator

House Of Cards
Steve Arnold, Production Designer
Halina Gebarowicz, Art Director
Tiffany Zappulla, Set Decorator

Justified
Dave Blass, Production Designer
Oana Bogdan, Art Director
Shauna Aronson, Set Decorator

True Blood
Suzuki Ingerslev, Production Designer
Cat Smith, Art Director
Ron V. Franco, S.D.S.A., Set Decorator

True Detective
Alex DiGerlando, Production Designer
Mara LePere-Schloop, Art Director
Tim Beach, Art Director
Cynthia Slagter, Set Decorator

Outstanding Art Direction For A
Period Series, Miniseries Or A Movie:

American Horror Story: Coven
Mark Worthington, Production Designer
Andrew Murdock, Art Director
Ellen Brill, S.D.S.A., Set Decorator

Boardwalk Empire
Bill Groom, Production Designer
Adam Scher, Art Director
Carol Silverman, Set Decorator

Downton Abbey
Donal Woods, Production Designer
Mark Kebby, Art Director
Gina Cromwell, Set Decorator

Mad Men
Dan Bishop, Production Designer
Shanna Starzyk, Art Director
Claudette Didul, Set Decorator

Masters Of Sex
Andrew Jackness, Production Designer
Kevin Rupnik, Art Director
Ellen Christiansen, Set Decorator

Outstanding Art Direction For A
Contemporary Program:

The Big Bang Theory
John Shaffner, Production Designer
Francoise Cherry-Cohen, Art Director
Ann Shea, Set Decorator

House Of Lies
Ray Yamagata, Production Designer
Chikako Suzuki, Art Director
Tim Stepeck, Set Decorator

Modern Family
Claire Bennett, Production Designer
Sam Kramer, Art Director
Brian Kasch, Set Decorator

Silicon Valley
Richard Toyon, Production Designer
L.J. Houdyshell, Art Director
Cynthia Slagter, Set Decorator

Veep
Jim Gloster, Production Designer
Sharon Davis, Art Director
Jennifer Engel, Set Decorator

Outstanding Art Direction For Variety,
Nonfiction, Reality or
Reality-Competition Program

COSMOS: A SpaceTime Odyssey
Seth Reed, Production Designer
Johnny Jos, Art Director

The Oscars
Derek McLane, Production Designer
Joe Celli, Art Director
Gloria Lamb, Art Director

Portlandia
Tyler Robinson, Production Designer
Schuyler Telleen, Art Director
Katherine Isom, Set Decorator

Saturday Night Live
Eugene Lee, Production Designer
Akira Yoshimura, Production Designer
Keith Ian Raywood, Production Designer
N. Joseph DeTullio, Production Designer

Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games Opening
Ceremony
George Tsypin, Production Designer
Rob Bissinger, Art Director

The Voice
Anton Goss, Production Designer
James Pearse Connelly, Production Designer
Zeya Maurer, Art Director
Lydia Smyth, Art Director
Kristen O’Malley, Set Decorator

We’re especially excited to congratulate the following nominees that we’ve worked with in the past year; True Blood, True Detective, American Horror Story: Coven, Boardwalk Empire, Masters of Sex, The Big Bang Theory, House of Lies, and Modern Family. Congratulations!

For a complete list of Emmy nominations, click here.

Death on Display: Morbid Anatomy Museum Opens in Brooklyn

 

7-30-jars

A few of the specimens they have on display. source: Newsweek

We love this! There is now an entire museum devoted to death and macabre in Brooklyn. The Morbid Anatomy Museum showcases items “exploring the intersection of death, beauty, and that which falls in between,” according to their website. The museum’s curator; Joanna Ebenstein, grew the museum from her Morbid Anatomy Library “including more than 2,000 books on medical history, death rituals, the human body and esoterica” (New York Times). It recently moved into its new home, a 3 story former nightclub on 3rd Avenue in Brooklyn.

source: Morbid Anatomy Museum

Displays in the Morbid Anatomy Library. source: Morbid Anatomy Museum

The museum is currently showcasing an exhibit on “The Art of Mourning,” displaying pieces related to 18th-20th century mourning culture including hair art jewelry and shadowboxes, morbid photography, and death masks.

 

 

source: Facebook

Morbid Anatomy Flea Market source: Facebook

 

They even hosted a macabre flea market last week with vendors selling  curiosities, bones, and taxidermy. We wish we could have gone! On the east coast? They have frequent lectures and guests so be sure to check it out.

Happy 4th of July from Dapper Cadaver!

From everyone at the shop, we’d like to wish you all a very happy Independence Day!

Just as a reminder, the shop will be closed on Friday, July 4th, but our website will still be open. Any orders placed over the holiday weekend will be processed on Monday, July 7th.

To celebrate, we’re going to watch our favorite summer movie JAWS.  Here’s to a shark-free summer!

800px-Jaws_-_Amity_Island_4th_of_July_Celebration

source: Wikimedia Commons

1375934253-2 (1)

(don’t try this at home, folks) source: Neatorama

 

New Burial Trends: Putting the Fun in Funeral

Have you heard of these new funeral trends? A recent article in the New York Times shows a woman casually sitting at the table, beer can and menthol cigarette in hand.  She seems to be enjoying life, except she’s dead.  Apparently the newest trend in funerals is to decorate the deceased in either their favorite living pastime or living dreams. Funeral homes around the country are taking on this new option, but it is a not so new idea.  The article mentions Willie Stokes Jr., a notable gambler, who at his wake was propped up in a casket made to look like a Cadillac, wheels and all.  He was positioned with his hands on the steering wheel and holding $1000 bills, according to an article run in 1986 by the Chicago tribune.

source: New York Times

Louis Charbonnet, at her funeral. Source: New York Times

Willie Stokes Jr.

Willie Stokes Jr.

How about this one: know a person who loves their pet so much it becomes their child?  Well according to this story heard on NPR, a new law in Virginia gave cemeteries the green light to bury their owners next to their beloved pets.  Make sure you call them now though, there’s already a waiting list and plots being reserved.  There doesn’t seem to be a limit on how many pets (or pet plots) can be reserved either, the article mentions one man who wishes to be buried next to his 11 dogs.  No word yet on whether California will adapt their pet/human burial laws but many other states such as New York and Ohio have already amended theirs.

This gets us in the mood to watch some Stephen King:

 

Heard of (or been to) any other not so traditional funerals? Let us know in the comments below!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,265 other followers