The premise for this party is simply spine-chilling: Transform each room of the house into a scary cinematic scene—like "Poltergeist," "The Birds" and "The Shining"—that strikes fear into your heart, then beckon unsuspecting guests to explore what lies within.
For Royale Ziegler of But First, Party!, the idea for this modern Halloween party comes from a series of iconic images on the big screen.
"The artistic concept was inspired by several scary movies that have haunted me my whole life," says the event stylist. "Starting with 'The Shining,' I never truly quite got over that scene with the blood gushing out of the elevators as a child and have always loved how visually impactful it is. Another film that terrified me as a young girl is 'Poltergeist'—any time the TV went to static, I was convinced a ghost had made its way into the television set. Lastly, I wanted to reference 'The Birds' because that attack scene really ruffled my feathers!"
She called up two of her friends: Rachel Huntington, owner of party boutique Bonjour Fête, and Alexis Andra, founder of event design and styling business The Shift Creative. Together, the three women combined creativity and creepy touches to bring this macabre vision to life.
How to Make Static Fringe Garlands
Recreating the look is easy—all that's needed is a mix of black and white fabrics, silver foil streamers, scissors, chicken wire, and monofilament.
Create a color palette of fabrics, focusing on black and silver hues, and incorporating metallic and sequin details for added shine and texture. Cut 10 strips of fabric per foot of garland length, in various lengths to add depth when the garland is strung across. The strips here each measure 2-by-8 inches in size.
The chicken wire can be measured to whatever length you'd like for the overall display. It's made of flexible, galvanized steel wire with hexagonal gaps—ideal for the base of a garland. For the fringe trimmings, start by tying dark-colored fabrics as the base.
Tie each strip to the chicken wire, looping through the hexagonal gap, knotting in the center and allowing the ends to drape.
Hang the fringed garland from various points on the ceiling using command hooks or fishing line. "We loved criss-crossing the fringe and adding in metallic streamers hung lower for a really dramatic effect!" (Don't worry if it's a little wonky—it's all part of the sporadic static look.)
An aviary is a place for keeping birds confined. But anyone who's watched Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" will know that some birds break free... and what's more, they're out for blood. Enter the second room of this haunted house, inspired by the 1963 Hitchcockian classic. The table was set with a gauzy linen runner by Silk and Willow, blood-red goblets, glittered cast-iron ravens, and modern black and white place settings. A spread of delectable eats was served, and a cake did double-duty as the centerpiece. Installation artist Ashley Renuart crafted the nests looming overhead and a few stunning floral arrangements.
"REDRUM": Spell it backwards, and that six-lettered word summons a gruesome scene to mind. As the writer-turned-hotel-caretaker in "The Shining," Jack Torrance was a frequent patron of the Gold Room's bar, and friend to the (plot-twist!) ghostly bartender Lloyd. This cocktail would have undoubtedly been his go-to order, and also served as the signature sip for the party. Agave, pomegranate juice, and beets are brought to a boil. Sweet homemade grenadine serves as the "blood."
Heat It Up
Pour It Cold
Sweeten To Taste