For 2011, I plan on hosting my first formal masquerade Halloween dinner and have been exploring unique ideas to make the experience for my guests one to remember. I've already purchased 13 (the ideal number for my first dinner) antique goblets for the table and have been looking for unique glass dinnerware that I can use year after year. I'm not having much luck, however, and am considering creating my own (I'll keep you posted). Regardless, I found this photo and after analyzing it to death (no pun intended), there are a number of ideas that I would absolutely love to incorporate. For example, the miniature pumpkins on top of the candlesticks with a small crow attached to the stem. How amazing is that? I have several very tall candle holders (in black, of course) that I could easily use for this arrangement. Fortunately, I have not had to pay a lot of money to create these as I have purchased them for a few dollars from garage sales and second hand stores and simply painted them with a can of matte black spray paint. I prefer matte black to glossy because it has a more subtle look. The real miniature pumpkins are relatively inexpensive around the autumn season or, if you prefer, pseudo ones can be purchased though I think they "cheapen" the effect. I was able to purchase black crows about 5 inches in length at a dollar store this season. This was an incredible find considering that craft stores (both online and locally) charge much, much more than that even when they are offered on sale.
I also loved the black and white theme with splashes of orange. Though I like the black and white vase with the artificial flowers, I would rather utilize a black vase with a base of black long-stem roses. Perhaps for filler I could paint twisted twigs and branches black and orange and add them to the bouquet. I am going to borrow the idea of utilizing orange and black licorice whips in clear glass holders which, if you don't have any, can be purchased for a dollar or less at garage sales or second-hand stores. Dollar stores are also a great resource for this type of purchase as well as other unique items (as I mentioned above). I love the idea of varying the length of the licorice in an arrangement of three containers in addition to it being a treat for guests.
Finally, I love the black and white skeleton head and pumpkin cookies. Perhaps for a splash of color I could present them on an orange tray for guests.