Hunting a haunting Halloween on Etsy: artisanal, hand-crafted tricks and treats to order now.

2013 halloween countdown week 8


If you’re looking for cute stuff on Etsy, you do not need my help. There are 250 pages of cute Halloween items, as of today. I’ve searched through most of them in order to find a slightly less cute, more sophisticated sensibility to share with you. With any luck, I’ve brought you a selection that shows you the darker, quirkier side of this site that does not discriminate against darker, quirkier craftsfolk who want to offer their handmade wares directly to us darker, quirkier consumers.

Hang in there non-shoppers (that include you guys.) I know this is a shopping post, but there’s stuff here for you too. Some of it’s just fun to look at, and some of it might be just what you are looking to add to you Halloween celebrations.

This is an eclectic tour, and I know I’ve probably missed some wonderful gothic and horror artists, but one can only scroll Etsy listings for so long before going mad. If you happen to know of an Etsy artist that should be included here, please let me know about him or her. 

NOTE: All photographs and images below are used for the sole purpose of referring readers to the original Etsy shops offering the pictured merchandise or content, At posting, all links are current and active. If a link fails to direct properly, it is due to a change by the vendor which is out of my control. I have NOT purchased the following items, so I cannot guarantee quality. Read descriptions carefully.

Please, comment to the post as a whole rather than the individual photos in gallery mode. That just confuses me 🙂


If you actually read the disclaimer note above, you might have noticed that I say I have not purchased the items featured in my tour. There is one, very-important, super-cool, totally-rocking, exception to that statement. I have indeed purchased and received my first set of magnetic buttons – and the magic necklace that allows me to wear them – from my daughter’s shop. I’m so excited about this that I made a video:

Pooka Creations Halloween Selection

So order some stuff from her, ‘k? Or send a link to this post (or to the video, or to her shop) to someone you know who might be interested. Or share such a link on your social media (if you can figure out how to do that without spamming folks with my proud-mother button-necklace-hawking.)



A few more jewelry shops, because I’m fair that way:

Weirdly Cute


SinisterVanity  – Jewelry, yes, but also gorgeous ethical taxidermy.


(If you love something, poke around. There’s probably similar stuff there.)



Mixed Media Human Heart Prop/Sideshow Gaff 2012 | $55
Pale Man lifesize latex bust from Pan’s Labyrinth | $200
Zombie walking dead severed head halloween film prop | $39


(Harkening back to my crafts & hobbies post.)

Halloween Digital Vintage Steampunk Paper Doll Download | $6
Witches Brew Halloween Primitive Sampler E-Pattern PDF | $7
Halloween Steampunk skeleton paper jointed doll with skull | $3.50



Believe | $14.99
Boo Hoo | $14.99+
Bigfoot | $14.95



1940’s Kirchhof Pin Up Witch Halloween Tin Ratchet Noisemaker with Open Ends | $35
Vintage childs halloween Mask DEVIL in its original box | $18
Vintage Halloween Noisemaker Tin Horn Circa 1950s US Metal Toy | $25



Latex Clown Prosthetic Appliances | $25
Gas mask | $24
Handmade burlap latex Scarecrow Halloween Deluxe full head mask w/ dreads | $150



Happy Halloween Retro Three tiered Apron | $52.99
Cemetery Scene In Purple And Grays | $20
Retro Style Halloween Apron | $35



Masquerade Mask Tattoo multiple use with included spirit gum | $25
Gothic Black Elbow wedding veil | $18.99
Gothic Burlesque Steampunk Bustle Skirt | $75 



Werewolf Milk – Pre-Made Witches Apothecary Bottle | $6
Mad Scientist: Lektra Laboratories Vacuum Tube Darkroom Interval Timer | $18
Primitive SPELLBOOK Halloween Witch | $24


(I admit it, I’m addicted to good bath products.)

Halloween Soaps (10 favor-sized) | $20 
Halloween Sugar Scrub Scoops | $8.50
Handmade Candy Corn Soap for Halloween | $4.99
Three Halloween Skull Soaps in Buttercreme and Snickerdoodle fragrance | $3
Werewolf Soap | $6
Shower Cap Spooky Halloween | $15.50



etsy as cute as i get crow

Crocheted crow | $15



While prowling, I found items I loved – that I would have included in the categories above – except the WHOLE shop was awesome. Have a look:

Halloween Whimsey – Wooden items, wonderfully hand-painted, including dozens of Halloween-themed wooden pub-style signs:

idolatre clothing co. – Gorgeous, sexy, EXPENSIVE costume-wear. The middle pic below shows the price for just the head-dress part of the costume.

NancyMichalak Paper Cutting – One of the first not-my-daughter shops I favorited. I love looking at this intricate work.

hhfashions (Helene Hawthorn Fashions) – Beautiful Gothic and Victorian styles for costumes AND regular wear.


That’s it, folks. Remember, it’s only EIGHT weeks until Halloween. More importantly, it’s only about 26 days until October 1st – the day we can come out of the Halloween closet and trumpet our love to all. Will you be ready? Now’s the time to be thinking about:

  • maybe having a Halloween party
  • costumes
  • decor projects
  • watching Halloween movies (No one can judge you for what you do in the privacy of your own home.)

PS: I spent so much
pooka comic swears-ing
time on this post, that I haven’t yet made my week 8 countdown image. I’ll add it when I’m done.
(Yes, that was a sneaky way to link to Pooka Creations one more time.)

UPDATE: So, it’s there now. But I’m leaving the link 🙂

halloween countdown general

13+ Halloween-themed movies
Printable checklist of Halloweeny activities – enough for 13 weeks of fun
How and why to spend an afternoon with the dead at your local cemetery
 Halloween hobbies: monster models, knitting, cross stitch, paper cutting and more
Fall 2013 TV for lovers of horror, paranormal, dark fantasy, suspense (and retro)


Write or Die – a productivity tool designed to overcome my personal writer’s faults.

EDIT: as of March 30th, 2014, I can no longer recommend the purchase of Write or Die or Write or Die 2. It appears that the developer has abandoned the products, even though he is still accepting payment. I’ve written more about my experience with both versions of the product HERE. If you’re thinking of buying it based on word of mouth or the functionality of the demo or previously purchased programs, please go read the new post first. 

—————- original post follows———————-

The following couple of paragraphs were composed (and I use that word loosely) in Write or Die! – a program I just paid ten bucks for, then downloaded from the interweb. I’ve been eyeing it for a few weeks, and I’m choosing to make the leap tonight, mainly because I am too tired to write the proper, themed post I had planned for the evening. I will do some more exploring after I take a nap, then edit this post to give more details. At this exact moment, though, I have to say that I think I might be in love.

I’m so tired that I’m beyond tired tonight. I’m typing this post in a new tool, called ‘Write or Die.’ It’s meant to provide the stick that so many writer environments fail to provide. If I stop typing, my screen turns red. If I continue to not type, I will hear an unpleasant sound. The program allows me to set any word count goal, to be achieved in any time frame that I set. I have to choose all the settings when I launch the program, then, when I hit the ‘Write!’ button, the program takes over the entire screen, which gives me a large, blank white surface on which to write. At the moment I’ve given myself 10 minutes to type 300 words. I believe the top (gray) line is showing me how close I am to my word goal. The lower line (red) is probably showing me how much time I have left. I was able to choose from three(?) different levels of difficulty: gentle, normal and kamikaze. (I chose normal.) I was also able to set a few other options. I am able to choose to disable the backspace key – which would kill me – for example. Right now I can’t remember what the other options were.

The program can also be used to participate in a ‘word war’. Apparently, I could link up with another writer for a predetermined amount of time and race against him or her. I’m looking forward to trying that, though I fully expect I will suck at it, because I tend to be an incredibly slow writer, who spends waaay too much time editing on the fly. I am currently feeling pressured, but not stressed, which is pretty awesome, now that I think about it. Ah, my screen just turned red for the second time– Oh! I just heard a fanfare! I guess I made the word count goal before the time ran out … and now there’s been a second fanfare, telling me, I assume, that I have been working steadily for the full ten minutes. Interestingly, in the lower left corner of my screen I now have a timer that is counting up.

Ok. First glitch. I believe that badge (which is uber cool) should be showing my numbers.

Warrior Dash & A fitness aid for us creepy folk: Zombies, Run!

One of my best friends is studying to become a yoga instructor. Another regularly goes on 8 mile+ bike rides. My son is a black belt. FIVE of my closest family members completed The Warrior Dash this summer.

Some of my nieces, my husband and my son. Aren’t they magnificently filthy?

Me? I take pictures.

The only reason I have mud on me is that I waded into the sloppy mess at the finish line to give hugs. Completely ruined my shoes.

I am not a sporty person. Which is a shame, I guess, because – apparently – I have pretty good genes. (I come from Norwegian and German farmer stock.) Despite 40+ years of an utterly ridiculous diet, and an almost complete lack of exercise, my body hasn’t given up on me yet. Every once in a while, I realize I’m feeling sore and tired, so I commit to doing a few sun salutations daily. (This “commitment” usually lasts a week or two.) On the first day, I am always shocked at how stiff and weak I’ve become. Then, the next day, I can effortlessly drop into a pretty darn good standing forward fold, and I can hold a plank for minutes at a time. (Though that is harder, now that my future-yoga-instructor friend told me I needed to drop my hips lower.) Just since I started working at the hotel, my biceps have firmed – even started to pop – thanks to all the sheet folding I have done. My body wants to be healthy.

The problem is that I find exercise boring. It’s also hot and sweaty and just plain not fun. (My experience leads me to believe that endorphins are a myth.) It doesn’t help that I hate competing against others, which leaves me out of actual sports. In my lifetime, I’ve found only a handful of (G-rated) physical activities I actually enjoy. On the exotic side, I like yoga, kayaking and rock climbing. (Before you get any ideas about the strenuous nature of those activities, you should know I mean the least dangerous version of them. Think paddling a kayak around the edge of a lake, or scrambling up and down the gentle bluffs near the St. Croix River.)

I also like to walk/hike and, strangely enough, run. (I don’t mean jogging. I mean all-out running –  across a pasture, along a soft-sand road, down a sun-warmed sidewalk. And, yes, I’d prefer to do it barefoot.)

I don’t run as much as I used to. When I forget myself – like when I’m playing with the dog – I find that my form is still good but my endurance is … not. (Don’t ever start smoking, Children.) Still, until my lungs catch fire and my heart threatens to explode, it feels awesome.

I’d like to be able to run again.

Which is why I am now absolutely determined to get a smart phone – just so I can buy an $8 app:

Here’s the official website:

This is my favorite review of the game:

By the way, now is your chance to weigh in on the IPhone v. Android debate. Has anyone actually tried the game? Or, like me, do you now think you want to?

WriMoProg: 3 + 24 = 27/46