‘A Grimm Evening’ Halloween Theme, Part 1 – Twisted fairy tales that don’t end happily ever after!

‘A Grimm Evening’ Halloween theme gives you a chance to twist and play on a few of our most famous childhood fairy tales and their beloved characters with a bit of humor thrown in. In truth, many of the Grimm’s tales are pretty scary all by themselves but let’s just see how we might serve them up ‘with a twist’!

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The fun of this theme is taking well-known Grimm’s fairy tales and twisting them into unhappily-ever-after-endings or playing up on the wicked elements that are already a part of the versions most of us grew up hearing. Miss Party intends this theme to be used only for a teen or adult party, when it is fun and appropriate to add wicked twists or a splash of campy humor to children’s stories. Here are some of the most well-known Grimm’s fairy tales:

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Sleeping Beauty
Little Red Riding Hood
Hansel & Gretel
The Raven

In each of these stories you will find a hero/heroine and a villainous character who can be: included in your scenes (or imply they have been there); used as costumed characters, or help drive your food choices (for example: Snow White’s evil stepmother, the Queen, poisons an apple to give Snow White. Hence, any sort of apple drink or dessert would be perfect to pretend it was prepared by her. See this idea used below with “The Evil Queen’s Mulled Apple Cider”). For Halloween party decor, imagine the aftermath if the villain succeeds in his/her mission in any particular story. In your version of Hansel & Gretel, maybe the Wicked Witch does cook Hansel and Gretel in a cauldron to make soup or perhaps Hansel and Gretel cook the witch. Another idea is to take a well-known ‘good’ character from one of the stories and put an unexpected twist in that character’s behavior–Cinderella might become ‘Sin’derella after dark or give Little Red Riding Hood an anger management issue.

Miss Party will get you started with a few ideas she used for this theme, many of which you’ll see in the pictures above:

- ‘Creeping’ Beauty death scene: ‘Creeping’ Beauty (a dressed skeleton) has been laid to rest forever and spiders are creeping all over and around her.

- ‘Sin’derella scene: Create a scene at a fireplace hearth with these sorts of items. ‘Sin’derella’s broom (appropriately tagged), stool, skull, handcuffs, man-killer high heels, etc. (go as far with this as is appropriate to your audience).

- Hansel & Gretel: Create a death scene for Hansel and Gretel either because of starvation or because they were added TO the dinner menu as soup in a giant cauldron soup pot. Alternatively, Hansel and Gretel might cook the wicked witch or their stepmother for dinner.

- The Evil Queen’s Perfectly Poisoned Apple: Make one very red candy apple with a natural stick. Plate the candy apple and place a small “RESERVED” tent card on the plate. Cover the apple with a glass cloche and set the whole piece on a cake platter to display in a prominent place at the party, perhaps on your food table. You might also rename apple desserts or drinks as if they were made by the evil Queen (see picture above).

- ‘Dead’ Red Riding Hood scene: Either insinuate Red Riding Hood has killed, or been killed by, the Big Bad Wolf. Either way, make it appear a smack down has occurred and one of them was the victor. Come to think of it, a real twist would be that Granny killed them both!

- Black Forest Cemetery scene: Create a classic graveyard scene and add painted wooden signs that point the way to: “The Black Forest”; “Wicked Witch’s cottage”; “Big Bad Wolf’s lair”, etc. You might put ‘Creeping’ Beauty or Snow White in this cemetery scene also. Have a gravestone for Red’s Grandma, Snow White or any other famous fairy tale characters that have met their demise. Add cobwebs and a fog machine –instant drama!

- Rupunzel’s princely death scene: Make a very, very long natural rope ‘hair braid’ (rubber band both ends of the braid) to hang out of an upper-story window with her skeleton Prince, hanging on for dear life. Or, ‘bloody’ one end of the braid and coil Rupunzel’s ‘hair braid’ all over Rupunzel’s skeleton Prince to suggest he pulled her hair off her head or the witch cut it off and he fell to his death.

Need more details on party details from the pictures above, continue on to Part Two of this post – “‘A Grimm Evening’ Halloween Party – The Devil’s in the details!” Want to know what Miss Party served for a light dinner, desserts and drinks? Go to “Behind the Scenes of ‘A Grimm Evening’ Halloween Party!”. Want to know how to make those awesome ‘Witchy-Poo” table legs? See “DIY Whimsical Table Legs” post.

Now, Miss Party is sticking strictly to Grimm’s fairy tales in this interpretation of a ‘Twisted Fairy Tales’ theme. There are lots and lots of other non-Grimm fairy tales, however, such as Jack and the Beanstalk or Goldilocks & The Three Bears, and all manner of Nursery Rhymes. There are also all the classic children’s stories, like “The Wizard of Oz” and “Alice in Wonderland” that you might want to include if you want to go with a broader ‘Twisted Fairy Tales’ theme. No rules, it’s all good.

Have a wickedly twisted evening!

(While this theme could certainly be made age-appropriate for a younger audience, Miss Party does not suggest using all the decor ideas listed here for a young children’s party. Good judgement should prevail.)


Witch hands black bowl and platter from Grandin Road
Black and white striped lanterns from Target
Paper and plastic party goods from iParty

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DIY Halloween Luminaries – Bigger bags ARE better!

Each Halloween, Miss Party makes a few spooky Halloween luminaries to add to a growing collection that now totals around three dozen. The grocery bag luminaries are big, festive and interesting for guests to look at as they arrive for a Halloween party or as a display in a corner of an outdoor party space. On Halloween night, she lights the luminaries again for Trick-or-Treaters. Boo!

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Since the thick kraft paper holds up through an evening’s use, Miss Party saves them for subsequent years. Each Halloween, she picks out a dozen or so of her designs from her collection and creates a multi-level display. She also uses them along pathways or adds to Halloween scenes. They’re inexpensive to make and set up each year, and much cheaper (and less messy) than lots of carved pumpkins. She also made a few with arrows pointing left or right to help guide guests.

One of her favorite sets of luminaries is perfect to be used along a pathway. Each bag has one word of the spooky phrase “I’d – turn – back – if – I – were – you!”

Notes on Fire-safety: Do NOT place in locations where costumed guests may accidently knock them over. Do NOT use luminaries if weather conditions are windy or wet. Do NOT place in or near dry leaves or other yard debris. The luminaries do best if placed in a dry, open or sheltered area (if windy).

Supplies needed:

large brown kraft paper grocery bag(s) (preferable if new and/or no logo printed on the ‘front’ of the bag)
pumpkin-carving books
Exacto knife
waxed paper
glue stick
cardboard that is the same size as inside dimension of your paper bag
extra-large tea light or votive candle in candleholder, one per luminary (if using regular size tea lights use at least 2 per bag)
several rocks per bag or sand to weigh down the bag
Aluminum roasting pan/tray, low sided (similar dimension as bottom of bag) (protects bag from wetness if placed on the ground)

1) Slide your cardboard into the blank side of your paper bag. Roll the top edge of the paper bag down one inch to give the bag a bit more stiffness so that it will remain open when lit.

2) Choose a design from your books, freehand draw the design onto your paper bag. If you are having trouble with the drawing, keep your designs simple. Draw scary or smiling pumpkin faces to start and work up to more complex patterns.

3) Using your Exacto knife, cut out the design. If you accidently cut away some piece you didn’t want to cut, use packing tape on the reverse side to tape back into place.

4) Cut a piece of waxed paper that is a little larger than your design. Glue the waxed paper onto the backside of your design (inside the bag). Apply glue around all edges of the design so that the waxed paper is really attached to all the little details.

The waxed paper gives design stability and will keep the kraft paper from curling away as outdoor moisture increases and the paper absorbs some of the moisture. The waxed paper also helps to spread the candlelight to entire design so that it isn’t dark at the top of the bag.

To assemble the luminary:

Open the bag and place several stones/rocks (Miss Party’s preference) or a layer of sand into the bottom of the bag. Place your candle into the bottom of the bag. Place the bag onto an aluminum roasting tray if the luminary will be sitting on soil or wet grass to add a layer of protection from moisture or wind.

Light and enjoy!

Miss Party’s U.K. invasion!


Miss Party has lived and loved another amazing whirlwind of warm and friendly people, amazing sights and delicious meals! Scotland and London were a brilliant complement to each other and yet, a contrast in lifestyle, history and landscape. In Edinburgh, our group toured the towering Edinburgh Castle, enjoyed a glamorous and unforgettable evening in an […]

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Summer Party

Miss Party does love her some good friends, good food and good drinks. Put them all together on a lovely, long summer evening and you’ve got some good times. Try throwing a casual summer party for you and your friends and see for yourself! Miss Party’s ‘Summer Solstice’ party (held on Saturday, June 21st, which […]

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Miss Party Goes to School!


Just thought I’d post a few pics of my final project from my “Graphic Systems and Structures” class at Rhode Island School of Design. It was a really challenging and interesting project. The project started with each student deciding on a small object that one could get in multiples. I chose to use the simple […]

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DIY Whimsical Ribbon Topiary – Party table decor that is bursting with color!

Whimsical topiary

Here are a few pics highlighting the whimsical curly ribbon topiaries that Miss Party created for the “On Cloud Nine” grad party. They turned out so cute she could hardly stand it! Basic supplies needed for 1 topiary: 1 large Zig Zag Pot or other base container of your choice, in color of your choice […]

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Grammy's statue

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Crock Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup for a Crowd – Hearty and delicious!

Chicken Tortilla Soup

This yummy, spicy soup is just as perfect for warm, summery weather as it is for cold, football-watching weather. For the hostess, it’s easy to put the soup together in your crock pot in the morning and have it ready in the evening for guests to help themselves. Couldn’t be less of a fuss! Make […]

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DIY Customized Paper Lanterns – Unique and inexpensive party decor!

paper lanterns

Need that one really, “Wow! Where’d she get those?” party decor idea? Then, here’s one for you! Customize your paper lanterns. Yes, it can be done with a relatively simple technique –decoupage! Look closely at the floral/white paper lanterns and the party linens in the images above. You’ll see they are the same floral graphic. […]

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Requests, anyone?

Miss Party's ruffled streamers

Just a quick note to say, if you find you CAN’T find the idea, recipe or info you’re searching for or have a general question, make a comment on a similar post or email me at ChrisMissParty@yahoo.com. I’ll reply quickly with the link to related posts, if available, or other response. With over 400 posts […]

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