Now, ‘The Halloween Book’ by Jane Bull is the perfect book for kids to use, safe, cute and great for the basics. ‘Ghostly Frights for Halloween Nights’ is aimed at the serious crafter.
Firstly I would say that the almost none of the projects here would be suitable for younger children, say below 8 or 9; most involve either sewing, or drilling or require a good deal of work that few younger children would be able to sustain interest in, although having said that, some might be suitable for group projects.
The items described in this book would be the kind of thing that grown-ups or older children could make as decorations for the Halloween season. And many are substantial enough to keep and bring out year after year.
I also feel that many of the items made in this book would not be suitable for decorating a house with younger children. The irony would be lost on the younger ones and they could simply be frightened by them. The hangman dolls or full size grim reaper figure could really upset a sensitive child.
Enough of the negatives however, as actually I love this book! The craft ideas are imaginative and cleverly executed. The whole book is infused with a real sense of wit and humour from the funny cartoons, the interesting Halloween facts and the delightful illustrations, both the drawings and the photographs.
The projects are not described in minute detail and assume a small amount of experience and intelligence, which in turn allows plenty freedom for the person who likes to make a project their own.
Where appropriate the pattern pieces are included in the book so that they can be photocopied and enlarged to an appropriate size. There is also a page of reference pumpkin expressions and suitable gothic lettering which you can also copy.
There are projects to decorate the outside as well as the inside of the house, party and trick or treat ideas. There are a number of doll-type makes – but there is no cutesy cabbage-patch stuff here – a chameleon, Frankenstein’s monster and a Voodoo doll.
For a Halloween celebration full of kitsch irony this book is absolutely perfect.
About the Author: Jacqui O'Brien is the Editor of eParenting.