Spooky Wedding Great Expectations Halloween Display

I have SO MANY posts for you this week. Relatively speaking. There’s going to be another sponsored post , and I don’t like to do two in one week (even though I work hard on the sponsored posts and only do ones that I feel are a good fit for the blog and blah, blah, blah), but some last minute scheduling issues made it unavoidable. And, since two posts a week is all I can usually manage these days, I like for the sponsored posts to be “extra” posts rather than having them replace one of my usual two…..which means FOUR posts this week. I hope. If all goes according to plan.

Great Expectations Halloween Display

So, as I mentioned in my post about making Miss Havisham’s wedding cake, this year’s Halloween theme is a little….specific.

But, at the same time, it’s about as universal as it gets. Weddings and funerals have a long history of creepily intermingling in art and literature (and, you know, at Disney’s Haunted Mansion, another theme this display could work with). Something about juxtaposing these two great rites of passage that are supposed to be so separate–one about the beginning of adult life and fertility and all that and one about the end of it–is compelling. And spooky.

In Hamlet “the funeral baked meats/ Did coldly furnish forth the marriage tables,” a perversion that seriously pisses off the mortality obsessed Hamlet. Poe has more fun with it (it would be hard to have less fun than Hamlet) in “The Bells” as wedding bells eventually give way to the “iron bells” of death.

And then Great Expectations, where Miss Havisham’s wedding feast sits out, gathering cobwebs and attracting vermin, for decades. In case you didn’t quite grasp what Dickens was getting at with this whole wedding feast rotting and decaying while Miss Havisham herself ages over the years in her wedding dress, Miss Havisham just comes right out and declares that her eventual plan is that when she dies her CORPSE will be laid out on the table, right there with the cake. Oh, Miss Havisham.

So anyway.

A wedding feast on the dining room table for two months being impractical, I did my best to replicate it on the buffet, in front of the Sad Pilgrims painting. The pilgrims are very sad about how all that lovely cake went to waste.

I guess the reason I quoted Shakespeare up there is that I don’t really have that much to say about the actual Halloween display–mostly just pictures with a few explanatory notes. Most people, when they don’t have anything to say just….don’t. But then there is me. (and I didn’t even MENTION The Sound and the Fury or “Bells for John Whiteside’s Daughter”).

Right, so…pictures! (plus short explanatory notes and relatively little literary analysis from this point forward).

havisham09s havisham08s

I bought WAY too much of the fake spider web stuff. I bought two bags, and I think I have 1.8 bags left. Fake spider web tip: a little goes a long way. I bought those gold rimmed glasses at Goodwill the other day, and I love them. I don’t know what kind of drink they’re for, but they look a little more antique and less…from the dollar section at Target than our wine glasses do. Then I just filled in with some stuff from our china cabinet–gold chargers and white dinner plates, brass candlesticks. Also fake spiders and cockroaches, not from our china cabinet.




There’s my raven from last year’s Halloween display. He doesn’t have anything to do with Great Expectations, but I love him, so he got to come out and get draped with spider webs.



I printed out this picture of a Victorian-ish bride from The Graphics Fairy. Poor Miss Havisham….look how young and hopeful she used to be!


The cake is the same as before, only now with spider webs.



I don’t appear to have gotten a good shot of the other printable….it’s an antique marriage certificate (also from The Graphics Fairy). Blank–because the wedding never happened 🙁  Miss Havisham’s room has lots of clocks all stopped at twenty to nine, the exact time when she received a letter that let her know there would be no wedding. We only have one clock, but that will have to do.

And here’s how the whole dining room’s looking. Like it still needs its new chairs painted. But also ready for Halloween! Anatomy cards are back up for their third year.


Recreate Miss Havisham's Spooky Wedding feast from Great Expectations for Halloween


Check out last year’s Halloween stuff:

Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”


Halloween Tree and tiny banner


Linking with:

Outside [the Box]

Link Party Palooza at I Heart Naptime

Best of the Nest

Get Your DIY On

October Before and After at Thrifty Decor Chick



Spooky Wedding Great Expectations Halloween Display — 19 Comments

  1. I love your theme. My kids always want to buy such crazy decorations I am never able to decorate along a theme. Oh, and I will take any left over cob webs you don’t need.

    • Thanks, Anna! This may be it for the theme….I’m not sure the costumes would be terribly exciting (although Ari says he wants a top hat ;)), and I can’t for the life of me find a pumpkin pattern that goes with it. But we’ll see!

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  4. As a soon-to-be English major and Halloween fanatic, I’m drooling over this!!! I DEFINITELY have to include more literary elements in my Halloween decorations this year 🙂

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