Why do we dress up and decorate at Halloween?

At Poundstretcher, Halloween is one of our favourite nights of the year. We love having an excuse to dress up as a scary character and kit out rooms with fabulous ghoulish items.

But when all is said and done, it’s a bit of a strange thing, isn’t it? Why, one night every year, do we celebrate all things scary and spooky?

Like most events that take place annually, there’s a fair bit of history and tradition that contributes to how we celebrate it today.

So with Halloween fast approaching, we’ve taken a look at what lies behind the event to give you a better idea of why your Halloween decorations and Halloween costumes are as they are.

Halloween’s Roots

You may know that there’s a religious element to Halloween. In most Christian Churches, the 1st of November is All Saint’s Day, also known as All Hallows’ Day. So the 31st of October is All Hallows’ Eve or Evening, which over time has become ‘Halloween’ as we know it today.

So that’s where the name comes from, but there’s some debate as to whether the traditions and celebrations associated with Halloween come from Pagan or Christian beginnings.

One of the most popular theories is that many of the traditions stem from the Gaelic festival Samhain, which marked the end of the harvest season and the transition to the darker time of year.

This was the time of year when the Celtic people of Ireland and Scotland, in particular, believed the world of ghosts and ghouls was at its closest. So it was at Samhain that these people looked to scare away these ghosts and ghouls and keep them in their own world using all many of spooky techniques, such as lighting bonfires and wearing costumes for example.

Interestingly, one of the reasons the pumpkin is so associated with Halloween is because Christians were encouraged to abstain from meat on All Hallows’ Day. So alternatives, such as pumpkins, were sought and thus became associated with Halloween as we know it.

It seems that Halloween, as it’s celebrated in the modern age, takes inspiration from a number of historical traditions – all of which band together for the spooky fun we enjoy today.

Halloween Today

However, the traditions we today associate with Halloween came about, Halloween today is big business.

With mass emigration from Europe to the USA in the 19th and 20th centuries, many traditions went with those people who moved across the Atlantic.

This is why today there are huge festivals and celebrations around Halloween in the US, and the event has become a major part of popular culture both there and in the UK.

You can get Halloween decoration ideas by taking a look through our superb selection of products. We also stock excellent Halloween partyware, as well as plenty of plenty of Halloween sweets and confectionary in our Trick and Treat range. We also host a wide selection of bargain Halloween decorations to get your homes or offices looking exactly as you wish.

Be sure to head to your nearest Poundstretcher store before 31st October and get everything you need for Halloween 2018.