The Founders of Halloween Decor

October has finally arrived and Dalena and I have brought out most of our Halloween decorations. It’s always a scavenger hunt to track down our favorite pieces as we seem to forget where we put things. But one part of the collection that I never lose sight of is our Dennison Bogie Books and I look forward to putting them on display every Halloween! 

(Yes...Those are Kettle Chips in the background.) 

Bogie Book Display

If you’ve never heard of these amazing little decoration books, they were really popular in the early 1900’s to 1930’s and featured a “how-to” guide to holiday decorating. To be honest, Dennison Books are a huge inspiration to Swar-Yay! and truly pioneered holiday decor in our country. For me, whenever I open a Dennison book I’m transplanted to that era in time and feel like I’m reading it off the rack at a local drug store or soda fountain. It’s an awesome feeling. 

Dennison Halloween Decorations

But the real reason I love these pamflet-like Halloween readers is because of all the insanely creepy artwork! The decorations advertised in the Dennison Bogie Book volumes are nothing short of genius. Not only did the artists design decorations with beautiful characters, scenes, and symbolism of the holiday, they also made decorations that were intended to entertain. Their pieces included various types of garlands, streamers, table cloths, napkins, runners, centerpieces, costumes, invitations, fortune telling games, and the list goes on! And each item they introduced captured the spooky essence of Halloween. Literally, Dennison taught America how to celebrate on All Hallows Eve! 

Dennison Decoration Scene

Today, Dennison Books and decorations are extremely hard to find. I’ve seen some Bogie Books and decorations go for thousands of dollars (sigh)....Yet again, Dalena would kill me...For those passionate about vintage Halloween decorations some of their items really are the holy-grail of collecting. And although our own humble gathering of Dennison decorations has slowly grown, I proudly feature them front and center for what they represent and the emotion they conjure. 

Want to make your home feel haunted? Dennison Bogie Books can show you how to do it. And who knows? You might discover a rare piece that’s a little haunted itself....

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published