Throwing a western themed Halloween party does not have to take much effort or money on your part or that of your guests. The ideas can be very simple and the costumes can be very reasonable to the very extravagant. This is also a great idea as the costumes can be cool and comfortable for the warmer climate states. Whether you would like to throw this party indoors or out or a combination it is real easy to decorate and can be accomplished on a limited budget.
Setting up your home is fairly easy to do if you just put your mind to it. I’m sure there are several things you can come up with just laying around the house that would work. I happen to have some red and white checkerboard tablecloths that I use for my Italian dinners. These are perfect for a western theme and you can use to cover tables or toss over furniture to use these as just accent pieces. You can probably find something in this pattern at most stores such as Wal-Mart who carries one for around $14. To search for these tablecloths, just remember to check gingham as well as checkerboard in your searches. Though red is probably the most recognized color for a western theme table cloth, just about any color combo with white would work on a checkerboard pattern. It’s then easy to offer red plastic cups and plates to make up for the lack of red if you can’t find tablecloths in that color.
Another simple idea to do is visit your local feed store or watch the pumpkin vendors, when they open, for hay. We got a couple of the rectangular hay bails at a local pumpkin patch vendor last fall and set them up outside the front door for decorations. Since these were part of an autumn decoration, we had stacked some pumpkins on top and a scarecrow behind. You may want to set a couple outside, especially if you are having a backyard party, that can be used as decoration, or seats by throwing a western blanket over them. For an added decoration you could also coil a rope, if you don’t have a real lariat, and set that against the hay. If you have access to some old tin cookware or something more like tea kettles or lanterns, then they can also be used a decoration. You may want to come up with something else if it is an indoor party only as I wouldn’t want the real hay inside my home because they can get really messy. However, if you do decide you’d like to use the hay, then make sure you place a sheet underneath that you can carry the hay in back outside.
If you have a Big Lots nearby I would certainly suggest visiting that store now to find other decorations that you could use indoors or out. They always have a large selection of scarecrows around this time of year. They also have so many other decorations, I’m sure you could find other things to use. You may want to check here for those tablecloths too. Make sure to also check the stores craft department. K-Mart happens to have cowboy boot stockings which are perfect for pasting up around the house as a decoration. You never know where you might find something perfect. These are also good stores to get some lanterns at for decoration and light. If you happen to be a camper, then break out some of your camping equipment and use as decorations. If it’s a backyard party, then also dig a little fire pit so you can sit around and sing songs.
Dressing for this occasion is also fairly easy. I’m sure a lot of us already have flannel shirts and jeans in our closet. Of course to be really authentic, get a cheap pair of boots and don’t forget the cowboy hat. I lucked out not too long ago and got two straw cowboy hats at SteinMart for $5 each. Check all you local retail clothing stores as I’m sure you can probably find a cheap hat that works. The same also goes for the boots. Also check out the flea markets and vintage stores (even Goodwill) for these items. Ladies can do the same thing or if you’re really wanting to look authentic, then go ahead and buy or rent a real costume for your party.
It is also easy enough to have food to go with this occasion without breaking the bank. A heaping batch of chips and salsa is a great starter. Another easy thing to do is get at least a couple hard crusted loafs of bread set at your tables. I would also suggest a big pot of franks and beans which is always perfect western fare. Another option is a large pot of macaroni and cheese. To make that more western, try to find the wagon wheel pasta to make this with so it fits right in with the theme. If you’re pressed for time, then also consider making a crock pot or two of stew, possibly one beef and one lamb. This is easy and won’t take up your day with cooking. Throw in some potatoes and carrots and you’re done.