HauntedProps.com. Here you can get yourself and other party goers a Jack the Ripper costume for around $50, or at the very least, since the outfit is rather simple, you may be able to put together something from your own closet or by checking out some vintage clothing stores in your area. It really is a fairly simple look you’re trying to accomplish. You could always do a simple slack and vest suit and add a cape to make it a little more authentic. Capes can be found just about anywhere on line and they have them at this site for around $40. The women’s outfits will take a little more effort as the style of the late 1800’s were tight fitting bodices and floor length dresses. If you have access to a high quality costume store, you could probably get the dress you need. However, you may also want to check out the Renaissance era dresses. They are not quite the style, but you could get something that would do just as well. For an example of what I’m talking about, check out this site for an idea. Another place to check out Jack the Ripper costume is here with a couple choices in the price range of $40 to $80.
Now for some things you can do to decorate your house. Again, you can start at HauntedProps.com for all these items or check out the cheaper local Halloween stores for similar items. I would drape as much as you can with black sheets if possible. If you get your home to look more like dark streets the better. By draping walls and furniture with black sheets you can darken the rooms for the right feel. This would also be a great thing to do with hallways. If that is too much, then you could just drape some black camouflage netting around. As for lighting, that’s going to be hard to duplicate, so one suggestion is to get some battery operated lanterns that they have at this site. Another option is to get the two pack of flicker lights at PartyCity.com for $2.00 a pack. You could either paint or just cover up the bottoms so they’re black and set these all around the house. Haunted Props has many other lighting options and you may decide there’s something you like better. It’s really going to depend on your home and what you’re going to want to accomplish.
As far as additional props for this theme, you can get some great rats to place all over as this certainly conjures up the visual of being on the filthy dark streets of London in 1888 (which is the year that Jack the Ripper murdered many women). Also available at Haunted Props are many choices of rats. If you’re on a tight budget, then just go for the cheap rubber rats, which still look quite real, for under $4 a rat. If you want to spent some money to make it even more realistic, then you can grab yourself some animated rats. The best place to try is probably a Big Lots as they usually have large animated rats around this time of year when they put out their Halloween products. Another thing to consider is placing some rubber rats around and on a bloody corpse or body parts at the very least.
If you have an open budget you can get really creative with your props. Keeping in mind that Jack the Ripper’s victims were women who were found mutilated, it would be pretty easy to set up a variety of areas with bodies in various states of mutilation. Some of the better places to find these on line is at, of course, HauntedProps.com and another great site is frightcatalog.com where you’ll find a good selection of female props.
Hopefully this gave you some ideas if you’re throwing a Jack the Ripper themed party. There is, however, one more thing I found that is worth a look. You’ve got to check out this life size prop which could easily pass for a “dead” Jack the Ripper. This thing is just about perfect for setting up just inside the front to door to welcome party goers.