Le freak c’est chic – Halloween special

As Halloween approaches we’re bringing you a selection of what we’re billing as a rising trend for interiors – freaky, creepy and a little bit kitschy Halloween homewares. From art with ghoulish undertones, to tribal masks that conjure up dangerous warriors, sinister ceramics to textiles with faces (admittedly quite friendly, but the teeth featured are generally gritted)…. here’s our edit of grim ideas and creations that would thrill any room with an off kilter vibe. Perfectly acceptable all year round, obviously.

Thomas Schütte, United Enemies, 2010 © Thomas Schütte/Bildupphovsrätt 2016 Photo: © Nic Tenwiggenhorn/Bildupphovsrätt 2016

Thomas Schütte, United Enemies © Thomas Schütte/Bildupphovsrätt 2016 Photo © Nic Tenwiggenhorn/Bildupphovsrätt 2016

Chances are you can’t acquire these guys above as they’re part of an exhibition currently on show at Moderna Museet in Stockholm. Thomas Schütte: United Enemies focuses on the work of Schütte who makes figurative sculptures – including the above piece, which ties two figures together so that each is the other’s prisoner (they are united enemies). If you want our more primitive take on things, basically the blue-faced one especially is giving us nightmares.

Eilean Shona | Old schoolhouse | masks | The Chromologist

Image, Eilean Shona

The magical Scottish holiday destination of Eilean Shona in Moidart, east of the Ardnamurchan peninsula, was once a hideaway for J M Barrie and the place that is said to have inspired Neverland. Nowadays it’s owned by Vanessa Branson and dotted with cosy rentable bothies and homes, including this, the Old Schoolhouse. Its mantelpiece is decorated with tribal masks that are cool, colourful and creepy. NB masks are also ideal for creating a big spooky gallery wall should you lack a mantel.

Still on faces….

Caitlin Hinshelwood | Star face silk flag

Image, Caitlin Hinshelwood

…here’s two artists whose work concerns textile wall hangings and crochety-looking faces. The above is Star Face Silk Flag by Caitlin Hinshelwood and the below two are by Damien Poulain in a collaboration with traditional Egyptian tent-making ‘Kheyameya’ artists whose craft is a dying art. The latter project is by Rotate Editions and launched at London Design Festival last month.

Kheyameya Textile hangings | The Chromologist

Images, Damien Poulain

Meanwhile Bertjan Pot continues to make really unsettling but really fabulous masks in his self-propelled face project, which evolved from his experimentations with stitching rope into a carpet. It coiled persistently making it an impossible carpet material, but inspiring the idea of masks. Since the first one, made in 2010, the designer has periodically added to his collection noting, “I’m meeting new faces every day.”


Images Bertjan Pot

For ceramicist Rami Kim including every feature of a typical face is not necessary, which to us ups the creepy factor of her vessel, below left. Her ghostly pieces however, are really quite sweet.


Images Rami Kim

Artist Nathalie Lete’s collaboration with Astier de Villate are both macabre and humorous. Ceramic meat cuts anyone?


Image Nathalie Lete

Or, from her own collection, just a lovely big gathering of ceramic eyeballs?


Image, Nathalie Lete

Lastly, we urge you over to artist Angela Deane’s website to see the full gamut of kitsch paintings available from her. Each one has a terrific name too – see Hallucinatory Hydrangea and Ghost Choir below.


Image, Angela Deane


Image, Angela Deane

Header image courtesy of Angela Deane –Witches Swimming (They don’t all melt).

Jill Macnair


Jill Macnair has worked as an interiors journalist for 13 years, contributing to titles including Elle Decoration, The Sunday Times and The Guardian. She set up cult interiors blog My Friend’s House in 2009 with Ros Anderson and continues to run the forum daily.

The Chromologist 2019 | Farrow & Ball

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