Sunday, October 20, 2013

Halloween Hangups

No, I'm not talking about problems people have with Halloween.  I'm talking about those great cardboard diecuts from yesteryear.  If you're old enough, you probably remember them from dime stores, classroom walls and maybe even your own home.  Beistle was the predominant maker of these wall hangings, starting way back in 1900, although it would be a decade before they got into the paper decoration business.  I love the art on these.  Unfortunately, the artists are uncredited and I haven't been able to find a definitive list of artists who worked for Beistle, although H. E. Luhrs who married into the Beistle family and eventually became CEO was one of them.

I found this witch in the basement of an estate sale this past winter.  She stands a staggering 5 foot tall.

Likewise, I found this witch in the basement of another estate sale as well.  She's not marked Beistle, but to the best of my knowledge, that's who made her.

There's something disturbing about her freakishly large head.

Classic Black Cat

Scarecrow Pumpkin

I found him with this witch

These following diecuts were a mystery.  I found them in a paper bag stashed among some more modern Halloween decoration.  I could tell by the art they were old, so I picked them up.  A little research suggests there were an Oscar Mayer premium, given away during the 1950's.  Apparently, they were included in a Halloween decorations book and were intended to be masks.  Fortunately, the previous owner only cut the face out and left the eyes intact.

And finally, while technically not a hang up, this 1970's piece by Hallmark certainly captures the feel.


  1. I love that 5 foot witch! My parents had that one and hung it on the front door every Halloween in the 70s.

  2. the cat especially flicks my nostalgia button. these are all in such amazing shape -- and those oscar meyer ones are really surprisingly detailed!

  3. I have three of those witches and many more ive collected since 2009 yes the drawings of these decorations are cool that why i collect them .

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  6. I would pay 125 for the lifesize jointed witch, text 662-491-6032 david

    1. Hi David. I wish I'd heard from you last year! I sold it for $60 on eBay! Thanks for the offer.


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