Johanna Parker Design is truly a cottage-based design team in Colorado with two creative folks that love each other and love making things with their hands. Johanna was born on Halloween! So, given that along with her affinity for art and color, as well as all things vintage whimsy, she found herself creating happy-spirited and often spooky characters from papier mache.

Besides Halloween, their folk art collections also include Christmas, Spring-Easter, Valentines and other fun and seasonal themes. Today, Johanna Parker Design creates a limited number of folk art originals each year as well as licensed collections for the gift and surface design industry. Any given day at the JP cottage may include a touch of painting, sculpting, sanding, along with some graphic design, pattern making, photography and illustration.

Behind the Collection

It all started with a dream for creative freedom, and a desire to create characters that make people smile. After working as an Art Director in the TV news industry with an Emmy award achievement, Johanna was ready to abandon the media madness for happier subject matter. And, that's exactly what she did! With JP's support, well, the rest is history.

Johanna longed for the days when she crafted with mom, making one of a kind holiday folk art for craft fairs and holiday bazaars. After cutting her corporate ties, a spark of inspiration moved her to reconnect with her tactile roots and refine her technique. Focusing on vintage style Halloween, it was a grinning black cat head with an illustrated conical hat that launched her business in 2003 and established her signature style. Well almost 2 decades later, Johanna Parker Design is rolling along quite nicely, offering one of a kind collectibles for a niche Halloween and holiday collector's market as well as populating shops and larger stores from shore to shore and beyond with reproductions that capture her whimsical look.

Don’t get tricked into thinking there’s no such thing as sophisticated Halloween decorations! While spooky fun is always the goal, it’s totally possible to stay in style with elevated Halloween decor that complements your larger home aesthetic. In fact, by focusing on more contemporary pieces you may even end up with decor you can use all year (or at least all season) long, rather than having to store it away until the next time Halloween rolls around. 

Below, we’re sharing some of our favorite ideas for standout Halloween decor, complete with plenty of inspiration from upcoming Johanna Parker new releases. 

7 Ideas for Stylish & Spooky Decor 

The only thing scarier than Halloween decor is wasting your money on pieces that don’t fit in with your style. This spooky season, focus on sophisticated decorations instead, with these ideas for taking a more upscale and elegant approach to styling your home for the holiday. 

Pick a Modern Palette

Choose a clear color scheme for your Halloween decor to ensure continuity and bring all your various pieces together. And for a more sophisticated feel, opt for a modern palette such as black, gold, and olive green, instead of falling back on the more traditional bright orange and purple.

Buy Functional Pieces

Your decorations should just look great but adds functionality too. For example, kitchen Halloween decor that doubles as everyday drinkware and serveware. We’re loving the whimsical Johanna Parker Halloween teapot, which can be a centerpiece of your countertop while also helping you serve up warm cups of fall tea. 

Bring in Some Texture

Halloween is a fantastic holiday for layering texture. Bring more visual interest to your decorations through the use of elegant textures like velvet, lace, and glass, swapping out or upcycling old plastic decor whenever possible. 

Shop Antiques

Halloween is a fantastic excuse to hit up your local antique store. Old birdcages, ornate mirrors, eerie artwork, and discarded Ouija boards all deserve a second life as part of your Halloween display, and can probably be repurposed for use throughout the rest of the year too.  

Upgrade Your Candy Bowl

When it comes to candy, how you display it is just as important as how good it tastes. Our pick: the Johanna Parker black cat candy bowl, part of her Carnival Cottage collection and inspired by her own cat (and muse), Jack. As a nice bonus, it’s so cute you’ll want to keep it out long after the holiday is over, which is as good of an excuse as any to keep restocking it with more candy!

Add in Small Spooky Touches

As far as holidays go, Halloween isn’t exactly known for understated decor, but there’s no reason that you have to go over the top. Rather than putting out big and bulky decorations, use small touches to bring a cozy, spooky feel to your existing decor set-up. A good place to start is by adding tiny pumpkins and other small pieces to your bookshelves, as well as by rotating in those functional kitchen pieces mentioned earlier. 

Mix in Metallics

Metallics are more than at home amongst your Halloween decor. Brighten up your decorations with gold, brass, and silver accents, contrasting them with matte tones and monochromatics so they really stand out. The most important thing when choosing home decor accents for Halloween is to stick with items you love. By staying true to your personal style, you guarantee that you’ll be surrounded by pieces you legitimately enjoy looking at – and that already fit in with the rest of the decor around them.