On Saturday afternoon I left myself a little short of time to make a grim reaper cloak for my daughter to go and demand sweets with menaces. Otherwise known as trick or treating. In one hour I made a full length cloak with hood, no pattern,no previous experience. It’s not haute couture but it looked most effective, especially when you think it’s black and she’d be wearing it in the dark. My husband did a sterling job on the scythe as well. It was a really simple outfit with a big impact. No need for face paint or fangs. She wore black trousers, her school shoes and my fleece. Cheap as well as effective as the fabric was on sale at £1 per yard and the scythe was made from a bamboo garden stick and cardboard.

It was important that her face couldn’t be seen and we pondered how the hood could be made to stand away from and conceal her face. Then my daughter had a brainwave, use a baseball cap and the peak would keep the hood in shape. It worked a treat.

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When she returned it was with the largest stash of sweets I’ve ever seen anywhere that isn’t a sweet shop! Some people had made up little bags for the children and some had even given money. It made our offering to the local kids look mean. And yet, is it right that they be given so much? I really don’t think it is. The main fun is in carving the pumpkin, dressing up and having fun with your friends. Not collecting such vast amounts of sweets and chocolate. My daughter doesn’t eat a lot of sweets, I bet there’s lots left at Christmas.

I have two pleas. Firstly for the kids and adult chaperones. Please only visit houses where a halloween light is shown. Masked figures on mass, in the dark, can be intimidating. Secondly – please only give a small treat, the kids really don’t need more. I really am turning into a grumpy old woman aren’t I?

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