I felt like I was traipsing through a forest of all things Halloween and autumn this week.
I’m still wearing sandals, but the store shelves and racks say leaves are falling and woodland decor needs a new home — at least through November. (Then you can put it away and get out the red and green stuff.)
Into the woods
TJ Maxx in Fairview Heights has its own mini forest set up in the home goods area. Bigger-than-life chipmunks (unless I’m mistaken and they’re groundhogs), downsized turkeys and average-size squirrels look very much like they want to be adopted. Made from burlap, felt, carved wood, metal and what looks like twigs and acorns, these cute creatures are priced from $6.99 to $29.99.
Cozy home stuff
Two quick notes from what I saw in Old Time Pottery in Fairview Heights to get ready for colder weather: Pick up a stainless-steel stock pot with a tempered glass lid for a steal. Sizes range from 8 to 20 quarts and prices from $14.99 to $29.99.
Also, check the copper-colored metal firewood holders with wood handles in two sizes for $19.99 and $39.99. Very attractive looking and a good way to store an evening’s worth of wood in the family room.
Don’t forget Unique Boutique on Friday and Saturday in O’Fallon. Sponsored by Memorial Hospital’s Auxiliary, it’s from 2 to 7 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Memorial Health Education Center, 708 E. Highway 50 (across the street from Schnucks). You’ll find a wide variety of crafts and gift items. Credit cards will be accepted by most vendors.
Women in need
The J. Jill Compassion Fund supports women in need. Through Wednesday, you will get 30 percent off one full-priced item for every gently worn piece of clothing you bring in to the J. Jill store at the Shoppes at St. Clair in Fairview Heights.
Plan for Halloween
Here’s a look at what retailers have in store for you for Oct. 31:
I liked the big orange-crackle metal containers from HereToday in Fairview Heights. They’ve got handles and cutout jack-o’-lantern faces edged in black. Put big pillar candles inside and set them on your front porch or steps to welcome trick-or-treaters. Or, add some faux fall foliage and put one on a shelf in the house. They come in three sizes and cost $6.99, $9.99 and $19.99.
Neighboring Five Below has plenty of Halloween supplies, including some makeup kits that can transform someone into a real or imaginary creature. The kits are $3 to $5 and most come with instructions to create, for example, a spotted cheetah. You also can buy just face makeup in a pack with four colors, such as black, white, purple and orange, for $2.99.
You’ll find lots of metal Halloween outdoor decor at Old Time Pottery in Fairview Heights, but I liked the vintage-looking pressed board cutout signs and displays with grinning black cats sporting bow ties, pumpkins wearing party hats and waving skeletons. Kind of spooky, but not scary. The big signs are $9.99 and have a support in back to make them sit upright. The smaller displays each have a battery-powered orange and black candle and are $19.99. I wouldn’t think these are weather-proof, so consider that when you’re figuring out where to put one for the big night.