Halloween costumes show craftsmanship
Costumes in the late 1800s were still homemade, but costume creation was becoming a mass market craft. Costumes were still homemade, but marketers produced patterns and sharing instructions on how to create masks and costumes. Women’s magazines provided instructions for creating costumes. Children used paper mâché and fabric found in attics and basements to create their own designs, often with unintentionally horrifying results. Mumming, guising, and souling were alive and well, and Halloween parties were as popular as ever. But costumes, though part of festivities, were more common at parties and indoor activities. They did not have the connection with going door to door, yelling a vaguely threatening verse (“Trick or treat!”) and receiving a treat to ward off pranks. In fact, trick-or-treating wasn’t part of Halloween at all in the 1800s.