Happy (belated) Halloween, Isadora Moon!

No place like home

Okay, I know Halloween was three weeks ago at this point, and they’re already showing Christmas adverts on TV, but it’s been a busy few weeks and I’ve got catching up to do. Over the last couple of months I’ve taken Isadora Moon as far west as Hereford, as far north as Manchester and south right down to Truro. I’ve visited five Waterstones shops, four literary festivals, and one country estate!

It’s been absolutely wonderful working alongside so many people who are passionate about reading, and, of course, meeting so many children who have enjoyed the Isadora Moon stories.  I am extremely grateful to Oxford University Press for organising and supporting me with all of these events. 

Still, after a little break in Cornwall, it’s good to be home for a while. I’m now back in my studio  and working on Isadora Moon Goes to the Fair

An Isadora Moon Halloween Party at Waterstones Manchester

On the Sunday before Halloween I was delighted to be invited to take part in an Isadora Moon Halloween party at Waterstones Manchester. This is the largest Waterstones store in the north of England and has a special separate room for events. 

Manchester Waterstones Party Set up
Everything was laid out ready for the children to arrive

Kimi from the children’s department of Waterstones Deansgate had put a lot of work into decorating the room and getting it all ready. She also made sure I had everything I needed both at the party and at our school visit the next day. You can read her book blog here.

Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween Party in full swing
The party soon got into full swing.

The party was ticketed and started at 2pm, so the children all arrived fairly promptly. The room suddenly became very busy with children doing crafts at the tables.

Harriet Muncaster at the Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween Party
Celestine helped supervise the crafting.

I brought along my Isadora’s Kitchen 3D illustration, which was popular with some of the children.

Children admiring Isadora Moon's kitchen at Manchester Waterstones Halloween Party
Isadora Moon’s kitchen scene drew some attention.

We did some drawing…

Harriet Muncaster drawing at the Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween Party
It’s not a proper party if you don’t sit down to learn something!

And we played pass the parcel.

Pass the parcel at Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween Party
The prize was an Isadora Moon book… who’d have guessed?
Fancy Dress at the Isadora Moon Halloween Party

I saw lots of great Isadora Moon Halloween costumes too…

Fancy dress Halloween costumes at Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween Party
A lot of the children had dressed up for the party.

One girl had on a starry, sparkly tutu which I just had to get a photo of. I wish I could get one in adult size!

Sparkly tutu at Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween party
I loved this sparkly tutu.

Another girl had put together this custom Isadora Moon tiara. This was based on a .pdf printable created by the book shop and recommendation site Boolino.Custom Boolino Isadora Moon crown at Manchester Waterstones Isadora Moon Halloween Party

Here’s a custom-made version of a downloadable Isadora Moon crownSpeaking of the girl wearing this tiara, she actually helps her mum write a children’s book blog. They did a lovely review of Isadora Moon, which you can read here.

A visit to a Manchester school

As Manchester is nearly four hours from us, we stayed the night. Waterstones had arranged for me to visit nearby Broadoak Primary School the next morning.

Harriet Muncaster at Broadoak Primary School
We created our own hybrid character.
Harriet Muncaster at Broadoak Primary School 2
The children asked lots of questions.
Harriet Muncaster at Broadoak Primary School 3
Some of the children tried to guess Isadora’s favourite possessions with their eyes closed.
Harriet Muncaster at Broadoak Primary School 4
Kimi, in the pink t-shirt, helped organised and facilitate the party and the school visit.

It was a lovely school and they made me feel very welcome. I’m grateful to Broadoak Primary School for hosting me, and to Kimi at Waterstones for making both the party and school visit so successful.

The Isadora Moon Halloween Costume Competition

In the run-up to Halloween, I ran a little costume competition. I wasn’t sure how many entries I would get, but I wasn’t disappointed! There were some absolutely amazing Isadora Moon costumes from a few different countries. Thank you so much to everyone who took the time to make a stunning Isadora costume and share their pictures on social media.

I’ve already shared this montage of some of the costumes I’ve seen in the last month, but it’s worth sharing again. Quite a few people really put a lot of time and effort into sharing the spirit of an Isadora Moon-themed Halloween!  

Isadora Moon Halloween costumes and decorations

Judging a winner was really difficult, so I enlisted Henry to help. We debated for a good half an hour about how to choose an overall ‘winner’ for the purpose of prizes. 

Isadora Moon Halloween Costumes trio
Left to right: I love this girl’s spooky vampire wings and make-up; this girl has such a cut expression, and a great bat-topped wand and crown; this girl nailed the pink-and-black look and has fantastic home-made wings.

All of the costumes were excellent and so much time and effort had clearly gone into them. The three below particularly stood out to me as getting really close to what I imagine a real-life Isadora Moon would look like:

Isadora Moon Halloween Costume 1
This girl found the PERFECT Isadora Moon dress: the collar is just like what Isadora wears on the Isadora Moon Goes to School cover!
Isadora Moon Halloween Costume 3
I met this girl at the Manchester Waterstones party, and I’ve linked to her blog above. She really paid attention to detail, with the custom ‘Boolino’ crown, stripy-eared Pink Rabbit and bat pin.
Isadora Moon Halloween Costume 2
This girl got the pink dress, stripy tights and bat wings, but what really impressed me was the pointy ears and Isadora hairstyle.
And the winner of the Isadora Moon Halloween Costume is…
Isadora Moon Halloween Costume Competition Winner
Faith from Glasgow is the winner of the Isadora Moon Halloween Costume Competition

As I said, it was really difficult picking an overall winner. When we looked at how many different aspects of Isadora Moon Faith’s costume covered, we knew she had to be the winner. Firstly, the dress with its almost-tutu is just the sort of thing Isadora Moon would wear for her fairy side, while the black cape shows off her vampire side. Of course, Faith has the stripy tights and half-fairy, half-bat wings. She’s got a Pink Rabbit too. What she’s also got is the pointy ears, fangs and Isadora’s trademark mussed-up fairy hair. Well done!

When asked why she liked Isadora Moon enough to dress up as her, Faith said, “I really like that she is different to anyone else. Isadora’s favourite colours are black and pink and so are mine! I love how she goes on all different adventures and tries different things.”

Isadora Moon Halloween Families

I did suggest in the competition that I would be extra-impressed if any families dressed up as Isadora’s family, not really expecting any to. Amazingly, there were actually three families who donned pink and black vampire fairy outfits!

The Botella Family from Texas, USA, dressed as Isadora Moon's family
The Botella family from Texas transformed themselves into the Moon family for Halloween. Is that Oscar the ghost in the background?
Pink Rabbit squash from Isadora Moon
The little girl of the family, Luna, also made this very creative and fluffy Pink Rabbit squash.
Isadora Moon Halloween Costume Family 2
The Staple family from Belfast also transformed themselves into Bartholomew, Cordelia, Isadora and Honeyblossom Moon!
Isadora Moon Halloween Costume Family 3
The third Isadora Moon Halloween family was the Francz-Kna family from Budapest, Hungary.

The Francz-Kna family also shared some close-ups with comparisons to the Isadora Moon illustrations:

The light-up tiara is a nice touch!
I love that Honeyblossom even has some pink milk!
Here you can see how closely they stuck to Bartholomew and Cordelia’s character designs.

I love the way that each family clearly put lots of care and energy into creating their costumes together. All three have a signed Isadora book on its way to them in the post.

I hope you had a wonderful Halloween, whatever you chose to do for it. If you haven’t already, then please consider subscribing to my newsletter. I send out far more treats than tricks, and you’ll get to hear the latest Isadora Moon news first, including upcoming events. Subscribers also geet automatic entry for some of my giveaways. I won’t spam your inbox, and I won’t pass on your address – promise:

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