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Hi all! This is my first post here after discovering the place a few days ago. I've been lurking since then and just going through past threads and getting ideas.

Now I need more specific advice for my own theme.

This year I'm dressing up as a plague infected plague doctor for Halloween and the fiance is going to be wearing something to compliment me. He isn't sure what to dress up as yet but he wants something to work with me. Ideas there would be great.

But the real reason I'm posting is to get advice on my outside theming for my house. I want some things to suggest that a plague doctor lives in the house. I figured some wrapped up dead bodies are a good start. I also want to build a scarecrow with a bloody sign around it's neck that says 'The doctor is in.' But aside from that I'm a bit stuck. My yard is kind of on the side of a hill so everything's going to be at an angle. Any advice on builds I can do that will be cost effective, I make minimum wage so upcycled and dollar store crafts are what I'm limited to right now.

I figured I'd use burlap to wrap up my 'bodies' and stain it with blood to give it a more medieval feel, since the black bags likely won't work with the time of the Black Plague outbreak.

So yeah, any ideas you guys have I'd really appreciate. Love the forum. It's now part of my daily website check list.
 

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Dollar store rats an easy one, it's how to stage them...maybe if you had a open pit/able to dig and could light it, put rats in with like lumpy oatmeal type stuff and green food coloring for sewage/waste (garbage bag beneath to scoop it out), bones and skulls and the rats, that a decent way to hint at the London Plague type aspect.
 

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Hello! Do you have a front porch or patio by your front door? If so, I'd suggest trying to create a patient quarantine room with a cot, maybe a skeleton on the bed that you corpse up, etc. If you don't have that space, that's okay, you can still do lots of stuff.

Maybe have some laundry bins filled with paper gowns & masks that you have bloodied up with stains & palm prints, and label that area "Bio-Hazard". Create some prop bodies (see the prop section for how-to's) & use masks or Styrofoam mannequin heads (can be bought with coupons at Micheal's craft stores, among other places), and dress them up as dead doctors & nurses with masks, bloody sores, missing body parts, etc.

Have a wheelbarrow full of bodies - the wrapped up ones you were talking about, skeleton parts, lumpy trash bags. You could make a dummy prop to wheel it away.

Perhaps have a little shelf/cubbie filled with "doctor" looking items - bottles & potions, extra masks & gloves, old medical books, black & white photographs of patients in beds, an old medical license, etc.

Maybe even have lots of piles of clothes set up in a yet-to-happen-bonfire, so it looks like infected clothes are going to be burned. Lots of wrapped up cloth & plastic trash bags with BIO-HAZARD & INFECTED stickers would be great.

Hope that gets your creative juices going in some way! Good luck with your plan & hope to see photos when you put it all together!
 

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I love your theme! Burlap for the bodies sounds good-- sounds like you're off to a great start.
I had some ideas, but they're only cheap if you happen to be lucky about scrounging materials. I'd love the idea of a body cart, but you almost have to know people who have scrap lumber...But on a hill, the cart could be tipped, with bodies falling out the back...so much potential!
You might be able to make a broken-over (lightening-struck?) plague column. You could get a couple concrete tube forms for around $10-- one upright, one lying on the ground. If you're good at crafting, you might fashion a base from cardboard or foam packing material. (Not all the plague columns were ornate; some were quite simple and could be do-able.)
Rats are good, of course.
Good luck! I hope you'll share pictures of what you come up with!
I know nothing about your level of dedication or how much you enjoy crafting but if you're as ridiculous as some of us are---
There's a Holbein woodcut with a reaper skeleton pulling away a toddler while his peasant family looks on in horror-- it's very moving, imo. I wonder whether you could duplicate that feel. Full sized skellys aren't cheap, but if you could get/make a cape and prop it on some kind of form (some people have done a great job with tomato cages) you could make a reaper of it. Having it holding hands with a child-sized form, pulling it along... Medieval/Ren toddler clothes are pretty simple; the face would be harder, but a plague-ravaged face would be really creepy.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wow, you guys are amazing with your ideas! I really appreciate the help, please feel free to post more ideas. I definitely need to stock up on rats and make up some body bags as a start.

I was also thinking of hanging dried herbs all along the top of my porch/garage to help with the old school healer idea. I'm excited to start.
 
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