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I know that we generally use fake items in our Haunts, plastic chains, bones, fake fencing etc. But does anyine use real items?

I ask because I saw some cool bones in a pet shop, and apart from the hygeine risks, attracting vermin etc thought they were a cheap buy. Then I wondered if anyone has just been to the butchers and ordered a pigs head to scare people with?

I also picked up a cool old chain winch recently for £15, which I figured would be more expensive to mock up. So I had a look on ebay etc. and with a few good searches was able to find lots of cool old bits and pieces for not much. So, do you use any 'real' peices in your display? Pic below of my chain winch.
 

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We've used real wooden tables, barrels, crates, chests, and chains. We think that they make the fake elements look that much more believable. Plus, they get repurposed as storage during the off season. :)
 

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Hi :) Last year I used chicken feet and turkey feet, which I bought at the dog food supply store. I was making a sort of wreath for the door out of entwined rubber snakes that I had spray painted black and I wanted something to break up the blackness of the twisted snakes. So, yeah, the poultry feet were kind of gross, but isn't that the point?
 

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I have also used bones. I found a wild boar that had been hit by a car [ poor guy :( ] and he was pretty well off the the road and decomposing . Before anyone could think I was too weird, I collected his skull and bleached it at home. He was a young boar, so his tusks were not really prominent but they were enough to work on making a prosthetic for my 'Red Riding Hood Morphing into the Leg Drawing Human leg
Lady Fashion Dress Costume Mask
 

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When i started really going out for Halloween, I had just remodeled my back porch and had a lot of dark stained wood. I used most of that to make a table for the corner of my porch (for Halloween), and then to board up my windows. I've since considered using foam for the windows, but the wood looks so old and creepy and every year it just looks better since it just sits out behind my shed under a tarp all year. I've since had to redo some of my windows and instead of foam, I just bought PT wood and stain it, using the culled section at my home depot whenever possible (since they are already warped and such.

Besides that, I just look around for stuff. This past year I found a working old lock at Marshall's just sitting on the shelf without a price. They only charged me $3 for it, so I plan on using that somewhere. I also prefer to use real fire whenever possible as well (and as long as I think it's not a hazard). i'm always on the look for "real" stuff that I can incorporate somewhere. LIke others said, I think the real stuff makes the fake stuff look better.
 

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Rutherford Manor Haunt
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Yes we use real bones, antlers, chains, animal hides and furniture. A fellow haunter and friend in Edmonton used real goat and pig heads in her haunt last year. She got them from a local butcher, kept them frozen during the day and put them out during haunt hours.

 

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Awesome idea! I wonder how to approach a butcher or hunter and ask for such...remnants without seeming weird? I imagine the big grocery stores only have the bigger cuts of meat already fabricated so they only have to saw the steaks and ribs and such....Probably only a real farm has the head bits, but I imagine most of them try to sell them off for dog food or bone meal or ethnic cuisines...Anyone else go to a butcher and have success with this? Thanks! [ I only have collected roadkill, and it's typically small and hard to find pieces that haven't been crushed. Want to add that I am in the medical field and always interested in anatomy, no, wait - that's my speech to people who don't understand. You guys get this. ;)
 

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Rutherford Manor Haunt
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I have a couple of friends who are avid hunters and they bring me bones they find while on hunting trips in very remote locations. The skull above is a moose skull.

You are right though, you would have to go to an old school butcher shop, large grocery stores have most of their meat brought in pre-cut. I know my friend went to a neighborhood butcher shop that does custom cuts, meat packages things like that!
 

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Awesome idea! I wonder how to approach a butcher or hunter and ask for such...remnants without seeming weird? I imagine the big grocery stores only have the bigger cuts of meat already fabricated so they only have to saw the steaks and ribs and such....Probably only a real farm has the head bits, but I imagine most of them try to sell them off for dog food or bone meal or ethnic cuisines...Anyone else go to a butcher and have success with this? Thanks! [ I only have collected roadkill, and it's typically small and hard to find pieces that haven't been crushed. Want to add that I am in the medical field and always interested in anatomy, no, wait - that's my speech to people who don't understand. You guys get this. ;)
Might not be available in every area, but if your town/city has a Middle Eastern market, they sometimes have goat/sheep heads for sale. I've heard that some grocery stores (like Kroger) sometimes have scrap meat/bone parts in the back, or can order them for you (though I went to our local one and asked to order a beef heart and the employee looked at me like I was nuts. So... probably success will vary).

Edit: Also, as mentioned, try to find a butcher shop or specialty meats store.
 

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Soccer and Lacrosse Dad
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I use as much real stuff as I can get. I have shed snake skin, lots of turkey bones and some chickens feet in apothecary jars. I also use skulls in my witch cabinet. The image below shows a pig skull, sheep skull, coyote skull and racoon skull. Although difficult to see there are ungulate mandibles in with the crow. This year I have purchased a black bear skull and a small bull skull to display as well.

 

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I am in love with your hanging bone lantern Unorthodox.

maybe I will have to start keeping the various animal parts that my dog keeps dragging home...
 

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bone collector
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Same here for bones, hides, antlers, taxidermy, lighting, furniture, appliances, hay hooks, chains & pulleys...as much real as we can use and store(or use in the house until haunt time). You will find it really adds to the authenticity of the haunt vibe.

FrenchMastiff, not sure where you live, but here in Scaryfornia, our Mexican meat markets regularly carry pig, goat, and cow heads, as well as eyeballs, brains and all sorts of other meatylicious things you could use for display! Sheep eyeballs are pretty cool in a distressed jar, just use 90% isopropyl alcohol-it's safe to use & will keep them fresh through Halloween, then toss out.
 
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