This “Hocus Pocus” Actor and His Family Celebrate Halloween With Subtly Spooky Decor
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Name: Sean and Carrie Murray, two kids, River (10) and Caitlyn (13). Two grumpy cats: Luna and Abby, and one peppy puppy: Millie
Location: Los Angeles, California
Size: 4,000 square feet
Type of Home: Single Family Home
Years lived in: 10 years, owned
Carrie Murray is a speaker, podcast host, and founder of the Business Relationship Alliance (BRA). She also happens to be married to Sean Murray, who played Thackery Binx in the mother of all classic Halloween movies, “Hocus Pocus.” And as you can imagine, Halloween is no ordinary time of year in the Murray household.
Even before the couple met (at a Halloween party, naturally), Halloween has always been Carrie’s favorite holiday, and the perfect occasion to have fun with decorating. “I married Thackery Binx—of course I decorate for Halloween!” she laughs. “I usually decorate around the first or second week of October, after much nagging from my children.”
Every year for the past 15 years, she pulls out her bin of Halloween decorations from the garage and gets to work. The bin contains an assortment of spooky items she’s collected over the years, some from higher end retailers like Pottery Barn and Crate and Barrel, and others from more budget-friendly stores like Target, Michaels, and various Halloween super stores.
With the whole family home more than usual, she wanted this year’s skeleton theme to be a little extra special, so she reached out to architect and interior designer Taryn Bone of Bone Collective Studio, who she had worked with in 2018 on a home renovation project. Working with Carrie’s existing decorations, Taryn sourced additional pieces and incorporated them into the design of the main living area, where the Murray family spends a lot of their time together.
The final result was a fun mix of modern Halloween decor that complemented the home’s open concept design without being overwhelming. The magic is in the intentional details, from the bats over the fireplace to the spiderweb table runner in the dining room. One small but essential item is the “Hocus Pocus” cauldron, a gift to cast members when the movie wrapped up filming, which is showcased in the bar area.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
My Style: Mid-Century Modern
Inspiration: Frank Lloyd Wright
Favorite Element: The backyard, back patio, and pool. I love to entertain so this space provides the perfect amount of space for guests to mix and mingle.
Biggest Challenge: The heat kills all the plants and would need a lot of water to stay alive, so we replaced them all with drought tolerant plants, especially succulents and artificial grass.
Proudest DIY: All of my experience with DIY really ends up being a DIDON’T! I’m not naturally crafty and I have too many Pinterest fails to mention. The one thing I did though for a Halloween party, “Mad Science” Halloween party I threw for my kids was create the periodic table out of cookies. That’s something that was really fun and easy for me to execute.
What percentage of your everyday home decor gets switched out for the holidays? 30-40%
How long have you been decorating your home for Halloween? 15 years
How long does it take to decorate? A day or two
What’s this year’s Halloween decor theme or inspiration? Skeletons
How much did you spend on Halloween decor this year? $100-$150 (I use the some of the same things every year)
Where do you store your decor — and where does your “everyday” decor go when the house is Halloween-ified? The garage, in plastic bins that are stored in cabinets by holiday. So when Halloween comes out, summer gets pushed to the way back and pushed the other holidays forward. Next bin is Thanksgiving!
Finally, what’s your absolute best home secret or decorating advice? Don’t go cheap, invest in something that will last longer. Buying cheap or poorly made decorations that only last one season creates too much waste and leaves a larger carbon footprint.
PAINT & COLORS
- Benjamin Moore — Soft white
Thanks Carrie and family!