Even Target is selling Day of The Dead decorations, so needless to say this celebration has moved outside of the Latino community and is now a mainstream event. Here are 5  DIY decor ideas using a mannequin or dress form.

1 We love these skulls sitting on the necks dress forms. We are not sure why bridal gowns are so popular for Day of the Dead – perhaps it was once a tradition to bury people in their bridal attire.


Dia de los Muertos is a traditional Meso-American holiday dedicated to the ancestors. Rather than mourning death as purely tragedy and loss, Dia de los Muertos honors both death and the cycle of life. The celebration acknowledges that we still have a relationship with our loved ones whom have passed away.

2  This window display from florist Nancy Krause in Chicago is a wonderful example of  window display at a retail establishment to celebrating Day of the Dead and tie it in with the products they are selling. Speaking of selling, we sell used mannequins in addition to new ones so you don’t have to spend a fortune on your Day of the Dead displays.


3  On Etsy, many artists decorate a mannequin head in Day of the Dead style. These make great table decorations or to put on an altar. We have a wide variety of new and used mannequin heads for sale at MannequinMadness.com so you can create your own version.



In Mexico, on Dia de los Muertos families and friends gather in local cemeteries to be with their loved ones and construct private altars, which contain everything from photos, favorite foods, and other memorabilia, in hopes that deceased souls will journey back for the Dia de los Muertos celebration.

4 Artist Felecia Vela is shows an example of how people use a mannequin to make altar to honor a deceased loved one. Painting a skeleton face on a mannequin is a lot easier than acquiring a real skeleton.


Traditionally, people gather at the graves of their loved ones to build altars in their memory. The altars will feature pictures and food, drinks and other things that the person enjoyed in life. Children eat sugar candy skulls, and it’s a chance to help make people comfortable with death while celebrating life.

5 An outfit  this elaborate (notice that it is made out of paper plates, cups bowls, and plastic utensils) needs to be on display after the event, not hung in a closet  – don’t you think? We suggest she put it on a mannequin and apply skeleton makeup.


To get more display ideas see our Day of the Day Pinterest board.

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