What Makes a Building Seem Haunted?
When you think of a haunted house, there are certain features that immediately come to mind - the rickety porch, half broken window, and the mysterious rocking chair gently swaying in the wind. Those things alone aren’t necessarily catalysts for the creation of haunted houses, but have proven to become popular features in modern interpretations of what a Haunted House should feature. In this article, we break down components that contribute to making a house seem haunted.
1) Unpredictable Layout of the Home
Part of what makes people scared is when they feel trapped. That’s why an open concept home is very rarely deemed worthy of being haunted because individuals can immediately associate themselves with their surroundings. Instead of an open concept, people want to be engaged with the unfamiliar and enticed with hallways that lead to separate corridors, rooms that are closed off, and stairways that suggest danger is lurking below.
2) Long Narrow Hallways
While briefly mentioned above, part of what makes a house seem haunted is the long narrow hallways that are dimly lit, and have multiple closed doors.
3) Lighting Effects
The type of lighting featured at a haunted house heavily depends on the surrounding aesthetic of the home. For instance, if the home is an old Victorian manner they may use candles or flashlights. Other lighting styles used include dim lighting, flickering lighting, strobe lighting, black lights, or string lights.
4) Overgrown Vegetation
Nature can be included in the spookiness when there is overgrown ivy slithering up the walls and trees overhanging the roof with branches tapping on windows.
5) Closet Under the Stairs
While practical for storage in a regular home, having a closet under the stairs in a haunted house immediately illicit’s fear of what’s hidden behind.
6) Peekable Attic
Similar to the closet under the stairs, having an attic for guests to climb into (or peek into from below) is a great fright for a haunted house.
While there is no rule on the type of furniture incorporated in a haunted house, think wing-backed chairs, solid wood tables, decorative mirrors, and lots of picture frames.
The most important element when designing a haunted house is coming up with an overall theme and choosing all of the elements to match. While the most popular theme is Victorian with creepy dolls, rustic furniture, dim lighting, and long hallways, numerous scares are to be had with any design.