More and more stores are now rolling out their Halloween goods, and there's some really cool stuff available this year. I'm making an effort to publicize this kind of thing because I've inevitably found myself saying "I wish I'd bought that back around Halloween" every year. Usually around February/March, when I have lots of time for projects.
The Dollar Tree chain has their usual assortment, and there's lots of things a propmaker would find useful. Their "skeleton garland" has become the go-to base for all kinds of mummified fairy projects, even though I find the figures a bit crude. That said, even goofy skeleton bits can be re-purposed to add some detail to larger projects.
One thing Dollar Tree really goes nuts with is body parts- fingers, ears, eyeballs, feet, and hands. The fingers are a great base for mummified fingers, while adding a coat of raw latex to the ears turns them into great trophy necklaces ala "The Walking Dead". Both the hands and feet are seriously undersized, but they're still a great base for projects. And, of course, EVERYTHING IS A DOLLAR!
The Rite-Aid chain is a bit "Meh" so far, but they do have a cool little "Groundbreaker" set. It includes two skeletal arms and a skull designed for yard display, as though an animated skeleton was bursting forth from the ground. All the pieces are undersized, something that's not surprising given the $19.99 price point. The skull is a little crude, but it's a good foundation for larger projects. The arms are far better. They're ideal for anyone looking to do a mummified hand or arm. Pose the fingers with a heat gun or hot water, lay on some paper mache skin, add some fingernails, and you're in business.