Given her penchant for quirkiness and her fun-loving demeanor, it’s no surprise that Food Network’s newest star, Damaris Phillips, is quick to embrace the lighthearted spirit of tomorrow’s spooky-sweet holiday. The host of Southern at Heart admits to dressing up for not only Halloween, but several other occasions each year, and she isn’t content with ordinary costumes for witches, pumpkins or ghosts. Her Halloween getups require a bit of imagination, as well as inspired clothing and coordination among friends. FN Dish caught up with Damaris to chat about these costumes, plus all things tricks and treats; read on below to learn her plans for this year’s fright-night bash, her all-time favorite Halloween costumes and her must-have candy.
How will you be celebrating Halloween this year?
Damaris Phillips: Me and all my girlfriends are dressing up as Britney Spears from different music videos. And she had some good outfits, like, phenomenal outfits. I really want to do the Pan Am girl from “Toxic.” Or I wanted to do “Oops!… I Did It Again” — the red pleather — but we have a guy friend that wants to do that, so …. The shoes are unfortunate, so I was OK giving it up.
So you don’t shy away from the costumes.
DP: Any reason to dress up, I am in. So I don’t only dress up at Halloween. I dress up for my birthday; we have a costume party every year for my birthday. I dress up probably seven times a year at least.
What’s your favorite Halloween memory from childhood?
DP: My favorite was … when I was a little kid: [My mom] got a dress from a consignment store, and she cut the bottom off ’cause it was too long. It was a pink dress with, like, chiffon shoulders and, like, arms, and it was high-necked with, like, sparkles. And she took the extra fabric and she took a posterboard and rolled it into a cone and covered the posterboard with the fabric and then attached the chiffon coming out of it. And I was a princess, and I remember feeling so beautiful, so beautiful. She made it, yeah. It was pretty awesome.
Any other costumes that stick out?
DP: One year I was a cat. One year I was a fancy lady. My mom got home from work, and we hadn’t gotten dressed in our costumes yet, so we had to, like, hurry, but we didn’t know what to be, and so we put on fur coats and pearls and white gloves, and we were fancy ladies, which I think is a pretty funny Halloween costume.
What’s your favorite Halloween candy?
DP: I love the little black and orange candies — you know the ones that nobody wants? They’re like peanut butter, kind of, like, chewy …. I love a Twix bar — and Bit-O-Honeys, but nobody ever gives those out.
Tune in to Southern at Heart on Sundays at 10:30am/9:30c.