Don’t Forget to Celebrate Traditions! How to Celebrate Día de Muertos at Home

There are many ways to celebrate Día de los Muertos at home. Create the perfect environment to celebrate this brightly colored Mexican holiday! Let’s remember our deceased loved ones with their favorite foods and drinks and with these special activities for Day of the Dead.

Día de Muertos is back! But how do we celebrate Día de los Muertos at home? First, get some candles, flowers, sugar skulls and papel picado (cut out paper flags) for the ofrenda (altar). 

Learn how to make your altar here

Day of the Dead Traditions: Ways to Celebrate Day of the Dead at Home

How to Dress for the Día de Muertos Mexican Holiday

Calavera Catrina Look

There are different cultural references being integrated into the fashion world and elements of traditional Mexican “fashion” are showing up all over.

One of the most iconic references during Día de Muertos is the Calavera Catrina Look. This fashion choice–just like its elaborate face makeup—has become popular around the world. Who among us has never dressed up like this ever-popular lady of death?

The modern image of La Catrina that we all recognize were drawn in 1910 by the Mexican illustrator José Guadalupe Posada. He wanted to create satirical illustrations with political and social charge.


He became famous for his elegant figures with skulls for faces. 

La Catrina by the Mexican illustrator José Guadalupe Posada.


The original sketch was designed to be a satire referencing the high-society European obsession of Porfirio Diaz, president of that time.


The original name of the sketch was La Calavera Garbancera, referring to a woman that renounced her Mexican identity for a European look. Actually, the word catrin or catrina is used to refer to any well-dressed man or woman. 

According to La Catrina: The Dark History of Day of the Dead’s Immortal Icon, published by Nat Geo UK, “The reduction of every person to bones—no matter of time, place, class or deed—gave Posada’s images a homogenizing quality, the apparent message being ‘underneath, we are all the same.’ No matter which part of society you occupy, death kills all!”

The good news is that you can assemble your catrina outfit with what you have at home! 

You just need a long, flowing dress with bright colored lace and a crown of flowers–preferably cempasuchil (marigolds), or any orange or purple blossom. The look is not complete without detailed face makeup. 

Learn How to Paint Your Face Like a Calavera Catrina: Traditions of Day of the Dead

Click here to Catrina Makeup Tutorial

Click here to Sugar Skull Makeup

Activities to Do on the Day of the Dead

How to Decorate Your Home: Ideas

Use Skulls

Have fun decorating your home! 

Bear in mind the colors of your home decor at the time of choosing your calaveras. Remember that you can find them in the gamut of colors that you wish—they don’t need to be black and white. What if you adapt a corner of your home to exhibit your collection of all the colors, sizes and materials?

Bring Day of the Dead Symbols to Life

There is a great variety of merchandise around Día de Muertos. Each detail will add a touch of style to your home.

Choose from cushions and pillows to linens and bedspreads, all the way to placemats, tablecloths, table runners, wall hangings, curtains, rugs, sculptures, posters and signs designed with skulls and sugar catrinas that can be placed on your door. Don’t forget to include papel picado on your altar, and why not, in your nook or on your dining table. 

Food and Drinks for Día de Muertos at Home


Serves 6


  • 500 gr pork meat prepared al pastor style*
  • 500 gr Oaxacan cheese or Monterey Jack cheese 
  • 20 flour tortillas 
  • salsa verde 
  • guacamole**

*Learn how to prepare pork meat al pastor! Click here!

**Discover the best guacamole recipe here!


Shred the Oaxacan cheese or dice the Monterrey Jack. Place the cheese and al pastor pork between two flour tortillas, like a sandwich. Grill the flour tortilla sandwich on a heated grill or pan. Turn it over when the cheese is melted and serve it. Add salsa verde and/or guacamole. 

Join the best salsa recipe, click here


Serves 10

Esquites are prepared corn kernels sold in street stands and/or carts, and are eaten as a tasty afternoon or evening snack.


  • 5 ears tender corn
  • 2 tablespoons butter 
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 2 or 3 chiles de arbol 
  • 1 stem of epazote, leaves only 
  • salt to taste


  • mayonnaise 
  • fresh grated white cheese 
  • powdered chile 
  • juice from a lime half


Cut the corn kernels off the cob. In a pot, melt the butter together with the canola oil. Add the corn kernels and stir.

Cook them over low heat for 10 minutes and add salt to taste. Take the stems off the chiles de arbol. Add the epazote leaves and the chiles to the pot. Add enough water so the kernels can be cooked for one hour and a half over low heat. To serve, add a portion of the esquites or kernels in a cup with a spoonful of mayonnaise and fresh white cheese. Top by squeezing the lime half and sprinkling powdered chile to taste.

Remember that powdered chile is simply crushed chile, it is not “chili powder,” which has several added spices not used to prepare esquites.

La Vida Loca


  • 40 ml Altos tequila plata
  • 10 ml Del Maguey Vida mezcal
  • 30 ml lime juice
  • 15 ml orange syrup
  • 40 ml pineapple juice
  • 2 drops Angostura bitters
  • pineapple leaves and lime wheel for garnish 


Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice. Shake well. Serve into a tumbler glass. Garnish with a pineapple leaf and a lime wheel.

Autumn Fizz


  • 50 ml Altos tequila reposado
  • 25 ml lemon juice
  • 15-20 ml pumpkin syrup
  • 30 ml cloudy apple juice
  • cinnamon sprinkle, apple slice and thyme for garnish


Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice. Shake well. Serve into a Longdrink glass. Garnish with cinnamon sprinkle, apple slice and thyme. 

Celebrate Día de Muertos at Home with These Altos’ Playlists on Spotify

How to celebrate Día de los Muertos at home? With the best music, of course!

Before you prepare your cocktails and favorite food, while you decorate your home, or are dressing up for Día de Muertos, don’t forget to hit play on these lists!

Altos Day of the Dead Party

Dance like a Catrina