Krampus Lore and New Traditions

We all know the story of Saint Nick, otherwise known as Santa Claus. He's a jolly and mystical being who rewards well-behaved children with toys and treats, and punishes bad children with a stocking full of coal. However, do you know about his alter ego, Krampus? No? Gather round, and let Halloween Club share with you the tale of the Krampus.

Krampus is a dark haired, horned, anthropomorphic beast with cloven hooves. He carries with him a birch whip to strike at misbehaving children, chains that rattle to signal his approaching, and a large basket on his back. Krampus will kidnap very poorly behaved kids, stuffing them into his sack, and into the underworld where he'll torture... and eventually consume them. Talk about being good for goodness sake!

Every December 5th, on Saint Nicholas Eve, Krampus of all kinds parade Alpine streets in a parade known as Krampusnacht. These Krampuses scare children and onlookers, giving them their last chance of redemption before Nikolaustag and Christmas day. With their birch whips, they chase victims around, striking them on the legs as they reprimand them for their naughty deeds this year. In lore, the children who were not beaten or eaten by Krampus would be rewarded on Nikolaustag by Saint Nicholas with treats in their shoes. Though all in good fun now, the scary tradition of Krampus lives on, with its influence even spreading to other parts of the world. In cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, groups gather around on any day from December 5th-25th to celebrate the spirit of Krampus.

Krampus Ball

source: Krampus Los Angeles

Krampus Run

source: Krampus Los Angeles

Here in California, the city of Torrance's Alpine Village holds an annual Krampus Ball and just celebrated it's 5th year running. At the Krampus Ball, the rooms are decorated with festive delights and traditional Alpine European style foods are catered to provide an immersive Krampusnacht that pays homage to its folkloric origin. Guests dress up as Yuletide friends and fiends, and vendors displayed their devilish crafts. During the music, dancing, and activities, the Krampus will march in unannounced, with cowbells clanging to signal their approach. From there, guests can be sure to expect some fiendish merriment as the Krampus deliver whoopings and consume their offerings of schnapps. To continue the merriment, Downtown Los Angeles also plays host to its own Krampuslauf, or Krampus Run. Up and down the street, performers and artists costumed from head to toe in Krampus gear march the streets scaring and chasing patrons around while delivering a smack with their switches.

Krampus Greeting Card

source: USC News

These events are fun and open for all to enjoy, and you can even get into the spirit yourself by donning on a demonic mask, horns, and furry suits. You can go casual or fully commit. For the casual dresser, a mask will do fine. Halloween Club can help you out with this.

Krampus Mask

Krampus the Yule Lord Mask

For those wanting to add some glamour to their Krampus, they can wear horns and don ye gay apparel combined with intricate makeup and outfits.

Satyr Horns

Satyr Horns

Bell Collar

Cat Bell Collar

For the Krampus devotees, create your own costume by combining a mask, horns, fur all around the body, cloven hooves, bells, chains, whips, and even a sack or two, and you yourself will be ready to parade around delivering bad tidings.

Krampus Costume

Ready-to-wear Krampus the Christmas Demon Adult Mens Costume

Cage Prop

Life-Size Black Cage Prop

Create your own Krampus experience, visit Halloween Club. With our assorted costumes, accessories, and decorations, and convenient locations, you'll be inspired to bring some Horror to your Ho, Ho, Ho. If you want to spark your imagination before stopping by our store, you can even check out our Halloween Club Pinterest board that has been specially crafted to help you have the perfect Krampus. We wish you a Happy Krampusnacht and a Merry Christmas!


Basu, Tanya. "Who Is Krampus? Explaining the Horrific Christmas Devil." National Geographic, National Geographic Society, 1 Dec. 2017,

Bell, Susan. "Have You Been Naughty? Then Beware: Krampus is Coming." USC News, University of Southern California, 22 Dec 2015,