You don’t have to buy a bunch of expensive, impractical decorations to get your home ready for a Halloween bash—you can make them yourself! Check out our tips for a totally DIY party that will entertain kids and make parents ask, “Did you really make that yourself?”
Spooky Potato Stamps
Decorate treat bags, place mats, and any other flat surface with these easy potato stamps.
- Large potatoes
- Melon baller
- Paring knife
- Non-toxic acrylic paint
Just cut a potato in half, and then use the melon baller and paring knife to carve out any spooky shapes you like. Then dip the stamp in paint. Now you’re ready to stamp anything that needs a little extra creep factor.
Day-to-Night Ghost Garland
This light-up strand of ghosts adds an illuminated touch to your décor.
- Strand of lantern lights
- Two yards of white fabric
- White string
- Black permanent marker
Cut ten 14-inch squares of fabric, and then make a small hole near the center. Remove the light from the lantern, and then carefully thread the light through the hole in the fabric. Put the lantern back on the light, and then wrap the fabric around the lantern. Use the string to tie the fabric around the lantern in a ghostly shape. Draw on a face with the permanent marker, and you’re done! Repeat the process for the remaining lanterns.
This is a great party favor for kids, but we won’t tell anyone if you want to keep a few for yourself.
- Small glow sticks (bracelets work great for this)
- Twine or string
- Kraft paper or brown paper bags
- Double-sided tape
Cut the paper into roughly 5-inch by 8-inch squares. Start cutting very thin strips (about 1/8-inch) along the longer edge side of the paper, but don’t quite cut all the way through. You’ll want to leave about an inch on the end so the strips will stay attached.
Next, apply double-sided tape along the uncut portion of the paper, and wrap the paper around the edge of a glow stick. It should look a little like you’re wrapping a skirt around the stick. Remember, glow sticks will only light up for a few hours, so if you’re prepping in the morning for a party in the evening, you should be careful not to crack the glow sticks while you add the paper strips.
Trash Bag Spider Webs
You could buy those stretchy, messy spider webs from the store, or you could make your own from stuff you already have around the house. Obviously, we recommend the DIY solution.
Cut off the seams of the trash bags, including any plastic drawstrings, so that you’re left with two rectangular pieces. Cut them into rough squares—it’s okay if they don’t look perfect. Fold one square in half to form a triangle. Fold the triangle in half two more times, and you’ll end up with a more narrow triangle. You can tape the edges together if it doesn’t stay in the right shape.
Use your permanent marker to trace the areas you want to cut away. Start by drawing a thin core from the pointiest end of the triangle down to the middle of the opposite side. Then create some scallop shapes coming off from the core to the outside. Cut away the negative space between the webs and unfold the triangle to reveal your web shape. Try following this template for help.
Haunted Family Photos
Your kids will love seeing their school portraits turned into paranormal photos.
- Printer and printer paper
- Card stock
- Glue stick
- Picture frames
- Mini Christmas lights in orange or red
- Craft knife
Print out photos of your family in black and white. Using a glue stick, attach the photos to cardstock, and then cut the card stock to fit the photo. Cut out the eyes with the craft knife and insert the lights, leaving them attached to the strand so you can still plug them in.
Remove the backing and the glass form the frame and insert the photo. Replace the frame backing, using tape to secure it if necessary. Then plug in the lights and display the spooky visage on your mantel.
Construction Paper Bats
This is a simple and super affordable way to fill your house with bats. (That’s a sentence you’d only read for Halloween!)
- This template from madeeveryday.com
- Black construction paper
Print and cut out the template. Fold the pieces of black construction paper in half, and then trace the template around it. Cut out the bat shapes, and then place them around your home.
Last-Minute Halloween Costume
Let me guess—you spent your time decorating your house, and you forgot to pick a Halloween costume. Don’t worry, it happens all the time. The easiest last-minute Halloween costume? A cat. Dress in all black, put on a pair of cat ears (you can even make them from construction paper and a headband), and draw on some whiskers with eyeliner.