12 Last Minute DIY Halloween Decorations
It’s only a few days until Halloween and you swore you weren’t going to decorate, but your neighbors’ decked-out houses have pressured you into getting festive. If you’re not careful however, you might spend a frightful amount of money keeping up with the Jones’. According to the National Retail Federation, it’s estimated shoppers will spend $2.87 billion on decorations this year alone!
While the temptation for plastic pumpkins and light-up skulls is tough for anyone to overcome this time of year, don’t assume you have to buy everything at a pricey Halloween store. Check out these 13 last-minute DIY Halloween decorations that’ll save you time and money, but still make it look like you tried!
1. Haunt Your House. Visit your local thrift store for a white sheet and use a black Sharpie pen to draw a haunted face. Use a balloon or styrofoam ball for the head, and dangle the ghost from a tree or the front of your house. You can even place a small electric fan under the ghost to make it flutter in the wind. If you don’t want to buy a sheet, you can also do this with plain white trash bags.
2. Egg Carton Bats. Be prepared to have your mind blown: If you cut apart egg carton sections and hang them upside down, they look like bats! Use some black paint (and glitter if you’re into the cuter Halloween look) and add googly eyes to make your bats come alive. Use decorative ribbon or yarn to hang up around the house, on the porch or in the windows.
3. Recycled Luminaries.
Skip the expensive store lighting and craft something more unique yourself. Using old tin cans or milk
jugs, draw with a Sharpie or punch holes to create a spooky design. Then, illuminate from the inside with battery
-operated candles or LED lights. These also make great pathway markers for trick-or-treaters on Halloween night.
4. Drunkin’ Pumpkin.
This one is good for people who don’t have the patience for messy pumpkin guts. Carve a scowling face on your pumpkin with a wide mouth close to the bottom, then drape the gooey guts from the mouth and stream them across your porch. Voila! Puking pumpkin.
5. Creepy Crawly Things.
Create a spiderweb with a ball of butcher's string or white yarn by stringing it from point-to-point in your front yard. Your handmade spider web will be much easier to remove once the festivities have ended than the sticky, store-bought webbing. If you really want to go all out, look for glow-in-the-dark yarn at your local craft store
6. Wicked fun. Visit the dollar store for a pair of cheap striped tights. Put them to frightful use by stuffing the legs with newspaper, adding red shoes and tucking your homemade Wicked Witch under the base of your house. You can also create your own “crash-landed” tree witch with a cheap witches hat, black trash bag and broom.
7. Lights Out. Get a jump on your Christmas decorating and hang lights up while the weather is still nice. If you use the right colors, you won’t even have to change them for the holidays. (We don’t necessarily recommend putting out your plastic Santas just yet. At least wait until the day after like everyone else.)
8. Window Webs. Remember making snowflakes as a kid with folded paper and scissors? This idea is similar. Use this tutorial and cheap, black trash bags to make huge spiderwebs for your windows!
9. Who Done It?
Thickly trace the outline of a body on your driveway with chalk and surround it with yellow caution tape found at many hardware
and Halloween stores
. You can even set out fake evidence bags for an extra spooky effect!
10. Spooky Shadows.
This simple but fun effect can be made by tucking clothes
into your blinds or windows and backlighting them with a floor or table lamp. Pose the clothing to look like a person, and you’ll have a free prop that’ll surely fool a few unsuspecting trick-or-treaters.
11. Have Kids Lend A Hand. If you have children that love to get messy, this craft is for you. Make window cling handprints with ordinary glue and food coloring. When you put them up in windows, on shower doors or on mirrors, you get a gruesome and spooky effect.
12. Floating Candles. Get the effect of magical, floating candles by painting old toilet paper or paper towel tubes and putting battery operated lights or glow sticks in them. Use clear string or fishing line to hang them from your porch or the ceiling above your dining table. Safe and spooky!