Cheap and Quick Halloween Decor Ideas
Halloween has always been my favorite holiday for decorating, as it allows for my weirdness to be expressed. Although there are lots of phenomenal and complicated DIY Halloween decor ideas out there on the ‘net, most folks need quick and easy ideas that anyone with limited time and money could create. I’ve put in alternative ideas, too. Check out the links, as many of the sites have the “how to’s” for the projects, but even without the instructions, most are easy enough to figure out. Along with the Halloween ideas, I’ve shared a couple of my new pieces, and announced our September Art Giveaway winner. Now get decorating!
Involves: cutting out a colony of bats and sticking them to your wall.
Why I like it: super duper simple to pull off, and has visual impact!
Cost: minimal (paper, scissors, tape).
Where I found it: http://www.madeeveryday.com/2010/10/bats.html/
Classic Black and White
Involves: painting pumpkins black or white, collecting branches, buying fake crows at your local dollar store.
Why I like it: clean and simple, almost elegant in its simplicity. Reminds me of Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Raven”.
Cost: depends on how pricey pumpkins are in your area. Cheaper alternative: spray some old plant pots black or white and stand the sticks up in them. Sticks are free. Birds are $1 each. Where I found it: http://www.createcraftlove.com/raven-inspired-halloween-porch/
I’ve Got My Eye On YOU!
Involves: Hot gluing eyeballs into fake flowers. Spray paint some faux foliage and a cheap vase black, and you’ve got a creepy centerpiece that looks back at you.
Why I like it: EASY, and a great effect!
Cost: minimal, as you should be able to get the eyes and foliage from a bargain store or dollar store. A can of black spray paint is a few bucks. A cheap vase (or for a cheaper alternative, wrap a big can with tea-stained cheesecloth for a neat effect). I would definitely fill a vase with more than shown in the photo for more impact. Cheap tip: watch at your thrift stores for old arrangements full of big flowers (you can usually get a good group to disassemble for a couple bucks). Where I found it: http://www.hercampus.com/school/ku/diy-halloween-decorations
Head in a Jar
Involves: putting a mask into a jar of water (for extra creepy factor, put greenish yellow food coloring in the water IF you aren’t worried about ruining the mask).
Why I like it: a great effect with almost NO effort.
Cost: most box stores have a basic “old man” mask that is fairly inexpensive. Your local thrift store should have a few jars (the impact would be even better if there were a small “collection” of these together). Budget version: use mason jars and junk store rubber critters from the toy section. Where I found it: http://howdoesshe.com/halloween-decoration-ideas/
Do a Little Gardening
Involves: throwing some leaves (or dirt) into a wheelbarrow along with some skeleton bones.
Why I like it: this is almost as simple as head in a jar. Move your wheelbarrow to the front yard, throw some leaves into it, and add a skeleton in disarray. Done.
Cost: if you don’t have a wheelbarrow, just pile up some leaves on the ground for the skelly. You can get “bag of bones” or skeletons from Big Lots or other bargain stores, so this is less than $20, usually less than $10 if you find the bones at the right place. Where I found it (AND the next Spider Colony tip): http://decorationlove.com/simple-outdoor-halloween-decorations/
Involves: a ball or water balloon in light colored stockings, attach a bunch of plastic spiders. If you use a water balloon, keep this an OUTDOOR decoration.
Why I like it: ICK. Spiders. In groups. *shivers*
Cost: under $10. A pair of cream-colored tights or nylons is less than $5, and you can get a whole bag of spiders from the dollar store, craft store, or other bargain store from $1 – $4, depending on how many spiders you want in your colony. Where I found it: (see previous link).
Spiders Who Crochet Pretty Webs
Involves: inserting crocheted doilies in a spray painted embroidery hoop, and adding a few plastic spiders, and a wrapped “food source” in the middle of the web.
Why I like it: not everyone likes scary, and this can be gussied up to “pretty”. If you’re more into “creepy cute”, then this is a perfect idea for you!
Cost: reasonable, considering how pretty this looks! Older doilies can be found in thrift stores and new ones are in craft stores, yard sales, and bargain stores. I’ve found embroidery hoops at thrift shops (much cheaper than buying new). Spiders can be found at dollar stores or craft stores. You don’t have to spray paint the hoop – you could darken it with stain for a more Victorian look, and you could add a couple of tiny sparkly buttons or pins around the edges, too. Where I found it: http://www.sadieseasongoods.com/creepy-crawly-crochet-spider-web-doilies
Eerie Outdoor Atmosphere
Involves: stockings, glow sticks, water balloons.
Why I like it: atmosphere! Can you imagine walking into a yard full of these? Not only for Halloween, this would be a great idea for almost any summer party.
Cost: stockings, glowsticks, balloons, and more stockings. Big Lots usually has some pretty cheap, or stock up on clearance stockings when you see them during the year. Glowsticks and balloons are at the dollar store. Cost will depend on how many of these you want to put together, but I think that the more you hang, the more magical the effect! Where I found it: on pinterest, with no attribution, but looks like dailydump posted it.
Involves: chicken wire and glow in the dark paint.
Why I like it: lovely, ethereal, and very customize-able. And it looks cool during the day, too!
Cost: chicken wire (or poultry wire) can be found at hardware stores for under $20, but perhaps cheaper at a farm store. Glow in the dark spray paint can be had for under $10, but I’m not seeing great reviews. Alternative: perhaps paint them white and shine a light at the figure, or add some Christmas lights at the base. Where I found it (there’s an explanation of how they did it): http://www.wackyarchives.com/offbeat/easy-do-it-yourself-ghost.html
Yard Full of Small Ghosts
Involves: styro balls, fabric, rebar.
Why I like it: this sets a scene and tells a story with minimal effort.
Cost: this is probably the most costly on our list. Buy some old sheets at the thrift store, about $3 each. You should be able to get four ghost squares out of a large sheet, depending on how tall you want your ghosts to be. Styro balls are a bit pricey, but you can use them from year to year. Look for a multi pack to save money. Rebar is pretty cheap at your various hardware store. Where I saw it (and they have other cute ideas, too): http://www.listotic.com/16-awesome-homemade-halloween-decorations/9/
And there you have it – my top ten picks for Quick, Cheap, Easy Halloween Decorating Ideas! I hope they inspire you to create a bit of magic for your yard and home this year. I’m sure you’re wondering what have I’ve done for Halloween this year…well, since I am in the midst of prepping for a show, my Halloweenization of our abode has been minimal this year, but still included our skelly on the rusty bike in front of the house (pics next time). I did manage to put together a new door wreath with snakes, black spray paint, cheap purple glitter flowers, spiders, and a little sign. Maybe I should add some eyeballs to the flowers!
A few years ago, I found an amazing, 56″ framed farm print at a thrift store, and I “upcycled” it for Halloween, adding zombies, vultures, a UFO, and various other creepy things. I was so excited to get started, I never took a full “before” photo, but there are sectional “before and after” shots below. It literally takes up almost the entire width of our fireplace mantel, it is so huge.
And here are a few of the Autumn and Halloween-themed gifts I’ve added to my etsy shop and a very large pumpkin and scarecrow bowl that was a commission for one of my collectors. She always challenges me with fun ideas.
Congratulations to CarolSue, who just happened to stumble across our EDA Newsblog during the September contest. She followed the instructions, and won the wineglasses! Another art giveaway contest will start near the end of October, so subscribe to the Newsblog to be notified when it starts!
Until next time, keep creating!