All Hallows’ Eve is upon us, which means it’s time to get spooky. If you’re a new homeowner, one of the greatest treats is finally being able to arrange Halloween tricks of your own . . . and to have more than enough space to get creative. Halloween is about fun, and you’re really just one jack-o-lantern away from being in the spirit. Plus, you really can’t over or under do it. So, go nuts! Here are some fun and easy ideas to inspire and help get you started:
One of the easiest ways to give your home an appropriately festive, spooky vibe is by taking away some of its warm and welcoming charm and giving it some edge with more of an abandoned feel. Little things like hanging a porch swing crookedly can make a big difference. While you’re on the porch, scatter plenty of dead leaves around, and make unsettling arrangements with any summer flowers you may have had that died in the first frost.
Try propping wood across a few windows to make it look like they were boarded up then dim your porch lights by covering them loosely with fabric or replacing them with lower watt bulbs or yellow or red colors for creepy lighting. If you have an archway, you could also try to hang up some painted cardboard to make a cool monster!
You don’t have to invest in expensive decorations to create a fun and moody ambiance in and around the house. There’s a lot you can do with very little to transform your home into the fright fest it deserves to be. Cut eyes into paper towel, fill them with glow sticks, and toss them into bushes to create a ghostly gaze or two. Also, a little Elmer’s glue and food coloring is all it takes to make some fairly convincing, yet easy to clean up bloody handprints that you can place over objects and windows.
When you’re done, head to the computer, and print out some old black and white portraits of stern looking people in classic clothing that you can glue to black construction paper and place on your mantle as a creepy photo collection. A few strategically placed candles and fake spider webs can really sell the effect.
Jack up Your Jack-O-Lanterns
What’s Halloween without a Jack-O-Lantern? You’re going to need at least a few. But rather than going the traditional carved faces route, you could take it one step further. Print out and cut a few mask templates from the Internet and string a few onto a few pumpkins that you’ve already carved up for some added personality. Have an old dress-form mannequin? Attach the Jack-O-Lantern on top and decorate the body in old clothes or torn up cheesecloth to create a haunting embodied specter. If you have extra pumpkins left over, hollow out the inside and turn them into bowls for serving cider or treats. Don’t forget to save the seeds to make bake roasted pumpkin seeds later!
Jack-O-Lanterns are all well and good, but if you want to add even more scare to your situation, you’re going to need the assistance of at least a few monsters to take up residence around your home. When it comes to fearful fun, nothing quite gets the job done like a giant spider. Here’s an idea for a DIY monster spider that won’t take you much effort at all.
Simply cut the top off a milk jug, and cover it in black duct tape.
Attach black pipe insulation as legs, making sure to cut out triangles in the insulation where you want the legs to bend. Use the duct tape to secure the legs in the positions you want, then attach ping pong balls as eyes. If you want to take it a step further, cover the body in black feathers to give it a furry appearance. Then hang it and wait for people to complain to you about taking it down. If your new spider friend needs a home, cut out black trash bags in the design of a spider web and arrange it in a suitable location.
Halloween might be marketed as a kid’s holiday, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get into it too. With a few of these tricks, your home can go to boo from boring in no time! Just don’t forget to put your Jack-O-Lanterns out to pasture when they’re past their prime. And remember the scariest thing . . . Christmas will be here before you know it.