Easy Halloween Decorating

Halloween is just around the corner in a few weeks, so I thought I’d show off some of the decorating we’ve done around the house. I didn’t do much in the living room since the walls are still unfinished, but the dining room is sufficiently decked out for my taste.

11222469_10156035578360627_6535040427080592087_n

12047137_10156035578495627_5338383187353037401_n

I did more the orange sign down behind the village since it wasn’t readable up top, but that was pretty much the only change to the hutch. I’d love to find either an old silver or mirrored tray with a metal edging that would mimic a wrought iron fence for the village to sit on, but I haven’t found the right one yet. And I left off the spider webs that I used as fog last year since it’s a pain to work with if there’s nothing to anchor it too.

I also put up some lights in the kitchen window. All of the lighting I scored last year in the post- Halloween clearance for 50% off. I’m hoping to score some more sets this year because they are perfect and it would be great to have some for the living room and the porches.

12033194_10156035578305627_7705661139267865105_n

And I did a little something in the living room, with some DIY graveyard terrariums (stay tuned for the close up pics in the how-to post) –

12079277_10156035578230627_214560661871400839_n

And we’ve got pumpkins, gourds and beautiful orange mums on the porches, but I don’t have a good photo of that since it’s dark all the time when I’m home on weekdays now!

DIY Halloween Round Up

Since we are knee-deep in repair negotiations to buy the house, packing up all of our worldly possessions (I am going to be highly annoyed if the contract falls through…) and keeping up with daily life here, I haven’t had much time to do anything interesting enough to write about. So I thought I would take a moment to share some of my favorite DIY Halloween crafts from around the web. I’m a big believer that a great looking home, well decked out for a holiday, shouldn’t cost a fortune. With a little creativity and time, great results can be achieved. Some of my favorites for Halloween this year –

Coffin Craft

This coffin diorama from The Glamorous Housewife is great. She uses a wood coffin (you can find it at craft stores or online for about $3 each). Bethany uses a sticker pack for the items inside, but I’ve got my eye on the haunted village accessories at Dollar Tree for this one – a wire tree, and some tombstones would be perfect –

tombstones

Dollar Tree also sells Spanish moss in the floral section. If you don’t already have black and orange paint on hand, you can usually pick up small bottles 2 for $1 at places like Michaels when they have their paint sales. So if you go the Dollar Tree route, you can have a pretty neat three dimensional graveyard diorama for just about $7! Not to bad!

Another easy on the budget Halloween craft that caught my eye is embroidery hoop spider webs. This is super easy to do is you happen to have the stuff on hand, but if you don’t, a wooden embroidery hoop will cost about $4, a package of spider web rings will be $1 at Dollar Tree and I could swear I’ve seen crocheted doilies at places like Dollar Tree or Family Dollar, but you can also order a dozen on them online for about $15 – making each one just $1.33 each. Hey, could you put them all over the house or split the order with friend or two. At about $6 a pop, that’s pretty affordable!

lace spider

Crystal ball candlesticks by Flamingo Toes is another easy DIY that really pops. This one is just so cool – I’ve already got all of the supplies I need to make mine, now I just need to take the time to do it! Candlesticks are easy – you can buy cheap ones from Dollar Tree, or pick up some truly unique numbers at the thrift shop. I found an awesome wooden one at Goodwill awhile back for just $1. The acrylic ornament globes can be picked up at Michaels for a few bucks a piece, but it looks like Dollar Tree will have some out this year for Christmas crafting! And since we majorly holiday jump in this country and I’ve already seen the Christmas gear popping up at stores, check your local Dollar Tree! You may be able to find some to use in your holiday crafting.

Crystal Ball

The most expensive part of the craft are the printable inkjet transparency sheets. They are crazy expensive. Avery seems to have the best price, and they’re a brand I really rely on for printables. They’re selling a box of 20 sheets for about $20. Shopping around on Amazon, I found a shop selling a box of 20 for just $10. And you can always look for coupons or sales, and definitely remember that once you buy a box you have it in your crafting arsenal for future projects, and you can always split it with a friend. Once you break down the per-piece price, it’s only $0.50 – $1 each, which isn’t bad. So if you get lucky on your other materials, you can make a grouping of crystal balls for a pretty good price – if you do 5, if you shop around and get some good deals on your materials, it’ll only cost you $11 ($5 for 5 ornaments at Dollar Tree, $5 for 5 candlesticks second hand and $1 for a transparency sheet, since you can print all 5 images on one piece). I suppose you’ll have to spend another dollar on spray paint if you don’t have some on hand, but $12 for 5 pieces? A place like Anthropologie would charge at least $12 each!

Oh, and one other thing about the transparency film – keep your eyes peeled when you’re out thrifting. I’ve picked up printable magnet sheets, iron-on transfers and specialty card stocks for pennies on the dollar. People buy a big pack and have extras they don’t plan to use, or they get rid of them when they cull through their craft supplies. So you can score that way too! I always grab them when I see them even if I don’t have a specific project in mind, because it’s just such a huge savings.

And last but not least, what about a super easy Halloween costume, especially if you want something understated by still spooky?

Tats

This is one is “good thing” from none other than Martha Stewart. I’m pretty partial to the spiders, and I’m going to do some to punch up my otherwise ordinary witch costume for this year. Printable tattoo paper isn’t cheap either – it’s going to be about $20 for 5 sheets, so about $4 per sheet. But where else can you get a $4 Halloween costume? So in the end, it’s all relative, and remember – you’ve got more sheets for more projects. I just happen to have a few sheets on hand in my crafting stash, so this year it’s “free” for me!

I hope you enjoyed seeing some of my favorite spooky projects for this year. I’ve pinned a ton more, so please feel free to browse my Halloween Pinterest board if you’d like some more ideas. Happy Haunting!

Pinterest Project: Halloween Haunted Village

Miniature villages are basically the adult equivalent of the dollhouse. They’re “home decorations”, therefore a grown woman can collect them, arrange the houses and people and accessories into cute little streetscapes and call it interior design. Like dollhouses, holiday villages are not cheap. I’d basically come to the conclusion that only rich people could have them. I mean, come on – a single house by Department 56 is about $100.00. For a tiny ceramic house. Yeah, I just do not think so. But I wasn’t going to give up.

I love browsing Pinterest. This time of year draws me to the Halloween and autumn crafts and decorations, and I’ve pinned a bunch of things that I’d love to try. A bunch of things that I look at and never do. But, on a whim I decided it was time to turn the board into reality. And of course the project I’ve picked is making my own Halloween haunted village! So there, rich people!

I was inspired by The 36th Avenue’s Dollar Store Halloween Village. It’s a genius idea, really – take something cheap and ugly, add spray paint and glitter and end up with something awesome. Here’s Desiree’s version –

Dollar Store Spooky Village

How neat is that? And she pulled it off for a serious fraction of the price of a single pre-made house. I basically followed her instructions to the letter, and ended up with awesomeness too.

First of, I gathered my supplies –

– 3 ceramic Christmas houses from Dollar Tree $3.00

– 2 packages of ceramic people figures from Dollar Tree $2.00

– fake spider webbing from Dollar Tree $1.00

– black glitter acrylic paint from Michaels $2.00

– brown picket fence from Michaels $3.00

– ceramic tombstones from Michaels $3.00

– battery operated purple mini light string $5.00

– Valspar black matte spray paint from Lowes $4.00 (I got the good stuff so I could use it on other projects, but I’m sure the $1.00 stuff would work just fine).

Everything I picked up at Michaels was either discounted or I had a coupon for, so that’s the way to go. If I paid full price for that stuff, it probably would’ve added ten dollars to my total. But as it stands, I came in at about $25.00 for everything. That’s a price I can handle without getting sticker shock.

Here’s the before shot of the little houses –

DSCN0046

Are they hideous or what? The colors are awful and the paint job is bad. Fortunately, they only looked like that for a moment. I took them out to the yard and sprayed them black.  Then I did a little highlighting with the black glitter paint. Here’s a close up of how the glitter paint looks –

DSCN0056

And here’s the whole streetscape –

DSCN0060

Their permanent home will be on a black molding shelf in the living room, but I don’t have it hung up yet so I set it up on the coffee table so I could show it off here. Here’s a picture without the flash so you can better see the purple lights –

DSCN0048

The house on the right has lights inside of it too, but the openings in the windows are a little small. I’m going to have husband try to widen them a bit with his Dremel.

One thing I did differently than The 36th Avenue was painting over the people’s faces – I wanted them to appear to be fully in shadow. So, what do you think? I’m really pleased with how it turned out, and it was quick and fun project to do.