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.

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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.

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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) –

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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!

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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!

The Haunted Village – Year Two Upgrades

You may recall that last year I made my own version of haunted village that I first came across on The 36th Avenue. It was great fun and I’m really looking forward to displaying it again this year. But of course I can hardly be convinced to leave well enough alone, and so have been on the quest to accessorize my village on the cheap.

This is what it looked like last year –

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I was really excited to discover that Dollar Tree has added their own haunted village to the lineup this year –

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But since I already have houses that I like from last year, I just picked up a few accessories to round out the scene –

trees

Just $3.00 total for two trees and a trio of gargoyles! Not too shabby. And since I can’t help myself, I decided to check out what Michaels had on offer, since I had a 40% off coupon to use. So I picked up a set of coffins for just $3.00. Not sure if I’ll put them in the village or not – I may do some creepy faux terrariums with some of the stuff as well –

coffins

I love DIY and Halloween is one of the best times of the year for decorating the house! I’ll be sure to post some updated pictures as soon as I have everything arranged – I think it’ll really turn out great!

Holiday Decorating with Quilt Panels

Until recently, I didn’t even know what quilt panels were. But now that I know, it seems far too good a secret to keep to myself. I was browsing the interwebs the other day for Halloween-themed fabric (yes, I spend time looking up fabric online – Pinterest is way cheaper than therapy) and stumbled across a skeleton quilt panel –

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I always thought that when one wanted to make a quilt, hours cutting shapes out of fabric were required. It then had to be pieced, sewn together, sewn to a backing, quilted… quite the process. But apparently there is this cheater method out there where you buy a panel with a cool design on it, sew that to a backing and then quilt it. In my mind, that’s just a regular old blanket, but I digress. Probably if they were called blanket panels that would confuse everyone.

At any rate, I have no desire to make a skeleton quilt, at least at the current time. But I did think to myself – how cool would it be to make a wall hanging of that? All I would need to do would be to hem the edges to finish them nicely, and then maybe mount it in on a dowel, or maybe even just stretch it over a frame or canvas. And voila, interesting fabric wall art for a reasonable price!

So of course then I ended up down the rabbit hole of searching for interesting quilt panels, and came across quite a few holiday ones. The smaller ones would look really neat framed up individually and hung as a gallery wall, I think. Here are my personal favorites for Halloween and Christmas –

Black Cat

Green Grinch

Grinch

As the photos show, all of the panels are available at Fat Quarter Shop, which is my new favorite place for fabric on the web. The selection is amazing, and the prices are reasonable. And despite the name, they sell much more than fat quarters – panels, fabric by yard and all kinds of accessories and notions. The panels above are currently priced at $7.75 each – which is not a bad price at all for a unique piece of fun wall art.

So, what do you think? Would you make some DIY wall art with quilt panels? There are all kinds to be found – it would be really cute to do for a nursery or kid’s bedroom as well.