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  • Writer's picturecathy king

Halloween Decorations DIY

Updated: Sep 17, 2023

I love decorating for both Halloween and Christmas. As the autumn leaves begin to drop, and the acorns produce a real mess in my driveway, I can’t help but be excited that Halloween is right around the corner. For me, it is not all about the candy or pumpkin spice products, but rather the spooky holiday decorations. I love seeing the faces of the children who are brave enough to make it to my front door.

Outdoor Halloween decorations leading to the front door.  The old jumping spider is in lower right hand corner
Scary Halloween walkway

Some years draw more crowds than others, as Mother Nature has a big impact on attendance, with everything from hurricanes to snowstorms.

Like my Christmas decorations, I have a fair amount of Halloween trimmings stored in the outdoor sheds, as well as up in the attic. Who knew, as a professional organizer, that I would have multiple storage places for my decorations? The Halloween decor is usually put up in multiple waves as some of the outdoor pieces have electronics in them and cannot be left out in bad weather, as they would not survive for another year.

I usually look at pictures from the previous year to help me make decisions about what will be repeated and what will change. Call it decorating envy, but I seem to get kick-started once I see other proudly adorned homes.

Scary Halloween decorations to great Trick or Treaters at front door
Halloween Front Door Greeters

So, what is my system? Let’s begin.

Here is the order of events for the outdoor display:

Outdoor Halloween lighting on front of horse.
Halloween Outdoor Holiday Lights

  • Move the copper torches from the backyard to the front yard and line the sidewalk with them. Make sure they have fuel left in them too.

  • Attach the faux chains from lantern to lantern along the sidewalk.

  • Test the mini-LED Halloween lights to ensure they are working before positioning them on the fence around the pond.

  • Bring all of the weather-sensitive outdoor decorations to the garage to be tested for later deployment to the yard on Halloween night.

  • Put the smoke machine in the garage along with the scared lady from the attic.

  • On Halloween, if the weather is cooperating, light the torches and bring weather-sensitive items outside to welcome guests.

  • Select my costume to greet the guests!

Halloween costume all dressed up as Cruella deVil
Cruella de Vil - Halloween costume

And now for the indoor Halloween decorating.

  • Get all respective bins down from the attic and onto the porch for sorting and decision making.

  • Review the inventory and decide just how much trimming I am going to do. Some years I have limited time, so I do not accessorize the entire house.

  • Start with the dining room, as that is the most visible room, and I have a lot of candles and adornments for that particular room.

  • Decorate the kitchen and bathroom. Here is a video of the dining room.

  • Prepare the stand for the Trick-or-Treat bowl. I tried using one of those scary bowls that move when you attempt to get candy but it scared the kids too much, and then it broke, so back to a regular old bowl.

Dining room decorated for Halloween with scary guests and glitter decorations
Halloween Decorated Dining Room

While the majority of my decorations are stored year after year, there are times when an investment might be needed to replace something that just has not survived. Two years ago I lost a giant, scary, jumping spider outside, which I have not yet replaced. The spider was ruined in the snowstorm that hit New England on Halloween Eve. The jumping spider was a show-stopper--or maybe a heart-stopper.

Graveyard around pond with lots of creepy critters, pirates, rate and gargoyles.
Gruesome Halloween graveyard party at the pond

I believe my family thinks I am a little over the top with all of my holiday decorating, but I really enjoy having a bit of fun. I like to keep my decorations simple and easy to distribute from year to year. That being said, I have a bit of Halloween decorating envy when I see homes where creative mock fronts have transformed entire houses and yards into haunted wonderlands.

In the blink of an eye, and no later than the day after Halloween, all of these fine trimmings are taken down and the Christmas bins begin their entry into the house. One might think this is too early, but when you are also erecting five trees, you need time to not only get the house beautified but also sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Tell me, do you enjoy Halloween decorating? What is the strangest decoration that you have?

Picture of Cinnamon the dog in her Halloween costume.
Happy Halloween Love, Cinnamon


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