Who’s got the time to spend days decorating the yard for Halloween? You want a big effect, but don’t want to spend a ton of time doing it. Well, I’ve got some quick ideas that have a big impact!
We were visiting my brother-in-law and family last week and the kids were so excited when the Halloween box came down from the attic and we started decorating. After everything was out, my sister-in-law and I stood back to admire our work and she said, “It looks pretty sad, don’t you think?” Yes. Yes, I did. Then she turns to me and says, “Do you want to decorate for us?” YES! YES, I DO! We were leaving in two days, so I had one day to shop and decorate…challenge accepted!
I got out my sketchbook and my laptop and started scanning Pinterest. I reviewed my ideas with my brother-in-law so he could get an idea of the budget, and the next morning we were off!
We shopped for pumpkins and mums at the grocery store, decorations at two Halloween stores, supplies at the hardware store, and more decorations and supplies at the craft store. We got home about 1pm from shopping and got right to work!
We LOVE how Pumpkinhead Scarecrow turned out! His base is made out of sticks and branches we found on the property, his head is a carved craft pumpkin with an LED lightning light inside, his vest is distressed burlap, we put a crow on one arm, and he is lit from underneath with an umbrella light that they had in the garage.
Their front yard walkway goes around what used to be a koi pond but is now a bit overgrown with water loving vine type plants…so I obviously thought immediately of a Swamp Monster! The base and arms are made from branches (found on property) secured with zip ties, the hands are latex cleaning gloves filled with leaves, the cloth is black cheesecloth and dark green mesh draped over the branch base, and the head is a mask we found at the Halloween store. We also picked up some green glow sticks to go behind the eyes on Halloween night. A fog machine behind the Swamp Monster provides the mist and the green light (which actually moves with a water type effect) is a “Fire and Ice” spotlight from the Halloween store. As an extra effect the light also accented the Pumpkinhead and reflected off the entire front of the house!
Lights and draping:
We hung orange icicle lights over the side part of the porch with black construction bags (cut into strips and stretched) hanging down behind. In the center we had orange and purple lights going up the column, over the top, and down the other column. Behind the lights on the top we hung cheesecloth that has been cut and distressed to look old and tattered. We attached a large spider to the cheesecloth and hung a ghost from the side. We switched out the normal white bulb in the porch light for an orange bulb to give it a warm glow.
Steps and Front Door:
To the steps we added mums and pumpkins of varying sizes and colors. On one side of the door we added a skeleton to the bench and on the other side used some of their original props with a haybale and mums.
Pet Cemetery (with ghost)
We had a small empty area to the side of the walkway across from the Pumpkinhead, so we added a small pet cemetery with a ghost that they already had. We also added lights and mums to the additional steps along the walkway to help trick or treaters find their way.
Spirit Circle (with half skeleton and tombstone)
Yep, it’s the Spirit Circle again! I gave the “how-to” for the Spirit Circle in my “DIY Smoking Cauldron with Glowing Coals” podcast and they had the perfect yard to add one around a small tree. We used solar lights to light the ghosts at night and added a tombstone and skeleton torso coming out of the ground.
Our final steps were to add a few more ghosts to the trees and creepy branches to the walkway. We left my nephews in charge of spiderwebs which they will continue to add in the days leading up to Halloween.
So there you have it, we did it all in one day! We left to go shopping around 10am (after searching the grounds for branches), started decorating the yard in the afternoon and put the final touches on as the sun was going down so we could turn on all the lights and fogger to see the final effect! I had the help of my husband and brother-in-law, so I wasn’t doing the whole thing alone, but we’re pretty pleased with what we accomplished!
Happy decorating to you all and Happy Halloween!