Halloween Decorating Ideas

Halloween decorating ideas. From fun and frivolous to down right spooky, you'll entertain kids of all ages with these decorations.

Halloween is a favorite holiday around the world and if you have any kids in your home it's probably one of your family's favorite holidays, too. So celebrate this haunted season with some decorations that will get the whole neighborhood ready for a spook fest. Orange and black is a great place to start, but if you really want to please the crowds you'll first have to decide who you'll be entertaining.

Young children can be easily scared so it's best to stick to friendly spooks. Try to keep your haunting happy with lighthearted witches, pumpkins and ghosts. Play down the fear aspect by using lights and other props that will keep your goblins giggling.

Here are a few ideas for safe and jolly haunting:

Fire safe Jack-O-Lanterns: Carve your pumpkin as you normally would, but instead of placing a candle inside, use a flashlight or tap light to illuminate the gourd. Cut a hole in the size of your light in the bottom of the pumpkin. The rim of the flashlight or tap light should fit snugly in the hole. Use colored plastic wrap or paper to filter the light so that you get a good fiery glow. You can also anchor the end of the flashlight in the ground to create pumpkin posts.

Witch Hunting: Make a game of the old-fashioned witch-hunt by hiding happy hags in unexpected places. The linen closet, the basement and entry are great places to hide a hag. Use fishing line to hang her from balconies, banisters and bedroom windows. To pique the youngsters' curiosity even more, leave a caldron, hat or broom in a conspicuous corner to play up the witches' presence.

If plan to put on a more sophisticated show for the older kids, try one or all of these suggestions:

Arachnophobia Arbor: You can use an arbor, doorway or wooded area to create this castle for spiders. Use packaged spider webs to stretch and drape around the pathway. Remember the less web you use, the more realistic. Leave some fibers to blow in the wind so they can freely brush and pull on passers-by. After the web is built, String up five and dime spiders with nylon string. The more the better with this display""make sure use enough crawlies to really creep out the crowds.

Ghoulish Graveyard: This haunt is as old as time, but you can spice things up with some added features. Litter your yard with body parts and bones, a bloody hand outstretched from a grave will do a great job. You can really get skin crawling by making your own sound effects. Whispered chanting and the sound of shop tools will send a shiver up everyone's spine.

Blair Witch Blinds: This is an easy way to even scare your neighbors. Collect bare sticks and twigs from a nearby forest (if your own lot is wooded enough, you might not have to leave home). Bind the twigs together with jute and string haphazardly""tie some in bunches and others in the form of stick figures. Then, place the woven branches on the inside of your windowsills and secure them in place with string.

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