Simple Halloween Crafts

Simple and inexpensive Halloween crafts. These are easy to make and fun for the whole family, as well as the trick or treaters.

Halloween can be such a fun and crafty holiday. Goblins, witches, vampires and ghosts have always been crafted for decorations. In the early years of Halloween celebrations, or All Hallow's Eve, gourds and pumpkins were carved to ward off evil spirits and guide family specters back home. Through the years, the carvings changed from simple faces to elaborate silhouettes and etchings. Many of the decorations of monsters and ghouls were used to ward off the witches and spooks that were said to walk the earth on that night. Today, the decorations are for amusement and entertainment, as much as to ward off those evil spirits.

Crafts are plentiful for Halloween. If you can imagine it, you can create it. Fun, frightening, fanciful or functional, crafts are as much a part of Halloween as the trick or treating and bobbing for apples. Here are 10 simple crafts that you can do at home without much monetary investment in supplies. Have fun with them and be creative; add your own touches or changes.

Lollipop ghosts are a fun treat to pass out as trick or treating candy or as a treat for a classroom or small group. Purchase the large round lollipops, the kind with gum or candy in the center, white tissue paper or tissue, and small rubber bands. Cut the tissue paper into pieces, five inches by five inches. Wrap the lollipop in the tissue and put the rubber band at the base of the stick and the candy. If you can't find small enough rubber bands, use glue, string or tape. Draw eyes and a mouth on the lollipop and you now have a ghost. If you want to coordinate a display for your ghosts, purchase a white Styrofoam block that is flat and long, big enough for all the lollipops, and a thin piece of gray Styrofoam. Cut out tombstones from the thin piece and with a black pen write RIP in the mini tombstones. Stick the tombstones in the big Styrofoam and stick the ghosts around the "graveyard." Trick or treaters can grab their own ghostly lollipop from this great display.

Ghosts are fun and easy to make and go just about anywhere in the house. You will need plain white men's handkerchiefs or bandanas, a roll of paper towels or toweling and some string or thread. Tissue paper will also work, but the ghosts will be more fragile. Roll up some paper towels to form a small ball and place in the center of the handkerchief, wrap the handkerchief around the paper and tie off with the string. Leave enough string to hang the ghost from the ceiling, wall or doorway. Draw your eyes and mouth and you have a swinging ghost to hang in entranceways or on the walls. The breeze that people make as they walk by will move these little guys naturally.

Window silhouettes are a fun way to greet trick or treaters and party goers. For this craft you will need large pieces of black poster board. You want to be able to block the entire window which will display the silhouette. Trace or draw the silhouette on the poster board and cut out. Be sure you draw it so that when you cut it out you will be able to see what it is. The easiest designs are the outlines of bats, the moon, a howling wolf, Frankenstein and a witch flying on a broom. Once cut out, tape the poster board to the window and be sure that the entire window is covered. When it is dark and the lights are on in that room, the silhouette will shine outside to onlookers.

Flashlight frights are another fun craft using silhouettes and light. You will need a flashlight, big rubber band, tape, poster board and different colored tissue paper. Cut out a circle of poster board big enough to fit on the top rim of the flash light. Don't let the paper sit on the light directly and never leave it on and unattended. Cut out a shape in the circle of poster board, like a bat or pumpkin. Tape the circle to the rim of the flashlight. Shine the light on the on a wall and see your shape appear. Change the color of the light by placing different colors of tissue paper over the flashlight. You can secure the tissue paper over the poster board and flashlight with the rubber band. Not only do these make fun lights, but they are also a great safety device while trick or treating in the neighborhood.



Pumpkin carving is centuries old. Take your carvings even further and create stencil art on your pumpkin. Go to any craft store and find a stencil of animals, flowers or anything else that is not too intricate, but different. Trace the stencil onto the pumpkin and carve. Insert the safety candle and see the glow this pumpkin lantern creates. You can carve small designs all around the pumpkin if you leave enough to support the weight, and they add a festive touch to your porch. They may not ward off evil sprits, but they will guide a path to your porch for the other ghouls and goblins out trick or treating.

Instead of pumpkins, create some "gourd"eous carvings using gourds. Gourds are similar to pumpkins in carving, except that they have unique and oblong shapes. These stems create perfect noses for witches and ghouls. Plus with the different gourd colors you can really create some scary carvings. Have fun and be creative and use a gourd.

A ghostly garden is a fun and easy creation. You will need large white garbage bags, string and a black permanent marker or glow in the dark paint. How fancy and expensive this craft can be depends on you. Take a garbage bag and lay it flat on a table or work area and draw your eyes and mouth. You can also purchase a small bottle of glow in the dark paint to use on top of the black eyes. Let it dry, and then take your garbage bag ghosts outside and cover your bushes, plants or trellis. Secure with string and watch as the breeze makes the ghosts come alive.

Here is a craft that can be used throughout the Autumn season. You will need mini pumpkins and a candle flower ring in Fall colors. Instead of a candle in the center of the flowers, place the mini pumpkin. You can also create your own ring with a Styrofoam circle and flowers and leaves from your local craft store. These make nice table decorations and can be used for Halloween and Thanksgiving. During Halloween decorate the mini pumpkins with paint or carve them and use a tea light to create a mini table lantern. Always be safe when using a candle in a pumpkin. Change to a plain mini pumpkin for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Clay pumpkin beads are a fun craft you and a child can do for a party or classroom. It even makes a fun classroom craft. You will need orange (or any color) clay that dries in the air, toothpicks and cord for necklaces. Roll the clay into small round pieces. Gently press the top of the ball with your small finger to create the pumpkin shape. Use a toothpick to draw the lines on the pumpkin and make a hole in the bead where the stem would be. You could also use the toothpick to etch a face in the pumpkin. Let the beads dry and then paint. Let it dry again, string the beads on the cord and you have a handmade pumpkin necklace. You can also create bigger pumpkin beads and put the hole in the side. If you do this, be sure that you make a stem for your pumpkin.

Here is a craft that is a sweet smelling addition to your house. You will need a bag of apples, cinnamon, twine and wire. A whole bag of apples can create one to two wreaths, depending on the size. You need to slice the apples, starting at the bottom, keeping the slices about ΒΌ inch thick. After they are sliced, lay them on wax paper and remove the centers. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon, the more you use the more they smell. Let them dry naturally or place them in the oven at 200 degrees until they dry out. Once dry, you can spray them with hairspray or a special craft coating to make them shiny and preserve them longer. String the apples on the twine and wire. Remember that if you want an approximate twelve inch in diameter wreath, you would need to use about 28 inches of wire and twine, you will need extra to tie it off. After they are strung, twist the wire securely and cut off the excess. Tie the twine in a hoop and secure. This will be how you can hang the wreath. Decorate with a bow or add Halloween or Fall inserts sold at craft stores. Not only will this wreath look great in your home, but it will also fill the house with a sweet apple and cinnamon smell.

Enjoy the crafts and create your own. The key to crafting is having fun and being creative. If they don't turn out as you expected or like you wanted, just be sure of one thing: that you enjoy it. The main part of doing any arts and crafts is having fun. So enjoy your crafts, enjoy the holidays and enjoy yourself.

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