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Trick-or-treating, late-night ghost stories, creative costumes and cheeky pranks – there are few occasions that spell F-U-N as much as Halloween! For most children, the beginning of October spells a countdown to their favourite spooky holiday, and what better way to get them in the mood than by giving your home a haunted house makeover?
Here are five frightful ideas to transform your home into a scary den this Halloween.
1. Monster doors
Spook your neighbours and delight your children by greeting them with a monster door for a true Halloween welcome! These adorable characters are deceptively easy to make: simply use paper plates as eyes, cut out black paper circles for their pupils and use strips of paper to form eyebrows and lips. The face can be as elaborate or as simple as you want – check out some examples in this gallery.
Enjoy transforming your door into a monster? Make it a Halloween tradition! Give your door a name and personality and share playful stories with your child about the lovable monster that appears every year to protect your family. This is a wonderful way to exercise your child’s imagination and build long-lasting memories.
2. A batty household
Fill your home with the Halloween spirit by welcoming a colony of bats into your living room! Don’t worry – it’s a lot less chaotic than it sounds when you can make the bats yourself. Just use a downloadable template and cut out the bats from black paper to affix directly onto your walls. Your children can have a cloud of bats to accompany them daily at the breakfast table!
3. Trick-or-treat cobwebs
Let trick-or-treaters know they are welcome by attaching black cobwebs to your windows. Inexpensive and straightforward to make, you’ll only need a black trash bag to use as a base.
Cut out two large black squares from each trash bag – each square makes a single cobweb. Fold the square diagonally to form a triangle, and fold it two more times. Fasten it shut with some tape, and use a black marker to sketch out the guidelines you will later use to cut out the cobweb. As a general rule, begin with a stem from the point of the triangle straight through the middle, and draw scallops that come off the stem. Cut away the negative spaces, unfold your web, and fix it to your windows using double-sided tape. For more detailed instructions, here’s a tutorial by Jessica Jones, the brains behind craft blog How About Orange.
4. Cheesecloth ghosts
Add some Halloween flair by attaching quirky hanging ghosts to your lights! All you need is cheesecloth, fabric stiffener, googly eyes, Styrofoam balls, glue, thread and a small water bottle. Most of these items can be found at Daiso, Spotlight, or Art Friend. Check out this tutorial for detailed instructions on how to create your ghostly entourage.
5. Pumpkin family
Lastly, what would Halloween be without pumpkins? Take pumpkin decorating to another level by turning these vegetables into members of your family! Source for larger pumpkins to represent the parents, and smaller pumpkins to represent the kids. Use carrots for noses and add facial features by drawing directly on the pumpkins with black marker, or cut out moustaches and eyebrows using black craft paper.
If all of this sounds like a lot of work, simply choose your favourite idea and run with it.
“Just do what you can to inject fun into the holiday,” says parent Hazriq Suratee. “The littlest gesture will mean the world to your children. After all, the most frightful thing that can happen to a child on Halloween is that they celebrate it alone.”