Halloween parties are fun—but do you really need to buy decorations that you’ll only use one night a year? Here are some incredibly easy (and incredibly cheap!) ways to create a memorable party, and an unforgettable house. Everything here can be found at a hardware store or dollar store, and some are right in your pantry. Here, go and try it out. We guarantee that your house will be spooktacular!
Cheap Halloween party idea # 1: Make your own fog machine
All you need is dry ice, warm water and a slow cooker. The slow cooker is essential, since it’ll keep the water warm for the duration of your party. (Otherwise, the dry ice will just freeze everything around it—bye bye fog!)
Here’s what you need to do. Fill your slow cooker to half-way point and then place it on its high setting. Then, get the dry ice. (Very important: wear gloves when you handle dry ice, or you’ll get burned. ) Break it into small chunks with a hammer.
Drop the dry ice in small batches into the slow-cooker. The fog will slowly build up. Don’t expect it to rise too high, though. We suggest placing the slow-cooker in a small cauldron or pumpkin, and then resting that on a side table.
Don’t have a slow cooker? Well, buy one! It’s pretty cheap and unlike most Halloween décor you can actually use it everyday.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 2: Tombstone table settings
All you need is white or gray paper, cut into (you guessed it) tombstone shapes. It’s morbid fun, but if your guests aren’t too stuck up they’ll laugh along with you. Why not write a funny rhyme to make it even more lighthearted? Or, if you’re afraid of offending people, use the tombstone pattern for invitations or listing the party menu.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 3: Halloween tree
Dust off your small artificial Christmas trees (or get one from the store—you’ll be using it again in a few months, so it’s a smart buy). Then, decorate it with orange Christmas lights and Christmas balls spray painted in a glittery black or dark gold. Hang fake cobwebs, paper cut-outs of pumpkins and black cats, white tissue paper ghosts. Or, make or hang edible Halloween decorations like iced cookies or chocolate lollipops.
Smaller trees make fantastic table centerpieces; medium-sized ones can be placed by the doorway or a table in the foyer.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 4: chalk window décor
Use window chalk or black chalk paint to draw ghosts, scary messages (‘Boo!’ or ‘Beware!’).
Cheap Halloween party idea # 5: pumpkin patch
Pick pumpkins of different sizes and group them in a room or on your porch or garden. This is a great place for your homemade fog machine, add wild ivy and black roses (you can make these with black tissue paper). You can also add candles in hurricane containers (to prevent fires) and cauldrons filled with candy.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 6: make fake blood
Fill a large fish bowl with fake blood for a game of bobbing for apples. (Tip: do this in the kitchen or outdoors—it can get messy.) All you need is a cup of corn syrup, half a cup of water, and 4 drops of food coloring. Add cornstarch if you want it to be thicker.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 7: make your own slime
Kids love this! Make them dunk their hands into a pail of slime to get a prize. Just mix lotion, water, and a few drops of lime gelatin. Gelatin makes it looks transparent, but if you add cornstarch it gets opaque. You can also get a darker shade of green by adding food coloring Really depends on how you want it to look.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 8: Create a creepy room
Hang black table cloths on the windows to darken up the room and create a ‘haunted house’ vibe. Cover lights with green cellophane to cast an eerie glow. Or, buy colored bulbs or bulbs of lower wattage. Play scary music. Distribute flashlights to guests (or tell them to bring their own to the party) and let the haunting begin!
Cheap Halloween party idea # 9: Ghoul Welcome
Hang 3m temporary hooks and fishing line on your ceiling. Attach a ghoul (its head should be drooping, so it looks like it’s watching the guests). It’s best if you position this in a corridor or doorway so everyone has to pass through it. It seems silly but guests get a kick out of this. For even more laughs, attach a fifth hook in a hidden corner with a fishing line that’s attached to its head. Occasionally pull the fishing line so the head moves. If you really want to go all out, have a tape recording of a ghoulish laugh ready—then hit the play button.
Cheap Halloween party idea # 10: Spiders and cobwebs
String white and green cobwebs all over your house, then cluster lots of plastic spiders. Position it under a black lightbulb (you can get this at the hardware store) for an extra spooky effect.
Photo from life123.com