30 Halloween Decorating Ideas | Midwest Living

30 Halloween Decorating Ideas

Bring the Halloween spirit into your home with these centerpieces, wreaths and decorating ideas.
  • Unhaunted House

    Spirited entrance

    This combination of easy-to-make decorations (such as black-and-white painted pumpkins) and crafts store finds (like the black leaf garland) creates a cheerful entrance that welcomes visitors with the classic colors of the season. 

  • In a Pinch

    In a pinch

    Need a quick and easy decorating idea? This clothespin wreath in candy corn colors goes together quickly.

    Use spray paint to color 15 clothespins orange, 15 yellow and 15 white. (Clip clothespins to a scrap piece of cardboard; spray paint one side, let dry, turn the cardboard over and repeat.) Cut a 12-inch-diameter circle from sturdy cardboard and cut a smaller circle out of the middle so you have a half-inch-wide ring. Clip on painted clothespins, adding a drop of hot glue to secure each one. Spray finished wreath with two coasts of clear polyurethane spray paint, letting dry between coats.

  • Spooky mantel

    This vintage-inspired mantel will make your home feel haunted! Hang or lean a collection of flea-market vintage silver trays on the wall—the more tarnished the better. Gather pewter and black candlestick holders and fill them with black taper candles. If some of the candles lean a little, even better; it creates a spooky feel. Use old books from second-hand stores to vary the height of the candlesticks. Click below for more photos of this mantel.

  • Eye Candy

    Eye candy

    What says “Halloween” more than candy corn? This wreath is made with painted foam cones. We used nine 2-7/8-inch x 5-7/8-inch Styrofoam cones, cut in half from top to bottom to make 18 halves. With craft paint, we first painted each cone white, then painted the bottom third yellow and the middle part orange. Make sure the cones dry inbetween each paint coat. Glue to a sturdy cardboard circle to form a wreath. (For a smoother finish, cover the front of each cone with lightweight spackling compound, let dry and sand before painting.)

  • Spooky String

    Spooky string

    Jazz up painted pumpkins using crafts nails and string for a spooky spiderweb effect.

  • Webby welcome

    Itsy-bitsy spiders and and sparkly webs add easy, spooky style to an entry way or party buffet.

    Quick netting To give containers a weblike covering, crisscross strips of black yarn. Adhere with hot glue or glue dots.

    Creepy crawlers Spray-paint plastic spiders so they show up against dark surfaces; affix with temporary adhesive.

    DIY decals Homemade spider and web decals stuck to mirrors or draped over pumpkins scare with flair. Click here for more details on this project, including free decal templates. 

  • Festive framing

    Festive framing

    Turn an artificial pumpkin into works of art with a creative spray paint job and inexpensive framing.

  • Painted pumpkins

    Spirited display

    A touch of black paint transforms pumpkins into an eerie display of trees, a moon, crow and witch. Freehand the shapes, or if you need some artistic inspiration, search online for "pumpkin stencils" or "pumpkin templates." 

  • Stylish stripes wreath

    Stylish stripes

    This playful wreath combines a little DIY with crafts store finds. First, wrap a 14-inch foam wreath form with black and white yarn. Then, embellish the center with crafts store Halloween decorations.

  • Prop pumpkins

    Various-size pumpkins stacked inside lanterns make easy but clever vignettes to place around the house.

  • Pose some plates

    Use a glue stick to secure decorative paper to the center of old plates. Display on existing shelves for a seasonal look.

  • Lace works

    Doilies used as stencils give a lacy look to orange pumpkins in the entry. 

  • Matte black

    Black place settings displayed on the mantel under a black wreath sets an appropriately somber tone.


  • Orange-and-white centerpiece

    White pumpkins encircled by bittersweet vine and set along an orange table runner create a striking table arrangement. 

  • Shining stars

    Embellish pumpkins with silver and black items: stickers, fake birds and spiders, pins, paint pens ... . Let your imagination whirl across these living canvases.

  • Get crafty

    Acknowledge the crafter in you by fashioning a dispay of tiny black-and-orange quilts, papier-mâché cats and other knickknacks.

  • 60-Second Video: Halloween decorating inspirations

    A few fake spider webs go a long way to “creep-ify” your home, but there are endless ways to take the haunts to the next level. These ideas transform living areas into spooky spaces.

  • Ribbon wreaths

    Sunlight glints off of two foam wreaths wrapped in black ribbon. Hang them from large buttons glued to a valance created from newspaper. 

  • Circle of orange

    Attach tiny pumpkins to a moss-covered form for a simple-to-make wreath. A glossy black bow is the finishing touch.

  • Mummy-look

    Fashion a spooky tabletop display that starts with easy-to-make plaster-cloth spheres.

    Wrap plaster-cloth strips (from a crafts store) around a balloon, following the directions on the plaster-cloth package. Leave open spaces as you wrap. When dry, remove the balloon and use a crafts knife to cut an opening for inserting the light. Place sphere over an orange or white battery-operated votive. Set your spheres on clear glass cake stands or similar displays.

  • Set the stage

    As master of the macabre, Edgar Allan Poe makes a natural Halloween muse. Books feature the celebrated author's tales, setting the tone of our party. A vintage typewriter puts an exclamation point on the literary theme.

  • Clearly classic

    Glass vessels and an antique urn take a turn toward the theme of the season with a few touches of black.

  • Light the night

    For stylish Halloween decorations, use doily stencils and black paint for a "web" of designs on a glass candle-holder or jar. Paint a spider dangling from one of the doilies. 

  • Welcome pumpkin

    Put together a Halloween outdoor display like this one—featured on a Midwest Living® cover—using a weathered wheelbarrow as a base.

    Stuff the bottom of the wheelbarrow with newspaper. Add a mix of pumpkins, gourds, fall leaf branches and bittersweet vines. Paint a friendly message on your pumpkins, if you like.

  • Get a little corny

    White foam painted the colors of candy corn holds dried naturals and artifical crows for a door hanging.

  • Cast a web

    Run a row of paper doilies down the center of the table for the look of webs. Black pumpkins sit below a black-painted chandelier.

  • Candlelit scene

    Candles cast diffused light from lanterns with cutouts or stickers on the glass. 

  • Halloween greeting

    Perch an artifical crow on a Spanish moss-wrapped wreath. A pick of orange berries adds a dash of color. Hang it with an appropriately somber ribbon.

  • Flush of orange

    A centerpeice of a hat box covered in orange felt and ribbons and filled with orange blooms sets the tone for this holiday table. 

  • Spin a web

    Wrapping a foam wreath in orange yarn then black rickrack makes a web for a spider. 

  • A murder of crows

    Fake crows crown an elaborate mirror marked with a spooky poem. Their feathers make up a wreath.

  • Clear message

    Black and orange whisper Halloween. The message on the lettered cards spells it out. Black feathers and dried leaves adorn the wreaths. Print out letters on cardstock, then string them together with black ribbon.

  • Graphic statement

    Hang white-painted letters on a vintage ladder in front of a strip of fabric for a season-specific greeting.

  • Put a spotlight on the decor

    Holes cut from a pumpkin shine light on a felt table runner decorated with black cutouts. 

  • Shelving style

    A collection of Halloween-theme hat boxes fills shelves while other Halloween accents hang off a curtain rod, decorate a chair and fill a corner.

  • Flickering fantasy

    Cut out a hauting scene from black paper; attach it to foam core for stability. Flickering votives cast an eerie glow. Set the display out on the mantle, in the entry or as a centerpiece.

  • Candles with a message

    White-ball pins transform plain pillar candles into Halloween messages.

  • Eerie feel

    A homemade bat (made from black poster board) gives Halloween flair to this wall sconce. The mirror reflects a black candlestick and candle, while books wrapped in decorative paper add contrast.

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