The amazing and talented Jenny (but we call her the new Martha-yes-Stewart 😉 is back today to share some of her stunning and simple Halloween decor! See more of her home here, and more of her projects here.
I really wasn't a big fan of Halloween until my 4 kids came along. With them on board, celebrating Halloween suddenly became a big deal and a lot of fun. Costumes and candy and decorations, oh, my!
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Simple Halloween Decor Ideas + Tutorials
I try to do something a little different with our decorations every year and, of course, DIY whatever I can.
Simple Halloween Decor: Branches
This year, inspiration struck for using fallen branches from the woods in my backyard as spooky decor. I gathered some branches and spray painted them black for added ‘spook' factor!
I piled a bunch together as part of a pumpkin display on my front porch . . .
And hung a great big one (using transparent fishing line) from my portico . . .
I also used spray-painted branches as table centerpieces and added some cheesecloth as a table runner. So inexpensive and easy!
Simple Halloween Decor: DIY Spiderweb
And it doesn't get any easier or less expensive than buying a couple of bags of that stretchy spider web stuff and draping it across the banister. I added cheap plastic spiders I picked up at my local craft store, too. (The black spider web in the picture immediately below, I bought from a store that no longer sells them, so when I needed another one, I DIY-ed it—scroll down for a ‘how-to' tutorial).
And you can always just drape the yarn in a messy fashion like I did. I think that works great, too!
You can make your very own spiderwebs in just about any size. Hang across the front porch or over a fence or across your banister or on a wall. So many possibilities!
To make the spiderweb above, I used thick black yarn (find similar here) and black all-purpose thread.
You can make yours any size, but for my spiderweb, I cut four 12-foot lengths of yarn and double-knotted the ends to prevent unraveling.
Then, I stretched them out on the open floor across each other and measured each piece so that they all met up together in the center.
I used all-purpose thread (which I doubled over for added strength) to tie the pieces together where they met up at the center. I tied thread from multiple directions and from below and over the top to ensure a good hold.
Then, I arranged chairs around the circumference of the circle made by the pieces of yarn and attached each length of yarn to a chair so that all of the pieces were stretched taut and suspended in the air.
I double-knotted a new piece of yarn to one of the ‘spokes' (about 4 inches away from the center) and worked my way around the circle, knotting the yarn wherever it crossed one of the ‘spokes.' So, the new length of yarn got wrapped around each ‘spoke' and single-knotted (the spoke doesn't move, but just stays still while the other piece of yarn gets tied to itself with the ‘spoke' in the middle).
Continue around as many times as you'd like. I double-knotted the ends each time I finished going all the way around. (Be sure to leave enough length at the end of each ‘spoke' so that you have something to work with when you get ready to hang and display the spiderweb).
I found it helpful, as I worked my way out and the pieces of yarn became longer, to wrap the yarn I was weaving through around a credit card. Much more manageable.
There you have it!
Simple Halloween Mantel Decor
On to more DIY projects. This time for mantel decor.
I made the 2 stands on opposite sides of the mantel from old lamp bases. I removed the wiring and lamp shades and spray painted the bases in a shiny black. I then used Super Glue to secure a small black plate to the top of each one to create stands.
You can see them on either side, with the glittery pumpkins resting on top. No one would ever know they were once lamps!
Other Simple Halloween Decor Ideas
Some other decorations from around the house . . .
The nice thing about having the house decorated, is that when it came time to host a party, it felt like half the work was already done.
The fence back-drop for this dessert table is an easy DIY build. And it can be incorporated in to the decor for any number of holidays or occasions—-think patriotic bunting for the 4th of July or bunny garlands at Easter.
I made all of the desserts myself because DIY-ing it saves all kinds of money over having a bakery do it!
There were white chocolate skull pops and a two-tier chocolate cake and chocolate spiderweb cupcakes and white chocolate covered caramel apples and red velvet mice cakes.
The cake was my favorite part, though. It was a labor of love. Eleven layers of lusciousness in the bottom tier and seven layers in the top tier. All made from scratch. Chocolate cake. Salted Caramel Swiss Meringue Buttercream. Whipped Chocolate Buttercream. Dulce de Leche & White Chocolate Pastry Cream.
I covered both cake tiers in a homemade marshmallow fondant and then achieved the cobweb effect by stretching melted marshmallow across the fondant. You can see the inspiration for this cake and an excellent tutorial on how to make it on the Cake Blog. (The inspiration for the spiderweb cupcakes came from Sugar Hero). And you can learn how to make the mice cakes here.
For the display below, I spray painted a cheap crate black and then wrapped a piece of ribbon around the middle to hide the openings between the crate's slats. I put a piece of Styrofoam in the center to stick the lollipop sticks in to and covered it up with decorative shred I found at my local craft store. I made the medallion out of paper scraps and ribbon.
More great Halloween ideas here: