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Outdoor Halloween Decoration Ideas

Updated on March 7, 2014

Create A "Spook"tacular Yard & House!

When October hits, thoughts turn to Halloween. Pumpkins and goblins and candy are on the minds of every kid in the neighborhood. Big kids love the holiday too, so if you’re one of them and want to deck your yard out in a ghoulish way, here are some ideas.


Choose A Theme

When you’re planning your outdoor décor, make sure you plan to do it with style. The neighbors may not think a 20 foot blow up skeleton is as much fun as you do, so plan to keep it simple, yet scary and fun for all. Picking a theme can help make your house feel more like a spooky destination than just a haphazard grouping of props. You might go with a haunted house theme. Alternately, you could do all black cats or ghosts or spiders or skeletons. Whatever you choose, plan to include the theme in all you do.  Maybe you'll choose a graveyard theme like the one shown in the photo....

Create Your Own Graveyard!


Scary or Fun??

Decide if you want to go full fright or just keep it light and fun so the younger kids won’t be scared.  Once you decide, you’re ready to make a list of what you’ll need. Before heading to the craft or discount store, you’ll want to have in mind the types of decorations you will need. This will eliminate repeat trips to the same stores. 

What do your prefer?

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Creepy Neighborhood Yard


Fright Fest

If you’re going spooked out, you’ll want to be the scariest house on the block. If you want to turn your house into a haunted mansion, you’ll need black fabric to drape on the inside of windows so the house looks abandoned and dark.

Include lots of cobwebs in corners of windows and under along porch rails with realistic-looking spiders in them. Load up on the fake blood and face paint. Dollar stores are great places to find these once-a-year items.

You might even grab double and stash some for next year now. Set up a mannequin or a dress dummy in tattered clothes. Hide him just out of sight near the front door so you’ll startle anyone who walks up to the door. Paint his face ghastly white with some fake blood dripping out of wounds. Perhaps he’s missing an arm? Or even a head? The scarier the better. You will be amazed at what you can find at stores these days from severed hand candles to gruesome pumpkins and rabid looking black cats.

Just make sure everything you use is safe (no open flames around fabric or straw). Go for shock value and have things that pop out at visitors. Play a soundtrack of spooky noises from a tape player hidden out of sight.


Fun & Kid-Friendly

If you’ve got really little ones who’ll be coming to the house for Halloween, you probably don’t want to scare them into never visiting again. So go with a lighter, but just as enjoyable theme.

You might make cats your theme. Have stuffed cats all around the front porch. Make them look like they’re eating out of bowls of Halloween candy corn. You can carry the theme inside by baking cat-shaped cookies and frosting them with black frosting. Offer cat-shaped goody bags for kids to take home. Make a tower of orange cupcakes that look like pumpkins and set little plastic cat decorations on top.

Or, use pumpkins as your theme. Make a happy pumpkin walkway. Carve dozens of little sugar pumpkins with different happy faces and place them all along the entrance to your house. When the sun goes down, light votive candles inside. Have an array of pumpkins on the porch in a wheelbarrow for kids to take home. Offer pumpkin shaped candies and cookies. String pumpkin-shaped lights along your porch or around your front door. Another fun idea is to have scarecrows of all shapes and sizes adorning your front yard. They can be handmade to look like members of the family or they can be cardboard cutouts that line the walk way.

Grab a bale or two of hay from a local farm for a few dollars. Seat a scarecrow on one. When the guests arrive, greet them dressed as a scarecrow yourself. Give out bags of candy wrapped in burlap bags and tied with straw. The kids will love it! The key is making the experience enjoyable for you and all the kids in the neighborhood.

Did you know that Halloween is the second most popular holiday of the year, just behind Christmas? Before you know it, the hectic holiday season will be upon us and we'll all be shopping for Christmas gifts. I don't know about you, but I'd take Halloween over Christmas any day of the year.

Creative Halloween Decoration Idea Video

Do You Decorate For Halloween? Leave Your Comments & Tips Here!

Submit a Comment
  • Nicole S profile image

    Nicole S Hanson 

    9 years ago from Minnesota

    Awesome ideas! I can't believe Halloween came and went so fast, but I will remember these ideas for 2012 :)

  • carriethomson profile image


    9 years ago from United Kingdom

    wow!! these are some great ideas here!!


  • jkvkdailey4 profile image


    9 years ago from Minnesota

    Great ideas - we love decorating for Halloween but I have to make it kid-friendly because I'm a scaredy-cat!! My kids go for the fright fest, their favorite houses to trick-or-treat at are the ones that are the spookiest!

  • mulberry1 profile image

    Christine Mulberry 

    9 years ago

    If I had kids these decorating ideas would be sooo useful. I have neighbors (with kids) who really go all out for every holiday. It's so festive!

  • Pinkchic18 profile image

    Sarah Carlsley 

    10 years ago from Minnesota

    These are some great ideas, lots of interesting content! I love that image with all the pumpkins, that house looks warm and welcoming but festive - in my opinion, the way to go. Great hub!


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