Easy Halloween Paper Crafts and Decorations

Box Bats
Photograph by Carl Tremblay
Halloween decorations don't have to be hard -- or time-consuming! Get into the spooky spirit with these frightfully fun kid-friendly paper crafts and projects.
Blake Ramsey Murray
Blake Ramsey Murray

Eyes on the Prize

Guide trick-or-treaters right to your doorstep (and candy stash) with these fun luminaries.

1. Lay white paper bags flat. Attach black vinyl letter stickers to spell “ojo,” and glue on googly eyes for pupils. In Spanish, "ojo" means be careful!"

2. Cut pieces of other vinyl letters to make eyelashes.

3. Trim tops of bags with scissors so they look like hair.

4. Place battery-operated tea lights inside the bags

Alexandra Grablewski
Alexandra Grablewski

Spinning Spirits

Hung these friendly paper ghosts from the ceiling, and they will swirl, sway, and spook all night long. To make, draw a spiral ghost shape on a sheet of white poster board, and cut it out. Cut eyes and a mouth from black construction paper and attach them with glue. To hang the ghost, poke a small hole in the top, thread a string through it, and knot it.

Tara Donne
Tara Donne

Goth Moths

Use a butterfly-shaped punch to cut black and white paper. Then double-stick-tape your swarm of moths to glass jars.

Paper Pumpkins

These simple pumpkins inspired by paper-chain dolls let kids create a string of festive faces. For the small trio shown here, download our template, below. Accordion-fold an 18- by 5-inch piece of orange paper (tape two pieces together, if needed) into six 3-inch sections. Using the template, cut out the shape. For symmetrical features, cut them from a sheet of black paper folded in half. Attach them with a glue stick. Click next to watch our simple how-to video.

Directions for making a spooky, Halloween pumpkin decoration from paper.

Tara Donne
Tara Donne

Scaredy Cats

Dress up paper bags with a paper black-cat silhouette. Use battery-operated candles to illuminate them.

Photograph by Carl Tremblay
Photograph by Carl Tremblay

Bat Box

With eerie glowing eyes and goofy grin, this nocturnal critter will happily perch on a mantel or a protected front porch.

To make, cut the top flaps off a box (we used a 16-ounce pasta box), then flip it over. Use a glue stick to cover the sides and bottom with black wrapping or construction paper. Halfway up the front, mark spots for eyes 2 inches apart. With a craft knife, cut an X for each eye (an adult's job), then widen each of the holes to measure 3/8 inch across. Insert battery-operated tea lights into the box so that the "flames" protrude through the holes. Cut white paper circles for the eyeballs, piercing small holes in the centers. Glue on the eyeballs, paper fangs, and a pink paper mouth as shown. Draw and cut out black ears and wings; attach them to the back of the box with double-sided tape.

Directions for making a spooky, Halloween cat decoration from paper.

Laura Moss
Laura Moss

The Boo Zoo

Mouse: Choose a small pumpkin with a long stem for the tail. Cut facial features and ears from card stock. Attach the back of the ears to the pumpkin with small pieces of duct tape. Use tacky glue to secure the rest of the face.

Cat: Using the same method as for the mouse, make the face and ears. For the body, cover an oatmeal canister with black paper. With tacky glue, add paper legs and a tail. Rest the pumpkin head on top.

Elephant: Choose a round pumpkin with a long stem for the trunk. Use the methods given for the mouse and the cat to create the head and body.

Tara Donne
Tara Donne

Tick-er Tape

Stamp or hand write warnings onto crepe-paper streamers and plaster them over doorways for an easy Halloween craft.

Scott Little
Scott Little

Haunted House Luminary

Dig into the recycling bin and pull out an empty juice carton to make this happy haunted house centerpiece. Kids can cover up the carton sides with black crafts foam and create a roof by covering the carton top with strips of scalloped-edge glitter sticker paper. Adults should cut out the windows and door using a crafts knife, but kids can help decorate the house with cutout crafts foam shutters and chimney and a collection of wired crafts foam bats. Insert a battery-operated tea-light candle to illuminate your finished creation.

Scott Little
Scott Little

Bat Box

Transform a black take-out box into a Halloween party favor box using card stock and glue. To make, download the bat wing template, print it out, and use it as a pattern to cut two from folded black card stock. Open up each wing and cut slits along the folds as indicated on the download, then slip the wings onto the wire box handles. Apply glue along the wing edges to glue the wings shut. Add cutouts and punched shapes from assorted card stock to make the face.

Alexandra Grablewski
Alexandra Grablewski

More Fun Halloween Crafts

Whether you're planning a trick-or-treating pre-party, or just want to spookify the living room, we've got tons more DIY craft and decoration ideas to get you inspired. Happy haunting!

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