Welcome trick-or-treaters with pumpkins galore! Dress up your entry with pumpkin-inspired wreaths, lanterns, and topiaries.
Hang a round orange wreath made from burlap and batting on your front door.What You'll Need: 16" Styrofoam wreath form, cardboard, scissors, hot-glue gun, cotton batting, orange burlap, black adhesive-backed craft foam, green ribbon, fishing lineMake It: Cut a cardboard circle to cover the back of wreath form; attach with hot glue. Place on flat surface, cardboard side down, and fill center with cotton batting until top of mound sits about 2" higher than the wreath form. Cut 15 to 20 3"x20" strips of orange burlap for wreath covering. Glue on end of each strip to center of cardboard back, then stretch all the way around the wreath and secure other end with glue. Repeat for each strip, working in a circular motion until form is completely covered with burlap. Cut out facial features from craft foam and adhere to rounded side of wreath with hot glue. Loop a 20" piece of green ribbon through the top strip of the wreath and know consecutively to create the pumpkin's stem. Hang with fishing line.
Hang a pumpkin patch from the porch or ceiling. Glue cardstock facial features to paper lanterns (we found ours at pearlrivermart.com) and suspend using fishing line or painter's tape.
Turn the topiaries on your porch into pretty pumpkins using orange tulle.What you'll need: Orange tulle, black adhesive-backed felt, scissors, piece of bark approximately 3"x1"Make it: Gently wrap orange tulle around the topiary top until thoroughly covered. Cut end of tulle and tuck under lower layer to secure. Cut facial features from felt and stick to front of topiary. Cut a slit on top of the tulle and insert bark as a stem.
Pump up your throw pillows by cinching them in orange fabric and attaching black buttons or beads with glue.
Trick your kids into eating healthy Halloween nibbles that are made of rice, veggies, cheese, and fruit.
Bring orange pom-poms, crinkle paper, and feathers to life by stuffing them into plastic ornaments.What You'll Need: Clear plastic craft ornaments, black permanent marker, orange crinkle paper, feathers and pom-poms, glue, 1/4" green ribbon.Make It: Open craft ornament and draw a pumpkin face on the inside of one side with permanent marker. (Tip: First draw desired face on scrap paper and tape to round side of ornament, then trace features with marker from within.) Fill ornament with crinkle paper, feathers, or pom-poms, then add a dab of flue to bottom to secure; let dry. Cut a small piece of ribbon and string through the loop at the top to hang.
Embellish a plain canvas bag with colored tape for the kids to use to gather their sweet loot.
Create a Halloween-themed umbrella to take trick-or-treating in case it rains. Simply attach pumpkin features cut from black electrical tape.
Carve an orange to resemble a happy jack-o'-lantern and then fill with a chocolatey dessert.
Decorate your home office with some smiling orange pumpkin frames.What You'll Need: Round picture frames, orange paper, scissors, glue pen, fine black glitter, orange ribbon, tapeMake It: Remove backing, photo and glass from frame. Cut orange paper to match size of glass, then draw each jack-o'-lantern feature with a glue pen and immediately sprinkle with glitter before moving on to the next. Cut a long length of orange ribbon and wrap around frame to cover; tape on underside to secure. Replace frame backing to display.
Bottoms up! Serve a fun fruit smoothie in pumpkin-inspired glassware. Add a green bendy straw as a stem.
Transform orange paper into foldable, freestanding decorations that you can reuse every fall.What you'll need: Orange and green solid or patterned scrapbooking paper, scissors or circle cutter, glueMake it: Cut out 6 equal circles or ovals from matching scrapbooking paper. Fold each in half (keep desired pattern or color on the inside), then glue one half circle on top of another. When all 6 are stacked, pull the top half circle around to meet the bottom half circle and glue together. Cut a stem shape from green paper; attach to top of pumpkin with glue.
Paint the ends of wood logs with primer, then apply two coats of paint. Be sure to saw off ends before burning.
Small paper cutouts make these lamp shades spook-tacular.
Originally published in the October 2009 issue of Parents magazine.