For a festive entrance, cover the door frame with stripes of orange and black masking tape and hang a strand of hand-painted paper lanterns.
Butternut squash are the perfect shape for Casper's friends. Paint them white with heavy-body acrylic paint, let dry, re-coat and let dry again, then add black dots for eyes. Pet- or doll-size accessories such as glasses, a bow tie, and a hat add personality.
Let this guy crawl on your porch. Start with a variety of mini pumpkins and break off the stems. Use toothpicks to connect them and paint on eyes and a sly smile.
A large white pumpkin plays the part of la lune. Recreate the classic man-in-the-moon look with a simple line drawing.
For these friendly Jacks, look for small- to medium-size pumpkins that stack nicely. Paint on stripes and eyes and add twigs for arms.
Dress up paper bags with a paper black-cat silhouette. Use battery-operated candles to illuminate them. Download the template at parents.com/black-cat.
Adorn a grapevine wreath with dried berries, ferns, and toy frogs and mice. Cut frosted window film to look like broken glass to finish the eerie entrance.
Weave white yarn through a piece of nearly invisible tulle to "write" words as a spider would.
What You'll Need:
Piece of black tulle fabric wide enough to cover door frame, scissors, white yarn, clear tape
Yarn-wrapped Styrofoam balls become friendly arachnids.
What You'll Need:
1 medium and 1 large Styrofoam ball, 2 colors thin yarn, scissors, 1 color thick yarn, glue, 2 tiny black pom-poms, 2 small colored pom-poms
Use a butterfly-shaped punch to cut black and white paper. Then double-stick-tape your swarm of moths to glass jars. Position to the side of your door out of trick-or-treaters' path.
Cover your doormat with a den of lifelike snakes to give trick-or-treaters a serpentine greeting.
Originally published in the October 2014 issue of Parents magazine.