DIY Halloween decoration ideas – 8 easy and fun crafts that celebrate spooky season

If you're looking to add a touch of the homemade to your Halloween scheme, then our DIY Halloween decoration ideas will be sure to inspire

DIY Halloween decoration ideas
(Image credit: The Finish | Stephanie Vainer / Cottage Living | IKEA)

Of all the celebrations to go all out with unique crafts and homemade decor, Halloween has got to be up there with being the most fun and creative.

Halloween decorating ideas continue to get bigger, better and definitely more scary every year, so if you're thinking of how you can add a more unique touch your Halloween display, we've rounded up some our favorite DIY Halloween decoration ideas that can be enjoyed and appreciated by all the family – and, of course, the trick-or-treaters.

From traditional Halloween craft ideas such as carved pumpkins, to more modern, ghostly creations for outdoor Halloween decor, whether you wanna be bold or subtle with your DIY decor, we've got you covered with our list of crafty ideas.

8 DIY Halloween decorations for both indoors and out

DIY Halloween decorations can not only make your Halloween displays feel that little bit more special, they are the perfect activity to embrace on a gloomy fall weekend or one dark evening – and they will certainly help you to get in the spirit for spooky season.

1. Carved pumpkins

Carved pumpkin

(Image credit: Future)

What's Halloween without plenty of pumpkins? This spooky squash is the ultimate symbol of not only Halloween, but of fall decor and Thanksgiving decor too – so we say, the more decorating with pumpkin ideas, the better.

A truly timeless DIY Halloween decoration idea is of course, pumpkin carving. Whether you keep it traditional with a classic, carved jack-o-lantern face, or opt for a more contemporary design with carved words such as 'BOO' or your family's surname, nothing beats the alluring glow of a pretty carved pumpkin. Get your pumpkin carving kit, like this set on Amazon, to the ready.

See Lindsay Roggen Buck's pumpkin carving hack below to ensure you're carving your pumpkin the right way this year.


♬ Spooky, Scary Skeletons - Andrew Gold

2. Painted pumpkins

colorful painted pumpkins

(Image credit: The Finish)

If you're looking for more easy, no-carve pumpkin ideas, then painted pumpkins will be sure to bring eye-catching color to both your inside and outside spaces. 

For subtle Halloween decoration ideas, choose a paint color or painted design that works in harmony with your current room color ideas and interior style.  

Nora Fleming homeware brand founder, Nora Napientek says, 'Halloween doesn't always have to be black, orange, and purple. I love painting faux pumpkins to match my home decor style. I'm constantly changing my home with new wallpapers, paint colors, and new odds and ends. I find inspiration around my new favorite pieces and create fun murals on the pumpkins to fit my latest style.'

For a more seasonal look, paint on classic Halloween motifs such as ghosts, bats and of course, jack-o-lantern faces. We explore how to paint a pumpkin in our dedicated feature. 

To further elevate your painted pumpkin design to decorative new heights, why not adorn it with beautiful fall flowers and foliage, as shown below by Cassandra Evans.

nora fleming
Nora Napientek

Chicago-based Nora Napientek is the founder of Nora Fleming, a brand that specialized in selling and making unique gifts and homeware.

3. Pumpkin planter

Colorful pumpkin planters outdoors

(Image credit: Bloom & Wild)

Instead of decorating the outside of your pumpkin with flowers and foliage, another easy DIY Halloween decoration idea is to treat your pumpkin like a vase or planter and fill it with beautiful seasonal blooms and cuttings. You can either take fresh picks from your yard, or fill the pumpkins with dried or faux designs – we love Afloral's collection.

Pumpkin planter ideas are perfect for adding eye-catching color and shape to you Halloween porch decor, as well as for bringing the beauty of the natural world into your home; as shown by Shannon below with her fall floral pumpkin arrangement.

4. Decorate with seasonal flowers and foliage


Dan Duchars/Future Publishing Ltd

(Image credit: Future)

As simple as placing some foliage and flowers in a beautiful vase, to learning how to make a Halloween wreath for Halloween door decor, uplifting your home with nature's bounty is a DIY Halloween decoration idea that can truly celebrate the change in the seasons.

Flower expert and florist, Igor Podyablonskiy, at My Flowers says, 'the most important thing that sets Halloween apart from other seasonal celebrations is the color palette. Think bright oranges, dark reds, deep purples and even black. In terms of flowers, there are plenty of pre-dyed petals to help turn your home into a Halloween wonderland but some flowers like roses also come in a variety of colors, too. Dark roses can be mixed with red and orange flowers for a fantastic look and feel.'

Cassandra Evans shows us how to make a pretty fall wreath below, ideal for using for fall wreath ideas, throughout Halloween and for Thanksgiving wreath ideas, too.

5. Get crafty with candles

IKEA ghost candle

(Image credit: IKEA)

Candles can not only make your home feel more cozy and warm for Halloween, they make great decorations, too. One way to spruce up a plain candle for spooky season is by getting creative with pens and paint. 

Below, Kara Whitten not only transforms these white taper candles into some pretty cute ghost decorations with drawn on faces, but she also changes the shape of them.

Of course, you don't have to just stop at ghosts, from orange candles that feature jack-o-lantern faces, to any spooky symbol that takes your fancy, a decorated candle can be placed pretty much anywhere in the home – we think they're perfect for adding to a Halloween table.

Remember, don't ruin your best candles, buy new ones specifically for decorating, like these colorful taper candles from Joann.

6. Make your own ghosts

ghosts on a front lawn

(Image credit: Grandin Road)

One of the biggest DIY Halloween decoration ideas that we've seen on TikTok this year has got to be homemade ghost decorations. 

Ideal for enhancing a corner of a room indoors, or for using outdoors in a covered area, the result is spookily spectacular.

Macy Blackwell takes us through how to create these fun decorations below.


♬ autumn trinkets - sarahdeluxe

7. Craft paper decorations

Living room with paper bat decorations

(Image credit: Stephanie Vainer | Cottage Living)

From Halloween paper garlands, to signs and more, it doesn't get much easier than crafting with paper.

Above, Stephanie Vainer from Cottage Living has created a pretty magical – and spooky, display in her living room using paper bat decorations. She says of the design, 'we made the bats look as if they were floating from the wall, but they can also be hung from the ceiling, or even attached to the front door. There are also so many ways you can style these bats on the wall.

Last year we stuck them around a bedroom mirror as if the bats were circling it. This year we wanted to add some Halloween decor to our newly painted black fireplace. This Halloween DIY is perfect if you need a last-minute addition to your Halloween decor, or for a spooky but fun Halloween get-together.'

Learn how make a fun Halloween garland from One Little Project below.


♬ Halloween - TonsTone
Stephanie Vainer
Stephanie Vainer

Stephanie Vainer is the Editor-in-Chief of Cottage Living and Style, a source of simple country pleasures and relatable and accessible design and DIY tips.

8. Style with string lights

Fairy lights in mason jar

(Image credit: Alamy)

Styling your home – both indoors and outdoors, with string lights will make your space feel more warm and cozy, and the lights can also help to illuminate your other Halloween decor.

Whether you use lights outdoors to wrap around your porch railings or front door – ideal for making your home look more inviting for all the trick-or-treaters, or embrace a more simple, small-scale mason jar craft with foliage and string lights, ideal for placing on a mantel or in a window, string lights are wonderfully versatile – and can be re-used for your Christmas decor ideas too, so it's always worth having a set in, like these battery-powered lights from Amazon.

We love what Pamela Dyer has created below using string lights and a few ornaments and objects – the perfect Halloween centerpiece.


What are popular Halloween decorations?

Pumpkins are often the most popular Halloween decoration to use at Halloween. Other typical Halloween decorations and motifs include ghost and ghoul decorations, spiders and skeletons and witches and wreaths.

However, as we have explored in this piece, Halloween decor comes in all styles and themes, with Halloween trends adapting every year. 

Whether you embrace spooky and scary decor, or go for a more modern look that is more subtle and sophisticated, decorate your home in designs that will bring you joy throughout the season, or with pieces that coordinate perfectly with your home and style.

We further explore the most popular Halloween decorations in our dedicated piece.

Of course, nothing can beat the charm of a homemade decoration, but if you're looking to spruce up your Halloween scheme with some irresistibly spooky and stylish new buys, be sure to explore the best indoor Halloween decorations and the best outdoor Halloween decorations.

Zara Stacey
Managing Editor

Zara is the Managing Editor at Homes & Gardens. She joined the brand in February 2022 as an Interiors Content Editor, specializing in writing content on interior color trends, decorating ideas and design inspiration. After studying English Literature at University, she worked as an Ecommerce Website Editor, Content Writer and Buying Intern at multiple independent businesses within the luxury retail and lifestyle sectors. She enjoys nothing more than discovering new trends, brands and products, whether that be in fashion, interior design or lifestyle.