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Devilish

Decorations

Monster Footprints

With a magic marker, draw a footprint in a big sponge. Cut out the footprint. Pour washable paint in an 1/8 inch aluminum pan. Press the sponge in the paint and sponge footsteps up your sidewalk to your front door for trick-or-treaters to follow, or around the side of your dark, spooky house. Flip the sponge upside down to stamp the other foot.

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Green Pumpkins

Great idea! Carve green peppers as jack-o-lanterns! You can have a whole row of them, and there are yellow and red peppers to try as well. Have a whole army of scary faces to greet goblins at your door. They will never recover from the fright!

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Ghosties

Crumple up a piece of tissue paper into a ball. Place it into the center of a flat piece of tissue paper. Pick up the corners of the flat tissue and twist it around the ball. Tie a twist tie or a piece of string around the ghosts's neck. Draw a face with a felt pen. You can hang them up all over the house! You can also glue on yarn, and make a black hat and cape from colored paper to make a witch!

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Wicked, Wicked Witch

Cut the top off of a cardboard milk carton and discard.

Cover the carton with black construction paper and tape at the back.

Cut a strip of white paper 3 inches wide and tape around the top over the black paper.

Draw a scary witch's face on the white paper. Glue on some yarn for the hair.

Make a cone-shaped witch's hat with black paper and glue to the top.

Cut out arms and hands from white paper. Cut out feet from black paper. Tape them to the witch.

Glue a popsickle stick to one of the witch's hands.

Cut out two small pieces of yellow paper and cut a fringe on the bottom. Glue one on each side of the end of the popsickle stick for the broom.

You can give these to your friends if you are having a Halloween party!

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Bobbing Ghosts

Start with a piece of cheesecloth 2 yards long and 1 yard wide. Place a helium filled balloon (white is best) in the middle of the fabric and gather loosely around balloon. Draw a horrid mask on the cloth with a felt pen. You can put some ghosts in a box and when people open the box the ghosts will float up and scare everyone! Or, you can place them on string in front of an open window or a fan and watch them gently move in the breeze.

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Icky Cobwebs

This is an easy one. Cut some string into 4 foot lengths and tape them to the ceiling. You should have a very dim room for this. Just before the victim arrives you can hold a bowl of water up to the string and get it wet. When people walk in the wet, slimy string will brush across their foreheads and scare them!

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Body Parts

This is a good decoration for a dimly lit room at party time. Have several bowls of body parts displayed to horrify your friends. Cut up a bunch of hot dogs lenghwise for severed fingers.Cook some spaghetti noodles and add some red and blue food coloring for veins. A bunch of cocktail onions rolling around in a bowl looks like eyeballs. Fill a red balloon with warm water and spread it with strawberry jam. Invite your guests to touch your brain!

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Crunching Bones Underfoot

Spread some dried bread and pretzels under a rug. When your guests walk across the rug it will sound like crunching bones underfoot!

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Sound Effects

You can record several scary sounds and play it back during the festivities. A very large sheet of poster board or sheet metal makes great thunder. Uncooked rice poured onto a cookie sheet sounds like rain. Crinkle a handful of cellophane for a roaring fire. To get a good scream you can, well -- scream. Snap carrots in half for the sound of breaking bones. Flap a plastic bag in front of the microphone for the sound of bats. Slowly blow bubbles with a straw into a bowl for that bog sound. Hunt around your house and the garden to find a squeaky hinge somewhere and tape it before someone gets to it with a can of oil.

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Lighting

When you have everything so dimly lit it's a good idea to have some reflective tape over the Exits. A black light bulb is always a good effect, especially if you are dressed as a skeleton!

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Tombstone Making Tips

Most commonly used is foam; you can find this used in packaging. Find a large piece that will be suitable for a tomb stone. Use black and gray spray paint, the lacquer in the paint will eat away at the foam and make a great stone look. This can be used in any application needing a stone look.

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Foam-Based Tombstone Making

Use the DOW blue insulating foam board. It comes in 4'x8' sheets. Layer the sheets to create thicker tombstones. Glue together with any waterproof glue. If layering more than 2 sheets together, use scraps around the edges for the inner layers. This makes the tombstone somewhat hollow, but reduces the amount of foam you have to use. If you feel you really must have solid tombstones, buy an aerosol can of expanding insulating foam, and use it to fill the space. Fill in any cracks or spaces on the outside with wood putty and sand smooth.

Carving epitaphs:

You can use a sharp hobby knife to cut letters into the foam. Use the knife to cut 'V' shaped grooves into the foam. Or you can use a hot soldering iron to melt the foam (Be sure to do this outside with plenty of ventilation: the fumes are DANGEROUS!). Or you can use a Dremel tool with a routing bit and a routing attachment to keep it steady. Print the epitaphs from a computer in a large font. Glue the paper to the tombstone and use the Dremel tool to cut through the paper and foam, following the outline of the letters.

Painting Tombstones

Painting with a water-based paint will not eat at the foam. Painting with an oil based paint will eat away the foam a bit. This gives a 'weathered stone' look, but try it first on a scrap to see if you like the effect. If you plan on doing this, carve your epitaphs after painting the stone, then paint the letters with a water based paint.

A speckled paint job can give the illusion of granite and other stone. You can buy the 'fleck-stone' paint kits in hobby shops, but this is expensive. Instead, modify some spray paint nozzles to give this effect.

To modify the nozzle, first pull it off the spray can. Then use a 1/16 inch drill bit, held in a pair of pliers, to enlarge the hole. You can experiment with other methods to enlarge the hole. The idea is to allow the paint to 'splatter' in larger drops as it comes out of the can.

Hold the spray paint can about 2 feet from the tombstone. Start with short bursts of spray to get the feel the spray pattern. Use a combination of different shades of gray, black and white to achieve the proper effect. You can also use tan and brown for a different effect.

Attaching your Headstone to the ground

One of the best ways we have found to attach/stabilize your foam headstone to the ground is to insert two pieces of 1/2" PVC vertically into the bottom of the headstone. Pound 1/2" rebar (or suitable material) into the ground and then slip the headstone on! Works great and won't tear up the foam.

For a different look on the tombstone, try this method:
"I paint my styrofoam tombstones with gray exterior latex paint, then lightly mist them with black spraypaint."

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Plaster-Based Tombstone Making

"I made my tombstones out of plaster. The form was a scrap piece of plywood that I had cut a groove in to reflect the basic shape that I was after. I then placed strips of sheet in the groove to act as the form.

Smaller pieces of sheet metal and patterns made out of wood or styrofoam were used for design varations. The form was sprayed with PAM before pouring to act as a release agent. I cast in two small vertical tubes at the base to slip over large nails pushed into the ground.

Note: the plaster must be sealed. I used Thompsons water seal. They were then painted grey. Last year, I used premixed cement mix, no sealing or painting is required. But, they do weight about 15 pounds a piece. I cast them about 1.5" thick. Although they are heavy, they don't break and they look really cool."

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Decorating Ideas

Glow Sticks

One of the great and cheap effects for your haunt is glow sticks. They come in many different colors and you can put them pretty much anywhere. Try putting them in.......

Light-up items like pumpkins or other plastic store bought light-up things especially if you can't plug them in, this will light them up about the same try 2 glow sticks if one isn't bright enough.

Also put them behind things like... pumpkins and tombstones. Or try hanging some from a tree with Halloween garland or spider webs. I have discovered that GREEN is always the brightest color when it comes to glow sticks.

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Make Your Own Trees

If you don't have any trees around in your yard but, would like a few or at least one here's what I did. Get a very, very large branch that has fallen off or from someone who has cut a tree down. A medium size branch is ok cause you can always get small branches and HOT GLUE them all around the medium branch to make it taller and wider!!!!! GREAT HINT!!!!

After you have the "tree" part get either a medium size bucket or cardboard box witha garbage bag in it. Fil with quick set CEMENT and put the "tree" part in the center of the cement. PRESTO !!! You now have a tree!! Hang ghosts from it or put lights on it or whatever else your creative mind can think of!!!

Here is the TREE I made. It turned out great but, once again the flash kills the lighting effects ( as you might be able to see there is a couple of strands of pumpkin and ghost lights on the tree).

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Black Lights

Black lights are awsome!! You can use a black light light bulb ( looks like a regular lamp bulb-round usually cost $0.99 to $1.99) or use florscent black light bulbs (which are tubes and they cost more $$ price depends on the size-length of tube).

The light bulb kind works great, you can use them in "treble lights"( hanging light fixtures automanics use--ask your dad, boyfriend they should know what one is)This works wonders cause you can use them outside and they have a hook on them so you can hang them anywhere.

There are also "treble light" fixtures that use florscent blubs, they protect the florscent tube much better then a regular tube lamp, especially if you're outside or they will be placed on the ground.

The tube-style florescent bulb does, however give off a much better black light than the round light bulb, the round is great but not quite as true or bright and the tube shines farther. It depends on how much $$$$ you want to spend.

Last year I did use a lot of round bulb black lights and they worked great!!! But this year I'm going to the bulb for a deeper effect.

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Need a quick fence or wall???

Here is a quick way to make a fence or wall. Get some WOOD 1x2's as tall as you would like them, get a roll of BLACK PLASTIC. (usually at a store like menards or payless cashways, many different sizes to choose from)

Hammer 1x2's into the ground or cement them into large coffee cans, then staple the plastic sheet to the wood-presto!!! You can also use metal rods and wrap the plastic sheet in a "8" figure around them.

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Paper Mache'

Please Note, I HAVE 2 RECIPES FOR PAPER MACHE' ON MY LINKS PAGE!!! (one with and one without store bought glue)
Want to be a little more original??? Try making your own decorations using paper mache'!! Remember how you use to make it with balloons when you were a kid??

Try doing it again and then use the balloon shape for a HEAD for a MONSTER, a MASK, a PUMPKIN, a GHOST, or who knows what you'll think of!! If you want to make "GLOWING" objects, try using CHEESE CLOTH or some kind of real thin material or try PAPER TOWELS and TISSUE PAPER!!

When dry, make a small hole - if there isn't one in your object - and place a GLOW STICK inside!!! Want more than that??? Use some CHICKEN WIRE and shape and mold it into whatever object you want to paper mache on!!

Like... a BAT, a WITCH'S CAULDRON, a C-SHAPED MOON, a COFFIN, a BIG MONSTER, or, again, who knows what your imagination will create? This is a great CHEAP way to make the things you may not be able to afford to buy at the store (PROPS AND DECORATIONS, that is!)

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Ghost

Use a balloon and tape it to a tall old vase, tape some cardboard paper towel rolls to the vase for arms. Set vase on top of some boxes-so it will be up high. Use TISSUE PAPER and place one sheet at a time onto the balloon and arms, then using a spray bottle spray the "glue" mixture onto the tissue paper.

**NOTE**: If you don't spray it on and you decide to dip the tissue paper it will turn to mush and fall apart so you can't use it.

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Bat

Use cardboard to make wings and glue popcicle sticks to one side of the wings to make them strong, then use a paper towel roll for the body-cut slits into it where you want the wings to go. Next, put a burned out light bulb in the end you want the head at, make some ears using cardboard (make a little cone) and tape them to the light bulb.

Using silver electrical tape, completely tape the whole thing together and, presto, you have a bat ready to be paper mache'd.

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Space Ship

"I used a old round sled, with a small vinyl kids pool on top (this gives a great shape for your ship) sat on top of some cardboard boxes for height then just use newspaper strips to mache' with.

I made two of these, a top and a bottom. Make sure to make it kind of long you can cut it down later, you will slide one into another to make one whole ship. I used CHROME spray paint and put holes around the sides for christmas lights from the inside poking out for a added effect.

You can hang the ship or find some kind of clear tube to stand it on to make a beam coming out from the bottom.

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