Home & Garden

Bring on the boo! Wicked do-it-yourself craft projects

If the thought of decorating your house for Halloween is scarier than facing down an evil demon, you can relax.

Do-it-yourself projects can be as involved or as simple as your skill, time and patience allow.

We searched for no-fuss decorating ideas to unleash your wicked inner spirit. Look around your home and in your closets for ghoulish inspiration. That way, the build-up to Halloween can be just as spook-tacular as the holiday itself.

CREEPY COUCH

Have you ever wondered how to decorate your home for a scary Halloween party? It can be relatively easy and cheap too. Turn your sofa into a creepy masterpiece.

1. Start with ripped cheesecloth ($2.29 a pack for 2 square yards) (we used two packs) at Michael's.

2. We added one orange throw pillow ($14.99) at Bed, Bath and Beyond and one black throw pillow decorated with a skeleton head ($12.99) at Target.

3. Complete your scary look with a large black spider ($7.99) and rats ($4.99 to $7.99) all from World Market.

PUMPKIN POT-BELLY WITCH

Green gourd

Black fabric

Purple button

Gray yarn

Hot glue gun; glue sticks

Googly eyes

1. Cut pieces of yarn to desired length for witch's hair.

2. Hot glue the hair to the top of the gourd.

3. Hot glue googly eyes to top portion of the gourd, which will be the face.

4. Fashion a black hat out of fabric and glue on its head.

5. Drape black fabric over the "body" of the gourd to fashion a witch's robe.

6. Glue the fabric pieces together, and glue a purple button where the ends meet.

DANGLING GHOSTLY GHOULS

Dried gourds

White spray paint

Twine or wire to hang

Black paint

Brush

1. Clean gourds with a soapy solution to remove dirt. We scrubbed them with a medium-bristled brush. After cleaning, let stand until fully dry.

2. Drill holes along the top of the gourd so you'll be able to thread twine or wire through for hanging.

3. Use a white spray paint or primer to paint the entire gourd white. It took several coats and two cans of spray paint to get good coverage on five medium-sized gourds.

4. Let the white paint dry.

5. Use black paint pens or paint on the eyes and mouth of the ghost.

6. Hang ghostly ghouls from your front porch.

SHOCKED PUMPKIN TOTEM

Googly eyes

Dowel rod

Three pumpkins, various sizes

Black fabric

Hot glue gun, glue sticks

1. Choose the widest pumpkin as the base. Cut the stem off the top, so the middle one can balance on top.

2. Measure a wooden dowel that fits the height of the finished product.

3. Cut or saw off any extra length of the dowel.

4. Hammer the dowel into the base pumpkin.

5. Push or gently hammer the middle pumpkin through the dowel rod, so it rests securely on top of the base. Trim or cut off the stem, so the last pumpkin can balance on top.

6. Glue googly eyes onto the gourd that will be the head.

7. Cut a round piece of black fabric as a mouth.

8. Glue the mouth on the top gourd.

9. Push the head through the remaining part of the dowel rod.

10. If the tower leans slightly, rest it against a pillar outside your home or find some rocks to support the base.

STACKABLE PUMPKIN

Three pumpkins, various sizes

Dowel rod

Duct tape, various colors

X-Acto knife

1. Find the best way to line up the pumpkins by stacking one on top of the other.

2. One at a time, place the pumpkins onto the dowel rod, beginning by cutting a small hole as an entry point and an exit point when you've pushed the pumpkin most of the way through.

3. To make the scarf: Fold a piece of white duct tape in half and wrap around the upper pumpkin's neck. Make stripes by tearing half-inch strips of black and orange tape. Fringe the ends.

4. To make the hat: Layer the duct tape so you have a 3-inch square. Cut a circle big enough to fit the pumpkin man's head. Cut out the center circle, creating a doughnut shape. Make the hat band by laying two layers of tape on top of each other. Create the top of the hat by using the hole you cut from the bottom. Use duct tape to attach all layers.

5. Create the face: Cut out features from the duct tape using an X-Acto knife.

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