18 Halloween craft ideas 2022 to spook up your space on a budget

Fun, frugal and perfect for fright night

halloween craft ideas: bats made from toilet role tube on an orange background
(Image credit: @wizard_within_books)

October 31st is, of course, a lot about trick-or-treating on the day itself, but on the buildup to fright night, getting hands-on with the latest Halloween craft ideas is a no-brainer to add a healthy dose of spook to your home for the season.

Crafting is such a fun pastime and pretty good entertainment for kids and adults alike, but it's even more tempting because you don't have to spend a ton of cash to create something unique for your home, inside or out. Whether you want to stencil a homegrown pumpkin and add it to other Halloween decorations you have on your porch, or if your rental staircase is kind of spooky in itself, but still crying out for a garland of ghouls, it's so worth getting those creative juices flowing.

Easy Halloween craft ideas for kids (and grown-ups) 

Whether you have a couple of hours or 20 minutes to make something frighteningly cool, DIYing your favorite Halloween decorating ideas can be as flexible and as customizable as you'd like.

Edward Griffith is the CEO and founder of LoveCrafts (opens in new tab) and a total advocate for crafting at this time of year when there is so much inspiration you can take from the spooky season and nature too, 'From mini harvest vegetables to all things pumpkin spice, cozy cabin blankets and golden gourds, as the weather turns chilly it's the perfect time for snuggling up with autumn crafts!' So, whether you're keeping yourself or the kids occupied, grab a pumpkin-spiced latte and hunker down with some cool crafts and makes.

1. Beetlejuice-suited pumpkins

Black and white patterned painted pumpkins on a kitchen shelf

(Image credit: Claire Douglas)

No-carve pumpkin ideas are almost as versatile as your classic carved gourds and if you want a Halloween craft that is fun and stylish, you simply need to refine your color scheme. We love these monochrome gourds on a shelf or mantel to add a festive pop in a kooky Tim Burton kind of way. Channeling all the Beetlejuice vibes with the monochrome color and pattern, it's a yes from us. 

Blackboard paint like Rustins in Black (opens in new tab) is super useful for this make as it takes to almost any surface and creates an impactful matt-black finish. Mix painting pumpkins with adding in spots, stripes, drips, or even splashes for a wicked-cool finish.

2. Flying phantom leaves

Painted leaves styled to look like ghosts

(Image credit: Claire Douglas)

This craft is super simple and easy for little hands too. Large leaves work best and any kind of white paint will do, making it an awesome budget Halloween project as you can even use leftover paint from other DIYs.

Paint the leaves with one or two coats of your paint (look for acrylic paint in titanium (opens in new tab) if you don't already have some) to get good coverage and allow it to dry. 

Then take a trusty Sharpie (opens in new tab) or fine paintbrush and draw a face on each of the leaves. These spooky leaves can be hung from twigs and branches with polyamide thread (opens in new tab) or stuck to walls or surfaces and they look super cute and spooky as a bunch.

3. Egg carton ghosts

Egg cartons and tissue ghost craft project

(Image credit: Claire Douglas)

A total classic, to recreate this spooky Halloween craft all you need is an empty egg carton, some more white paint (opens in new tab), a pair of scissors, some tissues, and a Sharpie pen (opens in new tab). It’s a fun project great for entertaining the kids on a cozy fall afternoon. Cut the egg carton into blocks of three and paint white. 

Cut a circular shape from the egg carton lid, paint it white and draw on a face. Glue the face onto the painted egg carton section and allow to dry. Tear strips into some sheets of tissue and glue them onto the egg carton to complete the ghostly effect.

You can make the ghosts more spooky by changing up theit facial expressions and adding more tissue. Kids will love hanging these egg carton ghosts over a Halloween-themed table display. Use polyamide thread (opens in new tab) to hang them by as this is clear which adds to the spooky illusion. 

4. Zodiac stenciled pumpkins

small and large stenciled pumpkins

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

Neat looking and super customizable to make them more Halloweenesque if you'd like. Copy Dori's quick stenciled pumpkin DIY and go a little Zodiac for a cool take on tradition or stick with a classic finish using spooky stencils from Amazon (opens in new tab).

If you're feeling more creative, why not freehand a spider's webs or something else a little more fright?

5. Crochet a patch of pumpkins

A set of crochet pumpkins by Hobbycraft in orange, cream, mustard yellow and Houndstooth pattern

(Image credit: Hobbycraft)

If you don't have the steadiest hand when it comes to pumpkin carving but love to crochet on a night in, try knitting a nice set of gourds instead. One hundred per cent cute plus, they won't rot after few days so you'll be able to whip them out year after year.

Not just for the spooky season, pumpkins are the ultimate symbol of fall, so pick a pattern or find a step-by-step video tutorial on YouTube (opens in new tab) to create these yarn-based, easy Halloween crafts.

Just because your generic Jack-o'-lantern is orange, doesn't mean that your stylish stitches have to be this color too. Go wild with rainbow-colored pumpkins, knit a Scandi-inspired trio of brown, cream and white arrangements or pick a classic pattern like Houndstooth. 

6. Quick knit black cat garland

Crochet black cat garland with black and lime green wool

(Image credit: LoveCrafts)

Get ready for Halloween with this spooky but super sweet black kitty garland. This is a quick and easy Halloween craft and you can make as many many 'faces' as you need to make a long or short garland – perfect as a fall mantel decor idea also.

If you don't want to make a garland these cats can easily be used as hanging decorations, Halloween gift toppers, or even coffee table coasters! These are particularly 'purrfect' if you don't like giving trick-or-treaters candy, as they also make for a great, non-edible keepsake.

7. Go for grinning lanterns

A set of lanterns decorated as Pumpkins for Halloween

(Image credit: Hobbycraft)

Create a kid-friendly scene for Halloween with these grinning pumpkin lanterns. They'd look as Halloween window decor inside the home or out on the doorstep ready to greet trick-or-treaters and guests. But you don't just have to stick to pumpkins. You could try making spooky mummies with old bandages, strips of muslin or crepe paper and some googly eyes.

If you are using real candles, remember to never leave a naked flame unattended. Instead, why not use battery-operated LED tealights which look just like the real thing without the fire hazard? Remember too that knowing where to shop for Halloween decor is a must if you want to mix up homemade crafts and shopbought additions for the ultimate display.

8. Pebble spiders

Pebble spiders with googly eyes and black pipe cleaners

(Image credit: Hobbycraft)

These adorable pebble spiders are easy to make! They are perfect Halloween crafts for pre-schoolers and won't cost you much to make.

It's the perfect opportunity to use that collection of pebbles from the beach, or if you haven't got pebbles, paper mache balls or cardboard toilet tubes will work great too! Alternatively, if you live next to the forest, conkers may be easier to find, and work just as well.

9. Dripping pumpkins

A white pumpkin decorated with colored melted crayon wax

(Image credit: The Home Depot)

This artsy, psychedelic dripped painted pumpkin look can be recreated using just some crayons (opens in new tab) and a hairdryer. However, if these are on the list of Halloween crafts for pre-schoolers, adult supervision will be needed as melted wax can be very hot!

To start, unwrap an assortment of crayons and break them into small pieces. Then, place the crayon pieces around the stem. Next, melt the crayons with a hairdryer on low heat. As the crayons melt, move the pumpkin around to direct the drips as desired. Repeat this process as needed until your pumpkin looks how you want. Then allow it to dry completely before putting it on display. 

10. Cement-look pumpkins

A mantel display of two hypertufa pumpkins with rose gold and yellow gold painted bottoms

(Image credit: The Home Depot)

If you're after a more industrial chic look, make hypertufa pumpkins by using a 1:1:1 mix of Portland cement, moss and perlite to create a lightweight cement. Hypertufa pumpkins look beautiful and, once created, you can use these decorations year after year.

After the pumpkin cures, use painter's tape to mask off the top portion of the pumpkin and spray the bottom with metallic spray paint. We like Rust-Oleum's Imagine Metallic Spray Paint in gold from Target (opens in new tab) which is a great place to shop for other crafting materials too, along with Lowe's (opens in new tab) and The Home Depot.

11. Chalkboard pumpkins

A pumpkin painted with two coats of black chalk paint alongside egg-shaped pastel chalks in a playroom setting

(Image credit: @our_life_our_play )

This Halloween craft is great for preschoolers. Katie-Rose (aka @our_life_our_play (opens in new tab)), a mom, and early years teacher painted a gourd black and purchased some pastel chalks. She says: 'I used my chalkboard paint to do two coats over this giant pumpkin. I was really pleased with how it came out and the pumpkin survived Joseph's very heavy-handed mark-making. He had great fun making lines and going around the curves of the pumpkin,'

'I bought the egg-shaped chalks a while ago from Cosy Direct (opens in new tab) and the blackboard cubes were from Little Acorns (opens in new tab) last year.'

12. Q-tip skeletons

kids craft of making a skeleton out of ear buds on a black piece of paper

(Image credit: @tnt.mumma )

If you've had a last-minute panic that you haven't planned any Halloween activities for the kids planned this weekend, this idea by @tnt.mumma (opens in new tab) is THE perfect craft for you.  All you need is some black and white paper, glue and, Q tips! We like these biodegradable bamboo cotton swabs from Amazon (opens in new tab). Let your kids get creative with their skeleton's position, or ask them to copy a picture for extra educational bonus points too. 

13. Hocus pocus embroidery

halloween embroidery with a bat, pumpkins and the moon on a grey background

(Image credit: Etsy)

We did say that Halloween crafting is cool and not just for kids. Cozy up, hunker down and get into the festive spirit by embroidering a spooky (and cute) design like this. Whether it's destined to complement your wall decor ideas, add a little more personality to a cushion or even a t-shirt, let your imagination run wild and enjoy some quiet me time too. This lovely design is available on Etsy (opens in new tab) now. 

14. Spider's playhouse

autumn leaves painted white with faces that look like ghosts and a wooden witch's dolls house

(Image credit: @raisingrodmans)

Fall is spider season, and while a lot of us are keen to get rid of them, around Halloween, it's fun to let them take over. This little crafting project is a great way to make use of an old dollhouse the kids may have outgrown, all you will need is a hot glue gun (Ryobi's ONE+ 18V Cordless Compact Glue Gun (opens in new tab) is a favorite of ours) plus, some faux cobwebs (opens in new tab) and spiders (opens in new tab), then you can go to town on making a spooky paradise, ready to add to your Halloween display. 

Add your ghoul leaves and you'll have created a cool, autumnal ghostly scene, that's pretty Scandi looking and, that costs next to nothing. This setup by @raisingrodmans (opens in new tab) is so simple yet effective – especially if you're scratching your head wondering how to decorate for fall on a budget.

15. Ghoul-land garland 

halloween garland fairy lights that look like ghosts

(Image credit: @devanandjanelle)

Speedy and stylish, this ghost garland by @devanandjanelle (opens in new tab) is so simple to make and gives a super nice design finish to a basic media space. Simply cut holes in the bottom of plastic cups, glue on black faces, and attach them to LED fairy lights for a new kind of display. We're loving how they sit back perfectly in this monochrome scheme, plus they'll only get more creepy after dark.

16. Cheeky toilet roll bats

handmade black bats made from a toilet role tube on an orange background

(Image credit: @wizard_within_books)

For the lols, this is a very cute make, perfect for kids or just to add a little hilarity to a studio or bland rental. Simply cut a toilet roll in half and wrap it in black paper. Cut out the shape of your wings, ears and eyes. Create slits at the side of the body to slot your wings into, and glue on the face. For a full, annotated step-by-step guide, head to @wizard_within_books (opens in new tab)  and she the master at work.

17. Clay gourds

Painted clay pumpkins for Halloween

(Image credit: Sculpd)

For an even more creative pumpkin craft, why not make yourself some cute pumpkins out of clay? These glossy gourds were made using a Sculpd Halloween Pottery Kit (opens in new tab), and you can follow their Instagram Reel (opens in new tab) for the process. The best part is you can decorate your pumpkins as you wish and bring them back out year after year or even give them as cute little Halloween gifts.

18. Paper mache pumpkins

An orange papier machine pumpkin design

(Image credit: Hobbycraft)

Paper mache gives a cool, rustic finish, ideal for spooky decor. Plus, decoupaging is super easy to do and you can let your imagination run riot with how you want to personalize yours. Use newspaper if you want to paint over it, or different colored strips of tissue paper for a cool and technicolor striped design. Follow the full tutorial by the creators at Hobbycraft (opens in new tab) and edit as you wish. 

'Cottagecore has been one of the hottest trends this year, so there’s no surprise that this nostalgia-inspired aesthetic is stretching into Halloween, with items like knit pumpkins, foraged branches, and rustic garlands giving the spooky season a homespun feel,' says Dayna Isom Johnson, trend expert, Etsy (opens in new tab).

'Looking to broader palettes, shoppers are tapping earthy pastels and primary hues for unexpected pops of color that give the classic Halloween shades a bold, modern look. Metallics, glitter and holographic elements also add a touch of magic to the holiday, and there has been an increase in searches of pinks and pastels too.' 

Sarah Fishburne, director of trend and design, The Home Depot (opens in new tab) adds how going for classic crafting method remains forever popular: 'On your largest pumpkins, paint silly holiday-related puns, jokes or even riddles.'

While Fishburne has some hauntingly-good ideas for Halloween outdoor décor. She says adds how 'fall is certainly a theme in and of itself, it can be fun to choose something more specific for your porch – like “pumpkin patch” or “apple orchard” or “hayride” – and select items that reflect this specific theme.'

Why craft for Halloween?

Griffith highlights how crafting is important all throughout the year but that it can be especially rewarding around this time of year on Halloween as we head towards Thanksgiving and start gearing up for those Christmas craft ideas also.

'Science has proven the positive impact crafting has on both our physical and mental wellbeing, and there are hidden benefits too! Being part of a global community and making new friends through a shared passion.'

'Altruistic opportunities, using your craft for good by knitting or crochet for charity. And of course, there’s the joy of keeping age-old traditions alive, passing skills down through the generations.'

Whether it's using leftover leaves for little ghouls or going big with paper mache pumpkins and knitted cats, there's a craft for every skill and scare level.

Amelia Smith
Content Editor

After joining Real Homes as content producer in 2016, Amelia has taken on several different roles and is now content editor. She specializes in style and decorating features and loves nothing more than finding the most beautiful new furniture, fabrics and accessories and sharing them with our readers. As a newbie London renter, Amelia’s loving exploring the big city and mooching around vintage markets to kit out her new home. 

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