Articles : Creative Ideas for a Spooky Halloween Party
Creative Ideas for a Spooky Halloween Party
By Nia Sowden
“Halloween is one of those fun times of the year when your creativity can really shine. The ideas are endless and if your imagination allows it you can create a spectacular day for both you and your kids.”
Halloween is one of those fun times of the year when your creativity can really shine. The ideas are endless and if your imagination allows it you can create a spectacular day for both you and your kids. For me, Halloween is one of those times when I can be as outlandish and inventive as I like — in fact, the more outlandish the better!
My children wanted to throw a Halloween party for their friends and they wanted it to be the spookiest fun ever. To add to the fun they wanted to make as many of the decorations, games and food themselves. So to help them make the night a success I guided them through the planning stages of their party. After all, deciding how many guests to have, what food to create, the games that would be played and how to create the right atmosphere all contribute to a successful party.
My girlfriends also wanted to get in on the fun and volunteered for the roles of fortune teller and the wicked witch, who visited the party tempting the children with a basket of lolly pops and juicy red apples.
Creating the invitations
We decided to invite 26 party goers and set about making the invitations. In keeping with the Halloween theme we created the invitations from orange, black and purple sheets of cardboard. With white and black fine nibbed ink pens we drew freehand designs on the cards. There were invitations that had witches flying across the moon, some with grave stones and others with bats.
You could also cut out Halloween shapes using a stencil or pictures from magazines, gift wrapping paper, or children’s comics.
Preparing for the party
Preparing for the party can be even more fun than the party itself. Kids love to use their imagination and getting them involved really brings the family together.
We spent two weeks leading up to the party painting headstones for each of the guests — 26 of them! They were made from heavy cardboard picked up from the local recycling centre. The headstone shapes were cut out and painted a green granite background with quartz flecks, a smattering of moss to give it that aged look with a ghoulish bony hand painted on either side holding the head stone from behind. The inscriptions all had RIP, the child’s name and date of the party, and either ‘Passed on’ or ‘Sadly missed’. These were a fun surprise for the guests and also served as mementoes of the party.
The remaining cardboard was cut into spooky shapes and they were used for decorations. We also cut out bat shapes from the black card and ‘jack-o’-lantern’ shapes from the orange card.
A visit to our local junk shop was next on the list. We wanted to see if we could find anything that would add to the atmosphere and ended up with a couple of old candelabras. Junk shops are a really great place to pick up old pictures, tablecloths and other items to help create an old and spooky feel.
On the day of the party — Creating the atmosphere
Give yourself plenty of time on the day to prepare for the party. It may take you a while to decide where to place everything for the spookiest effect.
Try hanging shiny black plastic around the room and against the walls to reflect the candle light and make the room darker and tape cardboard shapes to the windows and walls.
We strung orange, black and purple crepe paper streamers across the ceiling as well as spooky spider webs and spiders and Jack ‘o’ Lantern streamers. The girls spread the web all over the house and at the front entrance placed an enormous black spider with lots of baby spiders that glowed in the dark scattered all over the web.
Black and orange balloons hung in bunches around the party room. Some of the balloons were filled with helium and stood in corners with ‘Happy Halloween’ printed on them. The Halloween toys, skeletons and bats were hung off picture frames and door knobs all over the house and a battery operated bat was placed so that it swung out from the eaves to greet the guests at the front door. It was a particularly scary welcome for our guests.
We put candles in the candelabras with novelty ghost faces on in them and draped web over the whole thing.
The whole ghoulish effect was that of a haunted house with its own graveyard, and it took very little time to prepare.
© 2007 Nia Sowden
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