Despite having a husband that went to art school for a short period and mom to a mini-Picaso, creativity and artistic expertise don’t come easily to me. After a brief stint scrapbooking in my late teens/early 20s, my craftiness in recent years has involved mostly children’s handprints and footprints.
Recently I’ve found myself having creative surges around the holidays because I want to make our home a little more festive for the girls. Last year I held out decorating for Halloween until the beginning of October. This year I gave in and aside from the exterior blowups, we had all of our existing decorations up by the second week of September.
With Cupcake reaching the age where she can really enjoy Halloween this year, I decided to create some more fun Halloween decorations to really get in the spirit. Being a little challenged in right-brained activities and a lack of ample storage space, I wanted to create Halloween crafts that were fun, unique, and most of all…easy!
What says fun and whimsical more so than candy?! Orange and black may be the official colors of Halloween, but for the Halloween craft ideas I had brewing in my head, I knew I wanted something bright and colorful instead. Things that would look festive on our new bookshelf.
It’s likely the Type A in me, but I hate being interrupted while completing a project. I went to my favorite warehouse store so I could isolate a ton of certain colors while still having a rainbow of options available for a budget friendly price.
2. Using black acrylic paint, create a jack-o-lantern face.
1. For the Frankenstein: use jar filled with green Skittles. Slide one pair of large googly eyes into the jar. Position them low enough so that you can add a nose, mouth, and create a hair line.
2. Fold one sheet of black tissue paper into a square to fit opening of jar, then fold a second piece of black tissue paper on top of it, tucking it in at the edges.
3. Draw a nose and mouth using stitch marks to accent.
1. For the owl: take the jar filled with purple Skittles and slide a pair of large googly eyes into the jar.
2. You’ll need to pieces of purple tissue paper for this one, each crafted the same way. First fold the tissue paper in half, then fold the corner down creating triangles for the ears – one on each side.
3. Once ears are in place, secure with extra purple Skittles to simulate feathers on top of the owl’s head.
4. Trace the outline of the googly eyes using a wide band of yellow acrylic paint.
5. Create a diamond shaped nose for the owl using orange acrylic paint.
There was so many other colors of Skittles and all the Starburst leftover after creating these fun little Halloween candy jars that I went to work on a second craft project. Inspired by Christmas gingerbread houses, I decided to make a haunted house for Halloween!
Materials: cardboard rectangle, aluminum foil, 2 packages of chocolate graham crackers (1 package for house, 1 package for “dirt”), 1 batch of royal icing (recipe below), Skittles and Starburst candies, black and orange icing gels (windows), optional: googly eyes, pumpkins, spiderwebs, spiders to decorate
Royal Icing Recipe: 1 lb. powdered sugar, 2 egg whites, 1/4 cup warm water, 1 tsp. lemon juice, orange food gel coloring
Directions: Mix all ingredients using a hand mixer. Continue mixing until consistency is thin enough to pipe through pastry/sandwich bag.
1. First cover a piece of cardboard (to create a sturdy base) with aluminum foil.
2. Conceptualize the layout of your haunted house. For the house I made, you’ll use one graham cracker sheet (rectangle) and using a sawing motion with a serrated knife cut off the top corners. I created two different angles because perfection on a haunted house really isn’t necessary. Or as spooky. For the side walls and back you’ll be using one whole graham cracker sheet, plus an additional half cut lengthwise.
3. To secure each piece in position, place royal icing into a piping bag (or sandwich bag with one tip cut off) and apply a thick layer of icing to create a glue. This stage of allowing all of the pieces to set together will likely take the longest of all the steps.
Do you have any easy Halloween crafts to recommend? Have you ever used candy in your projects?