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Throw a Spooky, Cheap Halloween Party

Spooky Ideas That Won't Spook Your Budget


There are many ways to throw a spook-tacular Halloween party without breaking the bank. Here is how I plan to do it this year.Since one of the best parts of any party is the food and Halloween offers us an opportunity to get ghoulishly creative, I will be setting up a table of Halloween treats.

To help fill it I have included on the invitations a request for everyone to bring one Halloween dish and a solid white pillowcase for each child that plans to attend.

What I'll Be Serving:

All of this food, plus pumpkins filled with candy and the other dishes the guests bring, should be enough food for everyone.

Low-Cost Halloween Decorations

I tend to go overboard when decorating for any holiday, but this year I want to keep things simple.

Black and orange balloons on sticks as part of the centerpiece, pumpkins carved and cleaned and filled with candy set around, and for my main mood setter - a stuffed witch guarding the table.

This mixed with black napkins and whatever decorations I already own should offer enough Halloween spirit for the occasion.

Making a Large Stuffed Witch

To make the witch I plan on stuffing old clothing with a lot of newspaper. This allows for the figure to be placed in a variety of positions.
  • Making Witch Hands
    For hands, I'll stuff surgical gloves and paint them with a mixture of white and gray paint which gives an old wrinkled effect. If time permits, I may glue on long artificial nails to the fingers. Because of the flexibility of the gloves, it is easy to position the hands however you want to, such as pointing or crooking one finger.
  • The Witch's Face
    For the face, I'll fill part of one leg of old panty-hose with paper, paint it to match the hands, then glue a witch face printed from the Internet. There are several to choose from although I might have to go to Office Depot and have one blown up.
  • The Witch's Cape
    I'll make the cape from black fabric or spray paint an old sheet and plan to make the Witch Hat from a paper plate.
  • Witchy Shoes
    The shoes will be easy. I have a very dated pair of black pointed shoes from a few years ago that I will gladly donate to the cause!
Low-Cost Halloween Party Activities
  • The Talking Pumpkin
    My husband will never forgive me for this one. I lucked out and found a large sturdy box, big enough for my husband to sit under after I put it on cinder blocks.

    I cut a hole in the top, large enough for my husband to stick his head through. I also cut a hole in Halloween-theme fabric I bought on sale last year, and covered the box with the fabric.

    A few days before the party I will carve out a big pumpkin, large enough for his head to fit under. On the day of the party, he will sit under the box, with his head through the pumpkin.

    I will place the party bags on the table and when the children go to reach for them, my husband will say something - hence, the talking pumpkin - and hopefully a few fun screams!

    If it is hard to find a super big pumpkin you can do the same thing by cutting a hole in the bottom of a large pumpkin and setting it over the hole in the box. The person in the box can still hear the children and talk to them as if the pumpkin is talking.

  • Create Trick-or-Treat Bags
    There will be an activity area set up for the children. I'll have pre-printed Halloween stencils and colored markers for the children to create their own trick-or-treat bags out of their pillowcases.

    Included in the decorating package will be cut-outs of witches, ghosts and goblins cut from magazines and from online, as well as fabric glue to help attach the cut-outs to the pillowcases.

    For easy cleanup and mess control, I'll cover the area with plastic. Cheap plain shower curtains from the dollar stores are my choice.

  • Mask Making
    Using a stack of paper plates as masks, the children can create their own masks with glitter, colored markers, paints and feathers. The sides can be hole-punched and ribbons tied for wearing the mask.
  • Halloween Spooky Feel Box
    As much as I'd love to set up a room as a fun house, I simply don't have it in the budget nor do I have the time, but as a spooky alternative, I have used the advice of our Crafts Guide, Sherri Osborn, to set up a great spooky Feel Box.

    I salvaged a box from the supermarket and spray painted it black and cut two arm-sized holes in each side. Inside I will fill it with her suggestions, such as worms - cooked warm noodles, rodents - fake fur and eye balls - pearl onions.

For the Teens and Adults

As for the adults, as always, good food, good laughs and great conversation usually makes for a wonderful party. A good football game never hurts either. But, for those not interested in watching the game, or for the teens attending, I've made up 50 Halloween trivia cards for a good spooky game. The cards include questions like:
  • Where was Dracula born? Transylvania
  • What was Dracula's full name? Vlad Tepes III Dracula
  • What does it mean if you see a spider on Halloween? The spirit of a loved one is watching over you.
Coming up with the 50 questions was not very hard. A simple search on the Internet turned up a lot of information.

To keep it simple, I purchased this pumpkin designed deck of cards for $1 and wrote each question on address labels and stuck it onto the cards, but index cards would work just as well.

That is my party plan. I hope you have a great safe and spooky-fun Halloween!

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