5 viral DIY Halloween decorations that are simple, fun, and cheap to make - plus they're tasteful too

You won't find these handcrafted Halloween ornaments anywhere else

A living room with Halloween decorations
(Image credit: Getty Images)

With Halloween creeping up on us, it's finally time to start thinking about some spooky decor (if you haven't already, that is). Rather than unearthing the decade-old decorations lurking in the loft, however, why not consider something more stylish and get creative with some handmade ideas? 

DIY novelty decor has a far bigger impact than the kitsch grocery store decorations we're all used to, plus you'll have a unique look that you won't find anywhere else. If you want some Halloween home decor ideas that are cheap, fun, and easy to make, we've scoured social media to find five projects that offer the perfect place to start, no matter your craft experience. 

Ghost candles 


♬ Oh Klahoma - Jack Stauber

Twisted candles are a charming decor idea at the best of times, but these hauntingly good ghost candles are the perfect blend of spookiness and style for All Hallows' Eve. Courtesy of home content creator @kaylasnotaesthetic via TikTok, they're made by heating tapered candles under warm water which allows you to bend the waxy form into a shape of your liking.

All that's left to do once they've cooled (which only takes a couple of minutes) is paint on some phantom faces and style in some elegant candle holders. They're the perfect addition to your Halloween tablescape

Pressed flower pumpkins

You've most likely carved a pumpkin and perhaps you've even painted pumpkins, but have you heard of decorating your gourd with pressed flowers? This seriously pretty decor idea might not be the most frightening of ornaments, but it's really easy to do and makes a serious statement when placed on your hearth or on a sheltered porch. You can also create the same look with dried leaves too for a more seasonal look that will last you right through fall into Thanksgiving. 

If you don't plan to eat or compost your pumpkins afterward, all you need to do is apply the dried flowers with a clear glue such as PVA and wait to dry. Add another layer over the top to seal the deal, and you're done. If you want to make your project more eco-conscious, content creator Cassandra Evans of @northwoodsfolk who shared the idea on her Instagram suggests making a homemade glue by heating water, corn syrup or honey, vinegar, and cornstarch in a pan and applying it with a paintbrush or pastry brush. Now your pumpkin will then be safe to eat after the spooky celebrations are over. 

Tomato cage ghosts


♬ Halloween - AShamaluevMusic

This trending Halloween decoration for your front yard has been all over our Pinterest feeds, and we love the simplicity of this take from home stylist @MyDIYHappyHome on TikTok. All you need to make this ghostly figure for your front yard is a tomato cage, a tablecloth or bed sheet, and a ball-shaped material to act as the outline of the head. If you want to take your ghoul the extra mile, you can also wrap some battery-powered string lights around the tomato cage base for an eerie glow after dark. 

To make this DIY idea, start by wrapping the lights around the tomato cage and then add a ball to the top to make the head. In the TikTok video, the creator uses a polystyrene ball like these ones from Amazon that can easily be staked onto the top of the cage, but aluminum foil would also do the trick. Next, place the tablecloth over the top (depending on the transparency of the material, you might want to use two) then simply add a face using self-adhesive felt patches or by drawing them on with a permanent marker. 

Halloween wreath

This door wreath isn't only a wonderful addition to your Halloween porch set-up, but it will see you through the rest of fall, too. If you want yours to be more on the frightening side you can easily customize it with some skull decorations or faux spider webs to give guests a devilish welcome. 

The idea, shared by content creator Sierra Miller (@sierralmiller) over on her Instagram, is really simple. Start with a twig wreath and then weave in some faux fall-themed flowers into the gaps. Besides flowers, remember to include faux foliage like pampas grass, hops, or beech leaves to make your wreath look fuller and more rounded. You can also add some novelty decorations like miniature pumpkins or glittery black stars as Sierra has done. 

To finish off the project, add a piece of ribbon or raffia to hang your wreath from and then add it to your front door. This seasonal fall decor idea can stay up right through until Christmas!

Ghost pillowcases 


♬ bad idea right? - Olivia Rodrigo

Tasteful Halloween decor for inside the home is hard to come by, so why not make your own? We love this adorable ghost pillow cover made using yarn for the outline and felt pads for the eyes. This one's the handiwork of lifestyle blogger Charlene Wong (@allstylelife) via TikTok, and she claims the project cost her less than $10 in total!

To recreate the look, start with a plain pillowcase. Charlene uses beige for a neutral look, but you could go for orange or brown if you want to make yours more seasonally influenced. The rest is simply a case of cutting lengths of white yarn and positioning them in arch shapes to make the form of little specters. Once glued down with some fabric adhesive, simply add some small felt pieces on the top to act as the eyes (you could also add mouths if you like) and leave them to dry. All that's left to do is insert your pillow and then style your sofa to introduce a subtly spooky vibe to your living room. 

Whether it's to entertain yourself or get busy with the kids on the weekend, these genius DIY ideas will leave you with a tastefully decorated Halloween home that guests will envy!

Color & Trends Editor

Lilith Hudson is the Color & Trends Editor at Livingetc. Writing news, features, and explainers for our digital platform, she's the go-to person for all the latest micro-trends, interior hacks, and color inspiration you need in your home. Lilith discovered a love for lifestyle journalism during her BA in English and Philosophy at the University of Nottingham where she spent more time writing for her student magazine than she did studying. After graduating, she decided to take things a step further and now holds an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London, with previous experience at the Saturday Times Magazine, Evening Standard, DJ Mag, and The Simple Things Magazine. At weekends you'll find her renovating a tiny one-up, one-down annex next to her Dad's holiday cottage in the Derbyshire dales where she applies all the latest design ideas she's picked up through the week.