50 Awesome Halloween Ideas for the Crafting Challenged

Out of all the holidays that roll around each year giving us excuses to decorate, bake and generally get creative…Halloween is one of my favorites.  Yes, Christmas is great…but Halloween opens the door to go both spooky and harvesty and there’s just something about the cool crisp air and bonfires that always makes me want to throw a party.

This year we’re actually getting to host two events here on our farm. A fall harvest bash for our church and a costume party bonfire for a young adult group we’re involved in. Combine this with three kids in elementary school and there’s no shortage of reasons to go searching for creative ideas for Halloween. Sadly, outside of the food realm, my crafting creativity far outweighs my crafting ability. That makes decorating a challenge.

Since I’ve been out hunting for my own ideas, I figured I’d save you the time of doing your own hunting. Here are 50 Awesome Halloween Ideas for the Crafting Challenged among my readers, including creative foods, DIY crafts, free printables and spooky concoctions.

10 School Friendly Halloween Food Treats

Whether you’re throwing a halloween or fall harvest bash of your own or helping with a class party, these ideas will help put smiles on their faces while you’re putting food in their tummies.

Monster Pudding/Yogurt Cups

Tonya Staab put together a great post on these adorable Monster Pudding Cups over at KidZui Blog.Just add food coloring to vanilla or cream cheese pudding, pair with your favorite sprinkles and decorate the cups with some marketers.

Want a healthier version? Sub in greek yogurt for the pudding and top with homemade granola, fresh fruits or crushed graham crackers.

Zombie Marshmallows

In one of the single cutest treats I’ve seen so far this season, Meaghan Mountford from TheDecoratedCookie.com turns innocent and pure marshmallows into adorable zombie marshmallow halloween treats.

Meaghan has absolutely gone to TOWN on adorable kid friendly halloween treats on a stick. You’ll also find mummy cookies, chocolate blog monsters, chocolate spider pops, Frankenstein Marshmallow pops and quite a few more.

Candy Corn Marshmallows on a Stick

I’m loving the use of marshmallows for so many Halloween treats as they give great options to the mom’s that aren’t able (or interested in) spending hours in the kitchen hand crafting impressive treats. These candy corn marshmallow pops are as simple as dipping marshmallows into two different bowls of melted candy coat.

Chocolate Dipped Marshmallow “Pumpkins”

Kristen over at Better Crocker Wannabe (though she now blogs at A Simply Klassic Home) put up a post a few years back with these super cute marshmallow pumpkins. Love the detail of adding the green bow to look like the leaves. These ought to take about 15-20 minutes to do and school age kids could easily help.

Spider Pops

House of Baby Piranha has a great idea for schools that require “pre-packaged” store bought treats for anything you’re taking into the classroom. Her spider pops could be put together one evening while watching TV and require nothing more than a bag of suckers, some pipe cleaners and a few googlie eyes.

Sticky Spider Webs

This is one of the ideas I’m considering using myself for our church’s party. What kid doesn’t like cotton candy? These sticky spider web bags over at Happiness Walks on Busy Feet are great. Sticking an el cheapo spider ring in the mix as well turns it into an awesomely themed halloween treat without much work at all for mom or dad!

Fruit Cup Jack-o-Lanterns

Another great option for schools that don’t allow homemade treats: Fruit Cup Jack-0-Lanterns. Simply buy up some multi-packs of individual peach cups or mandarin orange cups, snag a Sharpie and go to town. Hat tip to Aimee at Pimp My Dinner for coming up with this idea!

Brains in a Jar

This one is right up my alley! It may be my favorite of the bunch and I’m giving serious consideration to pulling it out for our Young Adult party. Brains in a Jar is the perfect variation on cupcakes in a jar with a Halloween Theme. Check out the original post over at Living Locurto and you’ll even score free printables for the jars.

Mummy Pretzel Sticks

While simple in concept, these mummy pretzel sticks are a little labor intensive for my tastes. Simple ingredient list and execution though. This is the type of thing I’d happily let Thing One tackle when she gets a little bit older. (From Bright Ideas.) You might also want to check out their eyeball cupcakes and vampire bite cookies.

Babybel Cheese Eyeballs

I am loving on these Babybel cheese eyeballs. I love playing around with Babybel for the kid’s bento boxes, so these caught my eye when they showed up on Cute Food for Kids.

10 Halloween Party Food Ideas

It’s not just school parties and kid events that need great themed food. Sometimes you’ve got to have something a little more filling than candy or snacks. That’s why this collection of Halloween and fall themed food can help set the mood of your event with a little extra goulish fun.

Lady Fingers

I’ve seen a ton of variations of fingers showing up on Pinterest and blogs the past few years, but to be honest…most of them are so gross looking I can’t bring myself to make them or share them. Then I spotted these mostly innocuous biscuit based Lady Fingers from Living Locurto. Now THESE I can do.

Hot Dog Mummies

Chances are high you’ve seen Hot Dog Mummies popping up all over the web. That’s because it’s a great (and simple) idea. Might throw these ones together myself for our church’s party this month. While I have no idea who originally came up with the idea, Seakettle has a great tutorial on making them.

Deviled Egg Eyeballs

A little bit of food coloring and sliced olives can quickly turn a standard picnic treat into a perfectly spooky halloween appetizer. These Deviled Egg Eyeballs from Divine Dinner Party are another simple and creative option for those who don’t like to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.

Strawberry White Chocolate Ghosts

Taste of Home Magazine offers up a cute take on chocolate dipped strawberries with Strawberry Ghosts. (Of course if you’re anywhere but the west coast, you’re probably not willing to spend $4 a pound for strawberries when Halloween rolls around.)

Halloween 7-Layer Dip

I’ve seen a few variations of Halloween 7-layer Dips, but I’m loving on this one from Halloween Edge. Mostly because I’m a fan of any food I’d already make for a party that only involves a little bit of extra work to theme it.

Glow in the Dark Drinks

If you’re looking for something a little more sophisticated for an adult halloween party, consider these Glow in the Dark Drinks. Granted, you’ll need a black light for this one, but then again, what Halloween party WOULDN’T be more fun with a black light added to the mix?

Meringue Ghosts

In general, meringue is a bit more work than say..stuffing cotton candy into a bag with a toy spider…but in the grand scheme of things, these Meringue Ghosts from Joy of Baking are pretty darn adorable without being insanely complicated. A good quick option for someone who is already comfortable in the kitchen.

Monster Pedestal Candy Dishes

Another super cute idea that can double as a decoration at your Halloween party are these Monster Pedestal Candy Dishes from The Celebration Shoppe. I actually already own the cute little square bowl, so there’s a good chance Frankenstein may make an appearance at one of our parties.

Pizza Mummies

Even adults will like these bite size Pizza Mummies made with Pillsbury Grands biscuits, jarred sauce, cheese and a few olives.  Find the recipe over at Spear Family Culinary Adventures.

 Mad Scientist Potion

When it comes to adult halloween parties, there’s a fine line between cute and chic. Hitting the chic side can be a bit of a challenge…but this Mad Scientist Potion is so cool it would fly with Kool-aid or cocktails. Check out the DIY from Our Best Bites.

 10 Awesome Halloween Printables

Unless you’re a graphic designer or live next door to Martha Stewart, chances are you need a little help knocking out creative signs, posters and paper products for your parties. Thankfully the web is simply full of great free printables. These are some of my favorites.

 Deadly Drinks

This may be my favorite Halloween printable of the year. I absolutely adore these free printable soda labels that transform Mountain Dew into Zombie Virus and Orange Soda into Jack-o-Lantern Juice.

Halloween Subway Art

If you’re into subway art, there’s a super cute printable halloween subway art available for download as an 8×10 or 16×20 over at eighteeen25. It’s even available in multiple color patterns if black and orange isn’t your thing.

Happy Halloween Printable Banner

While I have to be honest and say I never use the, I love the look of pennant style banners. If you’re one of those dessert table fiends who loves the look of a banner, this is a cute one.

We’ve Been Boo’d Sign

If you’ve never “boo’d” anyone, you’re missing out. The premise is simple. Make a Halloween themed treat and leave it and the Boo card on a neighbor’s door, then ring the bell and run like…mad. It’s a fun neighborhood game that gives you an excuse to make a neighbor smile. Find full instructions and a super cute free printable over at The TomKat Studio.

Creepy Halloween Candy Labels

I love these creepy halloween candy labels. In fact, I’ve got some jars upstairs right now soaking in water so I can get the labels off and repurpose them for a candy bar for one of our fall harvest festivals. You’ll find them over at design.wash.rinse.repeat.

Halloween Printable Treat Box

If  you’re throwing a party and need something to make up gift bags or even serve popcorn or chips in, these Halloween printable treat boxes can be printed onto standard card-stock, cut out and folded into handy little themed cartons. You’ll find them at paper & cake partyware.

 Printable Party Favor Bottle Label

If only I had dozens and dozens of little apothecary jars laying around… Unfortunately I don’t. On the off chance that you do, or that you keep a bunch of empty pill bottles laying around, here’s a great Halloween party favor label that pairs well with pop rocks, rock candy or even pixie dust.

Printable Origami Halloween Box

This is a great option for a school part or for someone who likes to hand out a combination of smaller candies around the holidays. You’ll find the free printable file for these origami Halloween boxes along with step by step instructions on how to fold them over at Mushy.

Halloween Candle Wrappers

The simplicity of these wrappers is part of what makes them so great. Take a standard jarred candle that might be labeled with random pictures of pumpkins or a label from Yankee Candle company and wrap it in one of these Halloween candle wrapper printables for a super cheap Halloween themed glow for your party or event.

Printable Candy Eyeballs

Last year for Valentine’s Day, Thing One and I knocked out an entire bag’s worth of Hershey Kisses with Valentine’s themed stickers on the bottom of them. They’re a great way to turn a store bought treat into a holiday themed surprise. That’s why I love this printable set of monster eyes for the bottoms of mini Reese cups from The Fickle Pickle.

 10 DIY Halloween Pumpkin Ideas

Sometimes it’s not enough to just have a printable or to make the food look good…sometimes you want to dress it up a bit more with some great fall or Halloween inspired decor. In fact, I’ve been working my way through wine, vinegar and other bottles in our house to get the labels peeled off so I can dress them up with some great Halloween potion inspired labels. Let these do-it-yourself craft ideas bring a little spooky to your house this year.

Mini Pumpkin Vampires

Ok, these little guys are just crazy cute. A few mini pumpkins, some dime store fake vampire teeth, a few pins and a knife. It can’t get much simpler than that to make these great little mini pumpkin vampires. My guess is you could even branch out into bigger and stranger shaped gourds and squash to make a whole family of vampire veggies.

Zombie Pumpkins

Martha strikes again. Even if the lady drives you nuts, you’ve got to admit her team comes up with some pretty cool ideas. These Zombie Pumpkins make quick work of decorating through the use of toy eyeballs and a bit of carving.

Bat-o-Lanterns

Tired of the same old orange pumpkins or pale white gourds? Pull out some spray paint and a bit of cardstock and whip up a back of bat-o-lanterns for your party.

Candy Corn Pumpkins

Don’t feel like cutting out shapes or gluing things on to your pumpkin? Then try a little spray paint action. These simple candy corn pumpkins from Better Homes & Gardens make quick work of a non-scary, but still Halloween-ish pumpkin decoration.

Painted and Carved Pumpkins

If you’re better with a paintbrush than you are with a carving knife, consider incorporating the two together to spruce up this year’s pumpkin. This beautifully carved spooky mansion plays off the light of the carved windows to pair well with the black building stenciled on to the front of the pumpkin.

Pumpkin Drink Cooler

Back when I was in middle school, we grew pumpkins in our backyard garden. That year, one of them somehow managed to swell to mammoth proportions, weighing in at over 125 pounds! While mom managed to carve it (with a hacksaw!) I can’t help but think how perfect it would have been for a pumpkin drink cooler after seeing this idea from Country Living.

Drilled Pumpkin Jack-o-Lanterns

There are few things as traditional as watching the light of a candle flicker through the carved features of a pumpkin when it comes to Halloween decorations. At the same time, carving the same old boring face every year gets old and trying to get all fancy with your design gets complicated. That’s where a power drill and various size drill bits can suddenly become your best friend. These drilled pumpkin jack-o-lanterns are a beautiful and often creative option most people haven’t tried before.

Melted Crayon Pumpkins

Here in Western PA the latter half of October can bring toasty warm Indian summers or freezing cold early winters. That makes keeping a pumpkin looking fresh and beautiful for more than a few days pretty challenging. That’s why I love no-carve pumpkin ideas. I ran across this melted crayon pumpkin idea at The Swede Records and just loved it. Go with a standard orange or white pumpkin, or spray paint them first to add another layer of color to the mix.

Mini Pumpkin Spider Tea Lights

Mini pumpkins are such a great option for Halloween parties and fall decorations. They’re cheap, you can buy lots of them and they’re easy to either cluster together or spread through the area you want to decorate. A quick carving of a hole in top and a few pipe cleaners can also transform them into these super cute mini pumpkin spider tea light holders.

Masked Pumpkin Bandits

Maybe it’s because I love the sound of Antionio Banderas’s voice, maybe it’s because I think Zorro and the Lone Ranger were super cool, or maybe it’s because I’m lazy. Whatever the reason, I think these masked pumpkin bandits are just awesome.

10 Quick and Easy Halloween Decorations

Once we move beyond pumpkins and food, there’s still always going to be the need for at least a little bit of holiday themed decor. If you’re crafty, you can probably come up with all sorts of ideas on your own. If you’re like me, you’ve got a better imagination than you do crafting skills and it gets a little harder. That’s why I’ve scouted out ten great ideas that even the most crafting challenged of my readers should have no problems putting into play.

Ghostly Luminary Jugs

It doesn’t get much simpler this than. If you can’t use a Sharpie to draw a ghost face onto an empty and washed out milk jug, then there’s not much point in even decorating for Halloween, now is there? These ghostly luminaries are fast, simple and would look super cute on a front porch. Heck, if you are worried about pumpkins rotting too quickly, just replace them with a of these! They’ll still look cute, but you won’t have to worry about people smashing them in the streets.

Creepy Toilet Monster

Who says Halloween decorations have to be truly creepy? Truth is, this so called creepy toilet monster makes me giggle more than it makes me shudder…but that’s half the fun. This one can be knocked out quickly with black cardstock, or could be made even more sturdy with some black contact paper.

Monster in the Trunk

I’m not the type to go all out and decorate my whole house for Halloween, but I do love creative little touches here and there. I also happen to have a very old cedar chest that belonged to my grandmother. If I had a few monster gloves laying around, this Monster in the Trunk idea would be pretty easy to pull off.

Spooky Tube Eyes

This is probably one of my favorite discoveries of this season. We’re planning on doing a night hike through our woods for at least one of our Halloween parties this year and I have no doubt we’ll be using these spooky tube eyes. All it takes is some empty toilet paper and paper towel rolls, some scissors and some glow sticks. Since I happen to have a hundred pack of glow sticks in my storage space, I think we’re good to go.

No Sew Toilet Paper Roll Pumpkins

If you’re one of those people who likes to make every one of your house look like it’s part of the season, this may be the craft for you. (Especially if you are one of those crafters who keeps the scrap fabric from projects.) These No-Sew Toilet Paper Roll Pumpkins would look great lined up on a shelf in your bathroom. In fact, they’re even cute enough to move them out into the main rooms, chances are no one will guess what’s inside them anyway!

Pumpkin Hanging Lanterns

Now here’s a great idea for an outdoor party! Gather up some hanging chinese lanterns in pumpkin friendly colors and make a set of pumpkin hanging lanterns to light up the event. We used hanging lanterns like these at our outdoor tent wedding and found them online at an excellent price. (Head over to Paper Lantern Store to buy them super cheap in your choice of colors.)

Candy Corn Candle Holder

Sometimes sprucing the place up for the holidays is as simple as dumping candy into a bowl. In this case, it’s about dumping candy into a glass vase you plan to put a candle in. These candy cane candle holders make for quick and easy holiday decorating.

Felt Canister Monsters

While Jennifer over at the Naughty Secretary Club originally made these canister monsters by wrapping yarn around canisters and then decorating them with felt faces, it would be easy enough to skip the wrapping part and jump straight to felt to spruce up the canisters on your counter or the trash cans in your rooms.

Tissue Paper Mason Jar Luminaries

This would be one of those fun projects to get your kids in on. A little mod podge, a little crepe paper, an empty mason jar and you’re well on your way to making Tissue Paper Mason Jar Luminaries. (Warning: the site I’m linking to automatically launches a video including Elmo singing a song at top volume…in other worse, turn your sound off if you’re at work.)

Ghostly Paper Cup Hanging Lanterns

It doesn’t get much easier than this. A bunch of white paper cups, a string of Christmas lights and a few stick-backed googlie eyes are all you need to make these ghostly paper cup hanging lanterns. Fast, cute and a total “why didn’t I think of that” decorating idea.

I’d love to see the collection of super easy Halloween ideas you’ve either come up with or stumbled across. Please feel free to share your links, photos and even the link to your Pinterest Halloween board in the comments below! If you liked this post, please remember to pin it so you can share it with your friends.