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Throwing a Great Halloween Party on a DIY Budget

August 31, 2018 | By Louis Tulley

Halloween is known as the spookiest night of the year, but the scariest thing about it isn’t the ghouls or ghosts: it’s how quickly this fun holiday can drain your wallet! Between cobbling together a decent costume and throwing a party for your friends or kids, your bank account could be in for a big hit.

Luckily, there are a lot of ways to save money and still throw a great Halloween party. Because of the holiday’s innately creative nature, there are hundreds of DIY projects that can both delight and playfully spook your guests. Pinterest and endless craft blogs are filled with all kinds of great ideas for snacks and decorations you can make yourself. Here are just a few of our favorites.

Make Your Own Snacks

Even if you’re not a wizard (or a witch) in the kitchen, there’s all kind of cool holiday-themed snacks you can put together easily: dip pretzel sticks in chocolate to make witch fingers, push a pair of chocolate chips into a marshmallow to create a ghost, or fill a bowl with gummy worms for a snake pit. These simple snacks are fun for guests of all ages.

A witch’s brew is equally easy to stir up using a standard party punch recipe. You can buy a black witch’s cauldron from just about any dollar store to use as a bowl, and once you’ve set it up just plop a few scoops of pistachio or equally strange colored ice cream into the punch to give it a swampy look. Don’t worry about how it looks though – it’ll still taste delicious. You can even add a few chunks of dry ice to give it a bubbling, smoky appearance.

Craft Your Own Decorations

Good decorations are key to a fun party, and Halloween is a great opportunity to really go wild. A few basic craft supplies can pay off big: cut wing shapes out of black construction paper and tape them to the walls for bat silhouettes, paint old bottles black and apply skull and crossbones to make “poison” decanters, and pick up a cheap bag of polyester fleece to adorn your walls with faux-spider webs.

Pumpkin carving is something that costs very little, but can really spruce up any party and add a whole other dimension of fun to it. The amount of designs that people have created for pumpkins is incredible, and in the online age, there are hundreds of tutorials, guides, and videos people have created to help walk you through carving your own. Look a few up, and make your pumpkins the centerpieces of your party.

Costumes on the Cheap

Almost any Halloween party will be a costume party, so as the host you need to bring your A-game. Buying or renting a costume from a party store can be incredibly expensive, and unfortunately, the more affordable costumes tend to be of poor quality and selection. That really leaves only one option: make your own.

Much like any project first, you need to plan it out by picking out the right character: pirate, ninja, Jedi, or baker. The options are truly endless, but the trick is to pick one with a good reference picture, and then put it together as well as you can with what you have. Discount stores and thrift shops are also great resources for the costume materials you need.

Keep Things Spooky

Armed with these tips, your Halloween party is sure to be a smash. Invite your friends to bring their own DIY decorations and snacks to bolster your own, and remember - above all else, keep things spooky!

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