Spooky window silhouettes and other DIY Halloween decorations from ‘This Old House Magazine’

Halloween is approaching fast, and to get your homes ready for trick-or-treaters, Kathryn O’Shea Evans from “This Old House Magazine” joined TODAY this Sunday to share four simple, creative and spooky DIY Halloween Crafts. 

Get ready for trick-or-treaters with these simple DIY decorations


1. Gothic Wreath 


ping List: 

  • Styrofoam ring
  • Black spray paint
  • Black cable ties
  • Bow, stuffed raven (optional)

To make this spike-encircled wreath, first spray paint a craft-store Styrofoam ring black. Then, take black-plastic cable ties (you can buy a pack of 100 for about $6 at your local home store), and tie them around the Styrofoam ring so that some cable ties point in, and others point out. You can further decorate the wreath with a bow or a stuff raven for an extra-spooky touch.

2. Pumpkin Luminaries 


ping list:

  • Pumpkins
  • Outdoor holiday lights
  • knife
  • large spoon
  • permanent marker
  • drill

A twist on traditional carving, why not use your household power drill for these sophisticated pumpkins decorated with orange and white Halloween lights. To begin, carve a large hole in the bottom of your selected pumpkin, and carve out the inside of the pumpkin through the bottom hole. Mark a pattern of dots on the front of the pumpkin (they can be geometric, swirly or completely random —whatever your preference). Using your drill, make holes where you made your markings on the pumpkin. Then, thread your outdoor lights through the bottom of the pumpkin, bringing one bulb out each hole. 

3. Graveyard Tombstones 


ping list:

  • Utility knife
  • Tape measure
  • Small paintbrush
  • 2-inch rigid foam insulation
  • Stone-effect spray paint
  • Black paint

Using a utility knife, cutyour 2-inch rigid foam insulation into the shape of a grave marker. Then, using the same knife, carve letters (such as “RIP” or “BOO!”) into the insulation for the epitaph. Take your stone-effect spray paint and spray the entirety of the tombstone, and brush black paint onto the letters for the final touch. 

4. Creepy Window Silhouettes 

  • ping list:
  • Scissors
  • White-wax pencil
  • X-Acto knife
  • Heavy black paper (at least 32 by 40 inches)
  • transparent tape

Check out these window silhouette templates (each template is 16 pages. No adjustments need to be made; just open and click “Print”):

  • Disturbed Woodsman
  • Under Pressure
  • Drill Headache

Once your template(s) is/are printed, arrange the pages of the template so that the corresponding numbers in the corners of the pages match, and put the pages together with transparent tape. Cut out the template with scissors. Place the template atop the heavy sheet of black paper, and trace the silhouette with a white wax pencil. Using an X-Acto knife, cut out the outline of the traced silhouette on the heavy black paper.  

Tape the silhouettes in place. You may need to modify them to fit your windows. If the windows are double-hung, cut the silhouette in half and tape the lower half under the bottom sash and the top half above the top sash, with the paper coming right up to the frame. If you’re spanning two close-together windows, cut the silhouette vertically and abut the halves to either side of the window frames.