Before you break out the reindeer, Christmas trees, and green and red accessories, it’s time to decorate your home for Halloween. Supermarket shelves are stocked to the brim with witches, hats, and ghoulish decorations, but you can easily spend hundreds of dollars on store-bought Halloween decor. If you want to celebrate the scariest holiday of the year but want to keep to a tight budget, check out these tips and tricks for an inexpensive Halloween home decor solution.

Seasonal produce

Seasonal pumpkins, gourds, and squash are perfect for Halloween decor because they’re cheaper than man-made crafts and slot perfectly into any traditional holiday decoration.

Stick to traditional jack-o’-lanterns if you like, but decorate lots of them rather than just one, and get creative with your carving. The Internet is full of one of-a-kind templates for detailed pumpkin faces—or get crafty with glitter, paints, and other craft materials. Pumpkins also make excellent Halloween candy receptacles; just carve, cover, and serve!

Other seasonal gourds and squash make great centerpieces, mantel decorations, and porch adornments. Choose from a variety of sizes and textures of mini pumpkins, and arrange them any place you want to add instant autumnal flair. The best part about these kinds of decorations is that they can stay up after the holiday finishes, or even be cooked and turned into delicious November treats.


Autumnal colors

If you want to decorate your home for the Halloween season but want to stay away from the characters associated with the holiday, or if you’re looking for a few additions to your already decorated home, consider changing your home’s color scheme.

Choose pillows, throws, and candles in Halloween colors such as orange, yellow, brown, and black. If you’ve already decorated your home in autumnal hues, this should be an easy step. This simple change in decor saves you money because it is versatile enough for the rest of the season, and your accessories can be brought out year after year.


Craft projects

The best and cheapest way to decorate your home for Halloween is to do it yourself—and there’s nothing more fun than a weekend crafting project! Most of us know how to make a ghost from a white sheet, but there are so many more DIY projects that can easily and inexpensively take your home from tasteful to terrifying for the holiday.

Design and craft your own tissue paper garland with cut-out sugar skulls, bats, and spiders. A steady hand, a pair of scissors, and some black or orange tissue paper are all you need to make this kind of decoration that can hang on fireplaces and walls, or in doorways.

Use rolls of cotton or pulled cheesecloth to create realistic spiderwebs both inside and outside your home. These super simple decorations can be hung inside windows and door frames or draped across your front porch.

Adorn your front door with a Halloween-themed wreath. If you’re clever, this kind of wreath can be used throughout fall and will give your home’s entryway the creepy, seasonal vibe you’re looking for. Get creative with your crafting materials here, using gourds, googly eyes, felt, or leaves to decorate your wreath.

Give your front yard an eerie glow with luminaries made from paper bags, glass jars, or lanterns. Use candles for a soft, flickering effect (just be careful!) or solar powered lights for an eco-friendly alternative.

Fairy lights are also a simple, inexpensive way to change the lighting in and out of your home: drape some of your handmade spiderwebs across the lights to give them a Halloween makeover.

Budget shopping

After you’ve crafted and decorated your way through the previous steps, you may feel like there are a few things missing. If you decide to shop for Halloween decorations in stores, just make sure to shop smart. Search dollar stores, discount craft stores, and other party stores for cheaper decorations that will last. After the holiday has passed, scour the sale racks and shelves for next year’s decorations. Your forward thinking will reward you in years to come!