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Halloween Party Decorating & Gift Ideas

Published July 03, 2007        by Nicole

Adult Halloween parties are a great way to entertain your neighbors and friends. Create fun and festive party invitations and recommend that everyone attending the party dress up for the Halloween costume contest. Make the night memorable by have special Halloween themed foods and decorating your house and yard for the big party. An added benefit is that the Halloween trick or treaters can enjoy the outdoor decorations too. Here are some great decorating ideas that will create a festive atmosphere.

- Fake cobwebs. Fine-threaded fake cobwebs offer a great way to add some inexpensive ambience to your Halloween celebration. You can purchase bags of these loosely bound cotton filament style webs at party supply stores or online. Tape or tack one end of the cotton web down while you pull the rest of the cotton out to form a thin web. The thinner you can get the webs without breaking, the more realistic they look. Add them to corners for basement holiday parties and on the porch or around doors to welcome guests as they enter your home. Add some black plastic spiders to make them scary and use ‘can' lights to uplight the webbing to make it more noticeable. - Reusable Jack-O-Lanterns. Spend a little extra money and time this year to achieve gorgeous, realistic looking jack-o-lanterns that can be used for years to come. Many craft stores now sell hollow pumpkins that are made from lightweight foam. Just buy a few of these pumpkins as well as a pumpkin carving kit to create the best looking jack-o-lanterns on the block. Follow the carving kit instructions to construct intricate Halloween designs. Remember that because these re-usable pumpkins are foam, do not burn candles inside them because they are flammable. Instead opt for lighting them with glow sticks or small battery powered flashlights.

- Bloody handprints. Available online or in party supply stores, these re-usable red plastic decorations are meant to be used on windows and mirrors to make it look like spattered blood.  Designs range from bloody looking handprints and footprints to red blood drops and splotches. Create a dramatic ‘bloody' massacre to welcome guests to your scary Halloween party.
- Scary music. Set the mood with some Halloween theme music by purchasing a CD featuring scary organ music, screams and shrieks. Set the speakers up on the porch to welcome guests as they arrive or in the party area to play throughout the evening.

- Candles. A wide array of shaped candles and holders that incorporate the Halloween theme are now available at party stores. Set up a big bowl of water, add some red food coloring to make it look like blood and float some eye ball candles for a fun and spooky centerpiece. Or buy a large black candelabra that features black cats and spider webs, then add some orange or white Halloween themed candles for a great addition to your Halloween food buffet table. Just remember to keep an eye on the candles throughout the party so that they don't burn so low that they pose a fire hazard. Also be sure to set them toward the back of the table so that people don't have to reach over or around the candle to access the food.

Pick up a Halloween gift basket or other festive prize to give the guest that wins the best costume contest. You can use it as a centerpiece throughout the party and then give it to the winner at the end of the celebration.  Have your guests vote by filling out slips of paper and putting them in a pumpkin so that you can tally the votes and award the prize.