Halloween How-To

Monday, October 5, 2009


I love Halloween decorations. Especially the fact that you can use cheap junk and it looks great. I loved this creation by Pink and Polka Dot, so I pretty much CASED it (Copy And Steal Exactly). I'm not even going to pretend that I can arrange anything floral, so dead twigs are right up my alley.
Below are my step-by-steps. Please pardon my pine needles, we have evil trees that dump masses of pine needles whenever the wind blows, or as soon as you finish mowing the lawn, or sweep the porch. I swear I can hear them cackling at night as they plot against us.
I just happened to have a vase that looked similar to the inspiration piece. I purchased it at Michael's a few years ago and it's been hiding under my bathroom sink, waiting for something to do.

I filled it with branches, cut from my backyard. My branches are a little straight, but I had to make do. They'd be more awesome if they were a bit more twisted. To make the branches stay where you want them, you can use florist foam or styrofoam. Or if you don't have those around you can substitute some old rice that's probably gone stale anyway, so why not put it to good use.

Stuff spanish moss around the base of the branches. This stuff is a MESS! Work outside, or have a broom handy if you're inside. But it's oh so perfect for this creepy look. You could also use bagged raffia.

Now it's time to add the birds. These are from the dollar store. A buck, can you believe it? I almost bought mine at the big-box craft store, thinking that was my only resource. They had one lone little crow, and it was $10! Know how many crows I can buy from the dollar store for that amount? I'm thinkin' 10, but I could be wrong.

Before you are allowed to create your project, it's polite to allow your children to play with the crows. Dress them up with silly putty necklaces and boots. Give them names like Hoppy and Blacky. It's only fair that you share your playthings.


Once you've picked all the putty bits off the crows, you can wire them into your branches. Try not to think of the Hitchcock movie "The Birds". Betcha can't.

Add fake spiderwebs. Did you know that I'm that odd person who actually reads directions on packages? I'm glad I did on this stuff. There's a trick to making it look like spiderwebs and not like a stuffed animal came apart on your project.

Lastly, dress it up with a black ribbon and rose. You can use a black silk rose, or create one from cardstock like I've done here. Yes, yes, yes, there WILL be a tutorial this month on the cardstock roses!

I'm hoping to have a few more Halloween decor tutorials this month, so you'll see more of this piece once I get it set up on my mantel with the other projects.
Once I got into the Halloween groove, and had all this darned spanish moss to use up, I plugged in my hot glue gun and got busy. Here's the next project I whipped up. Dollar store skeletons this time, with one lonely crow and a red cardstock rose. Look how awesome this is on my newly painted black door.

I love the skeletons nestled into the spanish moss. A creepy little close-up surprise. Can you spot all three?

Gotta love that Martha Stewart glitter!

8 comments:

Mary Eisen said...

Love this - gonna have to check out the $1 store again - didn't think ours had such cute things!

Andrea said...

A very nice decoration!
Great details!
Many greetings
Andrea

Amy said...

These are so adorable and creepy all at the same time. I love them all! I also like your black door. :)

Sheila Bennett said...

What an awesome decoration. At first, I thought you had used birdseed as your "filler" in the pot - with either the rice or birdseed, you can just dump it in our yard for the birds to eat. Also love your black door, it looks very chic.

Your daughter looks as though she had a lot of fun playing with the crows. :)

Karen said...

Great post! BTW, I have told my custmers about you and one of them stopped by today and said that she and her daughter watched video after video on your site yesterday for hours. They loved you!

Laurie said...

Love all of this! Want to come to my house and decorate! I never could come up with something so creative, but I'm going to have to try this!

Sharli said...

Tressa - Amazing ideas! Your Halloween decorating skills are just out of this world (brah-ha-ha-ha!)

I've looked at those birds, too - they are maybe a little too spooky? I never thought about a porch decoration, though - I could maybe do it if they stayed out of the house!?

I'm LOVING your October Projects!

Haley D. said...

I am so glad you shared w/your daughter! These are two amazing Halloween projects. I am going to have to go find some old crows for sale! Wait a minute, some BLACK crows!

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