Halloween decorating with paper cut outs

October 25, 2012

When it comes to Halloween decorating, I’m all about quick, easy and stuff that doesn’t take up valuable storage space. 

We put up most of our Halloween decor outside, and I don’t do a ton inside just because I always go through the fall/Halloween dilemma. Put up fall, take it down, do Halloween, put it back up after? 

Or put up fall, add some Halloween in here and there? The older I get the more I go for the latter. ;) 

Over the past few years I’ve come up with a solution that meets all of those criteria – the easy to store and cheap part especially. I love experimenting with different ways to use them too.

I’ve shown you a few of these ideas before – one of my favorites is using our lamp shades. What looks like this during the day:

wooden box fall decor

Has a little surprise at night:

Halloween paper cut outs on lamp shade

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I just cut out the shapes years ago with my vinyl cutter – they have kept fine over the years. (I use a little bit of spray adhesive or just tape to put them on the inside of the shade.)

You can also find these cute Halloween cut outs online and at the dollar store. These paper spiders are super adorable, these ghosts are available in any color and these bats are a classic

On most of our lamp shades you can’t see them unless you turn on the light, but some are lighter so you see them during the day too. I just think it’s such a fun little Halloween surprise:

Halloween paper cut outs on lamp shade

You can find similar black spider webs here

Of course our infamous Halloween mice usually go on the stairs:

mice cut outs on stairs

Last year I showed you how I added a gaggle of bats on the wall:

paper bats on wall

Is it a group of bats a gaggle? Who knows. Sure. I’m tired people. ;)

Well, back then our walls were that pinkish hue and the paint was a flat sheen – so when I took down all of those bats the sticky stuff I used to hang them left a billion little dots on the wall. Niiiiiice.

The walls are eggshell now, so we probably won’t have that problem again, but I wasn’t taking any chances. This time I added them to the old windows I have hanging near the staircase instead and I LOVE how they look!

I just used that sticky gummy stuff again to put them right on the windows:

paper bats on wall Halloween

I bent up their wings to give them some dimension:

paper bats on wall Halloween

Last year I added some eyes to a few of them:

paper bats on wall Halloween

So fun!

They make a impact but didn’t cost much – well really anything:

paper bats on wall for Halloween

I wanted to add more but tried to show some restraint.

I was planning on making some quick Halloweeny pillows for the settee but then the monster cold hit me last night and that wasn’t happening. Maybe I’ll get some whipped up this weekend. Or maybe I’ll just sleep. :)

Our skeleton friend hangs out to greet our visitors:

sparkly skeleton

He’s just chillin’. Feet crossed. He should really close that mouth though. So rude. :)

He doesn't show up great so I may spray him with some sparkly silver spray paint to brighten him up a bit.

I love using paper for Halloween decorations – it’s cheap and takes up hardly any storage space – you can’t beat it! If you have a Silhouette or similar vinyl cutting machine it takes no time at all to create these. If you don’t, you can usually find them at craft stores and I found a TON of different options at the Dollar Tree last fall and this fall.

There are also printable options online – I found a great resource here with a bunch of Halloween images you can print and cut out on your own.

What’s your go-to Halloween decor? Does your family get into the really spooky stuff or does it stay cute and lighthearted?

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  1. I hand cut bats for my daughter's school decorations. And love that skeleton lounging around!

  2. love the bats on the wall and windows! have those mice running on my stairs too!

  3. I have wanted to the bats for so long! Maybe next year...Love your decorations. Hope you get to feeling better soon. Those colds that sneak up in one day are the worst!

  4. Colony of bats if you were wondering. I love the lampshades. That is fun!

  5. A group of bats is called a colony. :-)

  6. Hi there! I am in the same boat...I have two separate bins for fall and Halloween. Lately I have ended up only with fall and skipped the Halloween decorations altogether :(
    I really like your silhouette spiders and web idea through in the lamp shades! Unfortunately they won't show through mine, but it's super neat. I think paper decorations are so sweet too.

  7. Gaggle of bats is soo much more fun to say that colony of bats. I think if they are Halloween decorations, they should be called a gaggle of bats! I have bats all over our entry way too. I got pre-cut foam bats at Target and it was SO easy (and cheap!) to decorate for Halloween. Love the spiders inside the lampshades too. Oh and the skeleton just hanging out is too fun!
    Feel better.

  8. Hi Sarah, very cute! I was wondering if you got the amber glass lamp at Tar-jay? Thank you!

  9. Your house looks great! I LOVE your settee...it's perfect for that spot!

  10. You are very creative! I get inspiration I don't always comment I take peeks all the time.

  11. Your decorations are so fun! I love the mice and pumpkins on the staircase! I think displaying fall decorations first then editing/layering with Halloween decor is perfect (and much easier)!

  12. Love the subtle touches! The lampshade spiders and the mice and bats are my favorite! I definitely want to add more fall/Halloween decorations in the future as well!

  13. Love all of your Halloween decor, but the mice really crack me up:)

  14. I start fall decorating around the first of September, and then early in October I add in a few Halloween things(like signs and a spooky light-up jack-o-lantern wearing my daughter's witch hat!) I don't do a ton of Halloween decorating, per se, but I love fall decor and the whole house is "fallified". This year I also did a corner display with those great vintage apothecary labels on old bottles and jars...very spooky! All of your ideas are so cute!

  15. I love your decorations, however the bats kinda of creep me out. I know, I know, they're only paper. I must tell you I bought those same Martha Stewart mice on clearance at Michael's a few years ago, however I have never used them because after I got them home I realized our stairs are carpeted. Duh! What was I thinking?! Martha Stewart I ain't!

  16. I love all your Halloween decorations, but what I really adore are the Martha Stewart mice. I think I have to copy that. Your stairs look just so magical with the mice and pumpkins and candles.
    Btw really wonderful stairs. Have a nice weekend and happy Halloween!

  17. Wow love the windows with the bats, so cute! And the lamp idea is so fun, my kiddos would get such a kick out of that :)

  18. Sarah, love all your Halloween decor! So fun! I know you sweet boy is loving it, too. Happy Halloween!

  19. how you get to set all of them?

  20. Love how the bats on the windows make them look like they are outside! Cute

  21. I love the bats! We did bats this year too. The lamp shadows are too cute.

  22. I love, love Halloween! Lucky for me, one of my little guys celebrate their birthday on this spooky day. Each birthday we have a huge bash and the theme is always related to Halloween so that we can use the already present decorations. Last year was pirates...which we found a lot of pirate skeletons and skulls and swords...and there is never a lack of decorations to choose from.! This year he is into Scooby-Doo, how perfect is that?!!! I always decorate for Fall and then after our Canadian Thanksgiving, add in our Halloween. Take care!

  23. You did a spooktacular job! and congrats on your props from Hooked on Houses! Youre the best!

  24. I always get a kick out of your mice and the skeleton sitting on the sofa. I did similar bats this year. Mine were a Martha Stewart that I picked up over the winter months.

  25. Fall is my FAVORITE season and I would have loved some of these ideas a month ago! I'm just now stumbling across your blog so I'm a little late in the game haha. Maybe I'll still try a few of these anyway...not sure where you're located, but here in Illinois it was 60 degrees for Thanksgiving so I'm totally fine with clinging onto fall a little longer :)


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