You carve a pumpkin most years - but why not impress the kids and create something extra special this Halloween? From grisly games and fearsome food to wicked craft projects, here's how to make this Halloween simply spooktacular.
Paper plate masks
Encourage the little ones to make their own masks. All you need are paper plates and a few craft materials, such as coloured tissue paper, glitter, glue, and mini plastic spiders for finishing touches. Cut out two holes for the eyes, one for the nose and mouth and string through some elastic at each side of the plate, for younger children to decorate. Remember to create your mask on the bottom side of the paper plate. This way the edges will "round" against the face when done. A quick search on YouTube should bring up some easy-to-follow demos.
Why buy shop-bought decorations when you can make something much better at home? Search online, and you can find fantastically creepy labels to download for free. Simply print, cut out and apply to glass storage jars or vases – then fill with cotton wool balls, plastic spiders and a glow stick, or add spooky treats like eyeball sweets or jelly snakes. Group them together with some fake cobwebs for extra spooky style points.
Slime is easy to make. You'll need two cups of water, ½ cup of cornstarch and some green food colouring. Boil the water in a saucepan and add the cornstarch, stirring continuously. Once mixed, add the food colouring and stir. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Once made, slime is the perfect addition to a little box of horrors...
Little box of horrors
A game of 'what's in the box?' is guaranteed to get them squealing. Cut out a hole at one end of a shoebox – just large enough for a hand to reach through - and cover the box and lid separately. Have the kids leave the room and fill the box with a mystery item and replace the lid. The children then take it in turns to guess what's inside using touch alone. Cooked pasta mixed with boiled eggs is a good one to try.
The supermarkets are full of witch and ghost-shaped cookies at this time of year but making your own can be lots of fun. Invest in some Halloween-themed cookie cutters to make biscuits and cakes – or use them to make sandwiches more fun. A few drops of red food colouring can give most things a gruesome touch!
You might be surprised by what you can achieve with some black card and a few spooky accessories. Cut-out rat shapes from card and place them along skirting boards – or find a branch from the garden and hang cut-out paper bats using cotton thread and use to create a window display.
Do you plan to get crafty this Halloween? Share your tips and ideas below...