Halloween is right around the corner so I want to share my outdoor Halloween decoration ideas with you. I used to do a decorating job in the San Francisco Bay Area for 15 years to celebrate this wacky holiday. Now that I live in Tucson, I no longer work on this project, but it sure is fun to look back at all these delightfully scary Halloween yard decorations.
“Halloween was confusing. All my life my parents said, ‘never take candy from strangers’. And then they dressed me up and said, ‘go beg for it.’” – Rita Rudner
The lady of the house was crazy for Halloween, which is putting it mildly! The outdoor decorations in her front yard slowly expanded over time and had dedicated storage space in her garage and attic.
Ghosts, zombies, skeletons, black cats, purple trees with limbs that move, fog machines, the grim reaper, rats, spiders, pumpkins, mums, butlers, maids and skeletons that scream out frightening cries in the night – you name it – it’s all here.
The front porch and yard decorations that you see here have been collected and re-used for years. They come from wholesale display houses, retail catalogues, the San Francisco Flower Market, the Los Angeles Mart and even K-Mart, Sears and Orchard Supply Hardware.
This whole Halloween yard display is reuse at its finest!
Some of these Halloween yard decorations were expensive but many were not. You don’t need to break the bank to have a welcoming and delightful front porch display.
Many years ago some of the decor took flight over the Pacific Ocean when a fierce storm rolled in the day before Halloween. Those that remained look all the more authentic tattered and dirt stained. How’s ever heard of a clean ghoul?!
Here are some scary outdoor Halloween decorating ideas which I hope inspire you for your own yard and front door. These are the best Halloween yard decorations I’ve ever worked with, and they’re perfect to put on display all month long to greet trick or treaters and Halloween party guests.
Find your witches’ hat and broom and get ready to take off!
“WHEN WITCHES GO RIDING AND BLACK CATS ARE SEEN, THE MOON LAUGHS AND WHISPERS, TIS NEAR HALLOWEEN.” – UNKNOWN
Front Porch Decor
Kids and adults love this decorated front porch. There’s so much to see and hear as many of the figures move and talk. A mixture of fall garlands adorn the porch railings and pumpkins and squashes line each step staying up right through Thanksgiving.
I’ve done a post on How To Reuse Halloween Front Porch Decor to make it look like new.
TIP: The ghoulish figures spanning the length of front porch are tied together and to the porch posts with fishing line. They have movement and flutter in the wind but stay facing the street and walkway. Otherwise, they spin like crazy and the effect just isn’t the same.
TIP: This house got a new paint job at one point in time. We protected the railing from wire marks by first covering it with saran wrap and then with soft rubber open-cell material to line drawers over that. It also helped the garland to grip on and stay in place.
Where to Buy Front Porch Halloween Decorations:
1 – Lifesize Evette Witch / 2 – Farmhouse Hanging Witch Ghost / 3 – Foggy Halloween Cauldron / 4 – Standing Black Cat Silhouette / 5 – “Enter If You Dare” Luminaries / 6 – Foolish Mortals Hooked Door Mat / 7 – Grapevine Spiders
“WHEN BLACK CATS PROWL AND PUMPKINS GLEAM, MAY LUCK BE YOURS ON HALLOWEEN.” – UNKNOWN
Frightening Graveyard Decor
Because the lawn is artificial, all the decor is attached with fishing line and wire to posts on painted plywood platforms. The headstones are made out of a variety of materials including styrofoam, fiberglass, resin and plastic.
Some of the figures are ones which did not weather that storm too well so on the ground they lie. I would always in some faded hydrangea flowers from the garden for that “Morticia Addams” touch.
TIP: Position some of your tombstones at an angle – it makes the graveyard look older and gives a spooky effect.
TIP: Tatter and slit the ghosts and ghouls more than they already are. That way they’ll really flutter in the wind and look all the more eery!
“THE TIME HAS COME FOR THE WITCHES DANCE
AND THE SPOOKS FROM FAR AND NEAR
WILL GATHER AND MAKE MERRY
FOR HALLOWEEN IS HERE” – UNKNOWN
Where to buy Spooky Graveyard Decorations:
1- SKELETON GRIM REAPER / 2- HANGING GHOST / 3- CRAZY BONEZ SKELETON VULTURE /4- SKELETON DOG / 5- SKELETON STAKES / 6- HAUNTED CLOTH / 7- HIGH DENSITY FOG JUICE / 8- FOG MACHINE / 9- POSE-N-STAY SKELETON
1- POLYRESIN TOMBSTONES / 2- BLACK CROWS / 3- DURABLE TOMBSTONE / 4 – GHOULISH MASKS TOTEM / 5- VAMPIRE BLOOD CROSS TOMBSTONE / 6- BAG OF SKELETON BONES / 7- SKULL STATUE / 8- VAMPIRE DEMON TOMBSTONE / 9- CROOKED STONE TOMBSTONE SET / 10- BLOODY ARMS / 11- SKELETON HAND / 12- CREEPY CLOTH / 13 – HALLOWEEN CEMETERY FENCE
Spooky Sleigh Decor
Now I know not everyone has a sleigh in their front yard but because it’s there – we decorate it. At Christmas time, Santa sits in the sleigh pulled by 3 large reindeer to the delight of the young children in the neighborhood.
For Halloween and Thanksgiving, it’s decked with artificial fall garlands and bittersweet branches which have been around for years. We filled in with lots of pumpkins and mums bought in nearby Half Moon Bay.
TIP: Covered and uncovered florist wire and fishing line (see in “Basic Supplies” below) are indispensable when decorating.
“THERE ARE THREE THINGS I’VE LEARNED NEVER TO DISCUSS WITH PEOPLE: RELIGION, POLITICS, AND THE GREAT PUMPKIN.” – LINUS, IT’S THE GREAT PUMPKIN CHARLIE BROWN
Basic Supplies for Halloween Yard Decorations:
Here are a few tips which should make your decorating endeavors a lot easier:
1. Fishing line is essential to a job like this – we usually go through 3 rolls of it!
2. Have plenty of covered wire and green wire on hand also.
3. Map the electrical before you start connecting. This job has a lot plugged in which needs to be figured out in advance. There is only so much which can be plugged into an outlet.
4. Put all your things electric on exterior timers. It saves you from having to plug and unplug them every evening. Plus, it conserves energy.
5. Pack all your ghouls, goblins, headstones, foliages, rats, bats, and other Halloween decorating accouterment away as carefully as possible. Make sure they are completely dry before doing so. You’ve made an investment and want them to look just as good next year!
I’ll leave you with one last quote:
“I’LL BET LIVING IN A NUDIST COLONY TAKES ALL THE FUN OUT OF HALLOWEEN. ” – CHARLES SWARTZ
Note: This post was originally published in 10/2016 & was updated in 9/2020. We’ve updated the products in September 2021 to give you the opportunity to shop for the latest Halloween decor!
Wishing you a festive fall season. We hope these outdoor Halloween decoration ideas are inspiring and have given you a few delightfully scary ideas for Halloween yard displays!
Want More Fall Decorating Tips? Check These Out!
- Autumn Decorating Ideas For A Festive Fall Season
- The Best Plants That Will Make Your Home Festive For Fall
- 5 Porches That’ll Welcome Fall To Your Home
- Fall Readymade Natural Wreaths
- Thanksgiving Centerpiece Ideas With Natural Elements
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