Halloween is almost here. Every store you go in has Halloween-themed decor, food ideas, crafts, and candy. Instead of blowing your savings on every must-have item, however, throw a Halloween party on a budget this year.
Kids’ or adults’ Halloween parties can be successful without spending a fortune. I’ve put together a plan you can implement for your own upcoming Halloween parties, including décor, food, and tips to save money on all the above.
Step 1: Pick your theme
This is the first thing to do once you have a date set. Do you want a scary party or a lighthearted Halloween party? Do you like ghosts and goblins or love pumpkins?
Picking the theme for your Halloween party narrows down your choices and gives you a color scheme. Some popular Halloween party color combos include:
- Black and orange
- Black, orange, and purple
- Black and white
- Purple and green
- Add a metallic color
Step 2: Search for free printables
Now that you have a theme, search online to find free printables to match. We’ve created some that you can download for free right here, or you can check on Pinterest — just remember to follow The Good Stuff while you’re there! To download your free Halloween printables, click on the links below.
Step 3: Shop at home
The best way to save money is to first look around your house and see what you already own. Dig out your Halloween stuff from previous parties and see what matches your theme for this year. Repurpose items: Signs can turn into banners and props can be grouped together to form a table setting or entry area.
Better yet, get your DIY on and see what you can make. Here are a few DIY Halloween party ideas to get you started.
Step 4: Visit the dollar store
The local dollar store or the dollar aisles at many of our favorite stores are filled with seasonal items. You can get everything from table decor to paper products for $1-$3 dollars per item.
Step 5: Gather everything together
Now the creativity starts. Bring home and gather all your dollar store items, printables, and finds from home on a table. Group each item into one of the following categories so you can easily see if you’re missing anything:
- Table decor
- Room decor
- Entry decor
- Place settings
- Party favors
Step 6: Borrow missing items from friends
If you notice anything missing, ask a friend for help. You might remember a cute little item your friend had at their party last year. If so, call and ask if you can borrow it for the evening.
Step 7: Make it a potluck
Let your guests get in on the fun by making it a potluck. Assign easy-to-bring items like appetizers, drinks, and desserts. These are easy for people to buy if they don’t want to make, and you can provide the main course.
These tasty pumpkin dishes would work perfectly at any Halloween party.
Step 8: Select your signature drink
Find the perfect signature drink for your party and offer that along with water, wine, and beer. This way you don’t have to offer a wide range of mixed drinks, which will save you money. These three takes on pumpkin ale are in perfect keeping with the fall vibe and taste delicious, too!
Step 9: Create your party food
Make a festive cake or cupcakes for your party — they can even become part of the table decor. Use mixes from the grocery store to save time, and don’t forget to check for weekly coupons to see how you can save before shopping.
Chocolate Graveyard Cake
- 1 box chocolate cake mix
- 3 eggs
- 1 can chocolate frosting
- 1 can white frosting
- 1 cup Rice Krispies®
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon shortening or coconut oil
- 6-8 Milano cookies
- Mix the chocolate recipe as directed on the package.
- Pour into a 13×9 pan that’s been coated with oil or butter. Bake as directed on the package. Remove from oven and cool.
- While the cake is cooling, lay out 5-6 Milano cookies. Melt the chocolate chips with the shortening in the microwave for 30-second intervals. With a skewer or toothpick, write “RIP” or your guests’ names on the cookies and let dry.
- Top cake with chocolate frosting, then sprinkle with crushed Rice Krispies®. Place cookies upright on top of the cake.
- Place white frosting in a plastic bag and cut off the end. Pipe 4-5 ghosts on top of the cake and place little pieces of chocolate chips to make the eyes.
Smoky White Cheddar Potato Ghost Puffs
- 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and sliced
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup smoked white cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 egg yolks
- Whole cloves
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the potatoes in a large pot, cover with water, and add the salt. Cover the pot and bring to a boil; turn down to a simmer and let the potatoes cook until tender. Drain well and transfer to a mixing bowl.
- Beat in the butter and enough hot milk to make a fluffy consistency. Add in sour cream, smoked white cheddar cheese, salt, and pepper; continue beating until smooth. Beat in the egg yolks and transfer to a cake decorating bag with a serrated tip or a plastic bag with a corner cut off.
- Pipe small ghosts onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Press cloves into each ghost for eyes. Bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until heated through.
Tomato Soup Spiderweb
Source: Fab Food
Make your own tomato soup or start with a can of your favorite. Draw three circles in the bowl with sour cream, then pull the tip of a skewer through the circles to create the spider web.