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Tricks (and treats) to help you decorate your space!

The moment we have all been waiting for is finally here— leaves falling, (slightly) cooler temperatures, and large bins full of pumpkins at every grocery store.  Fall is finally here, and with it comes the inevitable tradition of Halloween.  While it may seem like an easy project at first, decorating can be a bit difficult— especially if you are in a smaller, shared space, like a dorm room or apartment.  Here, we’ll give you some ideas or starting places to help you find the best decorations for your own personal space— so whether you want to decorate your living space for just Halloween weekend or the entire month of October, we’ve got you covered!

Lights

Lights are arguably the easiest decoration to find and assemble— plus, they are (for the most part) budget-friendly.  A mix of orange and purple (or even green!) lights wrapped around a railing (indoor or outdoor), alongside the trim of a wall, or even hanging down on one wall as an accent act is a simple yet effective decoration.  Plus, when you turn all other lights off, your room will have the perfect dim ambience for spooky season!  (Another tip— you could get a single, colored light bulb and replace an existing light bulb in a lamp, for example, and your entire room will have new lighting!).

Artificial Pumpkins

Steering away from real pumpkins may seem like you’re taking the easy way out, but in reality, fake pumpkins can be the much better route to take.  You’ll be able to keep them for years to come, and they won’t rot either (I mean, who wants to deal with a rotting pumpkin— yuck!).  Plus, many different plastic pumpkins have different design elements such as glitter, colors, writings, or images.  This way, you can still have the classic pumpkin decoration but with a more personal and unique take. 

Wreaths and Floor Mats

Decorations like wreaths or floor mats are often overlooked because you don’t really see them while inside your living space, just on the outside.  However, this is still a really simple way to add some fall flare to your apartment that people can see coming in and out of your home— plus, you can also reuse these items for future years, too!

Window Clings

Remember those squishy, opaque shapes that your elementary school teachers stuck on their windows?  Well, believe it or not, those are still around— and can make an adorable addition to any windows (or mirrors!) in your home.  Simply peel and stick, and you’ve got an easily removable phrase or picture! 

Candy Bowls

Another simple idea for a Halloween decoration is a regular candy bowl that can serve as a table decoration and hold many other things besides candy.  After buying a bowl with any pattern/color you like, you can toss in some fake spiders, fingers, and other tiny handheld items interspersed within the candy.  A couple of these medium-sized bowls can be a great addition to your coffee table (and are also great for snacks for Halloween movie nights!).

Spider Webs

Another cheap, somewhat easy decoration is the good old-fashioned fake spider web in that crinkly, plastic packaging.  You can find these at any drugstore, and they are a super simple way to add a layer of spook and spunk to your apartment.  However, these can be a bit tricky to hang or stick to certain surfaces, so you might need some help or a bit more time devoted to this.  These can be put indoors or outdoors— either way, they are a tried-and-true decoration (and can be reused if you repackage them carefully!).

Blankets, Pillows & Other Traditional Home Décor 

Another great way to decorate if you aren’t the biggest fan of Halloween itself is to get some blankets or throw pillows that have fall colors/patterns.  This way, you can still decorate for the season of fall without having to involve any witches, zombies or skeletons.  Other items that could be included in this section include plates, napkins, place mats, tablecloths, coffee mugs, kitchen towels or candles.

fake Gravestones

If you have a small lawn or patch of grass outside of your living space, this decoration is great for the outdoors, as you can simply stick the gravestones right into your grass or lawn.  These may be reusable depending on the weather and are a simple way to spruce up the outside of your home for Halloween. 

Día de Los Muertos Decor

Día de Los Muertos occurs from Monday, November 1 to Tuesday, November 2, 2021, and is a Mexican holiday that celebrates deceased loved ones/relatives.  Many decorations for Día de Los Muertos are traditionally very colorful, and incorporate skulls, candles, and skeletons.  Incorporating some décor for this holiday into your fall decorations can bring new culture and diversity to your living space, all while showcasing some beautiful and colorful items!

Larger Decorations: Inflatables, Signs, etc.

Just because you are in a smaller space does not mean that you cannot still use some of the bigger, sometimes animated, lights or sound, type of decorations.  This could include anything from life-size skeletons to smoke machines and light projectors.  If you wish to use more bold and bigger decorations, be sure to take measurements of the area you want to put the item(s) in first, and remember to be aware of anything that is potentially flammable or has high amounts of electricity— safety first!

No matter what your Halloween decoration goals or desires are, there are options for every space and every person.  Whether you prefer witches and werewolves or skulls and skeletons, you can find a decoration of any size or kind to fit your needs— all you need to know is what look you want for your home!  (Pro tip: carefully repackage your decorations after the Halloween/fall season is over so that you can use the same ones over and over for years to come— less work for your future self!).

Danielle Wallace

South Carolina '23

Hi there! I’m Danielle, a junior Journalism major at the University of South Carolina. I love cats, 2000’s music, and Juicy Couture tracksuits. I love all things pink, and you will never see me without my nails done. Xoxo!
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