With Halloween coming up this weekend, it would be easy to spend a fortune getting into the spooky spirit, but if big spending isn’t in your plans, why not try some cheaper alternatives to the usual Pumpkin picking, cinema trips and expensive trick-or-treat outfits to help the little ones enjoy the weekend.
1). Pumpkin Carving / Painting
The easiest activity to celebrate Halloween is definitely Pumpkin carving, you can pick up a Pumpkin for under a £1 in some supermarkets. You won’t need any special equipment as you can use a knife you already have in the kitchen and a spoon to scoop out the inside of the Pumpkin. This is a great activity to do together, as you will have to supervise and help your little one with the carving bit and you can find lots of inspiration online for scary or funny faces.
(Photo Credit: My own)
Alternatively if you have a really little one you could try Pumpkin painting. The idea with this one is that you don’t have to carve the Pumpkin at all and your little ones can get as creative as they like with the paints. If you don’t already have some paints you will need to invest in these, but supermarkets and shops such as B&M sell paint for kids really cheap (the washable paint will work perfectly and avoid any mishaps for your furniture!)
I painted simple polka dots on mine but you can go for any colours and designs and really let the creativity flow!
(Photo Credit: My own)
2). At home cinema night
Although it’s tempting to go and watch a rerun of Hocus Pocus at the cinema or going to catch the new Addams Family film, the cinema can be expensive. Why not save some money and have an at home spooky cinema night? Disney plus has some classics on at the moment, including Hocus Pocus and Netflix and Sky also have lots on offer. If you don’t have a subscription to these sites you can usually get a free trial so make sure to utilize that to watch your favourite halloween films (kid friendly of course!)
Why not put some fairy lights or candles on to create a spooky atmosphere?
Check out some spooky Halloween Popcorn ideas to really polish off your spooky film watching!
My favourite recipe is simple:
You need: Marshmallows, M&M’s, Popcorn, Butter
Make popcorn (salted is best for this)
Melt 3 teaspoons of butter
Melt around 3 cups of mini marshmallows in to the melted butter
Pour the marshmallow mixture over the popcorn
Ensure that the popcorn is now fully covered in marshmamllow mix
Mix in the M&M’s in to the mix
Leave it to cool and enjoy!
3). Halloween Crafts
The perfect way to spend a spooky day is to do some easy crafts, from finger painting a spooky scene to making puppets there’s plenty to do.
My favourite Halloween craft I’ve seen is:
A paper bowl character- you could make multiple different fun faces!
To create a paper bowl character:
Step 1: Paint the bottom of your paper bowl with paint of choice. Let it dry completely
Step 2: Cut out your intended shape e.g. bat wings, ears and fangs from the colour card of your choosing
Step 3: glue all parts on the the paper bowl
Step 4: Repeat with a new character!
(Craft link: https://iheartcraftythings.com/halloween-craft-ideas.html)
You can also easily make halloween bunting with string and cardboard, just cut out letters to your intended phrase whether that be ‘boo’ or ‘happy halloween’ you can then decorate each letter with glitter and other crafty items like tissue paper before attaching to string and hanging up. Then you have a cute and thrifty decoration!
4). Creating your own costume
A fun and cheap alternative to buying an expensive outfit – I’ve included some ideas I’ve done over the years, what other ideas can you come up with?
Bat costume- the bat costume is probably one of the easiest to create at home. All you need is black clothing (think black T-shirt and black leggings) and two bin bags. Once you’re in your black outfit, open the bin bags and put your arms in to them to make bat wings and then you are done! You can make bat ears with a headband and cardboard for the ear parts and draw a bat face on with makeup if you want or you can stick with the bin bags!
Devil – To create a devil costume you’ll need a red base outfit (can be a dress, trousers, whatever you’ve got!)
You’ll need a headband, some red card and some glue/cello tape. With the red card cut out some Devil horn shapes and then stick them to the headband.
Then you’re basically done, for a simple yet scary outfit!
5). Local events
Take a look at your local libraries, community centres and museums who may be offering events for kids over the Halloween half term.
Lots of these venues will offer free or discounted Halloween sessions for kids so be sure to have a look at what’s on in your area. Plus a lot of them will have a educational opportunity so it’s a win win!
Hope these tips help you have a spooky yet frugal weekend, let me know if you try any of these ideas out or find a new exciting craft or costume to try!