Somehow, Halloween is already just a few short weeks away. If you haven’t started decorating yet, don’t fret — you’ve still got plenty of time to create the spookiest house on the block.
However, with inflation as a common concern for shoppers, it can cause the holidays to go from a joyous time to a stressful one. To help make this particular holiday less spooky (in the not fun way), Shop TODAY spoke to two shopping and decor experts to learn about how to make the most of your space on a budget. Plus, we scoured the internet for the best Halloween decorations available under $25.
What kind of Halloween decor are people shopping for?
Lance Allen, senior merchant of decorative holiday at Home Depot, and Maraga Martens, associate vice president of merchandising at Bath and Body Works, both noted similar trends amongst shoppers this year: everyone is going big.
“I don’t know if it really feels like it’s the first fall or the first Halloween in a long time where they’re going to be able to celebrate in the right way, but they’re buying these over-the-top pieces,” Martens told us.
She said that people are looking for things that are “fun but spooky at the same time,” including things that light up, sparkle or have animation. Allen added that shoppers are also looking for items that work for general fall decor like jack-o’-lanterns and straw bales.
“It’s been such a hot summer [and] they’re ready to think fall. Pumpkin spice lattes are back, too, maybe that’s got everybody’s mind around it,” he laughed.
Tips for decorating on a budget
Both Allen and Martens mentioned that one of the best parts of Halloween is that you can build up your collection year over year and can reuse many pieces from one year to the next.
“A lot of these huge displays out there just started with one or two pieces. Figure out what theme you want to have each season going forward and get one medium-sized piece and start putting some smaller accent items around it,” Allen suggested.
Here are a few extra key tips the experts shared when it comes to Halloween decorating:
- Start with the most vital pieces. Echoing his earlier sentiment, Allen emphasized how beneficial it is to start with key parts of your theme and work around them like posable skeletons, tombstones, pumpkins, ghosts or werewolves. “You can really keep holding on to those scenes year after year and you feel like you keep getting that value out of what you purchased,” he said.
- Accessorize items you already have. Holidays don’t mean you have to completely swap out all of the decor you currently have on display. Martens says you can use whatever you already have, like a plain black or purple candle, and buy other things to accessorize it like a spooky candle holder or smaller items to surround it.
- Lights can make all the difference! If you’re on an extreme budget, Allen reminds people not to underestimate the power of lights (no pun intended). “You can really transform your yard…your patio just by hanging a strand or two of lights and putting a posable skeleton next to them,” he suggested.
Kitchen Halloween decorations under $25
Nothing’s scarier than a morning without a proper cup of coffee. Get your daily fix in with this not-so-scary Halloween-themed mug covered in (quite jolly-looking) pumpkins.
Treat yourself first thing in the morning with some tasty mini waffles in the shape of a spider web. It also comes with a recipe guide if you want to get even more creative.
Pottery Barn Pumpkin Shaped Lidded Bowls
These pumpkin-shaped bowls are so cute you almost won’t want to use them, but they’ll be a hit at every dinner party you host this season. You can complete the set with matching salt and pepper shakers, a serving platter and a soup tureen.
Pottery Barn Skeleton Hand Double Old Fashioned Glass
Your guests will get a kick out of these glasses that are wrapped in a pair of skeleton hands. There’s nothing like themed glassware to fully immerse somebody into the holiday!
Of course, we can’t forget about our furry friends who are part of the family, too! Make them some ghoulish-ly good homemade treats with this treat maker that has pumpkin and tombstone impressions.
Okay, you caught us. This one isn’t really a “decoration” per se, but you’re bound to work up an appetite while getting your space prepped and ready for the festivities. These chocolate cookies come in colorful Halloween-themed packaging and boast being gluten-free, vegan and GMO-free. Each box comes with 10 packs and they’re perfect for giving out to trick-or-treaters or just keeping for yourself (we won’t judge).
Indoor Halloween decorations under $25
Party City Spider Webs Cling Decals
Window decals are an easy (and budget-friendly) way to get ready for any holiday. For just $1, you can get 14 decals to create the illusion of creepy, crawly critters taking up residence on your window.
Party City Caution Keep Out Tape
Caution tape is a Halloween decorating classic. You can plaster it across the front door, hang pieces like streamers or dangle a long strand along a wall like garland.
Whether you want to drop a few in your Dead Man’s Punch or strategically place them on tables and mantels, it’s always good to keep a few plastic skulls on hand during spooky season. And for less than $4, you can grab a few packs to stay extra prepared.
One of the best things about Halloween is that many of the decorations can stay up throughout the entire season — like these ceramic pumpkins! At just $5 each, you can make your own little pumpkin patch right at home.
If you’re throwing a party (or just want it to feel like one inside your home on the regular), you can’t go wrong with this felt garland.
Wreaths are perfect for year-round decorations. Make it a little spooky during Halloween season with this black and orange version for the holiday. It also comes in a black and white version with skulls!
This “wheel of fate” is sure to be a hit at any party. Give it a whirl and see if you’ll get lucky by landing on a spot that says “Treats will be yours” or if you’ll have to navigate spooky waters by landing on “Prepare to be scared.”
Target’s Hyde & Eek! Boutique has several of these mini mantel decorations so you can create the tabletop Halloween town of your dreams. You can pair this with the “I Scream Shop,” haunted house, coffin club or tree and pumpkin outdoor accessory set.
Bath & Body Works Spider Branches with Base 3-Wick Candle Holder
This three-wick candle holder will make sure that any scent matches your holiday aesthetic.
Outdoor Halloween decorations under $25
Party City Gone at Last Tombstone
If you’re going for the classic cemetery look on your front lawn, Party City has got you covered with all types of tombstones for just $9. Plus right now, they’re buy four, get one free so you can take home five tombstones for under $40.
Party City The Nightmare Before Christmas Graveyard Scene Kit
This 15-piece kit will help them bring some life (or death) to a scene centered around a Disney classic, “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” It comes with everything you need to set the mood including two tombstones, two arms, four fence section, six spiders and a spider web.
Arachnophobes, beware! These realistic-looking spiders strategically placed in your front yard are sure to cause a fright.
It’s not Halloween without at least one skeleton hanging out. At under $12 each, you can put together an entire skeleton crew without shelling out the big bucks.
The fun can begin even before anyone steps in the house with this doorbell that features an animated eye that moves around to keep an “eye” on any new arrivals and plays spooky sounds to inspire fright in everyone who dare approach your doorstep (or just entertain some trick-or-treaters). It only takes three AA batteries to operate and comes with the first set so you can immediately put it up.
If you’re looking for more kid-friendly outdoor decor, these yard stake signs are perfect for the little ones. The set comes with nine different pieces featuring everything from your friendly neighborhood witch to a sweet-looking ghost.
Give guests a spooky welcome with this water-resistant doormat donning a witch taking a quick fly across the moon, “Sabrina” style. It has touch-activated LED blinking light and sounds that will hopefully send a few shivers down their spine.
Following Allen’s advice, lights are a budget-friendly way to make your outdoor space just a little bit spookier. They have three functions: constant purple, constant orange or color changing with a manual switch if you want to increase the spook factor.