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October 31

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How to Have a Budget-Friendly Halloween

By Cassie

October 31, 2022

Halloween, Halloween Decorations

Halloween decorations on a budget are just the tip of the ice burg.  It can be so overwhelming trying to create the amazing holiday memories you hope for without spending tons of money or countless hours preparing.  And let’s face it, with the winter holidays just around the corner, who has the time or budget for that? Whether Halloween is your fave or you’re just looking to take it up a notch with minimal investment you’ll find just what you’re looking for in this post.

Halloween Decorations on a Budget:  Tips for Fun & Frightful Festivities

You haven’t lived on the edge if you’ve never tried carving jack-o-lanterns with 5 kids.  This hours-long activity was the foundation for our Halloween decorating for many years.  And while pumpkins aren’t all that expensive when you consider the investment of time, having to repurchase every year, and the amount of waste created, it just didn’t make much sense for our busy family.  So, we made a few simple changes to our Halloween decorating that might work for your family too

Multi-Purpose Pumpkins

I’m not sure if anyone out there loves pumpkin as much as I do but this delicious and nutritious treat is amazing in soup, and baked goods of all kinds (and if it’s your jam you can even make your own pumpkin spice latte).  Rather than carving pumpkins consider grabbing some smaller pie pumpkins and painting them instead.  These can serve as cheap Halloween party decorations, and then you can transform them into the base ingredient for some of your favorite fall delicacies. Simply scrub them down and roast them up after the holiday and you can freeze the puree in one-cup portions for up to 3 months (mine is always gone within a month).

Decorate for Fall

Instead of decorating specifically for Halloween why not decorate for fall?  This will save time, money, and storage space.  Consider using leaves, hay, and gourds of all kinds from early September through Thanksgiving.  If you’re feeling extra creative, you can even repurpose some of that hay by stuffing some old clothes and creating a spooky scarecrow, these are such fun Halloween decorations on a budget.

Buy it Once

Most holiday decorations have faux alternatives.  While they may be a bigger investment up front you can repurpose them for years which saves you money in the long run.  To save big, grab your decorations after the holiday has passed, and to save time, take pictures of where everything goes so you can set up quickly or even delegate the work to others.

Get the Kids in on the Fun

Many common crafting and household items can be used to make your own Halloween decorations.  This is a great way to keep the kids occupied, create fun memories and traditions, and get the house decorated all at the same time.  It’s a win-win-win!

Budget Halloween Costumes: Quick Creative Costumes for All

Halloween costumes are an essential part of the holiday but that doesn’t mean they have to be expensive.

Keep it Simple

There is no need to buy the piles of accessories that go along with Halloween costumes and these items can really add to the bottom line.  Instead, take inspiration from store-bought items and recreate them using what you have around the house.  And keep in mind that an entire costume can be made from things you already have.  It’s always fun for kids and adults alike to dress up in specialty or period clothing like bridal gowns or bell bottoms, or to even try out wearing themed onesie jammies as a costume.  You may be surprised at what you can find in grandma’s closet or the local thrift store that can be utilized as a Halloween costume.

Pass it On

Costumes are much better made than they were years ago and can be passed on to younger kids, friends, or family members.  I like to store our more generic costumes with our decorations, so I know what I have and don’t have to spend hours searching for them.  If you don’t have a bunch of kids like I do, you can always host a Halloween Costume Swap Party with other moms in your family, friend group, or community.  Make it fun with some yummy snacks and social time.

Play Dress Up

Dress-up clothes make the best Halloween costumes and they also provide hours of fun make-believe time which is so beneficial to brain development.  Rather than buying costumes specifically for Halloween encourage your littles to go in their favorite dress-up outfit or opt for dress-up clothes that can be reused for playtime after the holiday

Spooky Delicious Halloween Party Food on a Budget

Log out of Pinterest, you won’t find what you’re looking for there!  Listen, I get it, it’s one of my favorite places to get ideas and recipes too but it’s also a HUGE time suck.  And let’s face it, a lot of the content there requires Martha Stewart-level equipment and time.  Plus, I rarely make all the things I pin and often find myself feeling overwhelmed.

So… I did a little homework for you.  If you’re looking for an amazing variety of food for a Halloween party on a budget, check this out!

And remember that healthy food options on Halloween are always a good idea.  There are tons of sweets and treats already available so balancing that out with some fresh veggies and dip is always a great idea.  

Enjoy!

The holidays always present additional work and expense and it’s easy to become stressed and overwhelmed.  Stay mindful of the purpose of Halloween… FUN!  Let go of the pressure to have perfect holidays, perfect costumes, and perfect decorations.  Instead, focus on making memories and enjoying yourself!

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