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Halloween Crafts | Make Haunted Houses from Recycled Materials

Halloween Crafts | Make Haunted Houses from Recycled Materials
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If you celebrate Halloween, it’s time to start decorating!  These haunted houses can be made using mostly recycled materials and therefore are inexpensive to make.  They can also be combined with your existing Halloween decor  to create a table centerpiece, a mantel decoration, or a windowsill display.

Haunted Houses with battery operated tea lights
Photo/Art by Bonnie Thomas
Haunted Houses with battery operated tea lights

Materials to Make Haunted Houses:

  • Recycled cardboard boxes from food items
  • Newspaper
  • Cellophane or clear plastic (can be torn off billing envelopes or junk mail, pasta boxes, or even plastic sandwich bags )
  • Glue
  • Scotch tape
  • Silver glitter
  • Black paper
  • Scissors
  • Black Sharpie marker
  • White colored pencil
  • 1 Cotton ball (optional)
  • Battery operated tea lights

Materials to Make Haunted Houses:

Initial steps in making a Haunted House
Photo/Art by Bonnie Thomas
Initial steps in making a Haunted House
  1. Trim the top flaps from the boxes.
  2. Glue newspaper to the outside of the boxes.   Allow the glue to dry before moving on to the next step.
  3. Cut the tops of the boxes at an angle to make a roof pitch if you like.
  4. You will need to have room for a battery operated tea light to fit in the house.  If your house is not wide enough you can cut an opening into the back of the house to slide the tea light in.
  5. Cut windows and/or doors from the houses.
  6. Apply a thin line of glue to the windows and/or door trim.  Sprinkle silver glitter onto the glue and allow the glue and glitter to dry.
  7. Shake off any excess glitter from the houses.
  8. Cut clear plastic to fit behind your windows frames.  The plastic needs to be a little bigger than the window.
  9. Use your Sharpie marker to draw window frames and anything spooky you want to see in your window.  You can draw bats, spiders, creepy shadows, or spiderwebs.
  10. Use tape to attach the plastic in the window frames. Tape them to the inside of the house.
  11. Cut black paper into rooftops and shadows for the outside of the house.  If you have a white colored pencil you can add details to the roof.  Glue these pieces onto the house.
  12. Tear off wisps of cotton and tape or glue them to the inside of the windows if you want to make a cobweb effect.
  13. Insert battery operated tea lights into the houses.



Haunted House display
Photo/Art by Bonnie Thomas
Haunted House display
Bonnie Thomas


Bonnie Thomas


Bonnie Thomas shares her ideas and instructions for simple Yankee crafts. Bonnie Thomas works full time as a child and family therapist in Southern Maine and is also an established artist and author. She has published two books via Jessica Kingsley Publishing, titled Creative Coping Skills for Children: Emotional Support Through Arts and Crafts Activities and Creative Expression Activities for Teens: Exploring Identity Through Art, Craft and Journaling. Don't miss her latest book, How to Get Kids Offline, Outdoors, and Connecting With Nature
Updated Monday, October 7th, 2013
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