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Vampire-Inspired Decor on a Budget

Your Halloween decorations shouldn't cost you an arm and a leg! 

Vampires are a big trend this year and reusing red decorations you already have on hand is a fun, unique way to "re-vamp" the typical orange and black decor scheme.

Painted Pumpkin

A black painted pumpkin is a dramatic accent to add to your party space, but adding a few drops of "blood" to the exterior really makes a statement.

Using any size pumpkin, paint the entire exterior, excluding the stem, with black "Chalkboard" paint that is available at any painting supply store.

Let dry and apply a second coat.

When the second coat is dry you can create the dripping blood effect by using red paint and an eye dropper.

Simply fill the eye dropper with red paid and let it drip down the pumpkin from the top. Add more drops as desired and let dry.

  "Smoking" Candle Holders

Clear candle holders or vases filled with some water and dry ice are a dramatic addition to your party decor. Here's how to do it:

Fill a clear glass stemmed candle holder, or any clear glass vase, halfway with water that has been dyed black.

You can dye your water black using 2 parts of green food coloring with 3 parts blue food coloring and 3 parts red food coloring. 

To the liquid, add a small chunk of dry ice. The dry ice will create an eerie fog look that will last for about ten to fifteen minutes.*

***Take care in handling the glass because, if not used properly, the extreme cold of the dry ice could cause the glass to crack. Be sure to place these decorations out of the reach of any children and away from heavily trafficked areas (i.e. tables for resting cocktails).

Flowers for Pumpkins

To make a really special Halloween centerpiece, add a simple arrangement of "Blood" red roses to the center of your pumpkin. (like in the picture above)

Simply cut the top of your pumpkin as if you were going to carve it.

Make sure the opening you create is large enough to insert a glass cylinder that will hold the roses.

Clean out all seeds from the inside.

In a glass cylinder vase filled with water, create an arrangement of all red roses that, when placed in the pumpkin, will look like they are growing from the inside of it.

A second option (or in addition) is to create an arrangement using pink or red cockscomb instead of roses. This flower has a texture that looks like brains, so the pumpkin will look like its "brains" have been exposed.

Rather than paint these pumpkins black, etch or carve a face into them to create spooky-looking jack-o-lanterns.

Red is a great color to use on your tables and with the right decorations it is perfect for Halloween.


To save money, red pillar candles that were used for Valentine''s Day or Christmas can be decorated and reused for Halloween.

You can find many great sticker appliqués at your local craft store that you can use to decorate the candles and turn them into great accents for Halloween.


You can also save money on linens for Halloween by reusing the red cloths that again, you may have leftover from Christmas or Valentine's Day. Halloween does not have to be orange or black!

Find more party planning inspirations for Halloween Decorations

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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