Halloween Decorations

Heads on a Platter

Putting your heads together to discuss decorating is fun, but while you're talking, why not get "a head" of the game by making some nasty noggins? These shrunken heads are inexpensive and easy to make, and they can be made up to two weeks before you're planning to use them.

Preheat your oven to 150
°F. Using apples, potatoes, beets, or rutabagas (with the stems and leaves cut off), have your children carve out eye and mouth shapes using a spoon or, with your help, a butter knife. The cuts should go about 1/2 inch wide and deep to ensure the head's "melted" facial appearance. When you're finished carving, set the heads on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil and slip them into the oven overnight.

These shrunken heads are a perfect centerpiece for your Halloween party.
These shrunken heads are a perfect
centerpiece for your Halloween party.

When the heads have cooled, place them on a platter for a table centerpiece. If you'd like something wackier, screw them on bamboo skewers and place them in houseplants, atop decapitated doll bodies, or even on a scarecrow's neck. To get really creepy, make hovering heads by skipping the bamboo skewers and stringing a needle and fishing line through the center of the head from bottom to top. Cut the line to the desired loop length, make a knot, and hang heads from the ceiling out of reach of your guests.

Want to incorporate all of your favorite Halloween frights -- like ghosts, witches, moons, stars, and bats -- into one Halloween decoration? You're in luck -- the High Spirits Mobile on the next page fits the thrill.

Want to scare up more fun Halloween ideas? Try these:

  • Halloween Crafts: Not done being creative? These are great do-it-yourself projects for Halloween, from trick-or-treat boxes to candy jewelry.
  • Kids' Halloween Costumes: Try on our unique costume ideas for your ghosts and goblins.
  • Halloween Masks: Want an easy way to dress up for Halloween? Try a mask instead of a costume. Check out our selection of monstrous masks.
  • Halloween Games: Play more than 20 spooktacular games to entertain kids and adults alike.
  • Halloween Recipes: Learn how to make dozens of bewitching Halloween treats.
  • How Halloween Works: Traces the popular holiday’s Celtic roots to American traditions celebrated today.
  • Pumpkin Carving Patterns: What's Halloween without pumpkin carving? Check out these great pumpkin carving patterns.