When done right, good Halloween party decorations and props can give your adult guests genuine chills they’ll remember long after the party. One of the most effective ways to give your decor more psychological impact is to choose a theme. A coherent theme helps set the mood better than a collection of random decorations.
Straight Out of a Horror Movie
If you’re a movie buff, this theme will be easy to create. Say your favorite scary movie is Psycho. Set up your entry way to look like the lobby of the Bates motel, complete with guest book. In the living room, dress up a corpse or skeleton prop as the late Mrs. Bates. And don’t forget to put the remains of poor Marion Crane in the shower. With the horror movie set theme, details really help. Using the Psycho theme as an example, you might hang a lenticular changing portrait in your living room and label it “Mother.”
Even those who claim they “don’t believe in ghosts” still get a little spooked by seemingly paranormal activity when the mood is right. To really rock the ghost theme, don’t skimp on your ghost decorations and props. Hanging bed sheets won’t cut it. What you want, at least for your most visible ghosts, are specters that look like they used to be human. It’s the twisted faces, pale skin and hollow eyes that really creep people out. If you have some room in your Halloween decorations budget, look into a ghost illusion prop. These project semi-transparent, 3-D figures that look disturbingly realistic. Ghost illusion DVDs will get you a similar effect cheaper.
A Night with the Devil
This is another theme that’s more about chills than gore. To get the most out of this theme, set up a devil prop that’s as life-like as you can find. Place him where your guests will be spending most of their time, whether that’s in the living room or outside around a bonfire. To compliment your devil, pick up some ghouls and demons. Decent motion- or sound-activated animated demons can be found for less than $30. Hang up a few winged demons and leave standing ones lurking in dark corners. Placing one outside on a window ledge looking in also creates a nice creepy effect.