Haunted House Ghosts

Invite the phantoms of Halloweens past to a seance at your doorstep.
Haunted House Exterior

An all-white welcome puts a ghostly pall on the porch. Silky fabric ghosts hung at different heights with fishing line wave eerily in the breeze, and a scattering of white pumpkins lines the porch steps. If white pumpkins aren't available, spray-paint traditional orange ones.

Supplies for Each Ghost

  • 7-foot length of clothesline wire
  • Padded clothes hanger
  • Two 3-foot lengths of polyethylene foam pipe insulation to fit 3/4-inch pipe
  • Heavy-duty clear packing tape
  • Bubble wrap
  • Plastic-foam wig head
  • Recycled white dress with tulle or other sheer, flowing fabric (look for old prom or wedding dresses at thrift stores)
  • 20-pound test fishing line
  • Latex, rubber, or white fabric gloves
  • Cotton balls
  • White masks (optional)
  • Translucent trash bags: 1/2-mil or less
  • Glue gun and hotmelt adhesive
  • Screw eyes, nails, or push pins (for flying ghost) or tall candelabra (for standing ghost)

Instructions

  1. For the arms, wrap the center of the clothesline wire six times around the padded area of the hanger so an equal length of wire extends beyond each of the hanger's ends.
  2. Slide a piece of pipe insulation over each end of the wire and up onto the padded area of the hanger.
  3. Use packing tape to connect and secure the pipe insulation at the center of the hanger.
  4. Straighten the hanger hook.
  5. For the torso, drape a piece of bubble wrap in the desired length over the hanger, letting it fall over the front and back of the hanger. Push the straightened hook through the wrap.
  6. Add as many layers of bubble wrap as needed for fullness. Tape the front layers to the back just below the hanger. Insert the straightened hook into the center bottom of the plastic-foam head; hot-glue in place. Use tape and glue to secure the head to torso.
  7. Arrange the dress or fabric on the assembled body.
  8. To aid in assembly, suspend the ghost with fishing line at the neck and each arm. Attach enough extra line to accommodate the ghost's final location and height.
  9. Shred and tear the dress with a scissors, cutting off some pieces of the fabric. Glue strips of the torn fabric to the head for hair.
  10. Cut the arms to the desired length. Stuff the fingers and hands of the gloves with cotton balls. Slip the stuffed gloves onto the arms and secure with tape. If fabric gloves are used, bend and glue the fingers in place.
  11. Drape the arms with torn fabric; glue in place. Continue to tear and attach fabric for a ghostlike effect. Cut, shred, and tear pieces of the trash bags and glue on where needed to fill out the figure.
  12. Bend arms to the desired shape. Place a white mask on the head if desired. For a flying ghost, insert screw eyes, hooks, or pushpins into the soffit or ceiling and suspend the ghost with fishing line. Use extra lengths of fishing line to prevent it from spinning. For a standing ghost, drape the ghost over a tall candelabra and secure with tape.