Recycling Halloween into Thanksgiving, Part 2…Outdoor Decor Redo for Zero Dollars

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Fall, Part Deux! As I said in the last Thanksgiving post, because I go a bit over the top for Halloween and Xmas, I like to chill things out a bit in between and go for a simpler look. It took me about an hour to “recycle” Halloween into Thanksgiving out front. Here’s what I did:

BEFORE: (Halloween in full force)

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I removed everything distinctly Halloween: all the black and orange, along with the crows, lights, spooky eyes, and carved pumpkins. What was left was the faux Fall foliage and “whole” (un-carved) faux pumpkins. I added some silk sunflowers I snagged from the Goodwill a couple years ago, as well as a large dried grapevine wreath separated into 4 pieces.

AFTER:

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The pots out in front were the easiest. The faux Fall leaves (originally from the thrift store) stayed in the pots. I just removed the crows and added a few silk sunflowers. (It’s too cold here already for live outdoor plants, (low of 25 tonight!) so faking it is the best we can do.)

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The two pots on the stoop were much the same, a bit of faux fall leaves wrapped around the top, a faux pumpkin (all the pumpkins are also from the thrift store for a couple bucks apiece) plopped in the middle, (no real pumpkins possible here, the ravenous squirrel army would be munching on them within minutes) and a section of dried grapevine wreath added on top. I purchased the grapevine wreath from the floral wholesaler for about $35, and have been reusing it for many years now. You will be able to find these at most hobby shops as well. With a little care they will last for many many years. (I store mine in the garden shed when not in use.)

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Next to the door, the column gets the same leaf-&-pumpkin treatment.

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The table on the other side of the door (patiently awaiting a new paint job) is just a pile of dried gourds, also left over from Halloween.

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The far end of the porch got a nice dried flower arrangement. Dried flowers are a great choice for a covered outdoor area, just make sure they don’t get wet. During the year I dry all my old flowers from indoor arrangements so I can do a few of these outside in the Fall. These dried flowers are just stuck right in the dirt in one of the pots from the garden. The old magnolia wreath laying under the pot has seen better days (I’ve had it for about 5 years) and is no longer suitable to hang on the door, but it works great here on the table. Drying your older fresh flowers is easy. Just put a few together, use a rubber band or twist tie around the bottoms of the stems, and hang them upside down in a dry, out of the way spot. Most flowers will dry well, especially those with woody stems like roses and hydrangea. Flowers like carnations and mums, not so much.

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And that’s it! A sweet and simple Fall decor design for the front yard that cost zippedy-do-dah dollars. Now I get to relax for a couple weeks, before getting all loco again for Xmas/Hanukkah/New Year’s…

 

How I Did My Yard for Halloween This Year…And it’s All on the Cheap, of Course.

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Halloweeeeen!!

Did I mention I LOVE Halloween? Here’s a look at our front yard this year…

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The Front Gate. The 2 pots are changed out every season. This year I simply added fake Fall foliage and my beloved Crow decoys. All my Fall foliage was been gathered over the years at thrift stores for a couple bucks a piece. I scored all my crow decoys on Ebay. I’ve had them for about a decade and still love using them every year. They are indestructible! I added a little orange sparkly ribbon this year. The sign on the gate was an alley find: Free!

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To the left just inside the gate is the “Ball Garden”, where I’ve added a few fake pumpkins. To the right, more fake pumpkins, and more foliage and crow decays in the tall pots. A little trick with the fake foliage: I fill the pots with real Fall leaves (we have no shortage of those this time of year!), then add the fake stuff. It helps fill in the pots visually. OK, I hear many of you purists scoffing at my fake pumpkins. Believe me, I’d have real ones if I could, but the ravenous army of squirrels around here would eat their faces off within 24 hours (unfortunately I know this from experience). So faux pumpkins it is! We’ve been collecting these over the years from various thrift stores for a few bucks a piece.

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I continue the faux pumpkins up the steps (I still need to tape down the extension cords) and onto the porch (I do like a solid theme, I guess you’d call mine “Crows & Pumpkins”). The two pots up on the stoop are also changed out for the seasons, and these I wrapped in translucent black fabric with a little orange ribbon, and there are strings of orange lights in the pots just under the crow decoys. This year I added the Glittery Black Sticks to the pots. They sparkle like crazy! The columns on either side of the stoop are simply wrapped in more orange light strings and sheer black fabric, and topped with a little of the orange ribbon..

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On the left side of the porch sits another fabulous alley find table, awaiting a paint job. I dolled it up with more of the black fabric, some old dried out gourds (I save and dry out gourds every year, after they have been used fresh on the mantle inside), and of course, another crow decoy.

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To the right of the door sits this white column, done up in similar fashion. The door itself is surrounded with more orange string lights draped over with more of the translucent black fabric. I snagged the Fall wreath at the thrift store, and added a bit of the black fabric and orange ribbon (after Halloween, just remove the fabric and ribbon and it’s perfect for Thanksgiving!) The image above the door is just vintage crows and pumpkin clip-art I printed onto gloss photo paper on my home printer. (The porch is covered, so no moisture can get at it)

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My favorite part this year are my home-made Monster Eyes that blink at night. They look great! We always save one of the faux pumpkins for the porch light, using a compact florescent of course so there is no fire risk. Here are a couple more night shots:

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Almost everything in the yard came from the thrift store or is home-made. The only things I bought this year are the spool of orange ribbon and the sticks and glitter paint. Everything can be reused for years to come.

Next time, the inside of the house!

How did you decorate for Halloween? I’d love to hear about it in the “Leave a Reply/Comment section below.