Home & Garden

5 ideas for achieving tasteful Halloween decor

Author: Canadian Living

Home & Garden

5 ideas for achieving tasteful Halloween decor

Halloween may seem kitsch and quirky, but it's also a holiday that's grown increasingly sophisticated. And while there's a place for paper ghosts, all things orange, and dry ice, there's also room for glamour. That's why we spoke with Lisa Canning, Interior Stylist of Lisa Canning Interiors, who gave us her tips for keeping Halloween tasteful and unique.

Related: Quiz: What's your decor personality?

1. Take into account your existing decor
Before you buy anything, Canning suggests knowing your space. "I think the biggest mistake people make for any season is not taking into account their regular decor," she begins. "They throw together pieces that fit the season, but not might have any relationship to their current colour scheme. So you can still be festive for the season, but keep in mind your colour palette and the size of your space."

2. Opt for classic black and white

Despite Halloween's penchant for orange, Canning recommends using neutrals to keep the holiday classy. "You can get a lot of pieces that are black and white, and black and white tends to be quite simple to add into your decor," she offers. "Halloween can actually be quite sophisticated. I've seen some beautiful sophisticated Halloween themed parties that incorporate a lot of black, a lot of grey, a lot of white, and a lots of textures – even a lot of sparkle."

3. Use statement pieces that also transition well
Halloween is the perfect time to pick up accents you wouldn't normally use. "This is your opportunity to do something very dramatic and theatrical because the holiday calls for it," Canning stresses. "Oversize pieces, really weird and interesting, like silver skulls. They work very well for Halloween, and then you can use it as part of a hip and modern translation for Christmas."


Page 1 of 2 --  Pumpkins and jack-o'-lanterns are always a big Halloween trend, but they don't always have to be spooky and orange. Lisa shares her take on the pumpkin trend (think: colourful and sparkly!) on page 2.
"I encourage purchasing items that either translate through the years or through various holidays," she continues. "And think of having black items as decor accents. A black candlestick holder is super fun for Halloween with cobwebs and candles, but those black candleholders can still translate. So you can get theatrical through dollar store finds like fake cobwebs, but then you're still getting great value for your dollar by integrating the candlesticks into your normal off-season decor."

4. Limit festive decor to a concentrated space
To avoid feeling overwhelmed by the holiday, Canning suggests concentrating on one area only. "I would reserve kitsch to a percentage of your decor," she says. "Like candlesticks. Group them together on a mantle, and if you light them, you can create the ambience that Halloween calls for. And if your focus is just the mantle, you go all out, but that's really all you do for that particular season. Of course, everybody's got their own comfort level, but you can design holidays the same way you design a room."

5. Make one item the focal point
To help keep decor concentrated, build your theme around one piece. "One really quick and simple tip is taking a tray – a large oversize tray that you can pick up anywhere – and then focusing the vignette on the tray," Canning offers. "And you can make it really fun. I've seen great things done with candle wax and then of course, spiders and pumpkins."

"Another big trend is painted pumpkins," she adds. "So rather than having an orange pumpkin, you can spray paint your pumpkin various colours; different colour pumpkins including lots of glitter pumpkins. Again, glitter is something that can transition really well from your Thanksgiving decor."

Ready to start decorating? Take a look at our 10 favourite decor items for a super-stylish Halloween!


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5 ideas for achieving tasteful Halloween decor

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