I absolutely love easy front yard Halloween decorations. I am not in the least bit artistic, so the method I am about to show you is both easy and cheap! This method does take a little bit if time, but these are decorations that are easy to make, easy to store, and can be used year after year!
I first saw this style of decoration in the the Martha Stewart Living Magazine, October 2005. On the cover was a silhouette of a witch and her three cats. It was brilliant! Simple, elegant, and most importantly… easy to make.
That year, using her downloadable templates, I made the witch and her three cats out of plywood. The template was remarkably easy to cutout with a jigsaw. I was hooked! The following years I would add pieces here and there, including a haunted house.
This year hubby and I decided to rip out the front lawn and add bee and butterfly friendly plants, along with a dry riverbed. This of course meant I would need to add a few more silhouettes to the display. This year we added five fish skeletons swimming down the river, and three zombie children hanging out on the riverbanks waiting to steal a few pieces of candy from Trick-or-treaters.
For Martha Stewart’s Witch and Cat lawn ornaments you can click here for the template and instructions. One thing I would suggest is after you have painted the silhouettes black, outline them in white paint. It will make them more visible at night. Lights behind the silhouettes will do part of the job, but the white outline really makes it pop.
Using what I had learned from making Martha Stewart’s witch and cats I realized how easy it can be. I started with the fish. I Googled fish skeleton silhouette, and came up with all sorts of options. I chose the one I did based on its simplicity. I knew I would need to trace, cut, and finally paint the image, so I didn’t want it to be too intricate. Plus I would be doing more than one of each, and I wanted this to be fun, and not become a chore.
Once I picked my design I printed it out and laid it on a piece of foam board.
Using a dull pencil and pressing firmly I outlined the fish design. Once the printed copy is removed, you can see the outline pressed on the foam board. Retrace the outline in sharpie so that you can clearly see it. Next it is time to cut out your design with an exact-o knife. Try to cut it out in one piece and save both versions of the template.
You will need to use the top piece to outline the shape of the fish you will cut out of plywood.
Once you cut this piece out, paint it white. Be sure to use exterior paint. Wait for it to dry fully.
Using the stencils and a sharp pencil, trace the image onto the painted plywood. I found going over the pencil outline with a paint pen made painting it much easier.
Next, grab yourself a paint brush, black exterior paint and get to work. A little beverage doesn’t hurt either. Paint the fish on both sides so that you will have options on where you want to display them.
To display the fish, pre-drill a hole on the bottom and use a sturdy metal rod to stick it in the ground.
I repeated this same process with two different fish designs as well as three zombie children. Using simple solar puck lights I was able to light them up in the front yard. Hubby used three sets of blue LED curtain lights for the river. I am really happy with the way it turned out. I also love the fact that the river lights will be perfect for my Christmas display! But that’s a different post. I hope you enjoyed my easy front yard Halloween decorations and…HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!