Thursday, September 19, 2013

Halloween Haunted Yard with Black Lights

We've hosted a few fun Halloween parties throughout the years.  The more we do it the more DIY things we find to do and add to our collection year after year.  We are more into cool effects than gory stuff.  So we have found decorating with black lights to be one of our favorite things to do!  The long florescent black lights give off the best glow.  Don't use the black light spot lights or regular bulbs, you will be disappointed.  We also built our own light boxes that each box holds two 4 ft long black lights.  To make our yard or haunted spaces glow we use 4 to 5 of these light boxes at least.  

There are many cool Halloween decorations out there that already glow in the dark, black lights just really accentuate that glow.  We have many things we have bought in stores, that didn't glow too well, so we always keep a can of black light hairspray around to add glow to any item we want to.  Great thing about the black light hairspray is that you don't see it during the day, but under a black light it just stands out like bright white!  

Other things to use is rolls of black plastic to add a back drop to any of your scenes.  Keep in mind black light definitely works better with little to no white light, even street lights can hinder the glow.  SO we have made black light walk throughs in our yards in the past with using old Army tent netting we found at a thrift store.  Works great to keep some of the street light out.  I've splattered painted with glow in the dark colored paint both black plastic and black material to use and reuse year after year.  All these things help create the scene.  

I've also created all our own signs either out carved and painted styrofoam OR wood.  The used some black light colored paint to accent them.  This sign below not only has the orange skulls that glow, but we have used a clear black light paint over top of the black Keep Out so that it glows at night under the black lights and can be seen during the day too!  

One of the cool things with black light is that many regular household items glow brightly under it.  Here is a list we have gathered of items that work best!

  • white clothing of any kind
  • glow in the dark paints (of course)
  • glue & hot glue (there are versions that will glow bright)
  • florescent fishing wire
  • florescent tape
  • some papers (check them, you'll be surprised)
  • baby powder
  • Woolite (glows green)
  • Tide (glows blue)
  • white nail polish
  • sidewalk chalk
  • tonic water
  • Mountain Dew
  • peanut butter
  • milk (glows orange)
  • cooking oil
  • freshly sliced orange (glows bright orange)
  • freshly sliced peppers 
  • hard boiled eggs
  • bananas
  • marshmellows
  • potato chips
  • winter green lifesavers

This is a styrofoam carved and painted sign we created too.  
And at night under the blacklights
We've had a lot of fun with it throughout the years.  One of our favorite things to create new every year is our florescent fishing line large spider web.  We use 3M hooks somewhere on the front of our house near where a black light is going to be placed just in front of it.  I then use 16 small 3m hooks, 5 at the top, 5 at bottom and 3 along each side to basically create a good square.  Then I start stringing the florescent line up, down, and then across, tying loop knots at each hook.  Once a good base of lines are created, then I tie beginning in the center out creating the spider web look.  It usually takes me a few hours to tie all the knots.  I have had neighbors ask me later what I was doing facing my house for hours in the same spot.  Haha....I've given many different answers but then when they see it at night under the black light they totally understand.  This is one of our decorations that will totally fade during the day and then lights up bright at night under the black lights.  
Under lots of blacklights
We have also created glow in the dark fountains using tonic water.  Or large glow in the dark characters like our Event Staff guy in the top photo.  Not only does his event staff shirt glow bright but his jeans are splattered painted with colored glow in the dark paint, and his mask is one that glows bright. Be careful not all white haired masks do glow, be sure to check them in the stores under a black light, because I have spent good money figuring because it is white it will glow, only to get it home and find out it doesn't.  That's frustrating at best.  

We love our graveyard signs too.  These are styrofoam carved with a dremel and then hand painted.  The letters are also painted with glow in the dark paint over top of the black.  For more how to's on these click on the photo.  (fun list of many names for your own tombstones too!)

So if you can think it, you can create it yourself.  I'm always looking for cool ideas and things that catch your eye without having to spend thousands of dollars on store bought decor.  Hope you enjoyed a sneak peek into some of our Halloween fun.  Keep coming back to see what other fun items we will be sharing in the next few weeks!  

Happy Haunting.  For more Halloween decorating ideas, check out my Pinterest Board for other links.  

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  1. Great tips and it sounds like your parties are fun:@)

  2. Nice tips, the haunts should join the Home Haunt Contest at

  3. Love all your outdoor decor Pam! It's so much fun :) Thank you for linking up with Get Your DIY On this week!

    Mandy @ The Hankful House Blog

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