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DIY Spooky Halloween Trees Craft

By Brenda Ponnay

Does your house need a little spookiness to get you in the mood for this coming Halloween? How about some sinister looking haunted trees reaching their branches ominously across your windows? These cardboard cut outs are inspired by the Angry Birds Halloween game with their curling crooked branches and jaunty angles. All you need to make them are some cardboard, a box cutter and some paint!

Finding large pieces of cardboard can be a bit challenging. You might have some around already if you’ve recently moved or installed a new refrigerator or washing machine but if you don’t, you can usually track some down at your local big box hardware store. They’ll tell you that they compact all their boxes at five in the morning and you’re out of luck but don’t let that discourage you. Usually, if you poke around near the back of the store some friendly employee will give you some cardboard box waiting around to be discarded. Or, you can always buy some at a storage facility or a postal center.

Once you have your large piece of cardboard you can start drawing your trees. To make trees like ours, draw a tree the way you normally would but instead of curving branches use a ruler and draw your curves with a series of hard angles.

Angry Birds trees do not grow in nature. Their branches curl and bend downwards instead of up like real trees would. This gives them a more sinister feeling that is perfect for Halloween.

Once all your trees are drawn you might want to trace your pencil lines in pen so they are easy to see. Then with a box cutter (please use with caution) you are ready to cut out your trees! Make sure you are cutting on a surface that is safe to cut on. You don’t want to accidentally shred your living room rug!

Now you’re ready to paint! My favorite way to paint cardboard is to buy a small can of house paint from your local hardware store (they will make it any color you like, ask for dark black) and roll it on with a small paint roller. But really, any kind of black paint will work here. Even water-based, kid-safe poster paint and a brush would be great. You’ll have more brush strokes than you would if you used a roller but that might give your trees more texture which would look nice too.

Kids love to paint. Just make sure you paint in a well-ventilated area (preferably outside) and wear clothes you don’t mind ruining. It’s also a good idea to keep some wet-wipes handy for those messy fingers.

Once your trees are painted, set them somewhere safe to dry. When they are dry you can prop them in your windows. Tape them to your windows with packing tape if they want to tip or fall over. Then let night fall and watch the magic happen.

Your trees will transform your home into a haunted hollow inside and out!

Happy Haunting!

Difficulty Level: Moderately difficult
Appropriate Age levels: young adults and up, adult supervision is strongly recommended
* Please make sure a responsible adult is on hand for the steps involving a sharp blade and paint

Explore Halloween costumes, crafts, decorations and treats from our archives here.

About the Author

Brenda Ponnay

Brenda Ponnay is a stealthy secret agent who juggles parenthood to her adorable daughter by day and freelance graphic design/illustration by night. Whether it’s painting, baking, drawing, mak...

Brenda Ponnay is a stealthy secret agent who juggles parenthood to her adorable daughter by day and freelance graphic design/illustration by night. Whether it’s painting, baking, drawing, making castles out of cardboard boxes or just doing the laundry with flair, Brenda Ponnay has learned that what really makes her happy is being creative every single day.

You can read about all her crazy adventures on her personal blog: Secret Agent Josephine.

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  • Neil

    October 25, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    Brenda, you blow me away with your creativity.  Every holiday you come up with something cool.   I want you as my MOM.

  • Susan:)

    October 26, 2012 at 1:05 am

    Those look great in the windows!