Witches, ghosts, and goblins may be the official faces of Halloween, but they don't hold a monopoly on spookiness. Consider, for instance, the creepiness of certain bug-eyed clowns or the understated menace of a carnival barker. This party makes the most of them, turning a fun house into a haunted house, with a spinning game wheel, distorted mirrors, and crowd-pleasing food and photo ops. With some common party supplies and our clip art, you can put on the greatest show in town. Now, everyone, step right up! Step right up!
A few key pieces set the scene: giant balloons (tie together the marquise-shaped ones to form spiky clusters), hula hoops wrapped in electrical tape, and the glowing "Fun House" sign created from our clip art. Replace lightbulbs around the house with red and blue ones for a moody atmosphere -- and an even more circuslike setting.
Create a carnival photo booth, and supply cartoonish (template) card stock accessories such as glasses, a mustache, a barbell, a pipe, and a monocle. For a real photo-booth feel, download the Pocketbooth app to your phone, tablet, or computer.
Murillo 918 paper (for templates), 27 1/2" by 39", in Black, $10.25 per sheet, aifriedman.com. On boy: Classic crewneck sweater, in Gray, $44, benetton.com. Gingham shirt, in Red, $71, petitbateau.us. Coco bow, in Gray Houndstooth, $125, markmcnairy.com. On girl: Lurex-and-vinyl jacket, in Black, and radzimir-and-satin skirt, marcjacobs.com. Pearl necklaces, in White and Gunmetal, $80 each, by Kenneth Jay Lane, 877-953-5265.
Turn the maniacal clown that nightmares are made of into a fun party game. Download clip art, paste it onto foam board, and attach balloons along the edges and for the eyes and nose. Then mount it to a lazy Susan, give it a spin, and take dead aim. (Hang it where you won't mind stray darts hitting.)
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