1. Mood Lighting

Candles, candles, candles. Nothing is spookier than a room full of candles! Grand candelabras create a haunted-mansion vibe while bare candles (positioned carefully so they don’t ruin any furniture or flooring) have an equally scary effect.

2. Haunting Décor

A quick search online will turn up tons of DIY Halloween décor ideas. Whether you want to terrify guests at the start with giant spiders and jack-o-lanterns on the front porch, or go for the more subtle scare with mirror ghosts and crystal balls inside, you can create a frightening atmosphere fit for any haunted party.

3. Gothic Tablescape

Orange and black are the classic Halloween colors, but a black, white, and red scheme is also haunting. Adding copper or gold can create a classier look, or, for a more unique spin, try pairing black and white with purple or green for a movie monster-inspired palette. Whatever color scheme you choose for your dinner party, find linens, plates, silverware, glassware and decor to match. A formal place setting in dark colors creates a creepy and classy look for a murder mystery dinner party, while buffet-style snacks in a more relaxed color palette is more fitting for a kids Halloween bash.

4. Spooky Foods

Mummified hot dogs, red velvet blood drip cake, Oreo spiders, and more! From breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and all the snacks in between, every meal can be made scary with a little creativity! And don’t forget to think about how you are going to serve the food. Cake stands and Cupcake Trees make buffet-style service easy, while having matching bowls, trays, and serving utensils can help create a cohesive look for a sit-down dinner party.

5. Ghoulish Games

For a fully involved experience, try planning a murder mystery dinner party. You can purchase a kit from online sellers, like, which comes with everything you’ll need for a compelling and mysterious night of fun. Or you could make your own if you’re feeling up to the challenge! If you’re more in the mood for a laid-back game night, you can play the board games Clue or Operation, or move the party out to the cool fall air for some themed yard games, like Witch Hat Ring Toss, Pumpkin Tic-Tac-Toe, Tombstone Bean Bag Toss, or Pin the Spider on the Web.


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