Make these wickedly simple Halloween crafts

12:00 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017 Lifestyle
Ananda Neureither of Crafts & Drafts brings crafts to restaurants and bars for people to try. RALPH BARRERA/AMERICAN-STATESMAN PHOTOS

Tired of just picking up a pumpkin, removing the gooey seeds and carving it only to have it be moldy and gross a few days after Halloween (or before, if you didn’t time it right)?

Ananda Neureither, the owner of Crafts & Drafts, holds regular events in bars and restaurants for adults to create crafts. At L’Oca d’Oro restaurant, she showed us a few simple Halloween decorations that don’t require a lot of artistic ability and are inexpensive to make.

Learn how to make a cool Halloween craft with Ananda Neureither of Crafts & Drafts.

Instead of decorating a real pumpkin that will go bad in a few days, you can decorate a plastic pumpkin and keep it for several years. Faux pumpkins can be found in craft stores for $10 and up depending on size. You can add any decorations you choose as well as paint scenes on them.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Faux pumpkin caringStep 1: Draw a circle with a pencil on the faux pumpkin where you want the opening of the pumpkin to be.

Draw a circle with a pencil on the faux pumpkin where you want the opening of the pumpkin to be.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 2: Cut out the circle. Ananda Neureither uses the traditional pumpkin carving knives you can get in the kits, but any knife will do.

Cut out the circle. Ananda Neureither uses the traditional pumpkin carving knives you can get in the kits, but any knife will do.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 3: Decorate any way you want using items from local dollar stores or craft stores. Neureither hangs a plastic skull by poking a hole in the top of the pumpkin with a pencil and pulling the string the skull is on through the hole and typing a knot to the top.

Decorate any way you want using items from local dollar stores or craft stores. Neureither hangs a plastic skull by poking a hole in the top of the pumpkin with a pencil, pulling the string the skull is on through the hole and tying a knot to the top.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 4: Pull out fake spider web and spread it over the pumpkin.

Pull out fake spiderweb and spread it over the pumpkin.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 5: Some of the spider web will naturally stick, but glue on large pieces using glue that dries clear. Attach other decorations using glue.

Some of the spiderweb will naturally stick, but glue on large pieces using glue that dries clear. Attach other decorations using glue.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 6: Hold down anything you are attaching with glue for a few seconds to help it stay.

Hold down anything you are attaching with glue for a few seconds to help it stay.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 7: Find the perfect spot for displaying your pumpkin. You can use it again and again.

Find the perfect spot for displaying your pumpkin. You can use it again and again.

Learn how to paint a pumpkin instead of carve it with Crafts & Drafts’ Ananda Neureither.

Don’t like carving pumpkins? Neureither paints hers using the stencils that come in the pumpkin carving kits as well as acrylic paint and paint markers.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Pumpkin painting:Step 1: Select your materials, including a stencil.

Select your materials, including a stencil.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 2: Cut out the stencil.

Cut out the stencil.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 3: Tape the stencil to the pumpkin.

Tape the stencil to the pumpkin.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 4: Trace around the stencil using a pencil. The pencil will create a groove in the pumpkin, which makes staying in the lines when you paint easier.

Trace around the stencil using a pencil. The pencil will create a groove in the pumpkin, which makes staying in the lines when you paint easier.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 5: Remove the stencil. Paint within the lines where the stencil was using either a paint pen, a paintbrush or the tip of the brush for fine lines.

Remove the stencil. Paint within the lines where the stencil was using either a paint pen, a paintbrush or the tip of the brush for fine lines.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 6: Paint other decorations or finishing touches on your pumpkin.

Paint other decorations or finishing touches to your pumpkin.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 7: Display your pumpkin.

Display your pumpkin.

Ananda Neureither of Crafts & Drafts shows us how to make an easy wreath.

Who says wreaths are only for Christmas? Neureither gathers up all kinds of ribbons, fabric, plastic spiders and fake floral arrangements at craft stores and dollar stores to turn a $5 foam circle into a door decoration.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Halloween wreathsStep 1: Cut strips of fabric. They don’t have to be exact straight lines because you’re going to wrap them, hiding the edges.

Cut strips of fabric. They don’t have to be exact straight lines because you’re going to wrap them, hiding the edges.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 2: Add a dab of glue that dries clear to the foam wreath where you’re going to start your fabric.

Add a dab of glue that dries clear to the foam wreath where you’re going to start your fabric.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 3: Attach the fabric to the glue and start wrapping. Repeat until you have wrapped the entire wreath with fabric.

Attach the fabric to the glue and start wrapping. Repeat until you have wrapped the entire wreath with fabric.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 4: Finish the fabric wrapping with more glue to secure it.

Finish the fabric wrapping with more glue to secure it.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 5: Attach “creepy cloth” in strips. This can be also be netting, ribbons, anything that says Halloween to you. “Let it be messy,” Neureither says, to give it that Halloween look.

Attach “creepy cloth” in strips. This can be also be netting, ribbons, anything that says Halloween to you. “Let it be messy,” Neureither says, to give it that Halloween look.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 6: If you’re using fake floral arrangements, use a floral wire cutter to cut the parts you want to want to use. Stick the wire ends of the flowers into the foam in a place where the fabric will cover the end. Here Neureither has used pumpkins and feathery florals.

If you’re using fake floral arrangements, use a floral wire cutter to cut the parts you want to want to use. Stick the wire ends of the flowers into the foam in a place where the fabric will cover the end. 

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 7: Attach any other decorations like a plastic skull or spiders. Be careful not to overdo it.

Attach any other decorations like a plastic skull or spiders. Be careful not to overdo it.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Step 8: Hang your wreath on a door hook or on a wall. Store carefully to use again and again.

Hang your wreath on a door hook or on a wall. Store carefully to use again and again.

Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman Staff
Ananda Neureither of Crafts & Drafts brings a variety of craft supplies to her events. RALPH BARRERA/AMERICAN-STATESMAN
View full experience