6 Halloween Party Ideas

Haunted by your Halloween party woes? We rounded up some ways to scare away the worries.


Halloween in Honolulu can be frightfully predictable. Not to mention the horror show that is parking downtown, trekking into Waikīkī or figuring out who’s going to be the DD this time.


Don’t fear. Assemble your posse indoors for a fright fete that’s a boo-tiful sight. Just make sure you have plenty of food, libations and an ambience that will really get your ghosts in the mood. We rounded up our favorite tips for this hallowed affair, with advice from what to wear to what to watch.


It will be the Halloween of your nightmares—er, dreams.


To make:

Nothing spruces up a space better when you’re on a time crunch than a quick bunting or garland. Halloween has a lot of recognizable icons that you could string onto some baker’s twine and call it a day (New Year’s Eve may be a bit trickier). Cut some sweet little pumpkins out of different shades of orange felt; make black and gray bat silhouettes or even friendly ghosts. Buy a bag of mini clothespins and pin them on the twine. Interlace them with lights for added atmosphere. Or, if you’re looking to get next-level on this, try these great, ghoulish garland D.I.Y. projects from Brit & Co.


To eat:

Our favorite lazy-girl hack? Crescent roll everything. We love this ingenious pesto-chicken-stuffed witch hat appetizer by Hungry Happenings, made from the magical little tubes of Pillsbury dough, sesame seeds and cheese, but the options are really endless. Bat-shaped hand pies? Mummy-inspired pigs-in-a-blanket? What about homemade, pumpkin-shaped pop-tarts? Your table is going to be full of cute spooks. 


To drink:

Some people are into the whole guts-and-gore aspect of Halloween, like blood punch and monster-vomit shakes. We, on the other hand, nope at that stuff so hard. We’ll stick with the cute side of the season, like rainbow creepy crawlers. Jell-O shots (we’re classy) get a spooky twist when you add gummy worms to the cups pre-refrigeration. Voila! Delicious and just the right amount of squirminess. Try this recipe.


To watch:

Get ready to feel super old. The Nightmare Before Christmas came out 22—yes, 22—years ago. Someone could have easily been born, lost their virginity and graduated college in that time period. In any event, it’s still the most fun thing you can watch on Halloween, and it’s perfect for a background party flick, since everyone’s seen it a thousand times and won’t be interrupting their conversations to be like, “Wait, what is Sandy Claws made of?” Plus, it’s on Netflix right now! (Second choice: The Addams Family. Those gross/wacky/charming freakazoids always get you.)


To wear:

You’ve been totally obsessing about making your tiny Crescent roll witch hats and pumpkin garlands that you totally forgot the point of the holiday—dressing up! OK, girl, calm down. We promise, you have everything you need in your closet for a “costume” that will pass at a party. Pull out that LBD and let’s work some magic. Pearls + a long cigarette (or a faux one) + updo = Holly Golightly. Striped shirt? Add an eye patch and go as a pirate. Or, just copy this David Bowie makeup tutorial and call it a day.


To listen to:

If you weren’t the type of kid to have listened to The Phantom of the Opera on repeat (uh, neither were we … ) you aren’t familiar with the eerie-meets-ethereal magic of this haunting musical. Put this YouTube version of it on in the background to add drama at your fete. It’s a step up from those canned screaming soundtracks your dad used to insist on playing each year.