Come Halloween, homeowners with a sense of humor go all out to spook up their yards. As a city dweller and an interior designer, you can only image how jealous I have been all these years. It looks like so much fun for both the parent and kids to let loose, get creative and make decorating the home – inside AND outside – a family affair.

Until recently it never occurred to me to think outside the box about this.  I have always been creative, but giving birth has taken my mind to a totally different level. As a parent, I want to make sure that my children do not feel as though they are missing out on anything.  So last year I surprised my children by decorating our apartment door while they were at school. It was such a hit that this year I took it a step further and decorated beyond just the door and into the hallway walls.  

This year, decorating the door was even more fun because my whole family was involved. My oldest learned to cut black silhouette tree branches and my little one learned to roll the tape to hang the décor.  Even more shocking, my husband made and cut a black mouse silhouette of his own! It’s taped above our door.

It’s not Halloween yet, but the neighbors as well as their guests love the look. We have even had a few people knock on the door asking where they can buy the angry tree and owl. They walk away a bit disappointed when I tell him that they were all homemade.

This is a great family project to work on together and you still have time before Halloween.  But here is a tip for my fellow urban dwellers, make sure that before you start your building is ok with what you plan to do with your door. My building manager does not mind because he knows that all trace of tape will be gone the day after Halloween. I have gone as far as to ask for a bit of door paint to make sure that my door looks like it did before I embellished it.

I can assure you that if you pick up after yourself, even that grouchy neighbor won’t mind the temporary decoration. And I guarantee that next year your neighbors will likely join in the fun!

Marlene Pratt is the co-founder of Casa Latina, an interior designer and on-air television host on both English and Spanish-language television. Follow Marlene on Twitter at @CasaLatinaToday and Like her FB page

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