Frugal Decorating for Halloween {Cardboard Spinning Ghosts}

Looking for a super cheap, super easy decorating idea for Halloween?  You found it.  This entire project cost me $.90!!!  (3 posterboards/$.30 each)  These Simple Cardboard Spinning Ghosts are a hit with the kids and make a great statement for a party.  The hardest part of the project will be to keep your kids from spending all day climbing through the ghosts and making them spin!

Cardboard Spinning Ghosts tutorial and free printable from

Ready to make one?  Just cut a spiral shape, add a face, hang it up . . . and you’re done!

DIY Spinning Ghosts

In case you need just a little more instruction, here goes . . . (If you’re nervous, don’t worry–I’ve made you a pattern!)

  • For the long ghost, use an entire sheet of poster board.  For the shorter ghosts, use half sheets of poster board.  (I made one full-sized ghost and four half-sized ghosts).  If you can’t quite tell how to cut the spiral, I’ve made you a little pattern (and I do mean little!).  See the link below to download a letter-size version of the spinning ghost.  Practicing on it should give you an idea how to cut the larger cardboard shapes.  (Plus, it will give you some cute tiny ghosts to hang somewhere else!  I hung mine over the kitchen table.)
  • The faces were created by cutting shapes out of black cardstock.  (For those of you who are a little insecure about your face-cutting skills, I’m including five sets of eyes and mouths in the download (1 large and 4 small faces).
  • To hang the ghosts, punch a hole near the top of the head, off center toward the spiral.  If you punch the hole directly in the center, the ghosts won’t hang quite right.  Hang with thread or fishing line.
  • For those of you who might be a little intimidated by the shape or the faces, I’ve made you a little pattern.  (And I do mean little!)  Click below to download a letter-size version of the spinning ghost.  Practicing on it should give you an idea how to cut the larger cardboard shapes.

Is your living space to small for the huge ghosts?  Try this table-top version.  Mine are hanging over my kitchen table.  (If you need a little motivation to clean your kitchen–just create a project that requires taking pictures in the kitchen!  I dusted that chandelier for the first time in four years today!  What would I do without my blog to motivate me?)

Mini Spinning Ghosts and Free Pattern

Here’s your free printable pattern.  The pattern includes one 8 1/2 x 11″ ghost pattern and one faces page with five different face patterns.  I hope you like them!

Click here to download Halloween Party Games for Kids

This idea came from Parents Magazine.  You can see the original project here.

Thanks for visiting, and have fun creating!

Cardboard Spinning Ghosts with free Patterns

Thanks for stopping by today.  If you’re looking for more Halloween ideas, be sure to check out a few of these!  (Images below are linked.)

Halloween Word and Action Games

Canvas Halloween Pennants Tutorial

25 Corny Projects to Brighten Your Day {}



Click here to see all the fantastic sites I like to link up with each week.

This idea was featured here:

PhotobucketWhite Lights on Wednesdays


  1. This is so cute. I remember making spirals like this in grade school and hanging them above light bulbs as a science experiment to prove that hot air rises. As the lights heat up, the spiral would spin!

  2. Awesome, those are so fun! Thanks for sharing at The Fun In Functional!

  3. I love this. Please link it to my linky party & anything else you have to share. :) Thanks, Peggy.

  4. I love these and have been wanting to make them. Thank you for sharing on Thursday’s Treasures. <3 and hugs!

  5. These are great! Makes total sense. As soon as I saw them I knew how to do them, becuase it’s almost like making felt flowers the windy cutting.. COol! Thanks!

  6. Hi Heidi! Thank you so much for coming by twelveOeight today, this project is sooooo cute, following you now :)

  7. So cute! Clever way to make an easy Halloween decoration : ) Saw you on One Artsy Mama linky and came to say hello : )

  8. These look so cute! Will deffinitely make them! Thanks for sharing

  9. Congratulations! Your spinning ghost tutorial is featured at my Super Link Party! Come on by, check it out, and grab a featured button! :-)

  10. Oh, how fun! We tried something similar but I love yours. We will try it this way next year! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!!

  11. you know, simple is always best… Thank you for sharing this fun mobile idea at . A new linky party opens today! Come join. We’d love to see your creative pursuits from this week.

  12. Oh these ghosts are too cute and super easy too! Thank you so much for linking up this great craft to our Halloween/Fall Party! I am one of the co-hosts from MorningNooNight! :)
    Veronica recently posted…Graveyard CupcakesMy Profile

  13. Super cute. Totally pinning to do this next year! LOVE IT!
    Cindy {crazylou} recently posted…Change…My Profile

  14. This is such a fun idea..I LOVE how easy and inexpensive it is too! :D
    Marilyn recently posted…5 Storage & Organizing Ideas + The Project Stash Link PartyMy Profile

  15. Love this, and I now have three of my own ghosts hanging in the living room. They are adorable, and yes quite easy to make! Mentioned you over at my blog as well. Look forward to checking out several of your other crafts as well.
    Mae recently posted…Go Fly A KiteMy Profile

  16. I love this! Halloween is such a fun holiday for kids and there are so many fun activities here.

  17. Hi!!! I know it’s been a while since you posted this craft, but I just wanted to tell you I included it in my favorite Halloween crafts post because I just love it!
    Thanks a million for sharing ❤ I’m really grateful!

    Hugs from Spain ♫
    RemeiGG recently posted…I ❤ Halloween crafts // Yo ❤ las manualidades de HalloweenMy Profile

  18. This is really an interesting and funy idea. Thanks for sharing.

  19. I like it!

  20. OH DARN!! Such a cute idea that I missed. Well, I’ll just have to save it for next year. Thank you.

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