Samhain is the last of the three harvest holidays, following Lughnasadh and Mabon, so keep the harvest theme in mind when you’re decking your halls and walls. Consider decorating your home with symbols of the season. Like all holidays – whether spiritual or secular -- decorating your house is one of those things that are a matter of personal taste. Try some of these simple and inexpensive decorating ideas for Samhain.
1. Welcome the Dark SideIt’s the time of year when the world is dying; take advantage of it and get in touch with your darker side. While it may creep out some of the neighbors, Samhain is the perfect opportunity to take some grave rubbings, hang scythes and skulls on the walls, and put out other symbols of Death.
2. Bowls and Baskets GaloreFind some inexpensive bowls, cornucopias or baskets at thrift stores. Fill them with harvest foods, such as gourds, apples, corn and miniature pumpkins. Place them on tables throughout your home. If you've got florist's wire, you can hang Indian corn and other goodies in a bundle on your wall.
Carve jack-o-lanterns! If you have very young children, they may have more fun painting their pumpkins than carving them. Painted pumpkins will last longer than carved ones anyway. Use acrylic paints for brighter colors. Make one for each member of your family, and place them at the front door to greet visitors. If you don't have time to decorate them, that's okay - a few well placed plain pumpkins look nice, and bring home the sense of the season.
At Samhain, you can make a small shrine to honor your ancestors, or turn it into an entire ancestor altar. Set it up for the recently departed, or your entire extended family. If you know a bit of your family history, consider turning your family tree into an ancestor altar cloth. Hang photos of your deceased family members in a place of prominence - in some traditions, these photos are adorned with a black cloth as a symbol of honor.