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        Two children in costumes walking into a scary abandoned houseTwo children in costumes walking into a scary abandoned house

        Parental Arts

        How To: A DIY Haunted House

        While navigating narrow halls haunted by strangers is not in the cards this year—you can still recreate the fun of a haunted house at home. Here are five quick tips to get you started on your homemade haunted house.

        Find A Location

        With everyone spending so much time at home, ideally there is a place like a backyard or garage that is out of the way and can be haunted in secret. This is admittedly harder for city dwellers, but the point is to get creative. A room full of furniture is easily transformed into an eerie homemade haunted house with drop cloths and cobwebs and closets are great because you’ll want to block all natural light anyway. And the spooky potential for bathtubs is endless; think water and a little red food coloring or creepy crawly plastic spiders.

        Secure Your Props

        Get inspired with DIY haunted house ideas with regular household staples. Combine things you already have around like sheets , garbage bags and baby dolls with skeletons and spider webs. PVC pipe is popular for more elaborate back-yard structures, and play tents your children already have make the perfect interior spaces.\

        Set The Scene

        What everyday moment can you recreate with an edge? Maybe it’s a creepy doctor’s office or a front porch chair that rocks mysteriously. The devil, as they say, is in the details.

        Engage the Senses

        Go beyond what your children will see and consider what they will hear, touch, taste and smell in your DIY haunted house to create the full experience. Fill a boiling cauldron smoking with dry ice or play a scene from a scary movie in the background. You can even create a mystery box and invite them to dip their hands in with a blindfold on.

        Keep It Fun

        You know your child, their age and their temperament. You want to err on the side of a little boring as opposed to totally frightening. One way to ensure everyone is having a good time is to have a safe word. Invite your children to scream “pumpkin” if things get too scary and adjust accordingly. Happy haunting!