8 Creepy Halloween Lighting Projects for Under $5 Each

Ian Buckley 17-10-2017

Halloween is right around the corner, and for tech-savvy scaremongers there have never been this many options. It’s easier than ever to turn your whole house into a fully-integrated horror box How to Sync Home Lights and Music for Halloween Whether you're hosting a Halloween house party or want the coolest haunted house in the neighborhood, making your lights flash in time to music and sound effects is essential. Read More , and anyone with a little DIY know-how can make totally customizable motion-activated surprises Scare Trick-or-Treaters With a DIY Motion-Activated Soundbox It's that time of year again when it's considered socially acceptable to terrify young children and give them candy. Oh joy. Read More for trick or treaters.


What if you’re on a tight budget, though? Well, there are ways technology can help 16 Android Apps for Saving Money on (Almost) Everything Saving money is hard, but these Android apps make it a little bit easier. Read More , along with plenty of ways to get creative and creepy this Halloween! In this article we will cover several cool lighting projects that all come in at under $5.

1. Spooky Glowing Eyes How to Make Spooky Halloween Glowing Eyes for Less Than $5 Want to spice up your Halloween decorations this year? Learn how to make LED eyes for less than $5 in this beginner's electronics project. Read More

To start us off, our own basic electronics project. It takes minimal parts, and the soldering is simple enough for beginners too. The result can be stashed in a bush or dark window to give the effect of a pair of eerie red glowing eyes staring at you!

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

The combined cost of the parts for this simple scare build come in at $2.22, putting this first DIY decoration well under the $5 mark. We also cover how to heat shrink the components adding basic weatherproofing to the project, making it the perfect outdoor prop to make your guests feel watched!

And don’t worry if you’ve never soldered before because we have a handy guide to soldering Learn How to Solder, with These Simple Tips and Projects Are you a little intimidated by the thought of a hot iron and molten metal? If you want to start working with electronics, you're going to need to learn to solder. Let us help. Read More !


2. Eyeball Fairy Lights

Keeping on the subject of eyes, this time these eyes don’t peer at you from the darkness — they stare at you in the light! This quick and crafty build from is perfect for kids, utilizing ping pong balls and dollar store fairy lights to create a chain of staring eyeballs!

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

This build is a perfect thing to do with the less tech savvy members of the family, and if you find yourself itching for a little bit more, you could always create your own fairy lights from scratch.

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects


3. LED Mini-Mouse

A few years back, this adorable video of a toddler in her LED Mini-Mouse suit went viral. It’s easy to see why!

Glowy Zoey’s father (known by the YouTube moniker Visual Burrito) created a follow up video outlining the process he used to make the suit. He uses SMD 5050 LED strips along with a battery pack attached to black clothing, giving a floating outline effect. As mentioned in the video, you can opt for a single color and keep it simple, or attach an LED controller (which most LED strips come with) to allow for color changing.

This design could be easily modified to create a skeleton design or something futuristic, and with simple LED strips costing only $0.80 per meter, they can be an effective tool for anyone on a budget.

4. LED Headbands

These light up headbands certainly fit on the cuter rather than scary end of Halloween accessories, but can be modified to give a great futuristic twist to any style of costume. These kind of luminescent props used to be only available as parts of expensive pre-made costumes, now they are available to all in kit form.


budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

You may be looking at this and wondering how this qualifies as being super low budget? You would be absolutely right — even if this kit costs too much to be in this list, the technology behind these builds is available for much less. With battery operated luminescent wire costing $5.20 for 3m you will find this DIY build much more affordable. All that remains for you to do is grab an old headband, and let your imagination run wild!

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

5. Shiny Helmet

This one is not the best looking, but is a testament to what can be thrown together in a short time! Made for a Halloween show a few short hours before stage time, this LED helmet doesn’t win any prizes for beauty when viewed in the light.


budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

Put together using a cheap SMD 5050 LED strip, a battery cradle and a lot of tape, this helmet is rough, and simple. The purple light is achieved by soldering both the red and blue GND strips together, with the 12V+ tab attached directly to the battery cradle. It is turned on and off by attaching and unattaching the battery. Not exactly a high tech build, but in the dark it worked wonderfully.

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

These strips are a fantastic item to learn to use in combination with Arduino Ultimate Guide to Connecting LED Light Strips to Arduino One of the most common LED products is the LED strip. In this article, we will cover how to set up the two most common types with an Arduino. Read More boards, and before you know it you’ll be using them to light up your whole life 22 Ways to Light Up Your Life With RGB LED Strips You can buy five meters of RGB LEDs strip lighting for under $10 -- so here's some great project ideas to use them around your home. Read More .

6. Floating Harry Potter Candles

One of the enduring images of the Harry Potter films are the floating candles in the great hall. While there are many wonderful Potter gadgets you can buy 9 Magical Harry Potter Gadgets You Could Actually Own Slowly but surely, science is catching up to the wonders you read about in the wonderful books written by J. K. Rowling. Yes, the Harry Potter universe is almost real. Read More , making these candles yourself is surprisingly simple. The building materials are things you will have already, or are available at the dollar store making this build cheap, and perfect to do as a family activity.

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

Check out how they are made on YouTube channel The Sway:

These candles only consist of old paper rolls, cheap battery candles, and hot glue, but the effect they give is fantastic. Look out for the thinnest possible wire to hang these up for the maximum floaty effect!

7. Tardis Fascinator

While the true meaning of the fascinator is still unknown, real Doctor Who fans know that Halloween is definitely their time to shine. Step into unknown territory with this light up TARDIS fascinator!

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

The electronics part of this build is very simple and easy to follow. The components required are available for just a few cents each. Tiny coin cell batteries power the show, making the fascinator as light as a fascinator is supposed to be… probably. We still aren’t fully sure what fascinators are. This is another very basic circuit combined with craft making it a perfect beginners project. Today this build, tomorrow a Sonic Screwdriver?

8. Haunted House

Want to go bigger scale on a budget? What if your whole house emanated an evil glow from within?

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

With the advent of cheap LED lighting, it costs next to nothing to switch out your bulbs for Halloween night, making an eerie lair out of the most welcoming of houses. With one color LED bulbs available for as little as a dollar, you could easily kit out the whole front side of your building with them.

If you were to combine this with a cheap weather proof LED strip ($4.43 for 5m RGB 12v strips) , you could bring your garden into the mix too, as James Barker did, complete with mini-graveyard.

budget diy creepy halloween lighting projects

Fear of the Dark

There are plenty of tech savvy ways to get into the Halloween spirit 7 Tech Savvy and Fiendish Tips to Get Ready for Halloween With Halloween hot on our heels, procrastinators may have slipped behind on getting ready. Fortunately, thanks to the magic of the Internet, the lazy can catch up quickly with a few simple apps and sites. Read More , from geeky jack-o-lanterns 28 Geeky Jack-o-Lanterns You Can Carve This Halloween The season of spooks has snuck up on us, but there's still time to carve out your pumpkins if you haven't done so already. Begin with the ideas here. Read More to 3d printing Make Halloween Your Own With These Petrifying 3d Prints Don't bother spending money this Halloween, instead, make your own awesome props using a 3D printer and these free designs! Read More your own spooky decorations.

The scope of what is possible on a budget is huge. Like all things DIY, it comes down to imagination and planning. Hopefully the above ideas have sparked your creative juices. If these ideas aren’t quite geeky enough for you, why not try adding an Arduino 8 Amazing Halloween Frights You Can Make With An Arduino Learning electronics with an Arduino is fun, but using one to scare the life out of trick-or-treating children is just downright heavenly. Read More or Raspberry Pi 10 Amazing Halloween Props You Can Make with a Raspberry Pi Read More into the mix this Halloween?

Are you planning the ultimate light show this Halloween? Have you created a terror we really need to see? Let us know in the comment section below!

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