Few holidays encourage you to bring out your mischievous side quite like Halloween when you’re given full permission to spook friends, family members, and complete strangers. This opportunity is especially exciting when you host a Halloween party. The decorating options are almost endless; the only limits are your budget and your creativity.

In this guide, we’ve highlighted a few of the best ways to get guests talking (or screaming) while keeping party costs reasonable. Keep reading to learn more about the role spooky cardboard cutouts can play in bringing your Halloween party to life.


Ghoulish Goons

Build excitement — and trepidation — with help from cardboard ghouls set up along the driveway and in the front yard. These should be visible long before guests arrive at your party. They set the stage for an amazing get-together by letting guests know that you’ve gone the extra mile to plan an eerie occasion. What’s more, they’re fun for everyday passersby to gaze at — and they’ll make trick-or-treating that much more memorable.

DIY versions are extra fun to create, although you’ll find plenty of ready-made decorations at your local party or holiday store. Depending on the ambiance you hope to establish, you can try for something humorous with an eerie edge — or go full-on scary with the hopes of getting guests to let out audible gasps.

Of course, you don’t need to settle for ghouls alone. As guests approach your party, they can also come face-to-face with ghosts, zombies, witches, or any other spooky creatures that might make them feel nervous.

Use outdoor lighting to amplify the effect. Colored flood lights, for example, can instantly make seemingly mediocre accessories feel downright terrifying. Add string lights as accents — and don’t forget colored light bulbs for your porch.


Eerie Entryways

Your guests have tip-toed past ghouls in the yard and ghosts on the sidewalk, but that’s only the beginning. Once you have them feeling good and nervous, bring out the wow factor with a stand-out entryway. Halloween party decorations can be attached to your door frame to prevent any interruption to the haunted fun.

On the hunt for an especially creepy concept? Make the doorway look like an open mouth. Hang cutouts resembling sharp teeth, which will convince guests to duck in fear. Add angry eyes above the doorway to up the ante. This is a great opportunity for showing off your Halloween DIY skills.

If you have windows on either side of your front door, feel free to pose surprise cutouts. By peering out the windows, these should be just subtle enough to keep guests from spotting them from afar — and just bold enough to make attendees jump as they approach your front entry.

Head in hole Halloween standee


Freaky Photo Standups

Once guests have made their way inside, they’ll expect you to continue ramping up the terror. Keep them on their toes with help from unexpectedly spooky standups. These should be placed where guests least anticipate them. Foyers and bathrooms provide great opportunities for jump scares, but any nook or cranny can be spooky if you add the right accessories.

Standups from your favorite Halloween movies are especially effective. From Nightmare on Elm Street to the Nightmare Before Christmas, these can be incorporated into any type of party. Look to classic films to create retro or vintage vibes. Fun examples include:

  • Carrie
  • Frankenstein
  • Chucky
  • Pennywise the Dancing Clown
  • Twins from The Shining
  • Beetlejuice
  • Vecna from Stranger Things
  • Jason Voorhees
  • Michael Myers
  • Freddy Krueger
  • Elvira


Spooky Stand-Ins

Once your guests have recovered from the shock of simply entering your party, they’ll be ready to get involved in the spooky fun. Give them every opportunity to embrace their inner creep with help from photo stand-ins. These Halloween cardboard cutouts allow guests to get in on the action before posing for pictures.

While Halloween stand-ins can take many forms, they are especially effective when they resemble characters from guests’ favorite movies. Creepy is always better, although there’s certainly a place for off-kilter humor at your party.

Both modern and vintage characters are welcome. Many of the examples mentioned previously should work wonderfully, although generic concepts (such as your run-of-the-mill creepy clown, black cat, or jack o lantern) can also prove effective.

If you’ve established an overarching theme for your party, any Halloween decorations you provide should be consistent with that concept. Otherwise, an eclectic mix of spooky stand-ins will deliver the most photo-based fun for your guests. Provide a backdrop and allow them to pose to their heart’s delight.

Spooky Halloween Zombie Standee

Terrifying Tombstones

Turn your party into an instant haunted house with help from oversized standups that resemble spooky tombstones. These can be placed near the entrance, on the patio, or anywhere else you need some eerie ambiance. Put several on your lawn to create the ultimate graveyard.

A little detail can make all the difference, so don’t be afraid to get creative. At minimum, each tombstone should include a name, dates of birth and death, and an epitaph. These can be scary, of course, but humor is also welcome. Use flood lights and other creative lighting strategies to make these entries both easy-to-read and extra spooky.

To make your party even more memorable (and morbid), create a specialized tombstone for each attendee. Instruct guests to find and pose by their tombstones. When the party ends, they’re welcome to take these tombstones home as the ultimate keepsake.


Cardboard Cutout Standees: Your Go-To Resource for Non-Stop Scares

There’s no room for half measures when you’re preparing for a Halloween party. The bolder your decorations, the better. Lifesize cardboard cutouts help you create delightfully creepy vibes without breaking the bank. Placed strategically throughout your party, these accessories will get your guests talking.

Halloween is a big deal at Cardboard Cutout Standees, where we offer numerous opportunities to build spooks into every occasion. Feel free to customize your cutouts so they reflect your desired theme and ambiance.

We make the process as easy and straightforward as possible, so you can focus on perfecting all the other details for your Halloween party. Start designing your cardboard cutout standups today — or contact us for more information.


  • Jason Frank

    Jason Frank is the Co-Founder and Vice President at Cardboard Cutout Standees. After 25 years of selling factory automation he started the company with one of his college roommates. The company has grown to one of the largest providers of large format custom printed products in the United States. Along with the namesake cardboard cutout standees, they also provide BigHeads, Point of Purchase Displays, Wall Murals, and Wall Decals to a diverse client base across the US and Canada. When not focused on the business, you usually find Jason either on the road biking or our in the woods and fields of western Wisconsin.

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