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Originally published October 22, 2012 at 9:02 PM | Page modified October 22, 2012 at 9:25 PM

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Create boo-tiful Halloween decorations

Crafts: How to give a picture frame a creepy spider spin and turn your lawn into a graveyard.

Scripps Howard News Service

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Halloween is creeping up quickly. Here are a few easy do-it-yourself decorations to set the mood at your haunts.

Indoors

First, try a picture frame made just for spiders. It's simple and easy to do; even the kids can and should help.

At a craft store, purchase an inexpensive black picture frame. Remove the glass and any backing that might come with the frame. On the back of the frame, nail in several small wire nails along all four sides. But only insert the nails enough to secure them, allowing for about ¼ inch to stick out. Place felt furniture pads on the four corners of the frame so when you hang your finished project on the wall, nothing will get scratched.

Next, string black and orange yarn on the frame by attaching the yarn to the nails in the back of the frame. Attach the yarn like a web. It doesn't have to be an exact spider web, but the yarn should be strung back and forth in some sort of matrix. If you want to add some cotton webbing also, go for it.

Attach rubber spiders to the front of the frame on the web, and there you have it: a unique Halloween decoration you can use year after year. You could do this with one large frame, or you could get several small frames and create a wall of artwork with them.

Outdoors

How about the outside of the house? After all, you want to make a scary impression to get everyone in the mood. A cemetery always works. You've probably seen stone-looking tombstones for sale, but you can save money by making your own out of cardboard.

Cut several different tombstone-looking shapes out of the cardboard. Paint them a graveyard gray. If you are artistic enough, paint streaks of black pouring down from the top of the tombstones to about 1/3 of the way down to make them look old. Another way to make them look old is white paint foaming on top. Add fake moss to really finish the look.

Then paint R.I.P. on them or interesting things like "Here lies Uncle Joe. Too bad he fell upon the hoe." Or "Here lies Susan Drake. Stepped on the gas instead of the brake." Well, you get the picture. Make up some silly ones of your own.

To get the tombstone to stand, glue a yardstick to the back of the cardboard so you can plant it into the ground.

Rosemary Sadez Friedmann, an interior designer in Naples, Fla., is author of "Mystery of Color."

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