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Our Favorite Sustainable Halloween Decor That WON’T End Up In A Landfill

HEY, HI, HELLO. It’s officially fall, it’s almost the weekend, and I want to take you on a little afternoon digital window shopping trip. Here’s the thing: I LOVE Halloween and season-specific decor, but I am a liiiiitle less crazy about the VERY expensive plastic pumpkins that seem to be permeating my IG feed right now. Like, there’s gotta be more to this holiday than spray-painted styrofoam, right?! RIGHT. So today, I wanted to highlight a few elevated, last-forever pieces of newly-released Halloween decor that you’ll be happy to pull out again and again, season after season. A few of these tasteful additions can make you feel like you’re living in a festive, fall home and not in like…inside of a Spirit Halloween pop-up shop. I searched ALL of our favorite retailers and feel pretty confident that I’ve picked the best of the best – let’s see if you agree, yeah? 🙂

Truly Great Pumpkins

photo by sara ligorria-tramp | from: how we decorate for halloween

1. Pumpkin Lanterns | 2. Chinoiserie Pumpkin | 3. Harvest Tweed/Plaid Speckle Fabric Wrapped Pumpkin | 4. Seedstitch Pumpkin Shaped Pillow | 5. Harvest Mini Pumpkins | 6. Terra Cotta Pumpkins

If you live in a hot climate, these iron pumpkin lanterns (#1) are a minimal, bold, and super-chic alternative to, uh, ::checks notes:: a melted, rotting pumpkin on your front stoop. Love the color, weight, and shape of these – they’re an awesome modern alternative to a plastic pumpkin.

Blue and white china meets pumpkins (#2) – ADORE THESE. What a lovely way to introduce the idea of fall without soaking your home in orange and black.

These plaid tweed pumpkins (#3) look SO much more luxe than their $5 price tag. They’re so special and high impact without being overbearing. (I love how understated the black is, but they come in orange, too.)

TERRA. COTTA. PUMPKINS. (#6) Genius. Minimalist, textured, quiet, and they can take you from September through Thanksgiving. I could see these outside in an entry vignette OR styled as a centerpiece – I love the versatility.

Super Cute Florals And Doormats

photo by sara ligorria-tramp | from: make your home fall ready with 7 simple tricks (using all target)

1. Oh My Gourd Doormat | 2. Pure Harvest Bouquet | 3. Spooky Feathers Wreath | 4. Dried Eucalyptus Garland | 5. Magnolia Wheat Wreath | 6. Hand Painted Boo Doormat

This doormat (#1) makes me so happy (vibrant AND punny!) and the cute review photos of it styled in real-life are SO CHEERY. What a lovely way to brighten up your entry and exit every day! 🙂

Are feather wreaths (#3) for everyone? NO. Are feather wreaths for me? YES. An emphatic yes.

HUGE heart-eyes for a dried eucalyptus garland. This showstopper (#4) is from Anthropologie, but you should check if your local nursery or plant center has anything similar – I bet it’d be cheaper AND you could support a small business in your community.

Easy Impact Exterior Decor

1. Hyde and EEK Trick Or Treat Sign | 2. XL Skeleton | 3. Battery Operated Hyde and EEK Spider | 4. Light Up Unicorn Dog | 5. Witches Broom Set Of 3 | 6. Hyde and EEK Ghosts Lights

You know I had to include ONE piece of practical outdoor decor, right? This season, I’m in love with this double-sided light-up sign (#1). Welcome folks to your home when you have candy, and flip to the other side when you’ve run out. This is my new favorite alternative to like, turning off all the lights and sitting in the dark after you’ve run out in the hopes that kids will stop ringing the doorbell.

I can’t do a roundup without including Skelly (#2), guys. Is she timeless and understated? Well, KIND OF, YEAH. We love her – she’s made appearance after appearance here on the blog – and what’s Halloween without a little fun, you know?

Is a huge spider (#3) a lot? Yeah, sure. But it’s also a one-and-done outdoor decor piece – throw this on a roofline (or even on a bush!) and you’re fully decorated for the year. It’s a HUGE statement for only $35 and there are tons of creative installation ideas in the review photos.

This costume-wearing dog (#4) is THE CUTEST THING I HAVE EVER SEEN. When I saw this, Michael’s monologue to Toby immediately came to mind: “Who do you think you are? What gives you the right?” I CANNOT BELIEVE TARGET MADE THESE. My heart has grown three sizes since first clicking through. If I had a yard, I’d be out there at the stroke of midnight on September 1st getting a full little dog motif set up. (There’s also one in a ladybug costume in case you weren’t already saying “aww” enough.)

Keep visitors safe and on your walkway of choice with these smiling ghost path lights (#6). Target has a TON of great options for path lights this year (including zombie arms and multicolored versions!) but this one feels the most classic and timeless, you know?

Festive Tabletop Decor

photo by sara ligorria-tramp | from: 10 super easy + affordable halloween decor ideas

I mean, it’s no shocker that I love tableware, but this is my personal number one recommendation for getting into the spirit without feeling smothered by color or in-your-face Halloween motifs. A special tray or bowl or mug that you can break out and use for a few weeks every September-November means that you can experience the season on your own terms without needing to dive into a bin from the basement/garage/attic. Plus, there are a TON of awesome, sustainable options on Etsy – just search “vintage (pumpkin, cat, ghost, general fall/Halloween motif of choice) + (bowl, plate, cup, etc.)” to support a small business AND bring some one-of-a-kind pieces to your home. BIG FAN.

1. Earthenware Mini Ghost Mug | 2. Skeleton Drinkware Collection | 3. Bat and Moon Appetizer Plate | 4. Dapper Animal Halloween Salad Plates | 5. Pumpkin Shaped Stoneware Individual Bowls | 6. Inslee Fariss Autumn’s Bounty Glass | 7. Boo Stoneware Mug | 8. Spooky Double Old Fashioned Glasses (set of 2) | 9. Pumpkin Shaped Felt Placemats (set of 4) | 10. Slink Gold Napkin Rings (set of 8) | 11. Figurative Halloween Pumpkin Mug | 12. Ghost Shaped Stoneware Serving Platter

Oooooh, baby. This skeleton drinkware collection (#2) is for the Halloween die-hards out there. It’s a little too much for me (which is saying something!) but you KNOW I’d be first in line to attend a party hosted by someone with cups like this in their arsenal.

Stoneware mugs (#7) with a secret. These would be kind of fun year round, TBH.

These snake-shaped napkin rings (#10) are a little spooky, but they’re versatile and glam enough to use all year (if you dare :)).

I’m obsessed with this ghost-shaped platter (#12). It’s quiet and so easy to mix-and-match with your existing dinnerware – just plop this on the table and the mood is set, you know?

Other “Creepy” Decorations

1. Alien Pumpkin Push-In | 2. Skull Trinket Dish | 3. Pumpkin Mugs | 4. Pumpkin Harvest Dish Towel | 5. Ghost Serving Dish | 6. Trick or Treat Dish Towel | 7. Metal Gourd Box | 8. Cat Candy Bowl | 9. Plaid Candy Bowl

YEAH YEAH YEAH I know, I said elevated, but DANG IT. This alien push-pin decorating kit (#1) has me wanting to borrow a friend’s kid for a day of crafting. (They also have a princess one that they styled out on a Watermelon and it’s SO funny – you can see the pic in the product description.)

A tiny ceramic vintage treat dish (#5) has me feeling ALL KINDS OF WAYS. My grandma used to keep M&Ms and Hersheys kisses around the house in tiny dishes like this – it’s such a fond memory. :’)

If you can’t do kitsch on a dishtowel (#6), where CAN you do kitsch? I mean. There are dogs in outfits. There are cats in outfits. It’s so sweet and silly without being overwhelming.

Y’all know how we feel about brass vessels and boxes here, right? This gourd-shaped one (#7) could work in your home year-round.

This $2 gingham melamine bowl (#9) is great for kids at the holidays, but it’d be just as cute doing double-duty as your outdoor tableware next summer.

That’s it for me today. Signing off from 82 degree LA, where I’m sitting with my Spiced Pumpkin candle and dreaming of living in a tiny Northeastern town with a quaint house and a dog and big pile of color-changing leaves. In the interim, though, this window-shopping break did the trick of getting me into the spirit. 🙂 NOW – what say you???? Any winners here or decor pieces YOU break out year after year? Share with the class, please 🙂 xx

Opening Image Credits: Photo by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | From: My Spooky (And Super Simple) Kid-Approved Halloween Decor

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10 months ago

The thing I find strange about this post is that the most environmentally friendly Halloween decor out there is …. natural, grown stuff! Pumpkins and gourds, hay bales, plants, etc. Most of the products you included here are cheaply made plastic manufactured in other countries. Totally cool to do a Halloween decor round-up but let’s not fool ourselves that a plastic trick-or-treating sign from Target is anything but landfill-destined.

10 months ago
Reply to  Hillary

100% agree. I LOVE this blog and appreciate that all the ladies are working hard to balance being environmentally conscious with generating revenue through clicks. But a light up sisal dog dressed in a plastic costume as “sustainable”? Ummmmm…🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

10 months ago

Woah woah woah… with a title like that how can you link to all this mass produced stuff from target and other large stores? Sustainable options? The only thing on this list that is truly sustainable are real pumpkins. Most of these materials are not recyclable and will end up in a landfill at some point. Maybe not this year or the next but it will eventually. Go ahead and sell this stuff, I agree it’s better than styrofoam but for heavens sake don’t pretend it’s sustainable.

10 months ago
Reply to  Liz

Honestly ladies, this is so bad I think it warrants a response. Almost every comment here is saying the same thing… this stuff is not sustainable and saying so is green washing and gaslighting. Even worse than just selling the stuff blankly. Can you at least like change the title or take the post down? Have that decency? It’s misleading and harmful.

Zoe Barker-Aderem
10 months ago

Yup this feels like a whoops to me. None of this stuff is sustainably produced and most of the items feel like they’d get tossed after a year or two. As someone mentioned, there are ways to decorate seasonally that are more sustainable! Popcorn garlands, dried slices of orange on the tree, etc. Tbh I’d argue that seasonal decorating in general is a super unsustainable practice because it encourages you to buy more than you need if consumers feel compelled to buy a different pillowcase or accessories for each season. Would be super interested in reading the team’s thoughts on that, but this just feels like “click these links and buy this stuff” which I totally get, y’all gotta make money to keep the ship sailing, but saying any of this is sutainable isn’t true.

Melanie Carter
10 months ago

I agree. Save the Earth.

Rachel S
10 months ago

Same….I thought this would be things that you could compost or eat! I personally find the idea of seasonal decoration a bit weird but let’s have some actual sustainable ideas for those who are into it.

Lana Wren
10 months ago

I have a black Halloween tree that I put up every year and our four kids decorate it with hand made ornaments and small drawings. I love it because it’s a fun family activity and we save our favorite ornaments from each year to decorate the Halloween tree in future years. I put orange, green, and purple string lights from Target on the tree too, and it’s so cute all lit up.

Tina Schrader
10 months ago

I must disagree with several comments made here. These look neither plastic nor cheaply made, butvinstead seem to be things that will keepor mamy years. This is one of my favorite posts, and I love Halloween. Thanks and great job!

Tina Schrader
10 months ago
Reply to  Tina Schrader

Between my phone’s darn inputting of letters between words snd my mis-typing, my comment is a mess. Sorry — I think people can tell what I’m saying, tho.

10 months ago
Reply to  Tina Schrader

There are some beautiful items on this list but I think the title was misleading. Many of the items are plastic/from big stores/will end up in landfill.

10 months ago

Would like to see a compostable section. The eucalyptus wreath is a great idea and if you make your own you can use your winter wreath form or buy and donate the wreath form or return it too the shop to reuse for winter decor. I’m looking for more cloth napkins and table linens that would be reused yearly or perhaps mixed with another color or pattern for a different season. The things on this list are exactly what I would thrift. It would be fun to see a thrifted roundup from the team!

10 months ago

I believe these intentions are good, but the content is so problematic… If you want to promote sustainability in design, great! There is so much room for improvement in the field. If you want to sell things through linked product round-ups, that’s fine too! It’s how blogs like this stay afloat. But to try passing this kind of thing off as a sustainable solution is simply spreading misinformation. As a longtime reader, unfortunately I’m not surprised, but I am becoming increasingly disappointed at how flippantly the concept is being attached to such antithetical approaches to sustainability (the whole farm house thing especially). Please try to do better— we know you care about this!

I would say the best ways to decorate in an environmentally-friendly way is: Use natural things that you can compost or eat when you’re done with it. For non-natural items: Shop estate sales. Almost every estate sale i’ve been to has a basement full of holiday decor from years ago. Even if they are not compostable, you’re keeping them out of a landfill. I do like some of the things listed in this post, and I think if you’re going to buy something new, if it can be a natural, non-plastic item, that’s best imho. I like the dried wheat thing, the wreath made of magnolia leaves, the eucalyptus garland. For our Halloween decor, we have a lot of stuff that isn’t natural, and of course i feel guilty about it, but we have used them every year and will continue to use them every year until we die, but i’m trying really hard to stay away from that. my favorite items are these paper-mache pumpkins from target (also have wood pumpkins too) that the kids painted and decorated years ago. and we put them out every year. I like that they are not plastic (which i truly believe is… Read more »

10 months ago

So totally clicked this thinking it was going to be pointers to easuly create actual sustainable fall and Halloween decor. Nope it is the opposite continuing to push consumerism of non sustainable items. Missed the mark with the title EH.

10 months ago

Oh dear. I really thought this was about sustainable things and perked up.
It’s not.
What a lost opportunity.
I know you guys do care about sustainability, but this … is n-o-t.
False advertising with that title.

10 months ago

All I see is a bunch of massed produced crap, that will definitely end up in a landfill, unbelievable!

10 months ago

“Sustainable” means more than “anything but spray-painted styrofoam”
Yes, there are some cute things to buy on this list, but we can’t kid ourselves that they’re “sustainable” just because they may last more than one season.

10 months ago

What a weird title for this post…

10 months ago

There’s some cute stuff (you guys have great taste!) but I agree with all the commentary about “sustainable” missing the mark. Sustainable to me is like pumpkins, corn stalks, mums, etc from your local shops. Generally stuff that Target doesn’t sell. And I’m totally down with Target but maybe just leave the eco claims out of it.

10 months ago

See: greenwashing. There was no need to talk about sustainability in this post! Maybe frame these types of posts as items that you will want to use for years to come?

10 months ago
Reply to  Kara

Kara, that’s a really good point!
Similar to appropriation.

10 months ago

The kind of consumption that you promote by your incessant over-linking simply to get a kickback through adlinks will never be sustainable.

10 months ago

I don’t get what makes these sustainable choices. You mentioned a real pumpkin molding on your front steps like pumpkins are less sustainable than a large light up plastic sign. I recommend using mainly real pumpkins and gourds for decoration and then composting them after!

10 months ago

Where can I buy the beautiful 3 legged end table?

10 months ago

But…like, 90% of these things will literally end up in a landfill. Just because something is less disposable and/or higher quality doesn’t make it sustainable.

10 months ago

The title of this post feels like you’re gaslighting us. It’s all plastic crap that definitely WILL end up in a landfill. Like….what are you even talking about?! I was so excited to see a post about natural decor – real pumpkins, hay bales, foraged vase filler. But you can’t keep a staff around without cheap Made In China plastic garbage to shill. This post might be the most shameful one I’ve seen to date. Do better, Emily. You talk such a big game about going green and wanting to be eco-conscious now that you live in Portland, and posts like these make you look bad.

10 months ago

WTF how is ANY – literally, any – of this sustainable???

10 months ago

Cute ideas, and that living room is totally gorgeous! Thanks for sharing.

10 months ago

How do decorate sustainably for Halloween : take out last year’s decoration, install them and them store them for next year. The end.

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