Paper Tricks to Sweeten Your Trunk or Treat

10.19 - TrunkOrTreat_WEB-header SHORTER

You’ve got your one-of-a-kind trunk or treat idea—but how to bring your concept to life? Paper, posterboard and cardboard make for a setup that’s easy and makes use of items you have on hand, minimizing trips to the craft store.

We chose a spooky Halloween theme, but many of the ideas here can be adapted to your theme—treat bags and boxes in colors that match your look, for example. Flesh out the immersive effect by extending your setup beyond the vehicle itself, as with our cardboard “stone” pathway that leads to the trunk. Masking the car by covering the bumper in some way also helps create a look; here we created a rickety “fence” using cardboard.

Below are instructions for the two core concepts behind our trunk: candy and food presentation (monster treat bags, harvest box and broomstick treat bag) and decorating the actual vehicle (signpost, bat garland, spiderweb and ghosts). Now go knock it out of the park—or, at least, the parking lot.

Monster treat bag

Supplies

  • Black or white construction paper
  • Paper treat bags with window
  • Stick-on googly eyes
  • Candy
  • Scissors
  • Glue


Instructions

  1. Cut small triangles from black or white construction paper to make “fangs.”
  2. Glue triangles around window of treat bag to create fangs.
  3. Affix googly eyes and fill with candy.

Harvest box

Supplies

  • 1-inch-wide solid-color washi tape
  • ¾-inch-wide patterned washi tape (we used polka dots here)
  • Plain cardboard box
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Tissue paper
  • Apples or pumpkins


Instructions

  1. Wrap base of the box with the 1-inch-wide washi tape; cut and glue in place.
  2. Wrap ¾-inch washi tape over the 1-inch-tape, leaving the top ¼ inch of solid washi tape exposed; cut and glue in place.
  3. Put tissue paper in box, fluffing out the corners, and fill box with apples or pumpkins. (Or a spooky delight; your call!)

Broomstick treat bag

Supplies

  • Plain brown paper lunch bags
  • Scissors
  • Small branch
  • Ribbon
  • Candy


Instructions

Visit Martha Stewart for full instructions. We used decorative ribbon instead of twine to cinch the top of the bags.

Signpost

Supplies

  • Cardboard center from fabric roll
  • Glue
  • Two rolls crepe paper streamers, each in a contrasting color
  • Scissors
  • Black cardboard (or cardboard of any color and black paint)
  • White paint or chalk
  • Black duct tape
  • Christmas tree stand
  • Black fabric


Instructions

  1. Decorate signpost: Glue one end of the lighter-hued crepe paper streamer (in this case, orange) to the top of the cardboard fabric roll. Wind the crepe paper around the roll, leaving room between each twist; dot on glue occasionally to help the paper stay in place. Glue and trim crepe paper at bottom of roll. Glue one end of the darker crepe paper streamer to the top of the roll. Wind around the roll, filling in the gaps from the lighter paper and dotting on glue along the way as needed. Glue and trim at bottom of roll.
  2. Make signs: Paint cardboard black if necessary. Cut out rectangles of desired size from cardboard (ours were roughly 12-inches-by-3-inches). Trim one end of each rectangle into an arrow. Snip the other end into a rough zigzag pattern—for this Halloween theme, the idea is to look weatherbeaten, so it needn’t be perfect. Use white paint or chalk to write in destinations in line with your theme—whether that’s Treat Street or Grim Reaper’s Lane. Or, as we did here, Trunk or Treat.
  3. Assemble: Use black duct tape across the back of the signs to attach signs to post. Skew the angle—again, it shouldn’t look too perfect. Plant the signpost in the Christmas tree stand. Drape black fabric around the base to conceal.

Bat garland

Supplies

  • Construction paper
  • Twine or string
  • Scissors
  • Single hole punch
  • Downloadable and printable bat garland template from Hello Glow
  • Tape


Instructions

Visit Hello Glow for full instructions and template. We used black-and-orange string to connect our bat colony, and omitted the moon option in the instructions. Tape held the lightweight garland in place on the sides of the vehicle.

Spiderweb

Supplies

  • White paper (wrapping paper works well—you can use the reverse side of any wrapping paper)
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Tape


Instructions

Visit Skip to My Lou for full instructions and template. We wanted a white spiderweb, so we used a pencil instead of chalk to mark the template. Tape held the spiderweb in place in the corner of the trunk setup.

Ghosts

Supplies

  • White poster board
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Black construction paper
  • Glue
  • Single hole punch
  • Twine
  • Tape


Instructions

Visit One Creative Mommy for full instructions, including a template if you’d like one—it’s simple enough to freeform, though. We used a combination of tape and twine to secure the ghosts to the trunk setup.

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