Halloween Decorations Create Luminous Patio Decor

Article Posted By: Melissa Valeriote

Halloween Decorations in a back yard nook

In our Style Challenge series, we ask some of our favorite bloggers from around the web to surprise us with their ideas for creating a stylish and functional space using Home Depot products as a starting point. 

Artist Melissa Valeriote is pretty much an expert on holiday decorating. Her blog Fantastical World of Holidays is filled with her one-of-a-kind holiday items. In our Halloween Style Challenge she applied her creative skills to a Halloween-themed patio makeover using Halloween decorations from The Home Depot.The results are simply–and literally– luminous. 

For years now I have been gazing out my kitchen window while standing at the sink, dreaming about how I would transform a neglected corner of my patio into a charming garden nook then fantasizing about the intimate garden parties I would host at twilight amongst the candlelit flowers, family, and friends. But like many wishful remodels, I knew that finding the time for such a nonessential project would have to be put off until some future time. Little did I know that a serendipitous encounter was about to make my dream a reality.

 Back patio before the additions of Halloween decorations

When the Style Challenge Crew at The Home Depot contacted me and asked if I’d like to participate in their upcoming Halloween Style Challenge I said yes without any thought or hesitation. The following days were filled with phone calls and email exchanges, working out the details of the project. I was informed that I would be receiving a mystery box filled with a collection of Halloween decorations. I would then have several weeks to create a festive holiday space incorporating the contents of the box. The goal of the project is to inspire Home Depot’s Apron blog readers to try their hand at some DIY holiday projects. Meeting the deadline for project completion would be a challenge, especially with the holidays quickly approaching.

As a professional artist, I spend my days sketching and sculpting holiday art dolls and figures. As you can imagine, the Fall season is especially busy as I work on commission pieces and prepare for holiday shows. These past few months I have been sculpting non-stop, creating inventory for the upcoming and highly anticipated Halloween & Vine art show in Petaluma, California. Sometimes tight schedules can be a blessing in disguise. I knew I could come up with a weekend project that was both manageable and rewarding if I stayed focused, which can be challenging for a daydreamer such as myself. I also welcomed the much-needed mini break that would force me out of my studio. I quickly got to work and began strolling the aisles of my neighborhood Home Depot for inspiration. I knew I’d have to think a little outside the box for a DIY project since my local store has yet to display their Halloween stock.

At first I toyed around with the idea that I would design an interior holiday display incorporating my fireplace mantel. And then I stumbled upon this charming Hardwood Gliding Bench in the garden section at The Home Depot and began to think again of that neglected corner of my patio.

Natural Wood Patio Double Glider from The Home Depot

I returned home to discover that the crew at Home Depot had sent me a large box containing 8 twelve inch orange Harvest Pumpkins and a couple dozen strings of pumpkin lights. These items seemed better suited for a garden party than a mantel display so I quickly switched gears and began sketching ideas for the yard. I returned to Home Depot and picked up the gliding bench, a couple of potting containers and a variety of festive flowers.

Flowers from The Home Depot garden center

With a little bit of effort my drab patio corner was transformed into a cozy garden haven.

I posted more photos on my blog. Take a look.

Wooden glider on back patio

So inviting.

Flowers for back patio transformation

Garden nook before and after.

Back patio transformed for fall by Melissa of Fantastical World of Holidays

The glider bench is so much more comfortable than this hard splintery bench.

I could be quite content to spend the better part of my day just rocking back and forth, observing garden life.

And now on to the DIY project…

I have a soft spot for Lunar pumpkins. So my first thought was to paint these large orange foam pumpkins a rustic cream and use them as luminaries to add soft lighting to a flower border that runs the length of my yard. I returned to Home Depot and picked up these Shepherd Hooks along with some Martha Stewart paints and got to work.

 Shepherd hooks

Supplies for DIY pumpkin lanterns

I first applied a coat of Primer/Sealer. After drying, I applied a second coat of Redwood-colored paint.

 Painting pumpkins with Martha Stewart craft paint

I then applied a coat of Oat-colored paint. As the paint dries it begins to crack revealing the undercoats of paint. A lovely cracked, aged look don’t you think?  To finish, I rubbed a gold metallic glaze over the entire pumpkin to accentuate the cracks.

Painting pumpkins with Martha Stewart craft paint

After the pumpkins dried I used a star-shaped cookie cutter to outline the shapes. I then carefully cut out the stars with a kitchen knife and inserted battery operated lights into the pumpkins.  I cut lengths of 14″ wire twine and threaded it through the pumpkins for hanging.

Carving pumpkins

 I headed back to the yard with my freshly carved pumpkins and hung them on the garden hooks draping copper star string lights along the border.

Carved faux pumpkins are perfect for creating backyard lanterns

Back patio transformed for fall by Melissa of Fantastical World of Holidays

I then waited for the magic of twilight…

DIY Pumpkin string lights

and waited…

DIY Pumpkin string lights

and waited.

Backyard patio decorated for Halloween

Lots of candles give this patio a cozy, romantic feel

Lots of candles give this patio a cozy, romantic feel

Halloween space from Melissa  of Fantastical World of Holidays

I look forward to hosting a festive twilight gathering to welcome in the Halloween season.

Many thanks to the Home Depot crew for inviting me to participate in the Halloween Style Challenge. Not only did I discover some really wonderful items while browsing their store, I also learned that transforming a space doesn’t require a lot of time or money. With proper planning and a detailed shopping list, a lot can be accomplished in just one weekend. Since the remodel, the whole family is opting to spend more time outdoors and requesting that we dine out back nightly. I now enjoy gazing out my kitchen window at my revamped garden nook and dream about what I’ll restyle next.

To style her back patio, Melissa used the following products from The Home Depot:

Melissa Valeriote is an artist in the Bay Area who specializes in amazing one-of-a-kind holiday decorations. You can see her creations on her blog Fantastical World of Holidays.

For more Halloween decorating ideas, see other Halloween Style Challenges as well as our Halloween Style Challenge pinboard on Pinterest.

Visit our online Holiday Decorations Department for everything you need to decorate your home for Halloween. 

Style Challenge is a series of posts from guest contributors who aim to bring you fresh inspiration and ideas for your home and garden using a single Home Depot product as a starting point. Melissa received the Halloween products for her space from The Home Depot and a Home Depot gift card, but The Home Depot provided no other compensation. The opinions and ideas Melissa expressed are her own.

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