TORONTO – It’s time to bust out the decorations – the spookiest night of the year is almost upon us.
But if Halloween has crept up on you, don’t worry – there are plenty of last-minute ways to scare trick-or-treaters using everyday household gadgets.
From costumes to homemade decorations, here are five tech inspired ideas to make this year the scariest Halloween yet.
No need to worry if you don’t have a costume picked out yet – all you need is an old t-shirt and your trusty smartphone. Costume company Digital Dudz sells special smartphone pocket t-shirts that come with a free download of one of their creepy animations – but if short on time or money, you can create an at-home version.
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To create a creepy animated costume, all you need to do is create a pocket for your smartphone in an old t-shirt, cut out a hole about the size of your smartphone screen and decorate the front of the shirt with fake blood.
Then create the effect of an open wound with a beating heart animation, or go for a cyborg effect with an animated eye by downloading an animation or finding a video to loop on YouTube.
The same idea can be used for upping the scare-factor of your pumpkin.
Try buying a smaller pumpkin to accompany your larger carved pumpkins – but only carve a hole big enough for your smartphone screen. All you need to do is download an eye animation, place your phone inside and wait for trick-or-treaters.
DIY creepy glowing eyes
Want to scare your trick-or-treaters big time on a small budget? Get ready to raid your recycling bin.
All you need for this DIY project is a few toilet paper rolls, some battery powered LED lights (which you can find at most hardware stores) and a pair of scissors. Simply cut out a few different eye shapes on each roll, stash the LED lights inside and hide them in your bushes. Here is a similar tutorial using glow sticks.
Don’t have the energy to drape your house in cobwebs, or turn your front lawn into a fake graveyard? Turn your house into a haunted haven by hooking up your computer to a projector, or flat screen TV.
AtmosFEARfx has downloadable digital decorations that appear as life-sized ghostly images – from ghosts, to headless horsemen – at $10 each. Simply connect your computer to your TV and place it in front of a big window where trick-o-treaters can see it.
Scream-worthy sound effects
If you aren’t feeling crafty enough for any of the above, why not make your own spooky soundtrack?
Using a program like Apple’s Garage Band, download some scary Halloween music and record a few evil laughs, cackles and maybe the occasional “Boo” overtop. Save the track as a song on your smartphone and play it through a BlueTooth speaker you hide somewhere outside.