Paper Clay Haunted House With Lights!

Bryan's Workshop
by Bryan's Workshop
8 Materials
7 Days

I love Halloween! Love it!! Here's a fun way to make a haunted house for Halloween decor.

This is my finished paper clay haunted house.

First you'll need the paper clay.

This is my recipe for a bucket full of paper clay. This stuff dries incredibly hard and has a long shelf life.

If the clay is too wet-add more paper pulp and if it's too dry-add more glue.

Now you'll need the building and painting supplies.

I only used cardboard, hot glue and duct tape to make my haunted house armature. Any shape will work just as long as it's strong enough to hold the weight of the clay until it is dry.

The popsicle sticks and skewers glue onto the house later and help in no way to support the paper clay. The popsicle sticks were used for the door and the bamboo skewers were glued onto the roof to make it look cool. icon

Any paint will work on this paper clay recipe.

I mixed up small batches of joint compound, water and paint to give parts of the house a grainy texture. Chalk powder will work too.

I used wallpaper glue to glue on all of the artificial moss. I like using wallpaper glue, because it has mold inhibitors in it. (some brands)

Now you can build your haunted house. Don't be too concerned about the look of your armature. Everything will get covered in paper clay. Just make sure it is strong enough to hold the clay.

I used duct tape to strengthen the windows.

I used a bamboo skewer to create the bricks and siding on my haunted house.

After I painted the house and it was dry, I used really watered down black paint to age it. When that dried, I went over the black with a really watered down white paint to age it even more. 

This is some of the joint compound, water and paint mixture. I don't have a specific mixture, but it's easy to judge. Remember less is more.

I painted areas of the roof with wallpaper glue and then pressed on artificial moss. I then painted over the moss until is was saturated with the wallpaper glue. It dries clear and not too hard. In my experience the wallpaper glue works better than wood glue or normal glue.

I used some scrap wood for the balcony and popsicle sticks for the door. I ended up waxing them with Jacobean Briwax.

I cut squares out of transparent colored office files and taped them in the house behind the windows. You'll need to cut a hole in the bottom of your house to do this and add the light. Make sure the files aren't too transparent or you'll be able to see the lightbulb inside of the house clearly. Some files have a texture like a privacy window to them and they work the best.

Most lights work well in this. You can buy a push on LED light at the dollar store or set your house on an LED light build.

* Be very careful with Incandescent bulbs because they can get hot. Go low watt and check the temp, before you put your house on it.

There you have it!

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DIY Halloween decor

For more creative Halloween decor projects, discover Hometalk's best DIY haunted house ideas.

Suggested materials:
  • Paper clay
  • Craft paint
  • Cardboard
See all materials
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  2 questions
  • Leslie Leslie on Aug 26, 2017

    Hi Bryan, Your house came out wonderfully. I am a little confused about the paper clay recipe. I looked on another one of your posts and the recipe is a bit different, so for this one do you use the wall paper glue as the binder? I also would like to know if you put the mixture in a plastic bag and take the air out of it will it keep and for how long? Thank you so much for taking the time to answer, I truly enjoy reading about your projects.

  • Terry Terry on Aug 26, 2017

    If I wanted to use this outside, would I coat the cardboard first with some type of preservative or possibly the wallpaper glue?


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