I’ll be honest. I don’t love Halloween. I like it, but it’s definitely not my favorite holiday. For this reason, I’m a little stingy when it comes to shelling out money for Halloween decorations. Come Christmastime, money feels like no object. But Halloween? Not so much.

During my weekly trip to Target, I wandered into the Halloween section and immediately spotted some cute and spooky skeletons in cages. The size that I wanted was going to run me about $25 and as I looked at it with my DIY-er eye, I realized I could probably make something very similar for a couple of bucks. And so I did. Here’s how!


15 ft of 1/4″ dowel rods
2 equally sized pieces of scrap wood (my pieces were about 7.25×5)
16″ plastic skeleton (Dollar Store … Target has them too, but you’ll pay a little more)

First, cut your dowel rods into 18″ lengths. Stack your two end pieces of wood and mark holes every two inches or so (stacking them will make sure that your holes line up when you insert your dowel rods).

Make sure your hole pattern is the same on the sides that are across from one another. Using a 1/4 inch drill bit, drill all the way through the one board and part-way through the board underneath (the board underneath will serve as the top).

Drill a small hole in the middle of the under-side of your top piece, and secure a small hook to hang the skeleton. (This step is not pictured)
This part takes a little patience. Insert your dowel rods into the bottom end and then carefully line up the dowels with the holes in the top end. You could put a bit of glue in the holes if you really wanted it to be secure. I’m using this decoration for a couple of weeks in a location that is out of reach from the children, so I wasn’t too worried about building something super sturdy. 

Spray with black paint – two coats is ideal. Hang your skeleton from the installed hook and pose as desired.