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Indoor Halloween Lighting Effects and Ideas That Will Make Your House Look Spooky


Lighting is one of the most important parts for making your home look haunted. Find out the easiest indoor Halloween lighting effects and ideas that will make your house look spooky.

Halloween is my favorite holiday! I love to transform the inside of my home into a haunted mansion and the outside into a Halloween graveyard. Neither one would be nearly as spooky without some great Halloween lighting effects and ideas.

Indoor Halloween lighting effects and ideas

Indoor Halloween Lighting Effects and Ideas

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Lighting is one of the best ways to add atmosphere to a room any time of the year…and Halloween is no exception!

With so many types of lighting available, it’s easy to add a little or a lot of spookiness to your Halloween party, depending on the look you want to create.

Keep reading to find out my favorite indoor Halloween lighting effects and ideas to make your house look haunted.

Replace Regular Light Bulbs With Colored Ones

Replacing regular light bulbs with red ones adds atmosphere to your Halloween haunted house
Replace regular light bulbs with colored ones

Another easy indoor Halloween lighting effect is to replace your regular light bulbs with colored ones. I used red light bulbs all over the house to create the atmosphere I wanted for my Fallen Angels and Devils party.

Green light bulbs in the chandelier give a spooky indoor Halloween lighting effect

If you are going for the chilly, graveyard look, try green or blue bulbs.

If you want to add a flame-like, warmer like, try orange or red bulbs. (Animated props like this Halloween urn* with the motion sensor activated scary face and voice also add to the ambiance).

These colored bulbs do not usually provide as much light as regular white bulbs. You’ll have to gauge how many you need so that people can still see what they are doing.

For more flexibility (and a little more money), you can get bulbs with a remote control* that allow you to change the color. That makes them easy to re-use for any occasion when you need special lighting.

Use Uplights

An up light makes the cheese cloth "spider web" glow
An up light makes the cheese cloth “spider web” glow

Uplighting is a great way to add ambiance to Halloween scenes like this one. Which is why it is the next item on my list of indoor Halloween lighting effects and ideas.

This technique can be used to add drama for a lot of Halloween decorations…at the bottom of Halloween figurines, up walls and ceilings or under bushes and trees.



I used an uplight like this* to make the table look like it was glowing in the scene above.

Green uplight on skulls for spooky Halloween party

Colored uplights are great for creating a spooky atmosphere by having them reflect off walls and other props (like these candle trees*).

For this I use battery operated LED lights* that you can change the color of using a remote control. They’re fairly inexpensive and you can re-use them for other events and parties in the future.

Add Fake Flames

Fake flame for indoor Halloween lighting

Fake flames are another one of my favorite indoor Halloween lighting ideas.

You can get fake flames in both hanging and table-top varieties.

Hanging Flame Lamp*

Simply plug them in and they are ready to add some fire-y atmosphere to your Halloween party, without any of the fire hazard risk of real ones!

Combine the faux flames with a cement wall scene setter* to create a Halloween dungeon feel.

Find out how to hang scene setters HERE.

Replace Chandelier Bulbs With Flicker Bulbs

Flicker bulbs in the chandelier
Chandelier with flicker bulbs

The first item on my list of indoor Halloween lighting effects and ideas is a really easy way to decorate your chandelier for Halloween.

All you have to do is replace the bulbs in your chandelier with flicker bulbs*. It will immediately look like an old-time candle-lit chandelier.

Flicker bulbs in wall sconces
Flicker bulbs in wall sconces

While they make your chandelier or wall sconces look like they are old-school gas flames, they give out just about as much light as old-school non-electric ones did, too 🙂

You won’t be able to use them to read by, but they certainly add ambiance to your Halloween haunted house!

The orange glow in this lamp is created by a flicker light bulb
The orange glow in this lamp is created by a flicker light bulb

The orange light in this lamp is also created by a flicker bulb. The light reflects off the crystals and makes everything glow orange.

Hang Floating Candles

The Harry Potter series had a great idea for Halloween lighting…floating candles are spooky and look awesome!

Just wrap black thread around flameless taper candles and voila, you’ve created Halloween atmosphere.

Of course, you could go all out and re-create the whole Harry Potter great hall…which has all kinds of great Halloween lighting.

Click here to see all of our Harry Potter Halloween party decor.

Add String Lights

Halloween String Lights in faux coral home decor accessoryString Lights are not just for Christmas anymore!

Add some colored string lights to your standard decor and you have instant Halloween decorations.

This piece of faux coral is always on the shelf in my living room. By adding a few mini skulls and some orange string lights, it gets transformed into part of my Halloween decor.

Purple and Orange Mini Lights*

Purple and orange ones are easy to come by this time of year and can be used anywhere in your haunted house to add some more light, while still keeping the Halloween theme going.

Bird cage string lights look spooky and cast spooky shadows
Bird cage string lights look spooky and cast spooky shadows

You can also use string lights that come in Halloween shapes…the bird cages above look spooky and cast spooky shadows on the wall.

Hang a Skull Disco Ball From Your Ceiling Light Fixture

Skull disco ball is fun indoor Halloween lighting

You can buy these skull disco balls* around Halloween for not very much money.

They’re just as much fun as a real disco ball, with a bit of a Halloween twist!

Skull Disco Mirror Ball*

Light Lots Of Candles

Candles are another one of my essential indoor Halloween lighting effects. It’s hard to created a haunted house atmosphere without them.

While I love the look of real candles, with all of the creepy cloth and other flammable materials hanging around, I usually end up using flame-less candles for my Halloween displays.

Fortunately, they have become much more realistic looking in the last few years. All of the candles in this vignette that I did for my Phantom of the Opera party are fake and they still look pretty good.

You Might Also Like: Halloween Candle Ideas

Make Everything Glow In The Dark

Adding black lights to your Halloween decor is a fun indoor lighting effect that everyone seems to love.

You can make all kinds of things glow in the dark under black lights, and even write on the walls (don’t worry, it washes right off!)

Click here to find out more about creating glow in the dark Halloween decor.

Use Props With Lights

Props with lights add to indoor Halloween lighting effects

A lot of Halloween props come with lights.  Look for figures with eyes that light up, animated spell books* that light up, cauldrons that steam and light up*…you get the picture.

Or you can make your own boiling cauldron using an LED mist maker*.

Put an LED mister in a witches cauldron…they provide light and “fog” to add even more spookiness to your Halloween decor.

It isn’t really fog, just evaporated water that looks like fog so they are safe to use anywhere. However, the water will condense on surfaces around the mister so just make sure they are waterproof.

Also, the mister will only produce fog if it is covered by less than an inch of water, so you will need to sit it on top of something in the cauldron to bring the top of the mister closer to the top of the water.

Have comments or question on our indoor Halloween lighting effects and ideas?  Tell us in the section below.

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