Truth be told, I’ve never been a huge fan of Halloween. Once I had outgrown the holiday and hung up my trick-or-treat bag for good as a tween, I was done. The creepy, crawliness of it all is simply not for me (I’m much more of a pink hearts Valentine’s Day kind of gal). Then I had kids and the magic of Halloween came back to me in an instant.

I love watching them take the costume choosing process very seriously, and the thrill they get running from house to house as they trick or treat on the big day. In fact, I’ve changed my tune so much about Halloween that I even throw the kids a costume party each year, with the number of attendees gradually increasing as my boys meet more and more friends. It’s for this very reason that I started doing all of my Halloween party shopping at dollar stores – because while the number of guests goes up, my budget cannot.

Dollar stores are truly a treasure trove of inexpensive holiday decorations and party items that are pretty much all going to get trashed by my crew of preschoolers and kindergarteners, so it’s an affordable way to create a fun environment without putting a strain on your wallet.

Here are some things to look out for on your dollar store Halloween party planning trip:

* Halloween Paper Goods

Black, orange and lime green table cloths, napkins, cups, paper plates and cutlery – it’s all here. There is simply no reason to pay more for it anywhere else. You can also snap up paper lunch bags or party bags here if you’re planning on sending guests home with treats, either from a piñata or pre-filled goody sacks.

* Cheap Halloween Decorations

Dollar stores have tons of seasonal decorations and they really bring their A-game when it comes to Halloween. Fake spider webs to drape over shrubbery, balloons, streamers, plastic bugs and other creepies, witch hats – it’s all here. Once you start wandering the aisles you’ll be shocked by how much they have in stock (assuming you don’t show up on October 30th or the day of Halloween).

* Halloween Costume Pieces

If you’re going to DIY your child’s Halloween costume or one for yourself, before you hit the craft supply store, try the dollar store. You might be surprised by the little embellishments they offer at bargain prices. It may not entirely be one-stop shopping for costumes, but it could prove to be pretty darn close.

* Halloween Serveware

Plastic platters and bowls for food can be found in dollar stores, and around this time of year you’ll probably find some that are Halloween-themed as well. Look for plastic cauldrons or pumpkins to dot around your soiree and fill them with treats.

* Halloween Snacks

Not only do dollar stores offer non-perishable food items and treats (definitely consider scoring  your candy here), but many even have fresh produce sections. You can probably pick up all of the fixings for candied apples here (or at the very least a bobbing for apples game), as well as a bunch of other goodies for your party guests.

Have fun planning your budget friendly Halloween party with our Halloween dollar store ideas and tips.

For DIY Halloween costumes on a budget, click here. 

For DIY Fall Mason jar craft ideas with pumpkins, leaves and ghosts click here.