Nightmare Before Christmas Party Ideas

Nightmare Before Christmas party table ~ Lynlee's

One of my husband’s favorite movies is Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, making a staple in our household every holiday season from Halloween through Christmas! And since Disneyland transforms the Haunted Mansion into a this motif every year around this time, we were even more excited to have a Nightmare Before Christmas party inspired by this theme! Plus, we already had many items we had used to decorate for a trunk-or-treat a couple of years back, so we put them to good use for our dessert table and watch party.

Nightmare Before Christmas table decor ~ Lynlee's

To set the scene in wishing our guests a scary Christmas, I drew inspiration from the amazing imagery in the film and the characters themselves. The fun part is combining the two very different holidays into one cohesive theme. Incorporating festive items, such as wreaths, trees and bows into the traditional and dark Halloween decor is key. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your presentation! Including boxes wrapped in spooky gift wrap not only plays into the holiday gift-giving concept, but also helps to add varying heights to your table. Instead of a classic tombstone, I carved, glued and painted a foam one to look like the dog house belonging to Zero, the ghost dog.

Nightmare Before Christmas party wreath

Find an oversized wreath to utilize in your backdrop, but transform it into the terrifying man-eating wreath from the movie! You can easily add teeth cut from a white poster board, along with cardstock eyes and finish embellishing the sides with faux red cranberries and a large red bow.

Nightmare Before Christmas party table decor ~ Lynlee's

A Nightmare Before Christmas party wouldn’t be complete without Jack Skellington himself! For the trunk-or-treat, I had painted a foam pumpkin white, then added the iconic eyes, nose and mouth with black paint. I finished him off with a Santa hat and had the perfect decoration! Have fun thinking of fun ways to embellish party items in a spooky way, such as scientist beakers for drinks, an eye-catching floral arrangement and coordinating individual treat boxes with black and white stripes! I also utilized chalkboard tombstones as food labels.


Nightmare Before Christmas party floral arrangement ~ Lynlee's


Nightmare Before Christmas party cupcakes ~ Lynlee's

Now that we’ve pulled all the tricks to set up the Nightmare Before Christmas party, we can’t forget the actual treats! You know I had to incorporate cupcakes, so I put them in black and white striped treat cups and topped them with Jack Skellington fondant toppers I made.


I wanted to incorporate the iconic man-eating wreaths into the food as well, which reminded me of these marshmallow wreath treats I used to make around the holidays. Similar to marshmallow rice treats, I mixed Corn Flakes, butter, marshmallows and green food dye and shaped them into wreaths. I added fondant eyes, teeth and bows, then finished them off with red cinnamon candies to re-create the look!


Other highly recognizable Christmas goodies are gingerbread men, so I gave them a Halloween twist with these gingerDEAD men! I’m not usually a cookie baker/decorator and sometimes get intimidated by them, but I think these came out so super cute and spooky… or rather, SPOOPY!


Some other treats I made were bug gummy candies I made with gelatin {gelatin dessert and clear gelatin} poured into bug silicone molds. These make perfect favors with a treat bag decorated like the character of Oogie Boogie! I sewed the edges of burlap bags with black twine, then added the gummy bugs in clear plastic bags inside.


I used another mold with bone shapes to make chocolates for Zero! These were so super simple to make by melting white chocolate candy melts {in the microwave or double boiler}, filling the cavities in the mold and letting them set in the freezer for approximately 15 minutes. And lastly, include some popcorn in your assortment {I used a cookie jar and popcorn bucket from Disneyland} and you’re ready for your movie-watching party!



For more inspiration, be sure to check out the rest of my Halloween-themed parties and tutorials this season!


Merci Beaucoup!

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