When I was little, all the kids carried the orange plastic pumpkin pails at Halloween. (This is the point where Baby B would wave her forearms like a T-Rex, and ask, “Mommy, did the dinosaurs look like this?” She’s a charmer.) I thought it would be fun to turn a pumpkin pail into a Halloween Party Candy Centerpiece. This was ultra-easy and inexpensive.


  • Orange plastic pumpkin pails
  • Round, flat lollipops
  • Halloween printable party circles – I used these free ones from The TomKat Studio.
  • 2-inch circle punch – I like this one from EK Tools.
  • Pop-up glue dots
  • Halloween candy
  • Lollipop sticks – get them in the baking aisle of your craft store or WalMart’s craft aisle
  • Hot glue gun or E6000 glue – your choice
  • Styrofoam bricks
  • Orange paper crinkle
  • Orange grosgrain ribbon, 1.5-inch width


1 – Put the foam blocks in your pumpkin pail until they reach almost to the opening. I had to cut my blocks into squares to make them fit and then stack them on top of each other.

2 – Add paper crinkle to hide the foam blocks.

3 – Cut out party circles with a 2-inch circle punch and add to lollipops with glue dots.

4 – Push lollipops into the foam, starting at the center and working out. Leave spaces for the candy. (I think it also would be cute to add tall twisty lollypops like these to the centerpiece, but I was just too lazy to drive around looking for some.)

5 – Using either hot glue or E6000 glue, attach a variety of wrapped Halloween candy to the lollipop sticks. Both types of glue work, although the E6000 takes longer to set up. But, if you tend to burn the fool out of your fingers when working with hot glue (like I do) then the E6000 is another option.

6 – Add the candy in between the lollipops.

7 – Cut a 3-foot length of ribbon, tie a bow, and add it to your pumpkin pail with a glue dot. For tips on tying a great-looking bow, see this post.

That’s it; you’re done! I will warn you: your guests may see your centerpiece as part of the dessert table. As I got my guests started with their pumpkin decorating, other kids were snatching candy out of the centerpiece. The older kids tried to be a little sneakier: they pulled the candy out of the wrapper and left the wrappers stuck all alone in the pumpkin pail.

Remember in You’ve Got Mail, when Meg Ryan gets all offended at Tom Hanks for eating the caviar garnish? “It’s a GARNISH!” That was me, telling my daughters: “It’s DÉCOR!” But, really, you can’t blame kids for eating candy that I’ve put right smack in front of them – ha!

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