Store bought decorations are great!! But, you don't want your decorations to look exactly like your neighbors. Do you? The easiest way to make yours unique is to accessorize it a bit. This can be done quite easily and inexpensively.
First, try combining a couple items. For example, our Life-Size Female Reaper looks great on her own, but add a set or two of Rusty Chains and/or some Freaky Fabric and she'll stand out from your neighbor's. Or, try placing a realistic skull or two in front of a tombstone.
Another thing you can change is coloring. An easy way to change color is to use diluted tea or coffee to add a rotted/aged look. This looks great on light-colored cloth or clothing. You can drip or pour the solution onto your subject and let it dry. Repeating this process can enhance the effect.
Lastly, you can try what's called a color-wash. This is done using a solution of acrylic or latex paint (or a water-based stain) and water. The effect you wish to achieve will determine the paint color. For a rotten/aged look, browns and blacks are best. For toxic waste or a diseased look, use greens and yellows. And, for fleshy look, use dark reds. Combinations of these look great, too. Don't be afraid to experiment. What's been done can (for-the-most-part) be undone. A good example of color-washing can be found in steps 34-35 of our Bloody Skull Candle Lamp project.