Easy Halloween hacks; decorate with smart lights

Halloween is around the corner, and there’s an easy way to get your home ready.

Coloured light bulbs can easily transform your home into a spooky space; whether you want orange to light up your front window pumpkin, or some darker lighting scenes to create a creepier vibe.

Use a coloured bulb or wireless smart lamp in a pumpkin

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MiPow Playbulb Sphere lamp

Smart light bulbs like LIFX, or Philips Hue have colour changing abilities that can be controlled with the touch of a smartphone; you can use a bulb like this to get your front window glowing orange to signal to trick or treaters that you’re open for business. If you’re clever and careful, you can also pop one of these bulbs into a small lamp, and pop it inside a large pumpkin to make your carving glow. A smart light won’t get blown out by the wind, or become a fire hazard if it’s tipped over, or catches the hem of a costume, either.

Alternately, Philips has a couple of smart lamps that would also work well in this situation; the Hue Go lamp charges up, then can operate wirelessly, meaning you can pop it into a pumpkin, and leave it for a few hours. The LED light won’t get hot either, so it’s very safe. The MiPow Playbulb Sphere, a wireless glass globe, would also fit into a larger pumpkin. (Read more about it here)

Put LED strip lights inside a mask

smart light halloween maskThe Playbulb Comet light strip would also work in this scenario; coil the light strip like a string of Christmas lights into the pumpkin, or inside a mask, then choose your colour.  While the light strip does need to be plugged in, it’s quite bright if you’re looking for a different application.

Choose a halloween light theme for a party

Several smart lights also have ‘scenes’ or ‘themes’ built in; you can use them to create ambiance for your halloween party. LIFX in particular often creates holiday themes like ‘Intense” or “Halloween” that you can use with a click, but you can also craft your own custom atmospheres too by fine-tuning colour and brightness.img_6465

Use the Internet of Things to control lights, sound, music

If you haven’t experimented with IFTTT (If This Then That), you’re missing out.  IFTTT uses apps and smart, connected devices to create actions that happen automatically. I wrote about how you can use it to turn coloured smart lights blue when snow is in the forecast.   But you can also use it to have more fun. Need a primer on how it all works? Click here.

 Got a smart doorbell and some smart lights? Use an IFTTT ‘recipe’ to play spooky music on a Sonos speaker when the doorbell is pressed, and to set lights flashing blood red. Read more about how to do that, or to achieve the same effect with a motion sensor, via the Yonomi app here. You can also surf the IFTTT website for recipes that have already been created and borrow one that suits you.

Read my review of LIFX smart bulbs here. Check out the smart Philips Hue Go  wireless portable lamp too.

Do you have a halloween hack or IFTTT recipe we should try? Post your ideas in comments below!

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