Light-Up Pop-Up Halloween Card!

Introduction: Light-Up Pop-Up Halloween Card!

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It is almost Halloween, and it is time to send a spooky greeting to all your witch, vampire, ghost, goblin and ghoul friends! This instructable will show you step by step how to make an awesome pop-up 3D Halloween Card. You can make this pop-up card either with or without the ability to light-up when you open the card.

  • Inkjet or color printer (Required)
  • Card Stock Paper (Regular paper will work, but not as well)
  • 2 sheet of 11 in X 14 in poster board or heavy weight paper (In mine, I used a red and black sheet.)
  • LED Light (for light up cards)
  • Thin copper sheet or other conductive metal sheet (for light up cards)
  • One 3 volt watch battery (for light up cards)
  • Glue
  • Transparent tape (optional but recommended)
  • Exacto knife
  • scissors
  • duct tape or electrical tape

Step 1: The Card Cover

The first step is to print onto card stock paper using your inkjet printer the Images which include the following pages. Make sure you do not re-size the images.

  • Cover Page - You can make your own cover to the card if you desire.
  • Inside Page- This is the 'ground' for your haunted house.
  • Haunted House
  • Interior of Haunted house (This is optional. Print if you want to be able to peek inside your haunted house. Recommended if doing light up card)
  • Extras- Includes a sexy bathing witch to see when peek into window, bushes and other extras. This page is optional.

Next, simply cut out the pieces of your printed image. Cut along the outside lines of the haunted house interior and exterior, the bushes, and your witch. Cut out the slotted black lines on the interior page.

Step 2: Light Up Card Preparations

If you don't want to make your card light up, you can skip this step. To make your haunted house light up when it is open, you are essentially creating a simple switch that turns on an LED light when the card is open. You will notice that the card interior page has two black lines marked near the middle of the card. Use an exacto knife or scissors to cut these two slots. The page with the interior of the house has a rectangular shaped section. This is the paper tab that will act as the cards on and off switch. Thread it through the two slots and tape one side so that it can not move. The other side of the tab should slide freely as the card is opened and closed. Close to the area of the paper tab along the center fold, punch two small holes for the wires of the LED light and insert the wires through the paper such that the light is near the crease of the paper on the top of the page and the wires come out the back.

To make a switch, you will need a thin piece of conductive metal. In this case, I used a small piece of copper. I cut the copper in a U shape and connected the one end of the 'U' to the one wire of the LED light. I bent the copper over the LED wire, and the wire of the LED light over the copper such that no soldering is necessary. The other segment of the 'U' shaped copper ends beneath the paper tab. The paper tab has a copper collar attached such that when the card is open, the collar slides to complete the circuit between the 'U' piece of copper and the battery. The battery is placed on top of a small piece of the copper and the other wire of the LED light. The watch battery is 3 volts. Even though the LED light is only 1.5 volts, the copper acts as a resister. A piece of tape (Duct tape or electrical tape) holds the battery in place.

For a better understanding of this assembly, watch the video.

Step 3: Assembling the House

Use an exacto knife to score the areas of the haunted house that will be folded. Also cut out the windows. For my card, I only cut out two of the windows, but if you desire, you can cut out all four. If you do not plan to light up the house or wish to view the interior of the house, you only need the exterior of the haunted house and do not need to cut out the windows. The house consist of the sides with roof for the interior and exterior. Line up the windows and glue the interior of the haunted house to the back side of the exterior. Make sure the house can still fold. Next, score down the middle of the front and back of the house. This section of the house will be lined up with the center fold of the card, and so it will fold inside the house when the card is closed. Fold it in half, then glue it to the tabs of the house. Use glue or clear tape to put the parts together. once glued, the pink tiled portion of the house should be inside and the wood boards of the house on the exterior. You should be able to fold the house flat.

If you haven't done so already, cut out the sexy witch and glue the tabs of this segment to the interior of the card on the out side of the tab slots such that the paper tab that makes the card's switch can still move but is hidden beneath the witch in the tub.

Step 4: Glue House to Interior of Card

The next step is simple, but very important to do precisely right. Fold the interior of the card, then lay it flat. The haunted house must be positioned to line up with the center fold such that when the card closes, the house folds. Glue the house to the interior of the house, then fold it and place a heavy weight like a book on top of the folded card until the glue dries. If you glue this in the wrong place, the card will not fold properly.

Finally, glue in place any of the extras like the bushes or the gravestone.  I used the bushes to help glue the house to the base of the interior of the card and to cover up any visible tape.  The front and back of the gravestone is glued together and is slide through the slot on the card interior and glued underneath.

Step 5: Whoops... It Still Works

My original intention was that the haunted house would fit nicely inside the card when it folded closed. Unfortunately, if you've gotten this far, you will notice that the roof of the haunted house extends well above the folded interior page of the card. I contemplated making the house smaller, but a tiny haunted house is just not as impressive. Instead, I decided to make the card bigger by folding a large sheet of construction paper in half, and then glued the interior page with the pop-up haunted house on the inside, and the cover picture on the outside. In my case, I used a Black and a Red sheet of heavy weight construction paper, though you can just use one if you prefer. I then trimmed the construction paper down so that when the card closed, none of the haunted house was visible. This adds stiffness so that the card does not bend when opening.

When you glue the pop-up portion of the interior of the card, make sure that you do not glue the area that the tab must slide to turn on and off the LED light. I cut out an area around this tab in the construction paper to make a space for the tab to move. The hole is then covered by the picture that makes up the front of the card.

If you would like the cover picture of the card without the web address, you can purchase a print of the image without the address at

Step 6: The End

You now have the perfect Halloween Card to send to all your ghost and goblin friends! They will be amazed when they open the card and a haunted house pops-up as the windows of the house flicker with light. They will really be amazed when they peek inside!

Visit DarkRubyMoons website at for all sorts of great activities, artwork and much more. Be sure to check out DarkRubyMoon Store for my artwork on all sorts of fantastic items from T-shirts and prints to clocks and camcorders at the following web locations.

* DarkRubyMoon Store CafePress:
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    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you so much! :D I love pop-up books... I find they are almost magical... so thought be fun to make a pop-up card.