Everyone on my social feed is trying out this viral painting trend that's right on time for spooky season

It's serving up major 'Stangers in the Alps' vibes (if you know, you know...)

Ghosts painted on naturescape painting
(Image credit: Breanna Louise, @brelouise8 on Instagram)

There's a new trend making the rounds on social media that involves upcycling old paintings from the charity shop and giving them a spooky makeover that's right on time for the season. Phoebe Bridgers fans, consider this a love letter to you, as this trend is giving major Stranger in the Alps vibes – and we're a little obsessed.

If you were after an easy DIY project to add to your bank of Halloween decorating ideas (or, simply for all year round, given how obsessed we are with the outcome), it's time to dust your paintbrushes off and put your secondhand shopping boots on, because we're off for a ghoulish adventure.

Forest painting with ghosts hiding behind trees

(Image credit: Ivonne Wild, @ivonne.is.painting on Instagram)

Thrifted ghost painting trend

As aforementioned above, the 'thrifted ghost painting trend' consists of people buying old paintings from the thrift store (perhaps more commonly known as a charity shop, for us Brits) and adding ghosts and other eery elements to the painting. We think it's a beginner-friendly upcycling idea that'll certainly get you in the spooky spirit.

Ghosts painted on naturescape painting

(Image credit: Breanna Louise, @brelouise8 on Instagram)

This growing trend has racked up tens of millions of views on TikTok and Instagram combined and for the most part, has been received well by social media fans.

Some comments on a handful of videos include, 'This trend is the best. Every video I've seen turns out so cute!' Another one reads, 'As a Halloween obsessed girly, I absolutely love this.'


♬ Oh Klahoma - Jack Stauber

One artist's take on the trend we're particularly obsessed with is that of Ivonne Wild (@ivonne.is.painting on Instagram), who has since received several requests from individuals who bring their own paintings to her to recreate in this style for their autumn interiors.

She has transformed several artistic pieces and added a spooky touch to them, and the results are nothing less than swoon-worthy.

Naturescape painting with ghosts on the hills

(Image credit: Ivonne Wild, @ivonne.is.painting on Instagram)

You can use acrylic paint or pens and go in directly over the painting to create the ghoulish (but equally adorable) look – and given that the original print will be a charity shop or secondhand find, participating in this trend shouldn't cost you more than a couple of pounds.

So, as well as being a fun addition to an autumnal or Halloween-themed gallery wall idea, it also doubles up as a budget-friendly way of decorating.

Ghosts painted onto waterscape city painting

(Image credit: Ivonne Wild, @ivonne.is.painting on Instagram)

And on that note, why stop at ghosts? If you wanted to do a similar thing but for the chillier, winter months, we reckon you could even swap out the ghosts for festive characters to add to your spread of DIY Christmas decor.

At this point, the choices are endless. However, if you need us we'll be scrolling through social media admiring these adorable ghostly friends.

Jullia Joson
Junior Writer

Jullia Joson is Ideal Home’s Junior Writer. She’s always loved all things homes and interiors, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Nottingham in 2022. Previously, she was an Intern Editor for ArchDaily. Now focused on news stories, Jullia can be found down the TikTok and Pinterest rabbit hole scrolling through any new and upcoming trends, hacks, and home inspiration.