Most Halloween festivities are based on folk beliefs concerning supernatural forces and spirits of the dead. Halloween decorations typically feature imagery associated with supernatural beings such as witches, werewolves, vampires, and ghosts.
Halloween, a time of magic, also became a day of divination, with a host of magical beliefs. Images thought to symbolize bad omens—such as black cats, bats, and spiders—are also commonly featured in Halloween decorations. Elements of the autumn season, such as pumpkins and scarecrows, are also reflected in symbols of Halloween.
Particularly in America, symbolism is inspired by classic film, such as fictional figures like Dracula and Frankenstein's monster in the vein of Boris Karloff and Alfred Hitchcock. Homes are often decorated with these symbols around Halloween.
Black and orange are the traditional colors of Halloween. In modern Halloween images and products, purple, green, and red are also prominent.
The use of these colors is largely a result of advertising for the holiday that dates back for over a century. They tend to be associated with various parts of Halloween's imagery.