Ghoulish Grown Up Beverage Labels

By Kate Riley September 28, 2010

double double quote

Okay, it’s true, I so love autumn, but recently, as in the last few years, I’m loving Halloween too.  Only because in my world, all the kids around me live to dress up in their costumes and I can’t help but get excited along with them.  Costume choice is already the hot topic at school.  "What are you going to be?"  "I’m going to be Bat Girl!"  "I’m going to be Luke Skywalker!"

I’ve never liked the the gory side of Halloween.  I really don’t care for for anything extremely bloody or too disturbing.  Unlike the teenagers, I steer clear of haunted houses.  But I do love the dressing up in costumes, carving jack-o-lanterns, and trick-or-treating side of Halloween.  And I like the playful, whimsical, spooky side filled with spiders, witches, ghosts and goblins.

This year, we’re entertaining friends for a pumpkin carving party, so I thought I’d get a head start.  Martha’s been making beverage labels for a few years now, and when I spied hers in the latest Living Magazine, I was inspired to create some of my own.


These beer bottle labels are perfect for the spooky ales we will serve.

cg halloween beer labels   

Here’s a few poisonous potions I concocted for a Halloween vignette.

cg poison bottle labels



arsenic poison labels


And how about these toxic tonics for the grown ups at the party?

cg halloween wine labels


I’ve had so much fun creating these labels, and I did it with free photo editing software, free fonts, free clip art and wallpapers.  Just a little creativity and a whole lotta FREE.

I’ve spoken before of my love for Picasa.  It’s my go-to editing software for most of my pictures.  Sometimes I use Photoshop, but most often, it’s Picasa.  What I love about Picasa is that the program imports all of the fonts you have installed on your computer so you can write over any image with any of your favorite fonts.

I also like to use Picnik for other functions.  I’ve raved about that free photo editing software too.  Today, I’ll show you just how I go about creating all of these fun beverage labels.  Before I do, take a peek at all the free Halloween fonts you can download here.  I picked the ones I liked, then installed them on my computer following these instructions.

Want to see how I made this label for free and in ten minutes ?

bewitching brew beer label


Here’s the scoop.

How to Make Your Own Beverage Label with Picasa and Clip Art Images

1.  Find your Image or Clip Art.  I like to find free wallpapers or clip art on the web.  I usually find them through a search on Google Images.  You can also find plenty of images at sites like iStockphoto or Shutterstock, but you have to pay for those.

witch on broom


2.  Picasa is Your Friend.   If you haven’t downloaded this free photo editing software, do it here.  Place your image in its own folder, then open the image in Picasa.  Use the Collage Tool to layer clip art image on white background, and size to your preference.  Use the Crop Tool to create a rectangular shape for your label.

create collage in picasa


Next, add your font with the Edit Text tool.   I used the very bewitching free ‘Witched’ font found here.

add witched font in picasa


I used the Color Temperature tool to ‘age’ the label from white to a vanilla color.

change color temperature


Then I played around with the Graduated Tint tool to add a sunset to the background.

add graduated tint in picasa


To add depth to the font, I changed it to black, then tilted it to the side with the Edit Text Tool.

change tilt font in picasa


PIcnik Is Also Your Friend.  Once I was done in Picasa with adding all my clever sayings, I saved my image, then hopped over to Picnik to give it a border.  You don’t need to download anything from Picnik, rather you upload your images to this online editing program.  Again, it’s completely free!  To form the border, find the Border Tool under the Frames category in the Create tab.    Choose your thickness of the inner and outer color.

add border in picnik (2)


That’s it, so easy!   I’ve been using both these editing programs for awhile now, so to create this ‘Bewitching Brew’ label took me less than 10 minutes.

I then sized the label in a table in Microsoft Word (four labels per page) and printed them on full sheet labels.  You can use cardstock and adhere your labels with a glue stick or spray adhesive, but my preferred method is to use the Avery full sheet labels #8165 found at any office supply store.

Frighteningly fun, aren’t they?

cg halloween beer labels up close


Here are the four beer bottle labels I made using the technique described above.

beer labels


These simple Halloween brew labels are available for you in both .jpg and .pdf files for you to download and print right here.  Just because I love ya.  Here are four more wine labels too.

halloween wine bottle labels

Download all these wine labels right here !

You can use this technique to make your own beverage labels for themed events like blind tastings or murder mystery dinner parties.  You can make your own labels for any occasion you imagine, even with non-alcoholic beverages like sparkling juices or mineral water. 

Oh, but I’m not done!  Later this week, I’ll post some kid friendly labels, perfect for all those classroom and costume kid parties coming up in October, plus a neat trick for working with colored backgrounds.  Would you like some text free backdrops to play around with too?  Pick your poison, and I’ll try to gather up a few for you.

Now it’s time to eat, drink, and be scary! 




  1. You are just too cool. ;) These are fabulous . . . you seriously are “the next Martha”. I love reading your blog.

  2. Wow Kate! These are so awesome! And so are you for sharing with us! I love them!!!!
    Since you did all the hard work I feel like I MUST use them………no reason for me to procrastinate this year!!!!!


  3. These bottle labels look like you bought them in a store! Great job. I love the way the came out. It is perfect for a party. I too love halloween and I am trying to get going with how I am going to decorate…but something always comes up that I have to take care of! So much to do so little time! Have fun!

  4. Kate, these are adorable! Thank you so much for explaining how to do it. You’re a great teacher.

    I’d say you also have good taste in spirits, for your “Vampire Spirits” bottle looks suspiciously like Maker’s Mark, one of my all-time favorites. :)

  5. What a great post. I will putting these to use, and making some of my own. Just in time for this weekend’s wine tasting with girl friends! Thanks again.

  6. This is so amazing!! Thank you so much for the super cool freebies, the extremely clear & easy step by step, and the adorable halloween decor! Love this post! SOOO Creative & FUN! :) xo

  7. Oona, they cannot get wet, but they refrigerate just fine.

    Stacey, here are some of my favorites at Dafont:
    Nightmare, Chiller, and Bloodsuckers. Search under ‘Horror’ for plenty of choices!


  8. Great idea! One of my friends made labels for wine bottles at their wedding and had people write well wishes on them. Who knew you could be so creative with glass bottles.

  9. Thanks for the little tutorial on using picasa. At the moment I use gimp, but it would be nice to have something for quick things that’s very simple and fast to use!

  10. Thank you so much for the tutorial and for the link!!!! Can’t wait to print some for our Halloween Party :)

  11. I love these! We have a adult Halloween party every year and each year we get more carried away then the last, these will be perfect!! Thanks so much for the posting!!

  12. Hi Kate

    These are perfect and your tute was excellent. I have Photoshop Elements 8 and struggle when I try to do someting like this – so much to learn. I will have to check out these 2 sites. Maybe I will have that aha! moment and finally get it. Enjoy your pumpkin carving festivities.
    My best- Diane

  13. You have a really great way with words, and I love the label names you came up with. Thanks for the tip on the photo download, since I have been using MS Office for nearly everything. Fall is my favorite time of year, and it looks like you are starting the season off with a bang. Hope your pumpkin party is a blast!

  14. Those labels are so fun! You are clever once again, Kate! You’re Martha Stewart! I think I may try my hand at making these. Thanks for sharing the tutorial.

  15. These are awesome! You are so sweet – you said that it took you ten minutes to make these, but it probably took you way longer to write up the tutorial to share with us… thank you!

  16. These labels are so awesome and professional looking! You rock! And you double rock for giving them to us instead of making us go do it ourselves even after you provided a fantastic tutorial! :)


  17. I’ve been using Picasa for photo editing in a long time but never use the collage button hahaha.. new things to learn. Love the wording on the labels. Thanks Kate!

  18. These are great! Thanks for allowing us to download them.

    And thank you for the tutorial on creating out own labels. My husband brews his own beer sometimes, so this will come in handy when he finishes the nex

  19. next batch. I’ll just whip up a cute label and he’ll think that I’m a genius. HA!

    (Sorry about the two separate posts. My 16 month old thought that I was finished with my previous comment.) :)

  20. I’ve been using Picasa for years and never understood the benefit of Picnic (the borders!). I wish Picasa would get on board with the borders so there is no need to use two programs. A circle crop would be nice too, in case they happen to be reading this :)

    Thank you again for explaining your process so clearly!

  21. I have just recently started reading your blog, can’t recall how I came across it. So glad you like and use Picasa! I am a Picasa user and love it except I haven’t experimented as much as you have. I also read your “Picasa is My Friend” post. I guess I better get out of the editing button of “I’m Feeling Lucky” and actually start editing my pictures!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Amy S

  22. A total blast! Well done for my most favorite of “stat” holidays. My broomstick never goes out without me!

  23. Thank you so much for this tutorial. I used it last night to create wine labels for my daughters Paris birthday party. I found some beautiful free clip art of vintage paris. I’ve never made any type of labels and your directions were perfect. Is there anything you can’t do? You seriously seem to know so much about so much.

  24. Thanks so much for the wonderful tutorial & for sharing your creative labels with all of us. I’m not into halloween much but your labels are fantastic! I’m going to have to check out both programs to make labels for my son’s bday.

  25. Hello. I love these. Can I please beg you to also post the pdf of the liquor bottles? Makers Mark is my favorite and will be perfect for Halloween parties.

    Thank you,

  26. UGH! Your stuff is so inspiring, but when I try to act on it I get so frustrated! I got a background (had to chose one from Picasa because when I used the “snip” I couldn’t figure out how to size the rectangle), now I have a HUGE blue rectangle with a tiny little picture – can’t figure out how to enlarge the picture, I can add text to the picture, but not the collage… sigh, not asking for a tutorial (you’ve done PLENTY), just venting a bit I guess. :(

  27. Well, what do you know – I think I’ve just solved all of those problems (2.7 minutes after I got done whining) feel free to delete both of these posts and THANK YOU!!!!

  28. Now THIS is fabulous. How fun and you made it look really easy with your tutorial. I thought it was particularly clever to “age” the photo with the color temperature. And just wondering – do you prefer Picasa to Picnik? I use Picasa but haven’t tried Picnik.

  29. I have been looking all nite for spooky cool labels and you were my mistress in shining armor………thanks a ton for the free labels…xoxo back at ya

  30. I thought I had wrote you a note, but when I check it, there was nothing, so I am going to send you another one.

    Your site is awesome. I love you! I made one almost identical to your Bewitching Brew and put your blog address on my blog. You are very creative and am glad I found you!

    I don’t know what to do with this one, but I did it and now it will allow me to do so much more. The world is now my oyster!

    Can I ask you a question? When I put it into Word, Open it up, get the picture and then this is where I got confused but think I may have figured it out. …..

    I then make a table of four, (simple) copy the picture and then put it in each of the table. Am I right? You then print it and cut it out and post on your bottles? How did I do?

    Thank you again, I love you and your blog!!!!

  31. Thanks for these! I will be using some for my Halloween party. I am trying to make my own invitation by using the same techniques though and have a question. Can you tell me how to get rid of the white block background behind my images I save? Even just using your witch, I can’t get rid of it. I know you’re busy, so any readers out there that can help a Picasa newbie? Thanks!

  32. Nobody should ever comment at midnight, because their brains aren’t working. I just found the “add shadow” button that was checkmarked! Thanks again Kate…you rock my diy world!

  33. I had stumbled upon these when you first posted and then couldn’t remember where I had seen them! Good ole’ google to the rescue! Thanks so much! I need a last minute hostess gift for a par-tay and this is it!!! Yay!! Happy Halloween :)

  34. Hey, thank you so much for the picasa tutorial. I have used picasa for a long time but had not realized all of its features. Your tutorial helped me with several of my photo challenges I was having. I am so excited to explore it more. Thanks again!

  35. These are great!! My only question is how do you keep the label looking good when the beverage starts to sweat?? Thanks!

  36. now it’s almost Halloween….and this one just keeps getting better and better, thanks again doll….

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