Halloween can sneak up quickly on military families. As the days in October fly by, don’t feel pressured to spend big bucks for elaborate store bought costumes for you and your children. You might have the makings of the perfect DIY Halloween costume already in your house. Shop the closets in your home for different items that can be put together for a cheap and clever Halloween costume. Take a quick trip to your local dollar or discount store to complete a costume by purchasing accessories that won’t break the bank.
Why spend a lot of money on costumes you might not be able to keep? Storage space (or lack of storage space) for military families is important. Especially because your kids (or even you) will most likely want to dress up as something different next year.
Here are 10 easy and cheap ways to create clever DIY Halloween costumes for less than $30 and made in less than 30 minutes for you and your family.
For girls, pair together a black shirt and skirt or black dress and add black tights. You can also use anything that’s mostly black (and maybe even sparkly?). For boys, wear all black and use a black bedsheet folded as your cape. Head outside to find a thick stick to shave down as a wand. Swing by the dollar store to get a pointed witch or wizard hat. You can also purchase face make-up for an added effect or girls can raid mom’s makeup bag for dark lipstick and use black eyeliner to draw warts on their faces.
Wear a white shirt and white pants or white dress. Take a cardboard box (from your last PCS) and cut it out to the shape of wings. Poke 2 holes in the center for a rope. Use extra-large cotton balls and glue them onto one side of the cardboard wings to cover its entirety. Finally, use gold pipe cleaners to twist to the top of a headband and create another halo to attach together.
For girls, wear a white shirt and red skirt (or if you have anything two-toned or striped). For boys, wear a white shirt and light-colored jeans. You can create an eye patch with black cardstock paper and use an elastic band to keep it on your head. Run to the store for a red bandana. Does the store have a red stuffed bird or parrot? Strap it on your shoulder if you find one.
Wear all white underneath. Depending on your preference (and possibly the weather), you can use toilet paper (preferably extra strong toilet paper) or white bandages to wrap all around your body. You can get cheap bandage packages at the dollar store.
Wear either all green or all purple. Travel to the discount store and buy packages of balloons that match your color. Blow them up and use safety pins to put them on your outfit. Are you doing a family costume? Use thick rope with about 3 feet to spare between each person to be a grapevine!
It’s pretty likely that you’ve acquired at least 1 touristy shirt from your travels. Or maybe a Hawaii shirt? Wear your souvenir or Hawaiian shirt (why not add a lei too?!) with a straw hat and tie your camera around your neck. Do you have a fanny pack? Stick that around your waist and carry a paper map. If you’re feeling ambitious, tow a small roller luggage bag.
Ready for an easy one? Use old white sheets and drape them over head. Cut holes where your eyes would be and voila! You’re a ghost.
Wear an extra large solid orange shirt. At the store, buy sheets of black felt and decorative vine rope. Outline and cut out the pumpkin’s face and glue (or you can safety pin) the felt cut-outs on the orange shirt. Use plastic bags or newspaper to make the pumpkin shape underneath the T-shirt. Wear the vine rope as a necklace.
Cat and Dog
For a cat, wear all black, orange or gray. For a dog, wear brown, black or tan. Buy felt to match your color and enough to make ears and a tail. Cut the fabric to shape the ears and glue it on an headband. Pin on the tail to your back with the remainder of the felt and make sure it’s in the right shape. Use black eyeliner to draw whiskers and pink/salmon colored lipstick for your nose.
Wear clothing that matches or all the same color. Use colored duct or construction tape to outline your superhero letter or number on your shirt. Does your character wear a mask? Buy a couple yards of fabric and cut out eyeholes. Or does your character wear a cape? Do the same and tie the cape around your neck.
Are you a DIY Halloween costume guru? Share your tips for creating a costume in the comments section.