Saturday, October 1, 2011

DIY Halloween Costumes

Going Green Mama gets her creative side going...

The countdown is on! Thirty days until Halloween, and coming up with a creative costume can be tricky. It's easy to get yourself caught in the whirlwind of accessories and costumes at the store, as I found this year, the one year I have actually purchased a Halloween costume first-hand. (It was June at the Disney Store, and my Princess Tiana-loving daughter fell in love with the deep-discounted dress. I rationalize it will get well-used for dress-ups until it's outgrown.)

What I spent on my daughter was well set off by the $2 I spent for a Lightning McQueen pit crew outfit scored at a local garage sale a few weeks back. The trick is keeping him out of the costume for the next month!

Most years, though, I've forced myself (and my children) to invest a little creativity in their costumes. We did sweatsuit costumes for the little ones - with a pin-on dog tail and fluffy-eared headband, or a painted on jack-o-lantern on orange sweats. We did a "construction worker" costume of jeans, a flannel shirt and well-worn construction hat at zero hour when my son suddenly refused to wear the costume I'd previously bought at the resale shop. And the year I was pregnant? I pinned a white felt "M" to my shirt and paraded the neighborhood.

If you're still looking for ideas, Boothers and our readers can help! Here are some of the more creative costumes they've come up in recent years and shared with us:

Lisa's brother went as a pile of leaves one year, stapling them to a paper bag suit.

Green Bean's favorite was "the Recyclbot, a robot made entirely out of recylables and trash. Old CDs, plastic bottle caps, a cardboard box and painted with silver spray paint we got off of Freecycle. Another good option, though for people who don't plan to make a costume, is to check out thrift stores which usually have tons of costumes. A friend just told me that she picked up an entire family's worth of Harry Potter costumes at their thrift store for $25!"

Jamie shared a post she'd written for a client on ways to reuse old moving boxes, making everything from a raisin box to a bulldozer costume.

Farmer's Daughter shares her pregnancy pouch in her quick DIY kangaroo costume.

Granola Catholic shared creative costumes of Halloweens past.

Erin shared a video on how to make a Ninja mask from a t-shirt in about two minutes.

And check out last year's GPB costume parade for other quick ideas!

And if you're still stumped? Look online for locations for the National Costume Swap, next Saturday.


Lisa @ Granola Catholic said...

I just told my Peanut about helping my brother rake and staple all those leaves to the "Pile of Leaves" Costume. I suppose the making of our own costumes comes from my mother. She always saved dance costumes and upcycled them into something new. In our neck of the woods we end up going to several costume events and inevitably the weather changes from 80 degrees to 35 during the week, necessitating a change of costumes from one with shorts to one with a jacket.

Green Bean said...

Fun post. I LOVE DIY costumes that reuse and repurpose. They also make memories.

Betsy (Eco-Novice) said...

So far, we've been lucky to use the same 2 costumes for several years -- one bought on clearance, one a hand-me-down. In the future, I'm hoping to ever avoid buying a costume through trades, shopping thrift stores, borrowing and hand-me-downs. I love the ideas for DIY costumes, as long as they are super and simple!


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