I am typically not a fan of the store-bought costume. In my opinion, they are unoriginal and poorly made. My mom was always super creative with our own costumes, never settling for the store-bought versions of anything.
I wanted to be a cat when I was 7, so Mom adhered white patches of felt to my black leggings and turtleneck. Among other creations over the years, there was an old lady in a housecoat and rollers, an electrified-by-Christmas-lights lady, a prom queen, a harem girl and a cheerleader — none of which were straight-from-the-shelf costumes, but rather some creative uses of things we already had or piecing together thrift store finds and including a few store-bought accessories. I guess I learned it all from my Mom and her creative ways to save money.
Now that I have kids, I enjoy Halloween every year and the opportunity to put some creative thought into the costumes. We’re currently working on my stepdaughter’s fairy costume by re-working the flower girl dress she wore at our wedding, and I took on my first “big” sewing project by making my son’s cowboy costume. Unfortunately, my stepson wanted so badly to be Hulk that it just made more sense to buy his off the shelf (you win some, you lose some!).
You can create awesome costumes for your kids with just a little bit of vision. Here are some great, inexpensive and easy ideas — click the photo to view the tutorial/source.
A little chick created from simple staples of clothing and bits of fabric:
A paper doll from posterboard:
A pixie/fairy made from strips of tulle, wings, and colorful clothing:
Some scarves and layers create a colorful gypsy:
A cardboard iPod:
A day spa princess:
A nerdy teen:
A colorful bird:
80′s Aerobics Instructor:
And this is my favorite costume ever for a little boy! Inspired by the movie Up:
On that note, it is NOT okay to dress up your little girl as an old man because when she is older and writing a blog about Halloween costumes the topic WILL come up……(Sorry, Mom…)