I remember when I was a little girl, I used to make my own Halloween costumes. I don’t know whether it was because we couldn’t afford store bought, or whether my mom just wasn’t into buying costumes. Regardless, I can’t ever remember buying a costume.
One year I was a clown. I took some old clothes and stuffed them with pillows to make myself round. I painted my face with my mom’s makeup, and voila! Instant clown!Another year I wanted to be a witch. I wore my dad’s black college graduation gown and made a black hat with cardboard, glue, and some black spray paint. I think I might have even used my mom’s green eye shadow on my face.
Halloween doesn’t have to be an expensive affair. More than that, it can encourage your child’s (and your own) creativity.
Let your imagination run wild. Ask your child what he/she wants to be for Halloween, and then try to figure out how to make the costume yourself. You’ll be surprised at what you can come up with.
Contrary to popular practice today, you don’t need to run to your nearest discount store to buy a costume. There are several frugal options.
A Baby. This one is always popular with elementary aged girls. Put on footed pajamas, braid your hair, paint on some rosy cheeks, and stick a pacifier in your mouth. Kids always seem to prefer those candy pacifiers. :) Carry around a doll, if you like.
A Scarecrow. Wear an old pair of jeans, a flannel shirt, a straw hat, and some boots. Stuff straw or raffia into the sleeves and boots, so some is coming out around your hands and feet. It might help to wear a tight fitting shirt under the flannel shirt, so the straw isn’t up against your skin. Paint your face like a scarecrow, and you’re set!
A Pair of Dice. You’re going to need two people for this one. Paint two boxes white. Then paint black dots on them, in the formation of dots on a dice. Use string to hang the box over your shoulders. Easy peasy!
A Haggard Housewife. Wear a bathrobe and slippers and put your hair up in rollers (look for these at the thrift store….and wash them in very hot water before you put them in your hair). You could even add a bon-bon box for effect.
A Bag of Jellybeans. Cut arm and leg holes in a clear trashbag. Put it on and fill with balloons of all colors. Gather the bag at the neck and tie (but not too tightly). Viola!
If none of these ideas appeal to you, just put on your thinking cap. Often a pair of sweats can be transformed with paint, safety pins, glue, paper, and accessories that you can find at the thrift store. Halloween doesn’t have to be expensive to be fun. And truth be told, some of my favorite Halloween memories consist of thinking up a costume and using what I had on hand to make it happen!
Halloween doesn’t need to be another holiday where you run to the store and spend a bunch of money. With a little planning and creativity, you can have a fun, creative, and frugal Halloween.
Do you have any creative costume ideas? When you were young, did you make your own costume? Share your ideas!
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I'm just an average mom, trying to live a frugal life and get out of debt. I write about things that have (and haven't) worked to improve my family's financial situation. What works for me may or may not work for you, and you should always consult a financial advisor before making important financial decisions.
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