Holiday & Seasonal

12 Clever DIY Halloween Costumes That Won’t Cost A Fortune

Don't let Halloween sneak up on you again this year!

How does Halloween manage to sneak up on us every year? You know it’s coming and think you have plenty of time to get a costume together—and then, all of the sudden, you need to be at a party in an hour and you’ve got nothing! Well, not this year. We’ve got you covered with 12 creative costumes that won’t break the bank.

1. Charlie Brown

Start with a pair of black shorts and a plain yellow T-shirt. Then use black duct tape to make the zig-zag line around the bottom of the shirt. To complete the look, carry a football or bring your dog with you. (Hopefully he is black and white, and looks at least a little bit like Snoopy.)

All For The Boys

2. Circus Performer

This is a glamorous option—you basically get dressed up with full makeup and add a feather to your hair. The more sparkle the better.

Backstage #circus #headpiece #vintage #showgirl #sideshow #freakshow #makeup #burlesque #backstage #braid #costume

A photo posted by Julietta la Doll (@juliettaladoll) on Sep 3, 2013 at 4:15pm PDT

3. Medusa

All this DIY headpiece requires is toy snakes (you can buy ’em cheap on Amazon), a headband and some twist ties or glue to attach the snakes. Give your creation a coating of gold spray paint and—bam!—you’ll be the evil monster from Greek mythology in no time.

Halloween Forum

4. Snail

Use craft paper and ribbon to make a wearable shell, and a headband, craft paper and painted styrofoam balls for eyes. The result is adorable, and the instructions are fairly simple.

Oh Happy Day

5. Rosie The Riveter

High-wasted pants, button-down shirt and a red bandanna—it doesn’t get easier than that. You may have to do a few pushups before you head out. If you’re going to be flexing all night, you may as well have those biceps popping.

Happy Labor Day, Merica. #oldiebutagoodie #workhardplayhard #rosietheriveter

A photo posted by Brooke Powell (@brookepowellart) on

6. Strawberry

Add some white or black spots to a red shirt or dress and then glue together a green stem hat. This could work for various fruits, from pineapples to grapes. Get some friends together and go as a fruit salad!

Studio DIY

7. Bat

After dressing head-to-toe in black and following these instructions, you will have turned into a bat. Good thing you had that old black umbrella on hand.

Evil Mad Scientist

8. Baby

Get out your adult-sized footy pajamas—you know you have some or at least want an excuse to get them. Then snag a stuffed animal and a pacifier (or ring pop, for a sweet option), and you’re done.

Thread Ethic

9. Waldo and/or Wenda

If you can manage to find a red and white hat with a pom pom, it will make this costume. Otherwise, you just need some jeans and a striped shirt.

10. Fortune Teller

This is such a flexible costume that you are sure to have what you need on hand. With just some hoop earrings and a few scarves, you can pull this off pretty quickly.

11. Mime

This will require a black-and-white stripped shirt with a red bandana tied around the neck. Add a bowler hat from the dollar store and perhaps some white gloves, and voila—you are a mime!

#lifeisacircus #party #mimemakeup #mimecostume #mime #hfarm #hparty #hcircus

A photo posted by RitaPetrilli (@rita_petrilli) on Jul 24, 2015 at 6:37am PDT

12. Garden Gnome

The reason this costume works is because there are so many different ways to put it together. Any pants with a button-down shirt will do. Maybe throw a brown belt around your waist. A pointy red hat could be made from paper or felt depending on your time frame. Finish it off with a beard (you can get one on Amazon for $7.99).


When all else fails, use one of these puns to get yourself out the door in a flash:

Aircraft Carrier: Carry around a toy airplane all night.

The Seven Seas: Pin seven Cs to your shirt and call it a night.

Identity Thief: Wear a bunch of “Hello my name is…” stickers with different names on them. Bonus points for using names of people who are at the party.

Cereal Killer: Attach a few bloody cereal boxes to your shirt with some plastic knives sticking out.

Breadwinner: Grab a loaf of bread and any cheap medal ( you can find.


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