Avoid the Halloween Superstore: Get Crafty with Your Costume

Avoid the Halloween Superstore: Get Crafty with Your Costume

Believe it or not, Halloween costuming doesn’t need to come with a headache or a huge credit card bill. Rather, it can be an opportunity to spend quality time with your children encouraging them to think creatively.

Growing up, instead of heading to the Halloween store (despite our begging) my mom would load us into the minivan and cart us to the local Goodwill. All four of us children were given a few dollars and turned loose. I remember wandering through the store, my imagination running wild with costume ideas. We’d make our purchases and head home to get crafty with mom and put together a complete look. One year I turned an old prom dress in to a gown for princess, another year it was a choir robe into a vampire cape, and so forth. My wise mom avoided the bank-breaking prices of the Halloween superstores and pushed us kiddos to be resourceful and inventive.

I loved playing “designer” and creating my own Halloween costume as a kid. So when I had the opportunity to work with the Socks4Life.com team to put together a DIY Costume Ideas guide, I jumped at the chance. The guide features tons of costume ideas and how-tos as a part of the new resource, Heel to Toe: A Guide to Feet. If you’re looking for costume ideas, the guide has it all—from traditional, character costumes to clever, funny costume ideas for groups. Below are just a few examples of costume ideas: 



  1. 80s Aerobics Instructor:
  • Neon leotard: If you’re not comfortable with just the leotard, wear an oversized t-shirt or sweatshirt with a wide neck over the leotard.
  • Neon tights
  • Brightly colored leg warmers
  • Sweat band: Use a bright ribbon you have lying around the house if you can’t find a sweat band
  • Old gym shoes or high-tops
  • Wear your hair in a pony-tail on top of your head or to the side, secure it with a scrunchy.
  • Do jumping-jacks or high-knees at random intervals.

  1. Ninja Turtles:
  • Wear green spandex and a matching green long-sleeved t-shirt. Wear green socks over your spandex.
  • Buy a yellow tank top and draw ‘ab markings’ on the front of the tank. Wear over your green shirt- this is your shell.
  • Pick which ninja turtle you want to be and cut strips of fabric in that character’s color to make your mask (Michaelangelo- orange, Donatelo- blue, Raphael- red, Leonardo-purple). Simply cut eye holes in the strip and tie behind your head. Wrap other strips around your biceps or ankles.
  • Make weapons out of aluminum foil and cardboard.

  1. Popeye and Olive Oyl:
  • Popeye: Wear a navy button down shirt with the sleeves rolled up, jeans, brown shoes and a sailors hat (make from white construction paper). Draw anchor tattoos on your forearms. Carry around a can of spinach and flex your muscles for people.
  • Olive Oyl: White button-down long-sleeved shirt with a red sweater over the shirt, make sure your shirt collar and sleeves stick out. Wear a long black skirt with a yellow stripe around the hem (attach a strip of yellow felt or tape) and a pair of brown boots. Olive’s hair is dark and in a low pony-tail.
  1. Housewife:
  • Bathrobe: Have pill bottles and a TV guide sticking out of the pockets.
  • Slippers
  • Pajama bottoms
  • Wear curlers in your hair covered with a scarf.
  • Carry around a martini and cigarette.

  1. Harry Potter:
  • White button-down shirt
  • Yellow and red striped necktie
  • Grey sweater
  • Dark dress pants
  • Dark shoes and dress socks
  • Black robe: Use an old black sheet
  • Round glasses with tape around the nose piece.
  • Use eyeliner or face paint to create a lightning bolt ‘scar.’
  • Wand: Use a thin stick or roll brown construction paper to make your own.

For more costume ideas, head to the DIY Costume Ideas guide!

Guest author Maggie Voelker is a recent college graduate, working as a writer in Indianapolis, IN. She enjoys bargain hunting, DIY-ing, traveling and spending time with family and friends.



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