Great costumes don’t need to be elaborate or costly. The following costumes can be tossed together quickly and easily.
Movie Theater Floor
Dress head to toe in black. Glue or sew dozens of candy wrappers and pieces of popcorn to your outfit and string crumpled pop cans around your neck and waist. Pink silly string can be used to simulate discarded bubble gum. If you can find or make a big popcorn tub, wear it as a hat.
Buy a long string of plastic stars (these are available at many dollar stores and craft stores, or wherever Christmas decorations are sold). Dress in black and wrap yourself in stars, using safety pins to fix them to your clothing. For a more high-tech galaxy, wearable light strings (with battery packs) and costumes with lights built into them can be purchased.
Head on a Platter
Choose a cardboard box long enough to cover your torso from shoulders to legs. Glue a tablecloth to the box so that it covers the top and sides, and cut a hole in the top of the box large enough that your head can fit through. Next, make a platter shape by cutting a circle out of thick cardboard and covering it with tinfoil. Cut a head-sized hole in the platter and glue it to the cardboard tabletop. Glue plastic food to the platter around the head hole. Pop the box over your head and stick your head through the hole so that it’s the centerpiece of the plastic feast.
Purchase some cheap white fluffy cotton webbing (it’s available at many stores in the weeks leading up to Halloween). Buy cheap antennae from a dollar store or make a set with a headband and pipe cleaners. Have a friend wrap you in webbing, leaving eyes, mouth, and one arm free so that you can eat and drink easily. Tying or pinning a large plastic or stuffed spider to your back or chest will complete the effect.
Dress in all one colour, preferably green. Put together a collection of old junk such as hats, costume jewellery, kitchen utensils, and battered stuffed animals, tie price tags to each item, and attach them to your clothing using safety pins. Tape a “Yard Sale” sign to your back.
Cut a piece of bright yellow cardboard or posterboard into a 3-foot square. Write an enormous note across the front with a thick magic marker. Poke two small holes near the top and hang the giant note from your neck with thick twine.
Take a light-coloured suit or dress, rip it in several places, and paint tire treads across the front with black acrylic paint. Or, for a more authentic effect, coat an actual tire in paint and roll it over the outfit. Then splash some fake blood across the costume. Blood can be made by mixing:
- 2 teaspoons flour
- 1 cup water
Bring to a boil and simmer for half an hour, stirring frequently. After removing from the heat and allowing the thickened mixture to cool, mix in:
- 2 tablespoons red food colouring
- 1/8 teaspoon green food colouring
If you accidentally get fake blood stains on your skin, they can usually be scrubbed out or at least lightened by rubbing with a paste made from baking soda and water.
This costume will work best on a tall person. Dress head to toe in black. Hang a light mirror around your neck using wire, heavy twine, or fabric. Your costume is anyone you stand across from, or everyone else at the party.
For free pumpkin carving templates, Halloween recipes, Halloween history, and more, visit the main Halloween page.
Reference: Costume ideas and blood recipe have been adapted from A Halloween How-To: Costumes, Parties, Decorations, and Destinations, by Lesley Pratt. See this great Halloween resource for more costume, decoration, and party ideas.