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Indy on a Budget

Indy on a Budget

Do-it-Yourself Halloween Costumes

October 01, 2011
Halloween is fast approaching, which means the time has come to start thinking about costumes! But this year's costumes don't need to be expensive, uncreative or store-bought horrors. It is easy to find affordable costume ideas for your little one that are quick, easy, affordable and even homemade.

So grab your scissors, fabric and glue — it only takes a little creativity to transform everyday household items into fun Halloween disguises. From simple no-sew tutus to sweet little lamb leotards, find the perfect homemade costume for your little trick-or-treater with our ideas.

Teresa Lucas, mother of 5-year-old Landon of Plainfield, Ind., knows the struggles of finding that perfect costume. "I always look for creative new ideas, but he always feels very passionately about the person/character he wants to be each year," she said.

"One of my favorite places to find ideas is www.familyfun.go.com," Lucas said.

"Listen to what your child has in mind and help them narrow it down. Always assure them there's always next year if they have trouble deciding."

Do-it-Yourself Costume Ideas


Have a boy itching for a dose of the southwest? Try a cowboy costume from the movie "Rango" complete with a shirt, vest, pants, attached tail, belt, hat, mask and bandana.

Try Rango's Hawaiian chameleon look with a green bodysuit, spray paint, face paint, glitter, two ping pong balls for eyes, shower cap for head, and a pink or red paper party favor blower for a tongue. Then, simply throw on a red Hawaiian shirt and voila!


For the little ones who are still pint-sized, consider a bearded gnome from the movie "Gnomeo and Juliet." To throw together the look, grab some leggings, wide belt, blue shirt, red felt, an elastic cord and fake fur for the beard and hat.

"Blizzard fleece and felt are easy to work with and they don't require finishing," said Donna, assistant manager at the Washington Square Jo-Ann Fabrics & Crafts store. "Another alternative to sewing is to use fabric glue," she said. "I would give it about 24 hours to dry."

Weather Person:

Requiring less than a half-hour of time, this weatherproof wonder is put together by grabbing some rain boots, a rain jacket and an umbrella. Snazz things up by adding colorful paper cut-outs of lightning bolts and clouds. Hung by clear fishing line, this creation will keep your child dry rain or shine.


Unleash your creativity with a pair of fluttering wings from bendable steel wire and spare panty hose. Adorn with plastic gems and your little beauty will stand out among a crowd of trick-or-treaters. Check out www.diynetwork.com for a butterfly wing tutorial.

Little Lamb:

From the floppy ears to the snuggly fleece, a little lamb costume is perfect for a chilly night. Pair a black leotard or sweats with a cotton hat and felt ears. Attach wool batting as their "fleece" with simple fabric glue and let it dry overnight. Add some child-safe face paint and the look is complete. See the cute design at www.marthastewart.com/halloween-index.

No-Sew Tutu:

Dreams really do come true. Create a fairy, pixie or ballerina costume with this tutu. Start with enough elastic to wrap around her waist, and then subtract two inches. Overlap the ends about an inch on each end and sew together. Cut the tulle fabric about 16 inches in length. The number of strips will vary depending on the fullness desired. Fold the tulle in half and tie onto the elastic. Glue on ribbon over the elastic and then tie a bow. Now grab a leotard and leggings and get to dancing.

We hope this gave you some ideas to try out this year, or perhaps it sparked your inner creativity. Best of luck this year with costume designs, and a Happy Halloween!

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Tags: In This Issue, Kids, money, Parenting

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