Everything Halloween - Costumes - Resource

Tips for Keeping Kids' Costumes on a Budget

Kids love dressing up for Halloween. It's a great time to let them express their imaginations. Here are some tips for low-cost, made at home creations:

Ask your grocer for a potato bag. Cut arm and neck holes for your child. Don it over jeans and a plaid shirt, tie a rope at the waist, add a few wisps of straw and an old hat and you've transformed your child into a scarecrow.

Flexible tubing, such as electrical conduit or drainage pipe, is great for spider legs. Dress your child in a black sweat suit and top hat. Let the tubing (8 legs total) stick out of their body. Buy fake spider webs to complete the look.

Give your kids some large pieces of foam or large pieces of plexy paper and some markers. Let them transform themselves into huge parking tickets or passes for sporting events.

For a ghost, use a left-over wedding runner. Just fold it and cut a hole in it, then tie the waist with yarn. If you shred the edges, it'll give the costume a creepy effect. An old pillowcase can also do the trick.

Old bridesmaid dresses is perfect of a princess costume; just pin up the skirt. You can buy a tiara for a few dollars, or join the would-be princess in making a cone-shaped hat out of poster board, then drape it with inexpensive netting.

Use old hunters' fluorescent orange vests for pumpkin costumes. The bright orange keeps kids visible when they're out trick-or-treating in the dark. With a green turtleneck and pants and a fluorescent orange hunter's cap, you've got a great jack-o'-lantern. Paint your child's face orange or draw a design on the hunter's cap.

Old curtains can be recycled in many ways. Velvet curatins are perfect for a king's cape. Drape the cape so it hangs above the ground and let your child create his own crown. Don the costume with some costume jewelry and be sure to exercise some royal treatment that day...

Use handfuls of old scarves to tie around the waist and on the head for an awesome gypsy costume. Use lots of blush and makeup to create the look. Costume jewelry and a colorful skirt will complete this simple costume.

Colorful oversized shirts and scarves make a good basis for a clown costume, but creative face painting gives the clown his character. Face paint is often the final touch that makes the costume.

Headbands are useful for propping up ears or antennae. Use an old animal-print jersey, felt ears on a headband and black tights to create a cat. You can also use old ballet leotards for the basis of the costume.

Top 5 Halloween Safety Tips

  •  Eat a good meal prior to trick-or-treating.
  • Consider fire safety when decorating for Halloween.
  •  Plan and review with your children the route you plan to take when trick-or-treating.
  • Be visible and use a flash light during night hours.
  • When designing a Jack O' Lantern, leave the carving to adults!

More Safety Tips

  • Pointed objects such as swords and devil's forks should be made of soft material.
  • Children should carry a flashlight, and their costumes should be brightly colored or trimmed with reflective tape.
  • Be sure all parts of the costume are flame retardant.
  • If your child wears a mask instead of makeup, double check that the eye holes are large enough to see through clearly. Try the mask on yourself!

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