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13 Frugal Halloween Costume Ideas for a Haunting Good Time

Posted by Pekin Insurance on Oct 18, 2017

You can spend a lot of cash on a costume, but frugal Halloween costume ideas bring out the creativity and give you a unique look.

It's the most wonderful time of the year. Little ghouls, goblins, queens, and robots prowl the streets in search of candy. Sugary treats may be the end goal, but there's no question that dressing up is half of the fun.

There's also no doubt that it's easy to spend a small fortune on some of the most popular costumes out there. Want to go as Wonder Woman? That'll start at $30. Want to spend the evening as Chewbacca? You could be looking at a $70 costume. But frugal Halloween costume ideas include family time with the kids at a fraction of the price.

What's better than spending a few nights or a weekend working together to create a costume that no one else will have? You have time together, you get to work on a project together, and you can teach your little one the value of a job well done.

So where do you begin? Try the closet.



Frugal Halloween Costume Ideas
your kids (and your wallet) will love

1. Jellyfish 
This idea comes from Almost the Real Thing. All you need is an umbrella (a clear, dome-shaped umbrella works best), streamers or gift wrap ribbon, a couple of strings of battery-powered LED lights, and some strong tape.  Cut the ribbons into two or three-foot sections, and tape them to the inside of the umbrella around the edge. Tape your light batteries to the underside of your umbrella then tape the lights around the inside of the umbrella. Bingo! You are now a jellyfish.

Bonus: the lights can help you keep track of your sea creature when they are running house to house.

2. Rosie the Riveter
Your little powerhouse can channel American history with an easy Rosie the Riveter costume. A pair of jeans, a denim shirt, the iconic red and white polka-dot bandana, and some red lipstick are all you need.

3. Clown
The classics never go out of style, and this one is as easy as ever. Pick up some face paint at your local costume aisle for a few dollars, grab some too-big clothes out of an adult's closet, and you're ready to go.

4. Rubik's Cube
Find a square cardboard box. Cut the bottom out for your legs, then cut arm holes and a hole for the head. Color or paint the box black, then cut nine squares each of yellow, red, green, blue, and white construction paper. Glue the colored squares onto the box (it's your choice if you want the cube to be solved or mixed up).

5. Vampire
Another classic is also among the most frugal Halloween costume ideas. Make your fangs with a plastic fork and some dental glue (Method #5 in this WikiHow article). Use a white cream makeup on your face with a little red around the eyes. A white shirt and black jacket can complete the outfit.

6. Mummy
You really can't go wrong with classic monster movie creatures, and a mummy is no exception. Here's an easy DIY mummy costume from Melissa Mortenson

7. Alien
What an alien looks like might be up for debate, but a cool alien costume is always great. Here's an easy DIY costume from Mayhem in the House

8. Ladybug
Cut out circles of black construction paper, and use a hot glue gun to glue them to the back of a red sweatshirt. Pipe cleaners and a headband make the perfect antennae.

9. Black cat
Along with mummies and vampires, the black cat is one of the quintessential frugal Halloween costume ideas. Dress your little trick-or-treater in all black. Use black face paint to draw a nose and whiskers on their face. Use a headband and black pipe cleaners to make ears. For a tail, a black feather boa works nicely or you can stuff a black sock with padding. Tie the open end around a belt or belt loop.

10. Robot
A few cardboard boxes, some aluminum foil, and your imagination is all you need for what The Atlantic calls the single best Halloween costume there is. They have a plenty of inspiration for you, too. 

11. Traffic light
Here's another one you can take some creative freedom with. Get six squares of cardboard (three for the front and three for the back) and paint them black. Paint two with red circles, two with yellow circles, and two with green circles on them. Use packing tape to hold together one red light, one yellow light, and one green light, and repeat for the other side.

Use two fabric strips to connect the two "red lights" and secure them with more packing tape, making sure there's enough room for it to slide over your child's head. The fabric strips should rest on their shoulders.

12. Pac-Man
Here's a great group costume idea: Pac-Man and ghosts. This one will take some time, but you probably have most of the materials lying around. Jen Pinkston gives step-by-step instructions on her blog, the Effortless Chic


13. Knight
Someone has to protect the citizens from all the goblins running about on Halloween night! Here's an easy knight costume tutorial from Catherine Ryan. The best part is you may already have most of what you need, and anything you need to buy is relatively inexpensive. 


We love Halloween at Pekin Insurance, but we love making sure your home and family are covered even more. Get in touch today to ask about home insurance so you can enjoy the holiday without worry.




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