Family Traditions

DIY Halloween Costumes for under $10

If your kids are like mine, they’ve probably been talking about their Halloween costumes for the last 6 months. They’ve changed their minds at least that many times as well. When my older two were little, I used to let them have 3 costumes each for the month of October because I knew it was too hard to decide on just one character to dress up as. It worked out well because we attended several fall and Halloween events, allowing them to wear each costume more than once.

But WOAH, costumes have really become expensive … and elaborate … and poorly made. Buying three costumes for each of my four kids might equate to two weeks’ worth of groceries, only to be consumed and disposed of faster than those groceries might last.

Because of this wastefulness of both money and material, I announced to my kids a couple years ago that I will no longer purchase Halloween costumes. I’ve made a few exceptions by purchasing high-quality used items, but they have to be re-used for dress-up year round or be versatile and nice enough to hand down to family in the future.

This non-purchase declaration has led to some creativity in our family’s costume designs. Sometimes they’re a hit, but a few times, they’ve been straight-up Pinterest fails. Below I share some of the good, the bad, and the disastrous with you, as well as additional costumes that are so easy to pull off that you, too, may decide to never purchase a pre-made costume again!

From our Family’s DIY Costume Album:

Shared by Frugal with Four blog…

The Boxer –

Easy DIY Costume - Boxer
An old zombie robe with some duct tape accents, boxing gloves from the garage, and a little makeup make this Boxer costume one of the easiest yet!

Lilo (from Lilo and Stitch) –

Easy Lilo  or Moana Costume
Lilo (or Moana) is easy to pull together with a red bikini top, a green skirt from a thrift store, and plastic leaf bracelets/anklets from Amazon.

The Skiier –

Lazy last-minute costume - Skiier
This Skiier costume is about as lazy and last-minute as it gets. I just grabbed the ski gear out from under the bed. In the past, I’ve added make up, leaves, and branches to be a Skiier who Collided with a Tree. 😆

Football Fans –

Easy last minute family costume idea - All About Football
This family costume idea is easy-peezy! We just found our team tees and accessories to become obnoxious fans. And the kids used items from their closets as well, adding a baseball helmet from the garage and free pom- poms from a recent game. The baby’s football onesie and high socks were purchased used for a couple dollars.

Easy but Adorable Pirate –

Zombie Baseball Player –

Last minute costume idea - zombie baseball player
We took an old baseball uniform, added lots of fake blood, and cut a baseball in half to glue it to his cap. Voila – zombie baseball player! The zombie makeup attempt definitely leaves room for improvement, but this costume could be really great with a better make up artist.

Party Animals –

Last minute costume idea - Party Animals
I’m pretty sure you won’t find this last-minute costume idea on the beautiful Pinterest boards. 😆 My husband and I raided the kids’ rooms for animal masks and accessories. Then we added birthday party details from a stash of leftover junk to make ourselves party animals. (Insert jokes here.)

Mime –

Easy DIY Costume -  Mime
These mime costumes were for a themed day at school, but they work for Halloween as well. To pull it off, we found striped sweaters and black pants in the closet, red suspenders from Amazon, red bandanas from past costumes, white gloves from our winter gear, and a bit of makeup. Don’t put these cuties in a box!

Firefighters and Their Trusted Pets –

Easy Family Costume Idea - Firemen and Dalmatians
This family costume idea was pulled together with lots of freebies, hand-me-downs, and easy crafting. Firefighters: used fireman’s coat, free hats from Firehouse subs and a previous birthday party, black pants, red suspenders (from mime costume), and neon duct tape from Home Depot. Dalmatians: hand-me-down Marshall (Paw Patrol) costume, white tank from the closet colored with black spots (sharpie), and a black headband with white felt ears glued on.

Pregnant Mummy –

Last Minute Costume - Pregnant Mummy
Well, this is one way to make a pregnancy announcement. 😂 Throw on a white t-shirt, print a pic of a baby or a baby’s face, wrap yourself up in wide medical tape, and wait several seconds for people to “get it”. 😉

There you have it! The best and worst of our last-minute DIY costumes from the last few years may not have won us any costume contests, but we had so much fun putting them together and showing them off. Plus, we saved a ton of money.

For more awesome DIY costumes, check out these links: