Last-minute Halloween costumes


Halloween may be this weekend, but whether dressing yourself or the kids you can still make costumes happen

Image by Paige Cody via Unsplash

Ah Halloween, every year, it seems to come around faster. The last-minute scramble to find a costume, either for you or a little one, can be a horror. But don’t despair. There are some costumes and tips that will take the tricky out of trick or treat. Plus, having a DIY costume is a fun project, and helps you avoid some of the pitfalls of buying new.

For one, it’s a far more sustainable option, since you’re using what you already have. Buying a new costume every year takes a toll on your wallet and the planet. Plus, as Kellie Billings pointed out in the November issue, there are often more political issues with costume buying.  The hidden misogyny in some of the gendered costumes can be a nightmare to navigate. Avoid all the drama and get crafty and you’ll have an ideal costume no matter the theme.

The classic

Maybe you’re traumatised from the iconic Irish bin bag costumes of old, but using a household staple to make a costume is cost-effective and quick. Grab an old sheet, cut out some eyes, and you have a perfect púca. Plus, you’ll be harking back to the viral internet trend of last year, where people took their sheets to the streets for a ghost shoot.

@natenorell When Santa Monica goes to sleep, the ghosts come out to play 👻 ib: @jackjanson88 📸: @alecohlaker 2nd 👻: @katjohanab ♬ Oh Klahoma – Jack Stauber

Go easy

If you or the kids decide to dress up as a character from a favourite show, try and make it a show that is accessible and easy to emulate. There’s no point in desperately trying to become a Stranger Things Demogorgon overnight. Instead, choose a show that’s nice and grounded. Even a Scooby-Doo family costume would be an easy one to throw together. Fish around in your wardrobe for the right colour palette, add a couple of neck scarves, and you have Mystery Inc in your living room.  Layer up on the autumn wear for a Gilmore Girls revival. Embrace the new season of You by donning your best suburban mam outfit and carrying a secret (and fake!) knife.

Pretty punny

If you choose a costume that someone will have to work to figure out, they won’t notice how haphazardly you’ve put the outfit together. Using a pun or a popular turn of phrase is a great way to distract from a messy costume. Carry around a sign that says “We love you ceiling!!” and you’re a ceiling fan. Wear a fancy dress and a cheap animal mask, you’re a party animal. If one of your kids has red hair, send them on their way carrying a bag of bread and they’re the Gingerbread Man. You might get a few eye rolls, but it will have been worth it.

And if you’re really stuck, a bin bag witch costume is only a snap of your scissors away.