Editor’s note: Since it was originally published, we’ve updated this list with even more DIY costumes ideas.
Sick of spending too much money on a costume you’ll probably only wear once? This Halloween, make your own costume without breaking the bank. Here are 15 crafty, budget-friendly costumes that will make you wish it was Halloween all year round.
- Rubik’s Cube – With only a cardboard box, electrical tape, scissors, and six colors of contact paper, you can turn yourself into a giant Rubik’s Cube. As sturdy as it is, this costume could be re-used for multiple costume parties. See Full Instructions
- Giant Bag of Jelly Beans – Using a clear trash bag, small colorful balloons, a ribbon, and a permanent marker, you can create a deliciously sweet and simple costume! Cut holes in the trash bag for your arms and legs and write fictitious “Nutritional Facts” on the back of the bag. Fill up the bag with small, inflated balloons (jellybeans) and gently tie the trash bag at your neck with the ribbon. See Full Instructions
- Velma and Shaggy from Scooby Doo® – Solve mysteries with your favorite sidekick! To turn yourself into a Velma look-alike, visit a local thrift store or as your friends for an orange turtle neck, red skirt, orange socks, red shoes, and thick, black-rimmed glasses. For Shaggy, a baggy green shirt and brown pants will do the trick. See Full Instructions
- Garden Gnome – With a long-sleeved baby blue shirt, dark belt, dark denim jeans, and red felt (or red paint) and cardboard for the hat, you’ll look sharp handing out candy on the front lawn! Stick on a fake beard (or grow your own) and you’re ready to go. See Full Instructions
- Cat Burglar – Watch out for the paws on this pickpocket! Add cat ears, a black tail, and a black eye mask to an all-black get-up and you’re almost there. Draw a dollar sign on a pillowcase filled with fluffy material (could use stuffing, a bunch of socks, or even a few towels), and tie the top with a ribbon or shoelace.
- Facebook Profile – Want everyone to “Like” your costume before it hits social media? Paste on enlarged screenshots of your Facebook profile on a large white piece of poster board, or make a poster-sized printout of your profile. Where the main photo would be, cut out a hole and stick your head through!
- Bunch of Grapes – Buy a bag of purple balloons at your local party store and gently pin the tied portion of each balloon to an all purple outfit. Grab a green hat for your stem, or bobby pin green felt to your hair.
Invite your friends to “join the bunch” for an even larger cluster of grapes!
- S’more – Don’t worry, this costume will be the cleanest s’more you’ve ever had! First, put together an all-brown or black get-up. Then, duct tape the ends of two old pillows together (your marshmallows), leaving enough room between them so that they fit over your head and they cover your stomach and back. Attach two large pieces of cardboard to the front of each pillow (your graham crackers).
- Raining Cats & Dogs – All you need is a colored or clear umbrella, rain gear, and black poster paper. Cut out shapes of cats and dogs from the black poster paper and tape them to the umbrella. Put on your rain gear and you’re ready for “wet” weather!
- The Road – This costume is easy to make quickly. Put on black pants, a black shirt, and black shoes. Use yellow tape or yellow paint for the road lines going down your body.
- Iron Chef – You’re high school chemistry teacher is sure to get a laugh out of this costume. It’s a simple one: Attach the letters Fe, the symbol for iron, to an apron.
- Jellyfish – All you’ll need for this sea creature costume is a clear umbrella, streamers or fabric strips, and tape. Secure the strips or streamers to the umbrella so that they hang down like tentacles and voilà! A jellyfish.
- Loofah – Scrub-a-dub! You’ll be the cleanest Halloween partygoer as this poofy bath accessory. Cut 2.5 yards strips of tulle, fold them in half lengthwise and then fold them down in thirds. Tie each piece of tulle in the middle with an elastic band. Safety pin each bunch of tulle either to your outfit, or to an elastic band that fits around your waist and chest. See Full Instructions
- Spelling Bee – This one’s very similar to The Road in #10. Use yellow tape to make horizontal stripes around your mid-section over your all-black outfit—like a bumble bee. Then, stick adhesive letters randomly on top of the stripes.
- JJ Hightail – We saved the best for last! (At least, we think so.) To pull off your favorite ex-racecar driver, grab your red ball cap and the nearest fake mustache. Print the logos for your shirt and patches, slap them on, and the resemblance will be uncanny! See Full Instructions
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