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Kids & Money: Frugal Halloween Costumes

I have a confession to make. I buy my son’s Halloween costume each year (one of those costs of raising children [3] that I choose to pay). In fact, we just found a $20 costume for him on eBay. However, I know it’s possible to create your own costumes on the cheap. In fact, my mom still has the costume box that contains all sorts of elements that can be used for creating great Halloween costumes. When you have a large family, like we did growing up, it can help to have a box that has all you need for putting together costumes.

You might be surprised at the way you can put together creative and fun Halloween costumes. Here are some ideas for inexpensive costumes, as part of your frugal Halloween [4]:

The All-Purpose Black Hooded Cloak

You can purchase (or make if you’re crafty) a black hooded cloak. I love this basic Halloween costume ingredient because it’s so versatile. You can use this cloak year after year, and it can be a major part of halloween costumes that include:

The great thing about the hooded cloak is that it can be used for costumes that require a hidden face, your you can leave the hood down for costumers that require your face to be visible. It’s fairly inexpensive, and you can do all sorts of things with a cloak.

Other Inexpensive Costume Ideas

You can also create inexpensive costumes by looking around at your old clothes, and other old items around the house. An old white sheet can be torn into strips to create a mummy. Or, you can use the sheet to help you go as a ghost, a la Charlie Brown.

Use a white button down shirt and old black or dark gray slacks or jeans to help create a Harry Potter costume. Use your black cloak as the robes, and get an old tie to help. You can get an old red tie and use fabric paint to add gold stripes (or use an old gold/yellow tie and apply red fabric paint). You can make your own wand, or you can buy one

Visit the thrift store to look for inexpensive props, clothes and other items that can be used in your frugal Halloween costume. If your child plans to be a zombie princess (or even a “pretty” princess), or a dead prom queen, you can usually find inexpensive formals at the local thrift store, or you can use one of your old dresses. Cheap tiaras are easy to find — or even make on your own if you have a headband and some fake jewels to stick on.

Before you spend money on a ready-made costume, you might consider making your own. If you have some time, imagination, and creativity, it’s really not too hard to assemble a good costume that is fun. Kids love dressing up, and if you get them involved in putting together a costume, they will love it even more.

What are your favorite frugal Halloween costume ideas?

(Photo: PaulAylettPhoto.com [5])