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Last Updated on January 8, 2020 by Katherine

Halloween is an fun season

Costumes are Expensive

Halloween is an excellent time of year. It can also get pricey. It doesn’t have to be that way though, particularly when it comes to your costumes.

The bulk of these costumes can be made with items you can find in a dollar store. Another option is to source the items at your local thrift store or if you have time, head onto Amazon and order what you need (chances are you will find it!). These costumes will take a bit of time to make (but they are not hard to make!), they definitely cannot just be thrown together, a little closer to Halloween I will be publishing a last-minute costume guide for that!


Let’s start simple, shall we? No, I’m not talking about cutting up an old white bedsheet (though you totally can if you’ve got five minutes to spare). Let’s go a little more glam.

First up, grab yourself some grey clothing. You can mix it up with some black and white pieces as well if you want, but grey is key here. For added polish, head to the thrift store and see if you can find some older styles.

The final piece is your makeup. Cosmopolitan has a spooky-cute tutorial located here. The shaded grey clothing will give you a spooky aura, you can even add glow in the dark accessories for a little bit more punch.


I love Delia Creates’ tutorial, mainly because there is no sewing involved! I recommend using a black dress of your choice (it can even be your favorite since you are just dressing it up with a cool DIY spider web cape and a witches hat.  If you need a witch’s hat, I’m sure you can snag one at your local dollar store.

I love the idea of green tights, if you can’t find them in stores near you, check out Amazon, Pull out a pair of black heels (or even boots or flat shoes) to finish the look.

Handmaid’s Tale

I’m a serious fan of the show and I know I’m not alone. I’m behind in watching, but will be catching up soon on Crave, but it can be fun to dress up as your favorite show.

To accomplish this, you need a modest red dress (check out a cool tutorial on youtube here). If you don’t have one, I highly suggest poking around the thrift store. You can use poster paper to cut out a suitable bonnet. You can also try online sources like Amazon or eBay.

Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s

This look is instantly recognizable. You need a little black dress, black kitten heels and some cat eye sunglasses. If you can’t snag a pearl necklace, you can make your own.

To make your own, you will need:

  1. Jewelry Wire
  2. Pearl beads (or pearl-look beads)
  3. A multi-strand jewelry clasp or finding
  4. Crimp tubes

You’ll just want to string the beads along the wires, using a crimp tube to secure the wire to the finding. You can check out the technique I used in my bracelet tutorial post here. For this project, you’re just repeating my method for one strand and replicating it so you have 3-5 stands in the end.

Finish up the look with some nice earrings, a tiara, and some black elbow length gloves. For an added flourish, see if you can’t find a fake cigarette holder.

Paper Doll

Amazingly simple and cute, you simply get some poster board, draw yourself a dress to your liking, adding some “tabs” and cut that out, sticking it to your clothes. Set your makeup and hair and off you go.

Frida Kahlo

Beyond the obvious uni-brow, you’ll want a lovely flower bouquet on top of her head and some colorful clothing. For an added touch, find a stuffed animal monkey to attach to your shoulder!

Flapper Girl

This is one of the classics, the iconic flapper girl. A Beautiful Mess has a lovely tutorial located here. It is not vital to have a black dress but make sure your fringe and your dress match in color for a seamless look. I’ve seen anything from light pink all the way up to black for dress colors, so don’t feel you have to go with a particular hue!


Who doesn’t want to be Queen of the Nile for a day? Start with a maxi dress in white or black (or if you snag one in gold, that will work too!).

Now for the accessories, there are many options that I’ve found on Pinterest. Find a black bob wig and attach some gold findings to the tips.

For the collar necklace, you can make a simple one out of a paper plate (See the tutorial offered by First Pallete) or source some stiff gold material and glue on some jewels. Source some gold cuff bracelets and you’ll be ready for your throne!

Carmen Sandiego

Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego was my favorite game as a kid, my fourth-grade teacher actually thought I’d cheated on a geography exam because I knew all the answers due to the game!  You need the red trenchcoat and a wide brimmed hat and you’ll be instantly recognizable. I’d look to find a suitable jacket at a thrift store.

Tip: If you can’t find a red one, I would find a light colored pea coat and dye it red (trench coats can be hard to dye). With jackets, I always recommend using more dye than is needed as well.


These are just my suggestions for something simple and relatively easy to obtain, I hope you find them useful. If not, Pinterest is a fantastic source of inspiration. As always, if you like what you’ve read, please show me some social love by selecting one of the share buttons.

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Halloween can be expensive, check out my favorite costumes to build on a budget!

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