New House to Home: Fun DIY Halloween Costumes            

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fun DIY Halloween Costumes

Where has September gone?  I can't believe this is the last week.  With October quickly approaching, I'm sure many moms and kids are looking for a unique Halloween costume.  I just saw my first commercial for Halloween candy tonight, so you know it's right around the corner.  I've got two fun ideas for you.  These are the costumes my youngest daughter, Olivia, wore last year and the year before.  Here's what she wore in 2010:

She waited until the last week of October to decide that she wanted to be a donut.  The costume itself was very easy to make. 
  • I just spray painted a pool inner tube brown to represent a chocolate donut, and then applied a "glaze" of 50% Elmer's glue and 50% acrylic paint. 
  • As we applied the glaze, Olivia and I added colorful pieces of construction paper to represent sprinkles.  We had to work fast, as the glaze dried quickly. 
  • The headpiece was simply a Dunkin' Donuts cup attached to a headband.  I thought about hot gluing the two together, but I wanted to be able to use the headband again, so I used my favorite Command Picture Hanging Strips instead (I know I talk about the Command Strips all the time, but I am not being compensated for my endorsement.  I just looove them and want to share how versatile they are with everyone).
  • Finally, I looped a ribbon through the inner tube to hang it around her neck.
The most difficult thing about putting this costume together was trying to find an inner tube in late October.  If you are unable to find an inner tube locally, and you'd like to make things really easy on yourself, you could order this giant donut shaped pool float
 Warning -  this float is a whole four feet in diameter. Be sure your child can handle it before you go this route.

Now, on to 2011.  Olivia decided to be a giant box of popcorn.
Is anyone else noticing a food-related theme with this child's costumes?  She loves her snacks, so it makes sense.

The popcorn box was not really difficult, but it was definitely more time consuming than the donut.  If you would like to make a popcorn box costume for your child, here's how you can do it (sorry I don't have photos of the process - I wasn't blogging then).
  • Gather Supplies - 5 Foam Core Boards, White Duct Tape, Red Spray Paint, Great Stuff Expanding Foam Sealant (available at Home Depot), Large Bowl of Air-Popped Popcorn, Utility Knife, White Card Stock, Red Card Stock, Elastic, Wide Painter's Tape, Glue
  • Cut down four of the foam boards so that you can make a box.  We used Olivia's body size to determine the size of the box we wanted.  It makes sense that you would make a smaller box for a smaller child.  In Olivia's case, we trimmed a few inches off the sides of boards used for the front and back of the box, and trimmed an even greater amount off the boards we used for the sides.  If you have a much smaller child, you would probably want to trim the boards at the bottom, too, so that they're not too long.
  • Assemble the boards into a box, using duct tape at the corners to secure everything together.
  • Use your painter's tape to tape off equally spaced vertical stripes the whole way around the box.  Mine were about two inches apart.  I figured out where the center of the box was and started taping about an inch to the right and an inch to the left of center to ensure that I had a red stripe in the center of the box. 
  • Once everything is taped off, get out the spray paint and start painting.  Olivia was ten at the time we made her costume, so I let her do the spray painting.
  • Allow the paint to dry and then carefully peel the painter's tape off.
  • Measure the opening at the top of the box so that you can make a top out of the fifth board.  Cut the board so that it fits snugly into the top of the box.
  • Cut a hole in the center of the top.  Check to make sure it slides easily over your child's head before you attach it to the box.  Save the circle you just cut out.  You will use it for the headpiece.
  • Attach the top to the box with duct tape.  You will have to put the duct tape on the underside so it doesn't show on your red stripes.
  • Apply the Great Stuff to the top of the box a little at a time and stick the popcorn into it before it dries.  I tried to get the foam in the seams to help secure everything together a bit better than the duct tape alone.  This is the Great Stuff we used:
  • Figure out where you want the arm holes, and cut them out with your utility knife.
  • Punch two holes on opposing sides of the headpiece circle.  Thread your elastic into each hole, leaving enough slack that the elastic fits snugly under your child's chin, and knot it. 
  • Apply some Great Stuff to the headpiece and add popcorn.
  • Print out an extra large popcorn logo.  I just went into power point and selected a font that looked appropriate and played around with it.  Mount the logo on the red card stock, and glue the entire thing to the front of the box.
  • Send your child out trick-or-treating.  Tell him/her that you need to check all of their treats before they eat anything.  While you are "checking the treats," put all the Snickers bars in your pocket and consider them your reward for making this awesome costume!
My favorite part of Halloween - checking out the stash after the kids go to bed!
Truth be told, the popcorn box was a bit of a challenge for Olivia to wear.  It was wide and a bit heavy, and it made it hard for her to keep up with the other kids.  She was able to wear it for the pre-trick-or-treating party, but after about twenty minutes of tick-or-treating, I ended up wearing it.  This costume is probably better for an older child or for a party where the wearer doesn't have to move around much.  Keep in mind that this costume requires assistance to put on and take off, and the wearer won't be able to sit while wearing it.  That being said, it is super cute and we got tons of compliments on it (even when I was wearing it).

I love making these creative homemade costumes, but I'm secretly hoping that both my kids choose a store bought costume this year.  One of these would be perfect:
I'd love to have the extra time to plan a Halloween party or do some fall baking with the kids.  I'll let you know what they decide.  Whatever you decide to do or wear for Halloween, I hope you have fun!

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  1. oh my gosh, the popcorn is hilarious! so creative!

  2. Your popcorn box is amazing. Awesome idea. Thanks for linking up to the Masquerade Ball!

  3. "I got a rock." ☺ Clever costume ideas!

    Hello, new follower here! I would love to have you link up with my Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week!

    I hope to see you there!
    The Chicken Chick

  4. Cute! I hope you will link this up to The CSI Project starting tonight. The challenge is DIY Halloween Costumes. You just might win!!!!

  5. Your tutorial for that Popcorn costume would be great for moms and individuals who love to do DIY costumes! And same with you, I also love to check out the kid's candy stash especially the Milky Way and Snickers Bars!

  6. Awww these halloween costumes are soooo cute! I really love them... I'm gonna try that popcorn costume this year.. :)

  7. What a great post and lovely ideas! I've been looking and searching for some easy homemade halloween costume ideas to use on this coming Halloween. Thanks to you, i just got some idea. Thanks for sharing these DIY halloween costume ideas. Cheers!

    ~ Barbara