I was thinking about how (in the good old days) we used to scavenge our Halloween costumes from the attic or from the thrift store. Sure, my mom would sew costumes here and there, but often we used our ingenuity, safety pins and a hot glue gun.
I’ve always sewn fun costumes for my kids, which is very time consuming. (It can also lead to swearing when I’m sewing on super slick synthetics… yuck!) I’ve always done my best to buy the fabric on sale or with a coupon, but even still sewing a costume isn’t always cheap. It has been worth it though, because I knew we would get lots of play value out our costumes as dress ups.
Now that my kids are getting older and less likely to play dress ups, I love the scavenge idea more and more.
Here’s few scavenger costume ideas we’ve used in the past.
My son went to an Indian Jones movie party and even though his costume was the result of a frantic scavenger hunt, he took 1st Place in the “look alike” contest. He was most excited about winning a $50 gift certificate!
What you’ll need:
- White or cream button down shirt
- Khaki pants
- A brown leather belt
- A fedora- that might just be the most important element
- A whip- Check out this awesome tutorial
- A satchel
- A revolver- optional, but NOT for school
Rosie the Riveter
Emma dressed like Rosie for Lily’s last year’s Refection photography entry. This is an easy costume to scavenger!
What you’ll need:
- A blue (or white- since we make it do) button down shirt
- A square of red polka dot fabric for a head scarf
- Jeans- preferably sailor style
- Bobby pins for a pin curl
- For shoes- unless you are being judged by a historian… there are lots of options including Oxfords, Penny loafers or Mary Janes… whatever you have I say.
- Optional might be a tool belt and a few tools or even a WWII airplane to hold
- Also optional but fun is a sign “We can do it!”
WWII Paratrooper Soldier
Two of my kids dressed up like 101st Airborne Paratroopers for a 4th of July parade a few years ago. Again scavenger hunt was in order. The helmets came from a friend, the camo clothes from my son’s wardrobe… he’s fond of camo.
This year for Halloween my son’s 5th grade class does a wax museum and all the student dress up like a notable American. My son has chosen war hero Major Richard Winters of the 101st Airborne Easy Company.
Here’s what you and Ben will need:
- An army jacket- We’ve found his grandfather’s old army jacket from the 1950′s in grandpa’s attic
- Camo pants- I’ll be picking up some new camo pants that will be part of his regular wardrobe the rest of the year
- Boots- Not sure what I’ll do with this- maybe make faux- boot covers for his shoes- any good soldier will tell you it’s the boots that make the Airborne Paratrooper!
- A parachute- Made from a white, round, disposable, plastic tablecloth. Punch a few holes around and in from the edges and tie with long strings that come together and attach to the jacket. Better yet, if you can get a vest to attach the parachute to that’s even better.
- A WWII Army helmet- Plastic ones are readily available on the cheap
- We’ll be heading down the Army Navy Supply for some real patches for the jacket
After looking through the Chasing Fireflies Catalog that showed up in our mailbox a few weeks ago- here’s my scavenger challenges for my girl’s Halloween costumes this year:
The girls want SCARY costumes!
OOOh this costume will be fun. I’m thinking I’ll make great use out of old sheets and cheap lace fabric. We even have an old tutu from a dance performance that will come in handy here. Yes, I will need my sewing machine a bit… but not like making a costume from scratch.
Here’s the costume I love best. I think my daughter would have a great time creating a beak from things we have in our art supply… I’ll just need to pick up some black feathers from the craft store.
We already have a wonderful long black tutu and feather boa, from their dance performances, that will be absolutely perfect.
Making the feathered wrist bands would be SO fun…. They LONG black nails are something else. My daughter loves them, of course, but she may not love them as much when holding a trick or treat bag.
But the costume my daughter hopes for is a vampire and she likes this costume best. This one would be a little trickier to scavenge. Long black tutu maybe… some web style lace would need to be bought. But we’ll see.
Have you started thinking about Halloween costumes? Will you make? Buy? Or scavenge?