10 DIY Costumes You Can Make for Under $50, from Easy to Expert
Have you started making your Halloween costume idea list and checking it twice? Because we obviously have. Halloween is basically Brit + Co’s Christmas, and no idea is too simple or too far-fetched for us to create. Once you’ve figured out what you want to be, you’ve gotta figure out how to make that dream come true. To launch right into the spooky spirit, we’ve teamed up with Cotton to share 10 costumes you can totally make for under $50.
Anj here, Executive Creative Director of Brit + Co, and Halloween obsessive extraordinaire. We’ve got quite a few couples costumes (starring yours truly!), two maternity costumes, a group of sushi rolls and, of course, a way to twin with your pup. The great thing about cotton is that it’s a material you can use no matter what your skill level. You don’t even need a sewing machine for most of these costumes! Scroll on to check out our favorites, from easy to expert.
1. Cactus Couple: Are you ready to stop being cact-i and start being cact-us? This cactus couple is a cinch to create and the materials are extremely affordable. You’ll need two green cotton sweatshirts, pipe cleaners and a couple prickly headbands! Head to the bottom of this post to see the full DIY tutorial in action. You’ll be lookin’ sharp in no time.
2. Maternity Sunny Side Up: Many moons ago, our fearless leader Brit was pregnant with her first son Ansel (now almost two years old!). And so began our quest to create the best maternity Halloween costumes the Internet has ever seen. This punny number takes a matter of minutes to create. Start with a white cotton dress and put a fabric egg yolk on it! We used felt to create the yolk and glued it to the cotton dress. Complement the look with a yellow wig and white cotton leggings and your friends will definitely crack up.
3. Mummy and Ghost: Creepiest ghost and mummy, ever. I straight up look like a grown-up version of the girl from “The Ring” and my husband David looks like a white-cloaked grim reaper. And we love it. Both costumes were created by draping, ripping and wrapping white and off-white pieces of cotton fabric.
4. Unicorn Couple: Feel like wearing pajamas out on the town this Halloween? Then this unicorn couples costume is the onesie-wearing costume of your dreams. To make both costumes, we found cotton button-down onesies and spray painted them using gold glitter fabric spray paint. Create a tail out of tulle and thread it through the back of your onesie (yep, these ones have an opening at the back). Top with a silver hat or wig, ears and, naturally, that one and only horn.
5. Twinning Gnomes: Two gnomes are better than one, especially when one of them happens to be my adorable cavalier pup, Turkey! To recreate this winning (twinning!) look, we’ll start with my outfit. Wear a cotton oversized button down shirt over a pair of black cotton leggings. Once you’ve buttoned up your shirt, fill it with cotton stuffing to round out your torso. Then belt it! Make a red cotton cap for the top of your head, and don a cotton beard and brows (you can find this in the Santa section). For Turkey, we made a cotton “shirt” complete with a cotton belt to create the same sort of gnome-inspired belly. The hat is a headband with a cardboard piece covered in red cotton fabric so that it stays upright.
6. Cookies and Milk: Inspired by Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon’s costume from a few years back, this is fun, sweet (literally) and easy to make. First, create that milk box! We simply drew a classic milk carton design on a piece of white foam core. Then, we added “Got Cookies?” in fabric letters. Put this on over a white cotton tee and white jeans and you’re good to go. For little Miss Cookie, I suited up in cotton nude leggings and a cotton nude slip. Make a whole pile of cookies by cutting out cardboard circles and dotting them with a black Sharpie. Then, use Hollywood Tape (the kind of tape that keeps those low cut dresses in the right place!) to stick those cookies right on.
7. Sushi: Alright squad, it’s time to make like sushi and ROLL. We made each of the costumes you see in the photo above, and each one is actually pretty dang easy to recreate. Whether you fancy salmon nigiri, a classic roll or a whole bottle of soy sauce, this tutorial’s got you covered. We’ll start from left to right. On the far left, we’ve got a shrimp and cucumber roll. Start with a cotton white dress as your base, then create a shrimp pillow using peach-colored cotton fabric, batting and white fabric paint. Cut cucumber sticks out of foam and then wrap it around yourself with translucent black and green fabric. The soy sauce look is easy as can be — simply affix yellow fabric letters onto a black cotton dress. For the salmon nigiri, we found a salmon-colored cotton dress and painted white stripes on it to mimic salmon. Pair it with a body pillow! Finally, we’ve got the salmon sushi roll, which is constructed the same way as the shrimp but with a brighter orange cotton fabric.
8. Rainbow and Pot of Gold: That rainbow is making it rain gold coins, yo! For this costume, we’ll start with the pot of gold. We took a bright yellow gold cotton tee and glued a whole bunch of plastic gold coins to it. Throw some black cotton leggings on the bottom, then step into an inflatable cauldron. You read that right. Top it off with a rainbow wig and you’ll feel like you just stepped out of Emerald City. For the rainbow (aka my husband David), tie dye a cotton tee and white cotton pants in a rainbow pattern. You’ll thank us later. For the cloud on top, take a white baseball hat and cover it in fluffy cotton!
9. Maternity Gumball Machine: How cute is Cameron as this pregnant gumball machine!? We shot this last May when she was expecting her son Ned (of Brit + Co costume fame as baby BB8). To create this look, start with a long white cotton tee. Cover the belly of it with colorful cotton pom-poms! On the bottom we attached a coin slot to a red cotton maxi skirt. Done and done.
10. Pizza and Ice Cream: Finally, our two favorite food groups: pizza and ice cream. We’ll start with my role as an ice cream queen. We took a cotton white dress with a flared skirt and painted sprinkles all over it. Add beige cotton fabric to create the concept of a cone at the bottom of the skirt. For the ice cream hat, make a cone out of cardboard and cover it with fabric. About that pizza! Cut a large triangle out of cardboard. Then cut pieces of yellow cotton into fringe and cover the whole thing. Add fabric toppings of your choice and make a hat to match. Wear a white cotton tee and cotton khakis underneath the slice and… that’s amore ;)
Bonus! PIZZA AND PIZZA!!
Because two pizzas are better than one. Now that we’ve cleared that up, onto the DIY steps for creating your own pair of cacti.
How to Make Your Own Cactus Couples Costume
Materials + Tools:
— 2 cotton sweatshirts
— pipe cleaners
— pink tissue paper
— hot glue gun
— 2 headbands
— green cotton fabric
Cut pipe cleaners into 1 ½ inch pieces, fold in half and hot glue little prickers all over the sweatshirt. Fill in empty spaces with small pipe cleaner pieces.
Cut four sheets of tissue paper into an 8 x 5-inch rectangle, then fold in an accordion pattern. Use a pipe cleaner to wrap around the center of the tissue paper fold and then pull up each layer of paper to create a flower. Hot glue flowers to the right shoulder of the sweatshirt.
Cut a cactus shape out of cardboard and cover with green fabric. Use pipe cleaners and pink tissue paper to add spikes and a flower to the cactus. Attach onto a headband.
Okay, one more shot of those unicorns.
The end! :)
Advertisement by Cotton.
Author: Anjelika Temple
DIY Production and Styling: Kelly Bryden
Hair and Makeup: Misty Spinney
Photography: Kurt Andre