It's that time of year again! Halloween is just around the corner and many parents I know have already bought costumes or are at least thinking about them. Since we now have three little ones trick-or-treating, I'm thinking about how to save money on something they will only wear for about an hour, one night out of the year.
Last year our oldest son wanted to be a zombie for Halloween. This was his first year of really getting to choose his costume so I wanted it to be really impressive and memorable for him. As I started surfing the web in search of the perfect zombie costume, I couldn't believe the prices! To make things worse a zombie costume wasn't a simple costume to slip on with one or two pieces. There were many factors involved! Then my frugal side kicked in and said, "you can make this yourself and save a ton of money!" And so it began. I started looking up different pictures of costumes online to figure out what all I would need. I headed out to the local thrift stores in search of khaki pants, a white dress shirt, a small suit jacket and a tie. I found all the components of the costume itself at a local thrift store for $3-$4. I then headed to Wal-Mart for a face painting kit. I found one with everything needed to create the perfect zombie, complete with fake scars, lots of fake blood and instructions for $7-$10.
After splashing some fake blood onto the costume and painting my son's face, I added some baby powder to his hair to give it a dusty, dirty look. Overall the costume was pretty cool and the total cost was only $10-$14, compared to the online costumes that were close to $60. So if you're looking for a way to save money on Halloween costumes, try doing it yourself, you may surprise yourself! Here are some other tips for saving money on Halloween costumes:
- Buy costumes after Halloween when they go on clearance to use the following year.
- Ask family members to save used costumes for your children that are still in good condition.
- Check local thrift stores or consignment stores for gently used costumes or supplies needed to create your own.
- Use online trading sites to trade your gently used items for Halloween costumes that might be available.
- Sign up for Freecycle and Craigslist in your area and post a want ad for costumes or check what others have to offer.
- Search eBay for gently used or even new costumes that might be cheaper than paying retail price.