Cheap Halloween Costumes For Kids!

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Cheap Halloween Costumes For Kids

Creative Cheap Halloween Costumes For Kids

You can really come up with some cute and clever ideas for cheap Halloween costumes, even if you don’t feel particularly creative. Don’t wait until the night before Halloween to start your costumes. Look at the people and things around you and ask yourself, “How can I recreate this?”

Look at thrift stores and garage sales for cheap Halloween costumes. Go ahead and buy the costume or piece of a costume if the price is right. You really can’t go wrong spending $0.25 on a piece of a costume. Even if it doesn’t work, you haven’t lost much.

Halloween costumes can be very simple and still make a big impact. For example, instead of the usual witch robes, drag out your elegant black dress and add a witch hat with a veil of spider webbing stretched over your face. Cover the spider web with plastic spiders. For a man, a nice suit and tie and a funny mask makes a good simple yet cheap Halloween costume. For a couple: get a REALLY big sweatshirt, both of you get in it and be Siamese twins!


Here are some examples of some great cheap Halloween costumes for kids:

  • Sunflower – For the body, use a white sleeper or sweat suit. Paint the child’s face yellow, adding black spots to simulate seeds if you like. Make a flower  out of felt to fit on the child’s head or glue sunflowers on a white hat.
  • Angel – Again, use a white sweat suit or a long white dress for the body. Make wings out of heavy white poster board and paint the edges gold. Attach tie straps to them that go around the shoulders. You can also shape a metal clothes hanger into a wing. Make two wings, hot glue fabric around them and add straps.
  • Pea Pod – Cut 2 small foam balls in half with an electric knife or a knife with a serrated blade. (Note: Do this BEFORE attaching them to the child! 😉 Wrap in green fabric and pin them to the front of a green sweat suit. Make a hat out of 2 shades of green felt and a little brown felt for a stem.
  • Lion – Buy a yellow hat or dye a white hat yellow. Buy long brown fake fur, yellow fake fur and a yellow sweatsuit. You can get fake fur at your favorite fabric store. Add brown fur to the top of the hat (for a mane), hot-glue yellow fur into a long tail, adding a poof of brown for the end. Pin the tail on the back of the costume. Make an oval of the fur for the child’s tummy and use eyeliner for whiskers.
  • Dalmatian – Pin black felt dots onto a pair of white sweats. Paint black polka dots on the child’s face. Add more polka dots to a white hat, make some black felt ears and add black shoes to finish it.
  • I Paint, Therefore I Am – Glue a copy of a painting with a face on it on a piece of cardboard. (For example, the Mona Lisa). Cut out the face and then use it as a mask with the child’s face in the spot where the other face was.
  • Race Car Stroller – Decorate a stroller as a race car by adding fabric or paper racing stripes and a number. Add two flashlights for headlights, plus some reflector tape. If you want to get really creative, add a wind foil, a foil covered paper towel roller for an exhaust pipe or whatever else your clever mind conjures up. Cut a steering wheel out of cardboard for the child to hold. Your child can wear whatever clothes he wants. Just add an old helmet or baseball cap worn backwards.

Think of costume themes for all of the kids in the family:

It can be fun for all the kids to dress up in costumes that complement each other. Some sample themes are:

  • Superheroes
  • Vegetables
  • Candy bars
  • Rabbit family (or family of animals such as ducks, cats, dogs etc.)
  • Cartoon characters (i.e. Mickey Mouse, Minnie and Donald Duck).
  • They could also dress in pairs like a mouse and cheese, a plant and a watering can or doctor and patient. The sky’s the limit.
  • Christmas theme – One child could go as a present, another a Christmas tree, another Rudolph and the 4th as Santa.
  • Wizard of Oz or another movie theme.

It doesn’t take a lot of money to be creative with your costumes and you will find that creative costumes are a lot more fun than store bought costumes. Just think about the things your kids like and the materials you have and try to think of a way to make something unique. You’d be surprised about the cute things you can come up with if you invest a little time in the thought.

Remember, the idea is for the costume to be fun and cute, so don’t obsess about perfection and, by all means, involve the kids in making their own Halloween costumes. Just make sure you supervise or the costumes may turn out a little too “impressionist!” 😉

One additional note about Halloween costumes: With younger kids, simpler is better. Our oldest son used to dream up complicated costumes, but they often were difficult to construct and handle and he would get frustrated with them. Once we started helping him make simpler costumes, he enjoyed them much more! The best costumes are easy to move around in that allow the child to see well and can adapt to changing temperatures.


For lots more creative and inexpensive Halloween Ideas like these cheap Halloween costumes for kids, check out the Halloween On A Dime e-book here!



  1. says

    up here halloween is usually cold sleet or actual snow. We tend to dress warmly even with costumes.
    A lot of people buy PJ’s that are theme oriented and add to them.
    spiderman pjs a mask picked up at the store or face paint.
    pink pj;s with wings you have an angel.
    that way you get the PJ’s for wearing to bed.
    we actually have very fat skeletons because the little ones have snow suits under the costumes.
    lots of hobo’s and miners since you can put on layers under the coveralls.

  2. Nicole says

    Last year my little boys were pirates I picked up 2 pirate do rags and plastic swords and eye patches at our dollar store for a total of 4 dollars (to outfit both boys)! This year the boys are going to be cowboys, I picked up 2 cowboy hats at the dollar store for 2 dollars each, and 2 bandanas for a 1 dollar! We already have cowboy shirts, jeans. So easy, inexpensive and they are more excited about the simple costumes then the big fancy ones!

  3. Katie says

    I had heard on the radio yesterday (24 October) about a school district that was dropping the school Halloween celebrations ‘in order to make things more uniform’. There was also the comment about making things more ‘fair’ (as in some children stayed home because they felt they could not participate without the costume).

    The host brought up some of the ideas here. 😎

  4. Mary b says

    I have a trunk filled with pieces of home made costumes through the years and 6 kids. Angel robes and wings. Long beaded necklace, gloves, wigs, aprons, swords, daggers, shoe covers, boas. All I usually have to buy is fresh face paint. Then after Halloween is over, I pick up pieces for a dollar or less and add them to the trunk . Even when the kids become older and go to adult parties, there should be enough pieces in the trunk that they can make costumes with very little effort.

  5. Roxie M. says

    This is not a Halloween idea so much as a Christmas gift idea. After the Halloween night is over costumes will be cheap. Go buy a few of the simple super hero costumes, the princess costumes, cowboy costume etc. Then take the Halloween tags off and put them into a box. These are wonderful Christmas gifts as ‘dress up’ clothes. As a grandmother I can tell you I have done this many times. My grandchildren love it.

  6. Kathleen N says

    One year I was a stick person. I dressed all in black and then taped white posterboard arms, legs, & body lines on me. I cut eye openings into a circle that had a smiley face drawn on it. I used tape to adhere the head part to my forehead, but elastic could be used too. I took the face off after I arrived at the party.

  7. Alexis says

    Last year, I put my son in the baby costume contest (Mickey Mouse theme) at the county fair and won his age group for best costume; he was a Mickey Mouse firefighter. By October it still fit him so I used it for Halloween. My mom, an artist, helped me with the costume. I got a red plastic fireman hat from our local FD, made a new badge with his daddy’s (a real fireman) number on the badge and put elastic string on it to help hold it on his head. I cut out of poster paper what resembles Mikey’s ears, painted them black, slit two holes in the hat for the ear and stuck the ears through. He had a pair of baige sweatpants, so I wrapped duct tape around the ankles of the pants to resemble reflective tape that’s one actual fireman gear. I also took strips of thick elastic, painted it yellow, and sewed it onto the pants to make suspenders. My mom painted a red t-shirt to resemble the FD’s t-shirts that they wear for their fundraisers, etc. My dad still has his first pair of baby shoes, which are black, so we used those rather than boots, and they just fit perfectly.

    This year, I was going to go as an old lady with a cane, which is just a cane that we used to show 4-H hogs with, and my toddler was going to go as a toddler bum. I was going to get some fabric scraps to cut up and sew/glue on to an extra pair of my sons paints, and while I was looking through the fabric I found some fabric that looks like the American flag, which made me think of Willie from “Duck Dynasty.” The only thing I can get my toddler to keep on his head is a stocking hat that has one of those fluffy yarn balls on top of it, so he is going to wear that, I’ve borrowed hunting camo clothes from somebody, and he is going to carry around a blue Tupperware cup (making him look like Si from “Duck Dynasty). Half of Si’s beard is more white while the other half is more grey, so I am going to use some of my acrylic paint to make a beard my just swirling it on his face. It should be pretty funny.

  8. Michelle V says

    we have had ladybugs, bees and dogs to name a few. when my kids were little I made their costumes mostly out of sweat suits. Ladybug required red and black felt, a headband with pipe cleaners wrapped around it with big pompoms on the tops. the bee was yellow and black felt, with a stinger sown into the backside of his sweatpants. I even silver glittered the stinger so it would ‘bee’ seen. We even had a purple tel-a-tubby one year made with a plastic wrap cardboard glued onto her chest and more felt and stuffing for an antenna on a headband. I have used the same home-made cape for years for different outfits, it is black satin on one side and red on the other with a drawstring making a 3″ collar. good for vampires, witches, or other ghouls!

  9. Nancy Mugridge says

    I don’t have any particular ideas, but one of the great joys of my young life was going through our trunk of old clothes to create a halloween costume, which we thought was much more fun than buying a costume.

  10. Marcie Bouchard says

    In the past we have done a “bride” – white dress, veil from thrift store, white tights, and fake flower bouquet – all items were purchased at thrift store. Another hit was a “southern belle” – again all items were from thrift store – long floral dress with big skirt, big brimmed large summer hat, undo 2 wire coat hangers and shape into a circle, a belt and elastic binding like for a waistband. let wire hoop hang from belt by lengths of elastic and wear under dress (makes hoop skirt) curl hair or wear wig of long hair. Can also use a floral umbrella as a parasol. We would start working on ideas and hunting the pieces in September! It was always a lot of fun and my girls got to use their imaginations and ended up with costumes that no one else had!

  11. grizzly bear mom says

    considering trading costumes with friends. Then if someone gives you a clown costume, encourage your child to go as one.

  12. Susan says

    The last time we went to a Halloween get together(not a party per say,but just some friends getting together ) My hubby went as Matt Dillion and I went as miss Kitty,(remember Gunsmoke) any way I got everything we needed at the local thrift store right down to a headband with feathers on it for my head! A friend of mine went as the skipper and Gillian from the tv show gillans island so some times think of old tv shows that will make good costumes.

  13. Magdalen says

    I’m so impressed by the planning, ingenuity and hard work that you American ladies put in to give your children so much fun.

  14. Kris says

    I think Halloween is more fun when you make your own costume. You have great ideas. In addition to what you have listed, has some fun ideas (my daughter will be an owl this year based on alphamom’s idea) as does In the past we have done a Jedi knight, macaroni-and-cheese, and a weatherman (for some reason my 4-year-old son really wanted to be a meteorologist–go figure!). After Halloween my kids play dress-up all year long with their costumes.

    In response to Katie’s comment, I think schools nation-wide are doing away with an in-school party, in part because, at least at our school, it is very difficult to control who enters the building during party day (parents and grandparents would line up to see their kids) and unfortunately safety is becoming a bigger and bigger concern. Our district has an evening event where the kids trick-or-treat between classrooms and this way they can still see how their classmates are dressed.

  15. Brenda says

    My son’s favorite costume of all time was going as his dad in the morning. He wore his pajama pants, an old pair of slippers, t-shirt, and bath robe. I gooped his hair all up to make it stick out all different directions and drew on some 5 o’clock shadow and bags under his eyes with an eyebrow pencil. He carried a coffee cup with a funny saying and of course a pillow case to put the candy in. Simple, cheap and everyone got a huge kick out of it.

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