(Very) Last-Minute Halloween Costume Ideas

It’s Halloween! And a few busy people, their children and diehard procrastinators, still may not have costumes at the ready. If you happen to be among those who have suddenly been spooked into action on the final morning before trick-or-treat time rolls around, don’t despair — there are plenty of creative ideas you can use to save the day.

The first stop, of course, should be your local thrift store. Often supplied by donations to ClothingDonations.org, they offer an unparalleled source of last-minute inspiration at reasonable prices. Need a puffy shirt for that pirate getup? Look no further than the thrift. Or how about some acid-wash jeans for the ultimate ’80s hair-band tribute? You’ll find them here.

The thrift store also has plenty of used sheets that you won’t mind cutting eyeholes in to create the simplest of costumes — the ghost. It may even have accessories such as costume jewelry, hats and wigs that can make or break a last-minute costume. Whatever you find, the money you spend at the thrift will help fund veterans’ programs.

Those pressed for time will appreciate the concepts behind 22 Simple, Last-Minute Halloween Costumes from Real Simple. Easy to craft from basic garments and simple props, “Breadwinner” and “Ceiling Fan” costumes are likely to inspire groans for their offbeat wordplay, but no one will be able to accuse you of coming up short on a costume.

Kids will want to grab all the candy they can tonight, and no self-respecting parent or chaperone can let them go trick-or-treating as-is! If you’re suddenly scrambling to dress up a child, cover them in green balloons to go as a bunch of grapes, Brit + Co. suggests. Wrap them in two-ply to make them into a mummy. Or take them out in pajamas and a robe as your Lil’ Lebowski.

Whatever you can create at the last minute will only lend to the excitement that free candy and/or a costume party can bring. Now, get going on those costumes — and have a happy and safe Halloween!

Simple Costume Ideas for Halloween

If you have a Halloween party coming up and are at a loss for a costume, Living on the Cheap offers 101+ Cheap and Easy Halloween Costumes you can assemble using thrift-store finds and a little creativity. You can’t go wrong with scary classics such as ghost, vampire and mummy, or you can opt for instantly recognizable pop culture characters such as a Minion or Ghostbuster. Whatever the costume, shopping at a thrift supplied by donations to ClothingDonations.org helps fund essential veterans programs nationwide.

Thrift Your Look for Halloween

Thrift stores are a “goldmine” for Halloween costumes, the Gurl blog says. Many are a treasure trove of clothing from bygone eras, meaning that finding your inner flower child or going grunge won’t cost a fortune. Better still, you can amp up the gore by smearing those finds with fake blood, and never worry about ruining something you’ll want to wear again! The blog suggests 15 thriftastically creative costume ideas for women, including Carrie, Disco Diva and Eleven from Stranger Things.

Build a Thrifty Halloween Costume

For the do-it-yourselfer, there is no better place to source a Halloween costume than the local thrift store, says Parade magazine. Combine clothing you already have with thrifted items such as a wig and tiara to transform your toddler into a princess, it says. Or buy a lightly-used puffy shirt at the thrift, add a bandana, eyepatch and toy sword, and (poof!) you’re a pirate. Goodwill Industries even offers a complete costume generator that can help build a weird, wild or scary costume from a variety of thrift-store finds.

Halloween costume inspiration

For Halloween costume inspiration, check out Netflix or your TV programming guide for celebrity ideas. With some large frame glasses, your daughter can look like an old-school Taylor Swift. With Pokémon Go all the rage, it should be easy to create some fantasy creatures for your youngsters to wear.  For “Duck Dynasty” look-alikes, you just need some dark yarn for beards.