Trick or treat?

It’s that time of year again. The time when all those cute neighborhood kids (including your own) transform themselves into an unrecognizable motley crew of thieves, witches, and princesses. The time of year when your doorbell rings constantly as one gang after another fill their bags with the treats that are a kid’s dream and a dentist’s nightmare.

Yes, it’s Halloween. It’s the one day of the year made just for kids and the kids at heart. However, for your average American adult, Halloween can be a hassle too. Before the fun begins, there are endless weeks of constant whining for the best costume on the block. Harried parents are dragged from store to store in search for that perfect outfit, trying to strike some balance between the child’s enthusiasm and their holiday budget. For too many kids and parents, Halloween turns into a competition. Too much time, money and nerves are spent on what should be a fun experience. But this year, you don’t have to do that. The point of a Halloween costume is to be fun and original – and original and store-bought are not synonymous. Is your goal to make your child stand out from the others on the block? Well, your homemade costume is bound to be a one-of-a-kind collector’s item, specially designed just for one child. Don’t be scared if you’re not a professional tailor. Most people aren’t. You don’t even have to know how to sew. Just visit your closet and start thinking out of the box. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

  • The sheet turned into ghost idea never fails. But don’t leave it with slits for the eyes and mouth. Take a few permanent markers and give the ghost some flair. Makeup will bring out the ghost’s haunted eyes and red lipstick can look bloody.
  • All you need for a Pipi Longstocking costume are mismatched socks, shoes, clothing, and a hanger or pipe cleaner to make Pipi’s braids stand out.
  • Draft your kitchen broom as Harry Potter’s Firebolt. Add a black cape, witch’s hat, glasses and a zigzag scar to complete the picture. An old cauldron can be used for trick or treating.
  • What’s keeping your leotards from becoming animals? Just grab a headband to add assorted ears of your choice and pom poms make super fluffy tails. Add a dash of face paint and your home zoo is complete.
  • Dress your little girl in a leotard or light frilly dress and tights and see if you recognize that famous ballet dancer.
  • A piece of cardboard and some paint transform into butterfly/ladybug wings, ready to fly.
  • Is a dark suit or trench coat languishing in your closet? Add a badge, and you can enter anywhere as the FBI.
  • If you have old boxes sitting in your garage, cut holes for your head and arms, and decorate the box to become a jack-in-the-box or a popcorn snack.

If none of these suggestions meet your critic’s fancy, don’t use them. There are plenty of others. A quick search on the internet will yield many fun, creative, easy and inexpensive ideas for Halloween costumes.

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