DIY Halloween Costumes for Adults and Couples

To say we are fans of Halloween would be an understatement. We think about Halloween for months in advance. Our creepy house decorations have made little kids afraid to approach our door. We revel in putting together costumes from thrift store finds and crafty creativity. We win costume contests ... a lot. And we do so on tiny budgets. Sometimes we plan a month in advance, and sometimes the costumes are literally a day-of surprise.

Halloween Through the Years

1950s Prom Zombies for Trash Film Orgy's Zombie Prom

Cost: Under $10 for zombie makeup and a white shirt from a thrift store. 
My costume is a one-of-a-kind '50s prom dress with a shirt underneath for warmth. 

Flava Flav and his Flavor of Love Winner 

Cost: $5 for my clock from Target.
The rest we had. We used dog chains for necklaces. The big hat is actually a Goofy hat from Disneyland. Aaron's jacket and my dress were thrifted.

Sam and Joon from "Benny and Joon" for a movie-themed party.

 Cost: Under $15 for thrifted cane, jacket, vest, ping pong paddle and snorkel mask.
I borrowed the dress from my mom's closet

 Fallen Angel and Zombie Charlie Chaplin 

Cost: Under $10 for my halo and wings.
OK, so these two don't exactly go together, but we since we had already done couple costumes for the party, we wanted something different for Halloween night and threw these together.

Saloon Girl and Michael Jackson

Cost: Under $15 for thrifted swish pants and skirt, plus new boa, feather and can of spray glitter.
 (At the beginning of the night, the Michael costume was covered in glitter).
Aaron really wanted to be Michael Jackson that year. 
I searched through my closet and my corset jumped out at me, so saloon girl it was.

Angel and Demon 

Cost: $0
These were day-of Halloween costumes, but we still won a prize at a Kepi Ghoulie Halloween show!
The angel costume is a graduation gown, angel wings and my fallen angel halo. You can easily make a halo with pipe cleaners or a wire hanger bent into shape and attached to a headband.
The demon costume is simply a black outfit with demon horns. 
Yes, all of these accessories were pulled from one of our costume boxes. 
It pays to save old costumes!

Super Mario 3 and Princess Peach

Cost: Approximately $30 for thrifted red hat, overalls, red shirt, pink dress, plus furry fabric and mustache. 
These costumes were a labor of love.
My dress originally had long flowing sheer sleaves. We removed those and added the cap sleeves and darker pink trim from fabric scraps. Aaron made his own tail and ears, painting the black stripes on. My crown and Aaron's buttons are from craft foam. I even made my teal clip-on earrings and oval pendant from craft supplies.
 (You can always find clip on earrings and princess dress up accessories in the toy section at the 99Cent Store.)

These costumes cost us a bit more, but we won a $50 Thrift Town gift card for Best Couple Costume, which more than made up for the cost!

Black Widow Killer and Her Murdered Husband 
  Cost: $0
These were last-minute costumes because we were too broke to buy anything that year. Since my hair was already dyed black I wanted to be something on the evil side. As you may have noticed, Aaron's shirt was repurposed from our zombie costumes. I believe I paid about $4 for that dress from Goodwill for a costumed birthday party a few years earlier.
I drew spiderwebs on my arms and with lipstick, created the signature black widow mark on my forehead. I added spider rings for accessories; they came in a bag of spiderwebs.

The Joker and Harley Quinn
Cost: Under $30
These costumes took some time. 
For The Joker, the shirt, vest, jacket, pants and belt were all thrifted from various shops in the area. For Harley Quinn, the skirt was a $5 Goodwill purchase and the boots were a $10 Craigslist purchase. The corset was from my closet. I turned it inside out and hot glued the felt.  I simply cut up one pair of red tights and one pair of black for my legs and arms. I covered one boot in red duct tape. Aaron used purple duct tape to adorn boots he already had.

We wore these costumes one time to a local show the week before Halloween, and then I was incredibly sick and spent the next two weeks, including Halloween night, in bed. The following Halloween was spent moving into our home.
(We still passed out candy while unloading our moving boxes; we are committed!)

 Harley Quinn and The Joker, again!

We revived Harley Quinn and the Joker, wearing the costumes to the last Trash Film Orgy at The Crest Theatre. Then, despite being sick on Halloween, we dressed up to pass out candy to the kiddos. I removed the duct tape, which was really only good for one use, and instead used part of my red tight to cover my boot -- so much easier!

Child's Play Chucky and Bride and of Chucky

Wanna play?

We are all about repurposing. With the addition of a DIY Good Guys patch, Mario's overalls became Chucky's signature look. For about $5 we scored the dress and shirt from a local hole-in-the-wall shop called Mary's Thrift Store. I added some fabric paint to Chucky's shirt and used Duck Tape to add the red touches to his shoes and overall buttons. If Tiffany's choker looks familiar, that's because it is. I first created it for Harley Quinn; it's just scraps from tights with an added craft jewel. I already had the motorcycle jacket and boots.

For a makeup tutorial, including how to create realistic scars, check out the

Like this? You might also like: