June 7, 2020

Affordable last-minute DIY Halloween costumes for college students

Although Halloween is only a few weeks away, many college students have yet to buy a costume for the holiday. Adult costumes are expensive, and between work, school and a social life, many students probably haven’t had time to find a one. So, to save students time and money, The Chimes made a list of a few inexpensive, do-it-yourself costumes that anyone can create.

The Grape:

What you’ll need: Purple balloons; something to attach the balloons to (a t-shirt works); a green headband; green felt or foam; and tape, staples or a needle and thread

How to make it: Blow up the balloons in various sizes to simulate different sized grapes. While we attached our balloons to the shirt with duct tape, it might be best to attach them with something stronger, such as staples, if you plan to wear your outfit for more than a few minutes.

For the headband, cut out leaf shapes from a sheet of green foam and draw leaf details with a marker. Attach the foam to a green headband with a needle and thread. You can also use strong tape or glue to attach your foam pieces. This costume is easy to make, but it ends up looking like you spent a lot of time on it!

Error 404: Costume Not Found:

What you’ll need: A blank t-shirt and a marker

How to make it: Write “Error 404: Costume Not Found” on the t-shirt with the marker. Voila, you have a witty costume for that party you forgot about!

Smarty Pants:

What you’ll need: All that’s needed for this one is right in the name: Smarties and pants! (And, well, some tape.)

How to make it: Attach rolls of smarties to a pair of pants with tape, and you’re finished! To add to the aesthetic, you can wear “nerd” glasses and a button up shirt and have a pocket protector (if you can find one).


What you’ll need: A cheap white tablecloth, a marker or pen, and scissors

How to make it: Put the tablecloth over your head and make marks where your eyes are. Then, take the cloth off and cut holes where you marked. The ghost is a classic costume, and no bedsheets are harmed in the making!

Pig in a Blanket:

What you’ll need: Pink felt or foam, scissors, glue, tape or a needle and thread, a marker, string or ribbon, a pink headband and a blanket

How to make it: Cut out ear shapes and a nose from the pink felt or foam and add details with a marker. Attach the ears to the headband with a needle and thread. You could use tape or glue as well. Cut smaller holes in the nose with a hole punch or scissors and tie the ribbon or string through them so that it can be tied around the face. Finally, wrap yourself in the blanket.

Identity Thief:

What you’ll need: “Hello, My Name Is…” stickers, a shirt to put them on and a marker

How to make it: Write different names on the “Hello, My Name Is…” stickers and attach them to your shirt. For added effect, you could wear a mask.

Static Cling:

What you’ll need: Lots of socks, tape and a shirt

How to make it: Attach various socks to your shirt with tape. If you want to do more, you can add balloons or tease your hair.

Ceiling Fan:

What you’ll need: A t-shirt, a marker, and pom poms (we made ours out of tissue paper)

How to make it: Write “Go Ceiling!” on the t-shirt. To create the pom poms, ball up one end of the tissue paper and secure it with string. Then, cut the ends of the tissue paper into strips. If you want to add more to the costume, you can do facepaint or carry around a “signed” picture of the ceiling.

  • Heather Barr is the current Editor-In-Chief of The Chimes and a senior at Capital University, studying Journalism and Professional Writing. hbarr@capital.edu

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