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Where to Find the Coolest & Creepiest Halloween Costumes

Here in Portlandia we rave, rant and bumper sticker about keeping it weird. Quickly approaching is our best collective excuse to get our wack on; you guessed it — Halloween. Bring out the inner nerd, ninja or night creature at any of these fine establishments and say hip hip boo-ray for the bargains and unique options they provide.

lippmans 3

For All of Your Hallowed Eve Needs:
Aisles and aisles of ready-made costumes, from the usual Star Wars suspects to Miss Piggy snout and wig. Both of these stores are equally devoted to accessories, including a jaw-droppingly diverse array of mustaches, hats, wings, bandanas, suspenders, face paint, and wigs. But be prepared: you’ll need to steer smaller or more sensitive kids around truly gruesome plastic body parts and freakishly scary clown masks.

Lippman Company
50 Southeast Yamhill

Halloween Warehouse
11465 SW Canyon Rd., Beaverton

beanstalk 4

On The Cheap: 

Beanstalk Children’s Resale
3527 NE 15th
With a whole rack of gently worn costume regalia, this place is worth a visit come Halloween bargain hunting time. We saw adorb options like puppy dogs, frogs and butterflies. Plus this store has amazing second hand clothing, gear and shoes from the brands we love. Take a look around the whole joint; you’ll leave with a treasure trove of goodies for everyday life, not just October 31st.

Just 4 Kids
1925 Northeast 42nd Avenue
(no website)
This consignment boutique in Portland’s Hollywood district has a small selection, but what’s there is in excellent condition and priced to move. On a recent day, we spotted a cowgirl outfit, Star Wars storm trooper, ladybug costume, and dinosaur – all for ten bucks or less. It’s across from the Hollywood Library (and their awesome story times) and Rain City Cafe where Tallulah’s Daddy plays Mondays at 10.

There’s a Goodwill in practically every neighborhood around town (and one about to open in Clackamas) and they’re screamin’ it like they mean it. They ARE our Halloween hq! Check out the super-sized stores at SE 6th, W Burnside or SW 10th. Stock up on candy bowls, treat satchels and decor galore. Then hit the racks for diverse, gently used outfits for the tricksters and treaters, most of which run $7 or less.  With deals like that you can grab a coupla bargains for year ’round dress up play.


DIY with Help: 

2915 NE MLK Boulevard
We heart SCRAP, a nonprofit whose mantra of creative reuse is one we applaud applaud applaud. This gang of pros knows their stuff. Go see them to make that unique firefighter/bunny or robot/Harry Potter/BMX biker ensemble. It’s a treasure scrapper’s paradise, and all supplies are crazy cheap.

Knittn’ Kitten
7530 NE Glisan
Local quilters and seamstresses adore this shop, which specializes in previously owned but unused fabric. Prepare for an amazing array of vintage cloth, plus notions, yarn, embroidery, glass beads, wool, felt, faux fur, velvet, iron-on appliqués, silk flowers, tulle, sequins, pompoms, and of course, those all-important feathers which can totally make a costume.

costume avenue .com

For the Dress-up Obsessed:

Costume Avenue
12760 SWt 1st Street, Beaverton
Nearly 700 high-quality kids’ costumes available for a 3-day rental at prices ranging from $12-$36. Even better, if they don’t have your offspring’s costume in inventory, they’ll try to piece together separate items to create a look that comes darn close.

Helen’s Pacific Costumers
7501 NE Glisan
While this costume shop only has a small inventory for kids, they can make anything. Bring in a drawing or picture of your kiddo’s ideal Halloween costume (or their artist can sketch one out) and the expert seamstresses here will make it for you from scratch. (Prices vary according to materials needed and time required.) Helen’s can also set you up with a local make-up artist to provide your offspring with some spooktacular face paint.

Where are your favorite places to hunt for costumes? And, better yet, what are your kids dressing up as this year? 

–- Liz Overson

Photos courtesy of Beanstalk’s Facebook page,,, and SCRAP’s Facebook page.

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