When it comes to Halloween costumes for kids, there’s nothing quite like the original, DIY Halloween costumes you see on the festival circuit and at your front door on the big night. And so, to inspire major creativity in parents everywhere, we collected 33 of the most jaw-dropping homemade costume ideas that anyone—from Martha’s protege to the totally last-minute types—can tackle. Keep reading and check ’em out.
How adorable is this giraffe costume? With a little paint, a leotard and a headpiece bought off Amazon, your little animal lover will be wildly appropriate for Halloween night in no time. Get the tutorial over at Brit + Co.
BART Train Car
Do you have a BART or DART or some sort of public train system in your area? Using a cardboard box, markers and pictures of your kid and her friends, you can make a wearable train car for your kid this Halloween. The trickiest part is the straps, for which you can use old suspenders, old straps off a tote bag or even fabric.
Hula Girl Snow Globe
This lucky girl had her father make a snow globe costume in just three days. With foam, lots of paint, cardboard, plastic and of course, a coconut, it’s the perfect, enlarged version of the classic travel souvenir. Check out the entire project, and see all the materials here.
Wind Up Doll
This precious wind-up doll from Hart and Sew has us in “awwww!” Quite possibly one of the easiest and cutest DIY’s we’ve seen, anyone can make a version of this genius idea. Head over to Hart and Sew to get the details.
Figuring out how to make your own Rubik’s Cube costume will be easier than actually solving the classic brain-bending puzzle. Colored paper, electrical tape and cardboard are your main ingredients, but we think the groovy glasses and sweet hairdo add a little something extra, too.
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Oh, how fantastic is this little Mr. Fox? From the striped leggings to the furry tail, it’s easy to whip up your own version for Halloween, this year. Cat, of Mom Inc Daily, suggests starting with a store-bought mask and using glue, lots of glue. Find out what else you’ll need by skipping over to Mom Inc Daily.
This Pac-Man costume will thrill kids of all ages! We love the pixelated fruits and sunglasses added for extra appeal. If you’re worried about having the skill set to make your own, don’t be. The hardest part of this project will be getting it off your kid at the end of Halloween night. There’s even a tutorial to make an adult-sized ghost! Find out how it’s done and what you’ll need over at The Effortless Chic.
The Day the Crayons Quit
The crayons may have quit on you, but Brittany from The House that Lars Built sure hasn’t. This adorable and easy-to-replicate tribute to the popular picture book is fun and perfect for a group of friends or a family. Find out what you’ll need to make it happen over at The House that Lars Built.
If you’ve got a white sheet, rubber snakes, and a wig, you’ll probably have everything you need to make your own version of this mythical Medusa costume. A beginner set of sewing skills could be handy for the toga (sheet) and a cape but the snakes are what makes this stare-worthy costume shine.
What’s large, boxy and lights up at the sight of sweets? A Candy-bot 3000, of course! We think this unique take on the classic cardboard costume is pretty awesome, especially the three candy slots and LED eyes. This one-of-a-kind character is the on-going project of the Derringdos, and you can find the tutorial and the history of past Halloweens right here.
It seems as though hipsters have taken over the world—why not Halloween, too? This adorable idea is super simple because you’ll only need to make the cardboard boombox. There’s even an option for adding a tape player, which, of course, is hipster approved. Bonus points for funny little mustaches! Find out more by visiting A Subtle Revelry.
The Man with the Yellow Hat
If there’s a little kid who hasn’t been obsessed with Curious George at some point, we haven’t met him yet. Indulge your kiddo's love of the classic literary figure and create a Man with the Yellow Hat outfit. We love this no-sew version spotted over at Haute Apple Pie because while you might need to spend time collecting the gear, you won’t be sweating over stitches at the final hour. Find out what you’ll need to make your own version here.
This idea from Small Fry Blog has both direction and magnitude. It’s also hilarious and easy to whip up on your own. Plus, if you’ve got a minion-loving tyke at home, it’s the perfect Halloween combo. Find out what pieces make this look come together over at Small Fry Blog.
This is an easy, and great idea for using up all those boxes from Amazon! Just be warned— this cool costume could have other trick or treaters trying to get the candy to dispense. A Slinky, paint and a few other items are all you’ll need to make your own version of this tasty get-up. Head over to Thrifty and Thriving to get the entire tutorial.
Needle and Thread
It’s sew simple to make your own version of this clever costume. The hardest part might be finding the right lampshade to shape the spool. Wondering what else you’ll need? Head over to Maker Mama for the complete tutorial.
She’ll be as darling as the Delft milkmaids themselves, with a bright and cheery costume like this one from Creative Jewish Mom. Mom Sara found everything she needed from around the house and provides the tutorial for making the crochet wig, here. If you don’t have the skills (or time) to whip up a wig of your own, consider a grabbing one from the local costume store, instead.
Leslie of Pink Stripey Socks is at it again, and this time she’s come up with a seriously simple spider costume perfect for Halloween. Inspired by the book, Scaredy-Cat Splat, this adorable outfit can be made in a single afternoon. Gather your materials, which include black stockings, yarn, and sharpie markers, and head over to Pink Stripey Socks to find out how it’s done.
Pack of Play-Doh
Whether you need one costume or many, like Melinda from Melinda Beth, a can of Play-Doh is a clever and creative idea for little trick-or-treaters. We love the upcycling concept of this idea, as well as the basic material list (poster board, hot glue, spray paint, bucket lids). Get the entire tutorial over at Melinda Beth.
Bacon and Egg
Bacon and egg—the classic combo. This quick costume (about two hours from start to finish) is a fun idea for siblings! Find out how to duct-tape your way to costume bliss by watching the YouTube tutorial here.
Mini fashionista by day, sweet superhero by night—your tot wants to play the hero without giving up her sense of style. This adorable DIY from Brit + Co will give her a little bit of both. While this one does require a bit of stitching, the easy-to-follow tutorial means you can handle it in one afternoon. Grab the details here.
photo: courtesy Brit + Co
If your kids are anything like ours then Ninjago rules. Your spinjitzu master can pick his favorite student (Lloyd, Kai, Cole?) and you can go from there. Finding all matching colors for each suit is easy, but the small touches like shoulder gear and certain weapons give each costume a unique look. Delia of Delia Creates shows us how it’s done, so hop on over for the low-down.
We love this creative llama costume from Mer Mag. With just a few items on the supply list, the hardest part about this project might be procuring the poncho and hitching a ride to Peru! Find out what you’ll need over at Mer Mag.
If your kiddo wants to run away and join the circus, indulge her fantasy by whipping up a version of this whimsical clown costume we spotted over at Classy Clutter. From the cheery colors to the fact that this DIY starts with a leotard, we think your little ringmaster will love life under the big top. Find out how to get started by clicking here.
Here’s one that’ll stand out in a crowd of costume-adorned kiddos. Dana of Made Everyday starts with an orange t-shirt and shorts and adds felt, hot glue, some stitching to make something truly unique. You can get the details over at Made Everyday.
How creative and easy is this flower pot costume? The perfect size for your toddler, he or she can even pick out the type of flowers that'll adorn the pot! Find out how to make your own over at Clumsy Crafter.
You don’t usually hear “robot costume” and “easy” in the same sentence. We love this version from Creative Jewish Mom; not only is it designed for all-day wear (your kid can actually sit down!), but you don’t have to collect boxes for a year to make it happen. Head over to Creative Jewish Mom to see how it’s done.
Everyone's favorite elven warrior from the ‘80s is back, and we couldn’t be more thrilled. For your little Legend of Zelda fans, this adorable Link costume from Carrie Elle is the perfect fit. And, the best part? You won’t need to sew a thing! Find out what you’ll need to get started over at Carrie Elle.
The Rat Race
Parents, if you’ve ever had to commute and from the office, then you’ll appreciate this creative take on “the rat race.” It’ll take some coordinating to make it happen, but the results are guaranteed to see a few chuckles when your crew knocks on doors come Halloween night. Take a closer look over at Handmade Charlotte.
A Piece of Flair
Adorning jackets, bags, shoes and just about everything else with flair has made a comeback in a big way. This adorable idea from A Subtle Revelry is super-easy to replicate (only six supplies needed!), and totally on trend. Find the tutorial over at A Subtle Revelry.
For a last-minute costume that couldn’t be cuter, why not go for a buzzing bumble bee? If you have a headband and black ruffle ribbon already stored away in your house, then you’re halfway there!
Belts—lots and lots of belts. That’s the key to re-creating the classic Tim Burton character. Oh, and an incredibly patient parent, too. Dressing up like the sweet and just-a-little-spooky Edward Scissorhands is gonna take some time. Want to dive in? Check out the DIY info at Instructables.
Instead of dressing up like Disney’s favorite flyer, why not embody his mischievous doppelgänger instead? A unique twist on a classic childhood tale, the hardest part about this cool costume is the hat. FYI: Your kiddo will totally be able to breathe, says DIY blogger mama Nicole of Tikkido.