Do-it-yourself: Create your own Halloween costume on a budget

By Ashley Berger

Cade Belisle/Collegian

Everyone knows that when you’re in college, you’re broke. But most of us still want to look great on Halloween. Here are some do-it-yourself ideas on how to successfully cut, rip or tape together the perfectly scary costume that won’t break the bank.

Queen of Hearts

Movie characters are always a good inspiration for Halloween costumes, and who doesn’t love the “Alice in Wonderland” films? For this costume, buy a couple decks of cards and pull out all the hearts. Get a red dress to attach the cards to. Depending on the amount of time and cards you have, either staple or hot glue the cards to the dress starting at either the waist down, or do the whole dress. Make sure to paint a red heart on your lips with lipstick and buy a tiny crown to complete the outfit.

Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum

In sticking with the “Alice in Wonderland” theme, grab a friend and do a partner costume. For boys and girls alike, buy matching red shorts and yellow shirts. Make sure to wear light blue bow ties and don’t forget your hats with the spinners on top. To ensure no one gets the partner duo confused, use black marker to label yourselves “Dee” and “Dum” on either the front or back of the shirts.


Growing up, what little girl didn’t dream of someday growing up to be a beautiful princess? While the real world may have plans for you other than living in a castle, for this one night it’ll be easy to look the part. At a thrift store or using one of your own old ball gowns, chop the bottom of the dress to your desired length. Pair with sparkly shoes, a crown and other glittery accessories. Make sure you get home by midnight before you turn into a pumpkin.


If you’re severely artistically impaired and broke as well, this idea will cost you some elbow grease and about $3. Buy a few packs of purple balloons from your local dollar store. Dress in all dark purple and blow the balloons up, attaching them to various parts of your body. Be careful not to bump into anything sharp.

White Trash

If you’re feeling like you want to be trashy this year, or if you think you may need a trash-bag by the end of the night to vomit in, dress up as trash. Wear a white trash bag and tape pieces of ‘trash’ all over yourself. Go with as much or as little trash all over your body as you see fit.

Spaghetti and meatballs

If you’ve always wanted to turn into your favorite food, now is your chance.

While this costume requires a bit of creativity and an artistic license, it is sure to be a real treat. Dress in either all black or drape yourself with a red and white checkered tablecloth. Buy white or yellow, and red yarn, then cut into strips at the length of your choice. Glue the yarn all over whatever your outfit choice is. Paint small Styrofoam balls brown and glue those with the yarn onto your clothing. Glue a fork and a knife onto yourself as well. Wear either a colander or a pot on your head for extra decoration and yell at people all night in an Italian accent.

Ashley Berger can be reached at [email protected]