By Shannon Wand
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If you are anything like me you have planned a few
Halloween costumes out of season. It gives you time
to bounce your ideas off a friend. That's not to say
that last minute costumes can't be fantastic, too,
though. I just think that you should do whatever is
necessary to not have to rent a previously used (read
unoriginal and sweaty) costume that costs way too
much. Creating your own costume is fun and inexpensive.
Dress up as a stick of glue and act insane-you're
“Crazy Glue.” This is the time of year
to be as zany as you want, go nuts.
Take this idea as an example; use pipe cleaners and
wrap your hair around them as though your hair is
blowing in the wind. Wear loose fitting clothes tightened
across your front and ballooned with wire out back.
You would be “Wind Blown Person”. A simple
back-up costume is to glue cotton balls all over a
toque and a pair of old boots while wearing all white
fitted clothing. Worn together with white face make-up
you should look like a Q-Tip. It's a good runner up
costume as it wouldn't take long to make or cost more
than a few bucks.
Think back to all of the parties you've been to. I'll
wait... Okay, now try to remember the best costume
you've seen. I bet it wasn't a store bought gorilla
or gypsy outfit. The homemade ones are the best. They
are creative, unique and best of all, inexpensive.
They can be found at your local thrift store for under
ten bucks or right in your own home. There are even
great costume ideas in your tool shed or kitchen drawer.
Put two-sided tape all over you and go to the party
as “Sticky Spice.” It's quick, cheap and
you will come home with a few interesting items stuck
to you. Now that's a good time!
A couple of years ago my girlfriend, Jen, and I decided
last minute to go to a mandatory costume party. With
little time we had to use our imaginations. We found
an empty case of beer each and cut out places for
our heads and made sure that they fit on our shoulders.
We decorated each of our cases with construction paper
and magic markers to look like houses. We used the
front flaps as driveways, drew some bushes and then
added the piece de la résistance; toy cars
taped to our driveways. Jen had a motor cycle and
I had a lovely red sports car. We then took a piece
of yarn and stapled each end to the sides of our houses.
We found doll clothes and stapled those onto the line
between our homes so that it looked like a clothes
line. With our “houses” on and the line
keeping us together we went to the party as “Neighbors.” We still laugh about that one.
You may be thinking that you just don't have that
great of an imagination and that this Shannon gal
must be pretty smart to come up with so many great
costume ideas. You would be absolutely right about
my intelligence but just plain wrong about your lack
of creativity. Keep in mind that sometimes the best
thing about a person's costume is the name they give
themselves. Think of superhero names. Go as “Pork
Man or Woman” saving all the party goers from
the evil pork products being served. Wear tights and
a cape (easily made from a sheet) and draw a pork
chop or piece of bacon on an old white T-shirt. Presto-you
are a superhero! When asked who you are say your name
like you mean it-remember it's all in the attitude!
Not all superhero's work, though. A friend of mine
went as “Boobie Touching Man” one year.
I don't recommend this costume at all.
The party Jen and I went to was filled with the aforementioned
gypsy and gorilla rented costumes. No one was amused
by our homemade costume. I thought Halloween was about
being silly and hamming it up a little bit. I've had
way more fun chatting with the costume designers about
where they came up with their ideas then I ever had
asking someone about the good times they had renting
their costume. I have such respect for those fly by
the seat of your pants costumes that have more to
do with having fun than looking good. Keep in mind,
too, that many pictures will be taken and trust me
when I say the sillier you look the harder you will
laugh later. The idea is to have as much fun making
the costume as you have wearing it. You could even
have a pre-party party where everyone makes their
If you are, once again, just like me you will come
up with a few not-so-great ideas. Take for example
my “Moron” costume. What I would do is
wear all of the clothes that I could possibly get
on. I would then have “more on” than anyone
else making me a “Moron.” I love the idea
in theory but not the part about wearing all of the
clothes. It would be difficult to use the washroom
and I would get hot. Also, I have mentioned it to
a few people and nobody gets it as either they are
not as clever as I am or the idea is just plain stupid.
Whatever. They can't all be winners but its still
fun trying and that's the whole point. Besides, it
would be a great costume if I were celebrating Halloween
in the Antarctic.