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Quick & comfy costumes for the busy family

DIY Halloween

-Written by Carol Martin, Rainbows’ Finance Dept.


If an elaborate and expensive Halloween costume is out of the picture for you and your family members, try these fast and easy DIY costume ideas.

Gather the family around the kitchen table or couch for a brainstorming session. Write down your favorite movie and TV characters, action heroes, occupations, animals, entertainers and sports figures.

Start with the basics—a sweat suit, long-sleeved t-shirt and leggings, or pajamas, in a solid color. Capes are simple, with no sewing required. Buy 3-5 yards of solid-color knit fabric and use safety pins to affix the cape to the back of the shirt. Use markers to draw designs or emblems.



Glue felt cut into feather shapes onto a cape for bird costume. You can also fashion a feathery headdress and glue it onto a plastic hairband.


Try a yellow t-shirt and black leggings. Use fabric paint to draw your favorite emoji on the shirt.


Use fabric paint to make spots on a white sweat suit. Pin felt ears onto a knit cap, or glue on a hairband, and fashion a felt tail to pin onto the sweat pants.

Gumball Machine

In a circle pattern, fix fabric pom poms to a white t-shirt. Wear red leggings and a belt. Using a marker, write 25 cents onto a cardboard square and tape it to the belt buckle. You may want to add a red tutu for a girl’s costume.

Jack O’Lantern

Start with black or green leggings and an orange shirt. Paint a fun or scary jack o’lantern face on the shirt with markers or fabric paint. Make a green felt or cardboard stem and fix to a hat or hairband.


Use a brown or black suit, and make a tail and ears with felt. Carry a banana.

Ice Cream Cone

Make a brown poster board cone-shaped hat and draw multi-colored “sprinkles” with markers or fabric paint on a white shirt. Wear dark pants.


Attach a black scalloped cape to the back or arms of a black suit. Add small felt ears to a hairband or knit cap.


Wear black pants with a yellow shirt. Use black marker or paint to make horizontal stripes on the shirt, or cut black felt strips and affix with glue. Twist long pipe cleaners around a hairband for antennae and glue yellow or black pom poms onto the ends. You can purchase fairy wings at the local discount store, if wanted.


Cut out white strips or “bones” of felt and glue onto black shirt and leggings.


Other great costume ideas are available on The Mighty or Pinterest, or you can purchase one at Target, Wal-Mart or Amazon for less than $20. Whatever you decide, keep it simple and have a fun Halloween.