It’s that time of year again! Time for the kids to start begging for all of the newest and coolest bloody weapons of choice and princess costumes. Yep, it’s Halloween time again! I personally am not a huge fan of this holiday due to the fact that it can get ridiculously expensive. All so that they can dress up for one night and get all the candy in the world to rot their teeth out and assist with the continuation of childhood obesity and diabetes. I know, that’s the frugal part of me as well as the holistic health advisor. So I have to rein that in and remember the amount of fun that I had as a child dressing up on Halloween to go Trick-or-Treating.
Once I have gotten into the proper state of mind, the begging to go to the Halloween Store and Target are easier to handle. So we took the plunge yesterday and took them all shopping to get some ideas.
One of my favorite places to search for costumes first is the clearance section. Here is where you can find some of the more generic costumes or costumes that aren’t as popular this year. Finding something that the kids are interested in and that happens to be the right size is the challenge here. Although, I can tell you that 1 out of the 5 kids got a costume from that particular section yesterday and for under $10!
The older ones were not as easily persuaded on the costumes in this section though, and that could be where the battle comes in. Not all kids can be persuaded that they want to be the generic Ninjago or Medieval Princess.
Something that we end up doing every year is heading over to one of the local craft stores to see what we can find to embellish or create a costume. Usually we are looking for things like fabric, glitter, glue, wings, face makeup, etc. More often than not, Michaels and Jo-Ann Stores have Halloween related items on sale and prominently located when you walk into the store. This is immensely helpful because it makes it easier to find what we need without scouring the store.
Not only are their Halloween themed items on sale, usually up to 50% off, but I have found that they usually also have coupons you can use also. Currently at Jo-Ann Stores you can get a coupon on their website for 50% off one regular priced item or if you order online and have everything you need shipped you get 25% off every regular priced item on your order plus $2.99 shipping. That could end up being a pretty sweet deal depending on what you are looking for. Michaels has the same coupon for 50% off one regular priced item on their website too, so they are being equally competitive.
We had to go to Jo-Ann yesterday, after leaving the Halloween Store, to get the glue and glitter required by our own design for my daughter’s Fire Angel costume that she made up in her head. I do love this type of creativity! We bought a pair of white velvet wings that came with a white halo at the Halloween Store and then glittered them up to look like fire (spray adhesive is my new best friend when it comes to applications like this). She has a red dress that she is going to wear, so that didn’t cost any money. Between the wings, halo, glue and glitter the total cost for her costume was $19.36! I was happy that it ended up being under $20 and we still have a ton of glitter and glue left, so that is a big bonus.
This is my favorite category to live in. I love to reuse and recycle anything and everything. This is where you have to put on your creativity hat sometimes. Take stock of what clothes and shoes you have in your closet, kids and parents alike. Is there anything that you can use for an entire costume, or even part of one, that may work for your needs without having to purchase anything new? If you can’t seem to find everything you need at your house then consider going to a local second hand store, like Goodwill, because there are a plethora of gems hiding in there and for so much cheaper than purchasing new. If you aren’t sure where to go near you, then definitely check out TheThriftShopper.com because they are the only national thrift store directory in the world.
We are using an existing dress for my daughter, so that is one done. One of the boys was a grim reaper last year and I kept the costume (of course!) so we are using that for one of the other boys this year. I only needed to purchase him a new scythe because the other one got inadvertently broken in half by horseplay. One of the other boys decided that he wanted to be wolverine, which was what one of the other kids had been in a past year also, so we are reusing the mask and weeding through clothes to come up with an outfit to match.
Overall, for our 5 kids, we have spent a total of $76.17. Now of course this is still more than I would like to spend because I am frugal. But we have 5 kids! That math equates to $15.23 per kid. I can’t really argue with spending less than $20 per kid on a Halloween costume. Next year maybe we can reuse even more of them!
What tricks or treats have you saved money on Halloween costumes for your children?