10 Halloween Costumes That Are So Easy Even Your Kids Can Make Them
Halloween is full of excitement for children—family-friendly crafts, pumpkin decorating, fall festivals, and trick-or-treating for candy. One holiday must-do? Deciding on the perfect Halloween costume. To inspire their creativity, host a crafternoon for the kids and let them be in charge of planning and designing their costumes.
Most of the costumes shown here are accomplished inexpensively and quickly with staples, packing tape, white craft glue, or hot glue—very little sewing (or none at all) is required. Because they are so easy to make, kids and parents can complete them together, customizing certain features as a means of learning new skills. And all of the costumes are comfortable and easy to move around in: A superhero has to be free to spring into action, after all, and children soon tire of wearing anything that is too confining. To create the ensemble, you only need a long-sleeved shirt, leggings, and a face mask—kids can cut out templates of lightning bolts and letters that can be ironed or pinned onto clothing. Complete the outfit with a super headband and belt, and your little action star is ready to go. A pair of glasses also makes for a great last-minute costume. All your kids have to do is glue feathers and construction paper beaks to the frames, and they have an instant bird mask. And you can't really go wrong with aluminum foil—it can be shaped into swords or chainmail vests for a knight in shining armor. Think ahead and collect summer seashells, which can be glued together into a crown and accessories. Just like magic, your child is transformed into an undersea mermaid!
Kids will have so much fun making their own Halloween costumes, so go ahead and turn it into its own event. Before trick-or-treating, serve some healthy snacks (and a few sweets, too) for your costume designers, then celebrate Halloween with some good old-fashioned fun.
A cape is truly what separates the supermen from the boy wonders. This one requires just one easy seam—we didn't even hem the edges: To start, fold over one side of the fabric by 1 inch, and press with a cool iron. Sew down the flap, creating a 3/4-inch channel. Attach a safety pin to one end of ribbon, and thread through. (No-sew option: Snip holes along one edge and run ribbon through.)
If your kids can use scissors, they can help make costumes. When shopping for materials, explore your local hardware store: Most carry duct tape, painters' tape, and foil tape in a range of colors. When your kids create these speedy superhero costumes, they can mix and match their own amazingly awesome attributes. Each of these outfits starts with leggings and a long-sleeve T-shirt (which don't even have to match). Then come the accessories: head bands, eye masks, chest letters, capes, lightning bolts, and belts.
She undergoes a cute makeover in the blink of an eyelash: Glue extra large faux eyelashes onto big sunglasses, and stick black felt dots on her favorite red jumper. She can help make her own feelers: Simply twist pairs of pipe cleaners together to make each feeler, and stick wires of each feeler into a pom-pom. Wrap opposite ends of the feelers around her headband and twist to secure.
Kids will be all aflutter over these easy-to-craft fascinators! Snip faux flowers or butterflies and attach to a headband with glue, then pair it with a matching dress from her closet. One is made with bright hydrangea blooms and the other gives the impression of a flurry of winged beauties.
Howdy, partner. To turn your kid into a charismatic cowboy, just rustle up some brown-paper grocery and trash-compactor bags. When you get home, snip and punch them into a fringed vest and chaps, then add paper-fastener studs and candy-cup conchos. A mop-maned horse is ready to accompany this rider on a hunt for candy.
This four-eye glasses-based costume is fast, fun, and a sufficiently understated parrot costume for the kids to make. Have them glue a yellow beak and add feathers to green eyeglasses frames.
Kids can channel their inherent wildness into these playful masks—a bird, a lion, or a bear—and be easily transformed. Download and print one of these templates, and they can trace the template pieces onto colorful card stock and cut out the shapes to glue on the individual features. Punch a hole on either side of the plate and tie on a strip of elastic for your little jungle animal to roam around hands-free.
If she can cut and glue felt, your child can make this adorable flower. Download and print our templates. Then, the top four petals attach to a headband, the bottom two to a ribbon that ties under your sweet blossom's chin. Attach green leaves to the neck of her matching purple top, either permanently with fabric glue or temporarily with safety pins or gaffers' tape.
What is a mermaid princess without her crown? Let her design a matching tiara and necklace using assorted seashells. For the rest, a pair of her favorite leggings is accessorized with a showstopping tail that slips on or off her ankles as tulle-wrapped elastic bands. A colorful tank top and layered undershirt can be found in her closet. Lastly, get her two best friends to join her in a octopus costume and lobster costume, and they make an adorable under-the-sea trio.
Little Miss Monstrous Costume
A homemade wig is more chic and better fitting than a store-bought one, especially for kids. For this project, your child starts with an oversized curly black novelty wig, which is then trimmed down—using our template—and embellished with white yarn as an electrified streak. An easy-to-assemble bed sheet "shroud" and some bandages complete the look.
Teen Wolf Costume
A pre-teen's startling moonlit transformation gives new meaning to the term "growing pains." He can get himself into character with theatrical makeup, two wild wigs (one cleverly cut and reassembled into furry details), and ferocious fangs to bring out his inner animal. The makeup and wigs (affixed to the body with wardrobe tape) create most of the impact here, so there's no need for elaborate clothing; an everyday outfit suggests a transformation in progress.