How to Choose a Couple's Halloween Costume That Pairs Together Perfectly
Dressing up for Halloween is even more fun when you're part of a team—especially if you choose a couple's costume that's fun, recognizable, and simple to put together. Ahead, image and fashion consultant Amanda Sanders shares her favorite costume ideas for friends, partners, and siblings.
Take your cues from the pop culture.
Recognizable couples based on current events, popular movies, or celebrity couplings—think Beyoncé and Jay-Z, Morticia and Gomez Addams, or Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck—allow you to pair one relatively simple costume with a more complicated one that clarifies the theme. "It's very hard to do two people that are super elaborate," says Sanders. For example, go all out on one Cruella de Vil costume (a nod to the just-released adaptation of the film) while your partner wears a Dalmatian ear-headband and a polka-dot shirt.
Start with what's in your closet.
Buying store-bought costumes might save time, but Sanders recommends using your own wardrobe as a starting point, instead. "You don't want to buy a costume that's plastic from head to toe," she says. "It might look cute for a minute, but then you're itchy, hot, and miserable—it's supposed to be a fun night." And if you think your closet is too straitlaced to serve up a costume, think again, says Sanders. Basic men's suits can inspire a variety of costumes, from a same-sex or co-ed Men in Black look (just add white shirts, black ties, and sunglasses) to an iconic Clark Kent and Lois Lane pairing (wear the suit shirt unbuttoned over a Superman t-shirt, and add a reporter's notebook to a women's business-casual outfit). One of Sanders' go-to looks for women is a black dress, pearls, and gloves—a la Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's—which also works with a date wearing a classic suit. Use a biker jacket as a basis for Bonnie and Clyde or Grease's Sandy and Danny. "There's way more in your closet than you think," says Sanders. "You'd be surprised—everybody has an outfit."
Sanders warns against wearing a costume that's too gory or bloody—"Scary costumes always kind of kill a party," she says—but otherwise, anything goes. Splatter a white outfit with paint—you're a Jackson Pollack piece!—and have your cohort dress as the artist; create a simple Where's Waldo?-inspired set with striped shirts, red hats, and glasses; wear matching blue dresses to recreate the spooky twins from The Shining; or enlist a friend to pull out her favorite past bridesmaids' gowns and add faux beauty pageant sashes. "Simple things are more recognizable than you think," says Sanders.