Monday, October 26, 2015

A handmade Halloween

As I've said before, I don't do scary very well. But I do absolutely love Halloween because it's the perfect holiday to be crafty. I really love making my kids handmade Halloween costumes - so much so that we refer to one year as the "glue-gun incident" because I ended up in the emergency room with burns on my hands when I tried hot gluing cobwebs onto a black lace dress. So this is one of those "do as I say, not as I do" kind of blog posts. But seriously, it's amazing what you can do with a little fabric, felt or thrift store dresses. And a hot glue gun!

One of the easiest costumes I made was a "Spooky Spa Girl." All you need is a big fluffy robe, fluffy slippers and a white towel. I glued dollar store spiders and bugs on the robe. I covered my daughter's face in green paint as if she was having a facial and wrapped the towel around her head. Here's a trick: I knew the towel would be hard to wear around all night trick-or-treating, so I glued it to a knit hat so it fit around her head.

I love being able to use real clothes for costumes. The cowboy was a great example of that. My son wore jeans and a flannel shirt. Then I bought brown felt by the yard and made a really simple vest and chaps to go over his jeans. I can only sew straight lines so I avoid it if I have to. I use glue guns or safety pins - whatever I can find to rig a costume together.

My son's Shrek costume last year also took advantage of regular clothes. I bought really inexpensive khaki pants and cut the bottoms off to make them look tattered and also ripped up the bottom and sleeves of a long-sleeve white shirt. I made a simple felt vest and tied a rope around his waist as a belt. The great thing about Shrek is that he's supposed to look a little messy so it works perfectly for a homemade costume. The hardest thing was making his two horns on his head. I tried a few things before coming up with a solution. I covered a headband with green felt and twisted two toilet paper rolls into smaller horns. I covered them with the same green felt and hot glued them to the headband.

The little waitress was my favorite! It was made out of two pink T-shirts bought at the craft store. One was embellished with white felt for a shirt while the arms were cut off the second and tucked into a pair of shorts to look like a skirt. I made an apron out of felt and even had her carry a tray with a faux ice cream shake on it.

So remember that black lace dress I mentioned above? Yes, the "glue gun incident." That was the result of my daughter wanting to be a bride. But not a white, pretty bride. A black, spooky bride. We found a black lace dress at a consignment store and glued spiders and cobwebs to it. I made her veil out of tulle from the fabric store and a black headband. On her feet? Well, we opted for comfort!

So if you still haven't found a costume for Halloween this year, look around your closet and find some inspiration for a handmade Halloween. A little bit of creativity can take something really ordinary and make it fabulous!

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