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January 2015

Homemade Halloween Costumes


Click on your favorite costume idea below for full instructions!

Vampire Costume

Bumble Bee Costume

Peanut Butter and Jelly Costume

Lion Costume

Pumpkin Costume

Popcorn Costume


Vampire Costume
You’ll hardly be able to “count” all the compliments you’ll get with this easy to make vampire costume.  It’s perfect for all ages and a timeless Halloween tradition.  Using clothing that you most likely have around the house and some simple make-up, your little vampire will haunt the neighborhood the whole night.

What you'll need:

  • White dress shirt
  • Black pants
  • Black socks
  • Black shoes
  • Remnant of black fabric for the cape, or a readymade cape from a fabric or craft store
  • Hair gel
  • Fake fangs
  • White, black, and red make-up
  • Bow tie (optional)

How to make it:

  1. Dress your little vampire in the shirt, and button it all the way up.  Finish the basic clothing with the pants, sock, and shoes.  Drape the black fabric or cape over shoulders and secure with a pin or ties at the neck. 
  2. Slick hair down with gel, part severely down the middle and comb away from face.
  3. Using white make-up, go over entire face, including under eyes.  Using black make-up, create a “widow’s peak” at the hairline, centered over nose.  Using red make-up, draw drops of blood around mouth, and dripping down one side.
Insert fake fangs, and get ready for some Halloween fun!  



Bumble Bee Costume
Everyone will buzzing with excitement when they see this bumblebee Halloween costume.  Can you bee-lieve this simple no-sew costume will take less than an hour to make? All you need is a hoodie, some duct tape, and a few other supplies to make this quick and easy costume.


Main Bee Costume:

  • Black hooded sweatshirt
  • Yellow duct tape
  • 2 yellow chenille stems
  • 2 yellow pom-poms
  • Pencil
  • 1/4" elastic
  • Safety pin
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun and hot glue stick
  • Rubbing alcohol (optional)

Bumblebee Wings:

  • 2 sheets stiff white or yellow felt
  • 1 sheet yellow felt
  • 1/4" elastic
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue and hot glue sticks

How to make it:

  1. Lay sweatshirt flat on work surface. Put a duct tape stripe across the chest, stretching from one sleeve seam to the other.  
  2. Add two or three more stripes of duct tape, equally spaced from each other.
  3. Add matching stripes on the back of the sweatshirt.
  4. For antennae, wrap a yellow chenille stem around a pencil to curl it.  Fold one end of chenille stem around edge of hood. Tape the end on the underside of hood with a piece of duct tape to secure it in place. Attach a pom-pom to the free end of the chenille stem with hot glue. 
  5. Cut a small slit in the inside layer of the waistband. Attach the end of the 1/4" elastic to a safety pin, and thread the elastic through the waistband until it goes all the way around and comes out through the slit. Cinch the elastic so the waistband is slightly gathered, but not uncomfortable. Tie the ends of the elastic together and clip excess. Tuck the knot inside the waistband.
  6. To make wings, use a pattern to cut two large teardrop shapes out of stiff white or yellow felt. Cut a smaller football shape ("center piece") out of plain yellow felt, and a 1x3" rectangle from the same felt. Cut two 12" pieces of 1/4" elastic.
  7. To assemble, lay the center piece good side down on work surface. Hot glue wings to the center piece. Hot glue each 12" piece of elastic to the center of the wings in a large loop, then hot glue the small rectangle of felt over everything to hide the edges of the elastic.
  8. To wear wings, put your child's arms through the elastic straps like a backpack.



Peanut Butter & Jelly Costume

What could be better than your child wearing his/er favorite food? A couple pieces of cushion foam and some colored felt makes this sandwich a hit without the sticky mess! It’s fun to make, and even more fun to wear.


What you'll need:

  • Two square pieces of 1 ½" foam, approximately 22" x 22"
  • 1 yard fuzzy peanut butter colored fabric
  • 1 roll purple cellophane
  • 1 package purple or blue tissue paper
  • Brown magic marker
  • Scissors
  • Purple shirt
  • Fun tights
  • 1 can spray adhesive (recommended: 3M Super 77 Multipurpose Adhesive)
  • Hot glue gun or foam glue (stickier than white glue)

How to make it:

To make the "bread":

  1. Use a bowl as a guide to trace rounded corners on the foam and create the shape of a piece of bread.  Color around the outside edge of both pieces with magic marker to create the crust.

To make the "jelly":

  1. Glue three large squares of tissue paper to cellophane.  Leave enough room on the cellophane to fold it over and glue to the tissue paper, leaving no plain tissue paper is visible.
  2. Wrinkle up the cellophane and tissue to create a jelly-like texture.
  3. Use foam glue to attach the "jelly" around the outside edge of the first piece of "bread."  Leave enough cellophane and tissue to allow the "jelly" to ooze out over the top of the "bread.

To make the "peanut butter":

  1. Place the second piece of foam "bread" on a table.  Lay the brown fuzzy fabric right side up over the foam so the one yard length is across the top edge of the bread.  To give the peanut butter some shape, stuff tissue paper inside fabric and roll the fabric around the tissue paper and glue it to itself with spray adhesive. Fold the fabric edges under in folds and clumps along the top and sides of the "bread;" use spray adhesive to glue it in place. (Note: Super 77 is VERY sticky – work in small areas at a time, lifting the fabric, spraying and pressing it back in place on the foam.)  On bottom edge of fabric, cut off excess, fold under and glue raw edge out of sight.  
  2. Cut holes for head and arms; glue raw edges out of sight. 

To put the sandwich together:

  1. On jelly side, spray adhesive on exposed foam in between jelly on edges. Turn foam over and press onto "peanut butter" side.  
  2. Dress your child in a purple shirt and dark pants or fun tights, and then slip the sandwich over your child's head.

    USA Science and Engineering Fest


Pumpkin Costume

Here’s a fun and easy way to make a traditional Halloween costume. Using a hoodie and some fabric, you and your child can make this costume and have a great time of trick-or-treating!

What you'll need:

  • Orange fabric (1 yd x 54"w remnant)
  • 1 heavy duty paper plate
  • Black felt
  • Hot glue gun, white glue
  • 1/4 yard green fabric (we used linen)
  • Wired raffia
  • 4-6 plastic grocery bags
  • Re-sealable plastic storage baggies & a straw or other light-weight filler
  • Needle and thread
  • 1 yard yarn, ribbon, or other cord
  • Green knit cap
  • Pattern

How to make it:

To make the pumpkin body:

  1. Cut a hole in the paper plate large enough for your child's head to fit through.  Test to be sure it fits. 
  2. Take the orange fabric and make darts by hot gluing folds along the long edge of the fabric until you have gathered the fabric enough to fit around the head hole in the paper plate.
  3. Hot glue the gathered fabric onto the plate; leave a little extra fabric to wrap down through the hole and glue to the other side of the plate so the edge won't scratch your child's neck. 
  4. Close up the back of the costume by hot gluing a seam down the back. 
  5. Have your child try on the costume so you can mark where the arm holes should be.  Cut the arm holes and hot glue the fabric to the inside of the costume to keep the opening neat.  
  6.  Fold under the bottom edge of the fabric and stitch it in place, creating a 1" hem pocket.  Leave a gap at the beginning and end of your stitch line.  Ease cord, ribbon or yarn through the pocket of the hem.  Once the costume is on your child, pull the ends of the cord to gather the fabric and tie it in a double bow knot.  Excess cord can be tucked up into the inside of the gathered edge.
  7. Cut eyes and mouth from black felt.  Have your child put the costume on, so you can position the eyes and mouth before affixing them. 

To make the leaf:

  1. Fold the green fabric in half.  Lay a leaf pattern on the bias (at an angle across the grain) of the fabric.  Pin the pattern in place and cut around it.  Cut out four leaf patterns from the fabric. 
  2.  Lay wired raffia out along pattern to approximate the lengths required for the leaf veins. Twist them together to keep them in place and set aside. 
  3.  Apply white glue to one piece of fabric leaf and spread it evenly, covering the fabric completely.  Lay the wired raffia on the glued fabric and cover with the second pattern piece.  Press the fabric firmly around the raffia.  Flip the leaf over and press from the other side. 
  4. When glue has dried completely, trim fabric edges if necessary and bend raffia to give leaf shape.  Twist one end of a second piece of raffia tightly around the first. Wrap the loose end around a pill bottle or other round object to create a faux vine.
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 for the second leaf.
  6. Attach leaves to top of the costume with hot glue, positioning them near the neckline.

To fill in the pumpkin:

  1. Fill grocery bags evenly with inflated re-sealable baggies or other filler. Measure the length of your child's torso (the distance from their shoulder to their crotch.)  Hot glue the handles of the grocery bags to the paper plate on the inside of the costume so they hang no lower than your child's torso measurement.


Lion Costume
You’ll have a roaring good time making and wearing this fun kids' lion costume!  Using a pajama pattern, some fleece, and a hot glue gun, you’ll be the “mane” event!

What you'll need:

  • Simplicity pattern 9853, and coordinating zipper (12” or 14”, according to size)
  • Three shades of fleece, in yellow/gold/brown tones
  • Hot glue gun
  • Sewing supplies, including scissors
  • Black make-up

How to make it:

  1. Begin by making the pajamas with the middle (gold-tone) fleece fabric, complete with zipper.
  2. Using the lighter tone fleece, cut an oval shape for the tummy, and split it down the middle.  Hot glue to the tummy to each side of the front, getting as close to the zipper as possible without touching it.
  3. Using a hoodie sweatshirt, create a pattern from the hood, and make a hood using the pajama fleece.  Attach to the neckline of the pajamas.
  4. Using all three colors of fleece, cut strips approximately 22” long, and 6” wide.  Cut strips all along one long side, leaving a solid edge for gluing to the hood.
  5. Alternating colors, glue the cut strips to the hood.  Trim around the face to make it neat and smooth.
  6. Using the black make-up, draw a black nose and whiskers on your lion’s face.


Popcorn Costume
Introduce your little kernels to the joys of corny crafts this Halloween with this Popcorn costume they can help make themselves.

What you'll need:

  • Cardboard box (big enough to cover body of child)
  • Box cutter or serrated knife
  • Wide masking tape
  • Picture of popcorn
  • Red duct tape
  • White duct tape
  • Glue
  • 1 piece of white construction paper
  • 1 piece of yellow construction paper
  • Red and yellow markers
  • Popped popcorn
  • Red long-sleeve shirt and brown pants
  • Yellow visor (optional)

How to make it:

  1. An adult should cut holes big enough for the arms and head of the child. Remove the bottom of the box for the legs.  
  2. Tape sides of box closed with masking tape. Cover any sharp edges with tape as well.   
  3. Print out multiple photos of popcorn and cut off any excess white border. Wrinkle the photos and glue or tape to top of box around head hole at the top of the box. 
  4. Wrap paper edges with duct tape. Where tape overlaps armholes, cut darts and wrap tape through arm holes to inside of box. 
  5. Use red and white duct tape to create vertical stripes, starting at bottom of box and taping toward top.  Let tape extend about 5" beyond top edge of box and fold excess back onto itself.  Trim folded over tape into triangle.
  6. Cut out a white oval and a slightly larger yellow oval.  Write "Hot Buttered Popcorn" on white oval.  Glue yellow oval to front of box first, then white oval. 
  7. Hot glue some popped popcorn to the top of the box. 
  8. Finish the look off by adding a yellow visor, red top, and brown pants.


Special thanks to KABOOSE for their fabulous ideas!


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