Spooky and inexpensive

Jackie Lloyd

Halloween costumes can be creative without taking a chunk out of your wallet

Freshman graphic design major Laura Guardalabene designed her own costume for Halloween this year, which is a red squirrel. DANIEL OWEN | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: DKS Editors

Every October, Kent State students search high and low for an answer to the age-old question, “What am I going to be for Halloween … and how am I going to afford it?”

Each Halloween, seasonal costume stores open up, charging, on average, $35 to $50 each for packaged costumes. This year, consider a cheaper alternative to the typical store-bought costume.

“We help people put together costumes piece by piece,” said Dawn Dearth, an employee at Einstein’s Attic on Main Street. “We are really busy the whole month of October. It gets progressively busier toward Halloween. A lot of students come in for last-minute costumes.”

For around $10 or $15 you can be the proud owner of a poodle skirt, referee shirt, army uniform, school girl plaid skirt, French maid uniform or any of the other pieces that adorn the walls. Several racks of affordable accessories, wigs and packaged costumes line the front of the store. A glass case by the register holds moderately-priced tiaras and gaudy jewelry.

The possibilities are endless, with new merchandise brought out several times per week.

“I stopped in a couple weeks ago and they were bringing new Halloween stuff out,” freshman architecture major Ashleigh Rough said. “I came back to help my guy friends find their costumes.”

Original Costume Ideas

Gold Digger

• Wear a gold dress and shoes.

• Wear gold makeup and sprinkle gold glitter on lip gloss

• Bring a toy shovel and bag of rocks.

iPod Commercial

• Wear an all-black outfit

• Paint exposed skin black

• Carry an iPod and dance wildly

Peace and Quiet (for couples)

*One person dress as a hippie

• bellbottom jeans

• flowered shirt

• peace signs

• beads

*One person dress as a mime

• striped black shirt

• black pants

• suspenders

• white face paint

Courtesy of www.costumeideazone.com

For students like Heather Hannah, sophomore fashion design major, there is a better option.

“Last year I made my costume, and it was maybe $15 total,” said Hannah. “I was a dust bunny, but I didn’t think I’d be able to find it in a store, so I bought some shaggy fabric, bunny ears and feather duster and made it. I used a makeshift pattern, then I just sewed two lines down the edges. The whole thing took an hour at most.”

But if your costume idea is complicated, or requires extensive sewing or expensive fabric, it may not be worth your time.

“If you wanted to be a pirate or something that’s more complicated, it’s going to cost a lot more and take too much time and effort. You might as well just buy it,” said Hannah.

There are also many Web sites that offer original, inexpensive costume ideas. Some can be made from things most people have around the house or already own. Other ideas require only minimal materials and a little time.

Contact student finance reporter Jackie Lloyd at [email protected]