Halloween costumes 101
Filed under: MummyBloggers
Every year, Halloween rolls around and parents are not only faced with having to fork out for yet another set of costumes for their little ones, but they also have to wrangle with helping their kids pull the ‘look’ together. And let’s face it, we all know one super-crafty mum who always smacks their kid out in the full regalia; either a handmade, delicately detailed costume, or at the very least splashes the cash on a really expensive (almost bloody cosplay quality) professionally made fancy dress costume - thus making us all feel like crap parents.
Now, I’m not quite that parent, but neither am I totally hopeless. Last year, my daughter dressed up as Merida, and I managed to make her a quiver and a bow and arrows from pipe cleaners, a Pringles tube and an old coathanger, with an armload of paper mache, paint, and resulting in a reasonable amount of success. Well, success being that it stayed in one piece long enough to get her through her school Halloween disco. At least it saved me €40!
Many parents really struggle to be ‘creative’ as they say; and what with Halloween, Christmas, World Book Day and so forth, the opportunities to put our creative parenting skills to the test are ever-increasing. As is the stress.
So, I’d like to help, if I can - with a few tips as to how NOT to get in a twist this Halloween over your children’s costumes. Some very effective looks can be pulled together using not a lot of supplies or expense. So, here are my top tips for blagging your way through fancy dress…
1. Before they come to you with an idea for a fancy dress costume, it can sometimes work if you plant an idea in their mind. If you know you can manage them dressing up as a witch, a cat or a spider - then show them pictures online of other children dressing up that way, and throw in some effective ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’ and ‘isn’t that girl lucky to have SUCH a nice costume?’, etc.
2. Have a look on Pinterest. There are SO many clever ideas that you can quite literally copy. No imagination required on your part. There are lots of tips on how to do costumes on a budget, too.
3. Ask around. I put a general call out on social media last week, asking for a Little Mermaid costume. I was willing to buy it second-hand from anyone who had one, and not only did I get it free, we were given about eight other costumes that my friend’s daughter had grown out of - result.
4. Don’t be afraid of face paints. Just because you hated art at school and can’t draw a stick-man for love nor money, doesn’t mean you can’t paint a face. There are basic principles (just ask Google) that you can follow, to make some easy but effective looks (Spiderman, tiger, butterfly); and a bit of practice never hurt anyone. By the time they’ve eaten the six toffee-apples that the neighbours gave them, it will all be rubbed off, anyway!
5. If you are going to buy a ready-made costume, you can find some good deals off-peak, so to speak. Of course, companies are going to put their prices up closer to Halloween, so it might feel silly buying those costumes in February, but you might get more for your money!
This year in our house, we are looking forward to dressing up as The Little Mermaid, and Cat Boy from PJ Masks. Daddy doesn’t have a sense of humour, so he isn’t dressing up, but me…? Maleficent, here we come! Happy Halloween, everyone.
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