10 Last-Minute (and Painless) Costume Ideas


Phyllis Cambria 


With Halloween fast approaching, costume party invitations are likely to be in your mailbox soon. If you’re like many, the thought of heading to your costume rental store and squeezing into a superhero costume or a claustrophobic gorilla suit probably has you trying to come up with excuses for not attending the celebration. Perhaps you’d prefer not to spend a small fortune on an elaborate costume rental, or it may be a last-minute invitation and you’re stumped for something to wear. If any of these situations sound familiar, relax, here are ten costumes you’ll be able to slip into at the last minute with clothes readily available in your closet or needing only a quick trip to your local party store or thrift store for accessories.

Cowboy or Cowgirl: It’s an old favorite because it’s such an easy costume to implement. All you need are a pair of jeans or a denim skirt, cowboy boots, a leather belt, plaid shirt and a cowboy hat. Happy trails to you!

Prom Queen: In case you’ve been wondering what you should do with that hideous bridesmaid’s outfit you were forced to buy, here’s the perfect way to get some use out of your expensive purchase. Simply slip on the dress, add high heels, an inexpensive tiara and carry a long-stem red rose. Voila! You’re back in high school as the belle of the ball.

Typical Tourist: Dig through your t-shirt collection and find one from a favorite amusement park. Or, rummage through the back of your closet to locate an old Madres shirt. Pair it with a pair of plaid or khaki shorts, sunglasses, sandals, and a baseball cap or straw hat. Hang a camera around your neck and stuff an amusement park brochure or an old airplane boarding pass into your pocket. Best of all, you won’t have to wait on any long lines to have a good time in this costume.

Gypsy Girl: Peasant skirts are all the rage this year. Team yours with a peasant-style blouse, lots of bangle bracelets and necklaces, dangling or hoop earrings and sandals. Then, wrap a wild print scarf around your head. The crystal ball says that this costume is a winner.

Tool Time: Slip on a white t-shirt, jeans or work pants, white sports socks, work boots or old sneakers, and a loaded tool belt around your waist. Butt cracks (and jokes) are optional.

Luau Lad or Lady: Top a pair of white or brightly-colored shorts with your wildest Hawaiian print shirt. Add sandals, a straw hat and a real or fake lei and a tropical drink, complete with a little umbrella, and you’re ready to hula. Aloha!

A Law-suit: This worked for Denzel Washington’s character in the movie “Philadelphia,” and it can work for you, too. Tape a variety of legal contracts and forms to a basic business suit. “Your Honor, I give you my law-suit.”

Super Fan: Have a sports team that you love? Great! Here’s a chance to show your team spirit by wearing a team shirt, hat, and color-coordinated pants. Then, carry pom-poms, pennants and any team accessories you have stuck up on your shelf for when you attend a game. Go, team, go!

Dancing Dan or Magic Man: Dust off your tux and polish your shoes. Add white gloves, a top hat and cane. Fred Astaire never looked so dashing. If you prefer, skip the cane and stuff a fake rabbit in your hat and, abracadabra, in mere minutes you’ve turned yourself into a magician.

Stepford Housewife or ‘50s Mom: Borrow a shirtwaist dress from your mother or find one at a thrift store. Add stockings, a pair of sensible heels, a crisply-ironed apron, a strand of pearls and a rolling pin. You’ll look like you've stepped out of a ‘50s TV sitcom.

With these simple and affordable ideas, there’s no reason to turn down your next costume party invitation.  

Phyllis Cambria's Media Page

Phyllis Cambria's Bio Page

Back to PartyPlansPlus.com

Back to Halloween Party Page