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Last Minute Halloween Costumes on a Budget

As we get older, costume ideas get harder to come by and store-bought costumes are extremely pricey. We have compiled a list of inexpensive, fast, and simple costume ideas that you can throw together at the last minute with things that you likely already have laying around the house!


The Bread-winner

Dress in athletic wear such as leggings, a workout shirt, sweatbands and running shoes. Add a medal that you bought from the dollar store or that your brother won at his U8 soccer tournament. Grab a loaf of bread or two, and BAM, you are the breadwinner. This “punny” costume is dad-joke material, so you are sure to get a laugh from someone!


50 Shades of Grey

Stop by your nearest hardware or paint store and collect as many grey paint swatches as they will allow. Try to get a variety of shades of grey paint swatches. Head to your closet and pick out a grey shirt, grey pants, grey socks, grey shoes, a grey hat, etc. Use any medium of your choice to attach the paint swatches to your clothing. You are now 50 (give or take a few) Shades of Grey.


The Nerd

It’s time to put that University of Alberta t-shirt to use! Slip into some high-waisted pants, tuck your university tee into your pants, borrow a pair of your grandfather’s suspenders, and bring out your chunky sneakers. Pop the lenses out of some movie-theatre 3D-glasses and wrap some white tape around the nose-bridge. Grab your university-certified calculator, your lab coat, the world’s thickest textbook, or any studious prop of your choosing. You are ready to rep your school and celebrate Halloween in one fell swoop!


The Bank-Robber

A black-and-white striped shirt, some black jeans, black boots, black gloves, and a black toque will have you looking fashionably (faux)criminal. Get a strip of black fabric to cut holes in and make a burglar mask. Finally, a white pillowcase with a a money symbol ($) will top off your look. Just make sure that you are stealing hearts, rather than your sibling’s candy!


A Cactus

Use pipe-cleaners or a marker to decorate a green long-sleeved shirt with the cactus “spikes.” Choose pants or a skirt in a colour that would make a good flower pot! Attach some pink tinsel or tissue paper to a hair clip or headband to make your cactus-flower headpiece. All that is left to do is to stand with your arms in a cactus shape!

Photos courtesy of Unsplash.


Robin is a senior student at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Alberta. She is getting a Science Degree, with a Psychology major and a double minor in Sociology & Biology. Part-time jobs, full-time classes, various student groups and volunteering fill most of her time. Robin is the 2020/2021 President of Her Campus at UAlberta and served as the social media director for the 2018/2019 year!
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