Friday, October 30, 2009

Last minute dollar store Halloween costumes

My son is home sick today, so I spent the morning catching up on some household chores. While dusting I caught the Rachel Ray TV show. Kathy Jacobs, the "Discount Store Diva" was on it, giving a fashion show of costumes she made from mundane items found at dollar discount stores. Black garbage bags were transformed into witch and bumblebee costumes; coffee filters were re-purposed to become the crinoline on her Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz costume.

Intrigued, I checked out the Discount Store Diva website and her Flicker Photo Album.

Wow, that's creative with a capital "C!" She is obviously one of those people who can look at an ordinary item and imagine a myriad of unexpected ways to use it. For example, she created a "Deviled Eggs" costume with a red mesh laundry bag, a white flannel backed tablecloth, and an inflatable devil's pitchfork. A food umbrella, opaque shower curtain and blue flannel backed tablecloth were used to create a Jellyfish costume. Inflatable plastic cats became part of a clever "Cat Lady" disguise.

Most of the costumes take less than one hour to make and cost less than $10. So if you are looking for creative last minute costumes, check out her Flicker "How To" slideshow.

Although I was not as imaginative as Kathy, I put together my son's costume with some ordinary items. He is an FBI agent. I purchased a black ballcap and t-shirt and added F.B.I. patches to the front of the ball cap and t-shirt. (I purchased the patches at a local military store.) I used white tape on the back of the t-shirt to write F.B.I. in large letters. I created a F.B.I. type ID on my computer with Microsoft Publisher and attached it to a lanyard. To complete the costume, he wears black pants and black sunglasses.

My daughter's costume was easy, too. She is a monarch butterfly. I purchased the butterfly wings and headpiece (a headband with chenille stem antennas) from the costume store after Halloween last year. We added her black leotard, black tights and black knit ballet skirt. If I had more time, I would have used Kathy's method to make the wings and made my own headpiece. Perhaps next year!


  1. I was waiting in a pharmacy yesterday and happened to catch that segment! Holy cow! That lady rocks! I made my 4-year-old's costume this year, too, though with things we already had on hand...he will be Wall-E this evening: (I am kinda proud of it!) =) But Discount Store Diva, WOW! We may have to try that next year!

  2. Tina, your costume was adorable! Your son made a great Wall-E!


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