Handmade Halloween Costume Roundup

Halloween, friends, Halloween!  I love it! I may even have a Halloween movie playing on Netflix in the background while I write this post.  It might be Practical Magic.  You will never know for sure. 

But really, the thing I love the most is planning and making costumes. I love looking at other people's plans for costumes.  I love when my three year old changes her mind every three days and I end up finishing her costume 5 minutes before we go trick or treating.


No, that last part can't be right.

This year I am making an effort to make their costumes with plenty of time to spare, and I thought some of you might want to give that a try this year too, so I am here to help!

18 halloween costumes to sew yourself

Here is my costume strategy and a roundup of the cutest, funnest, best DIY costume tutorials that are inspiring me this year (and all the time) with a whole month to spare to give you plenty of time to gather supplies and make those costumes yourself!

My strategy:

My favorite starting place with any costume plan, is with the idea of separates that can be used as a costume for the big night, but then thrown into the dress up basket to be played with again and again or put right into their drawers to be worn every day. 

And I love it when those separate pieces can be made with sewing patterns I already have and love. Two of my favorites are the Bimaa Sweater by LouBee Clothing and Go To Leggings.  Such incredible basics that are easy to sew, comfy to wear and so fun to customize in endless ways.  Oh, and a rainbow of tulle for some coordinating tutus goes a long way, too!

So let's see this strategy in action. 

Dinosaur Costume

Last year Annie wanted to be a pink dinosaur.  No problem.  Pink Go To Leggings (which were later added to her dresser for wearing anytime).  Pink Bimaa sweater (and if I were making this again this year, I would use this incredibly soft and lovely to work with Organic Pink and Gray Stripe jersey from Cloud9 Fabrics).  Then, just follow this tutorial to add spikes to the back of the sweatshirt (and maybe some felt teeth and eyeballs, too) and make an incredible tail, a tail that is the most played with thing in our dress up basket, a tail that takes my quiet, sweet, introvert and turns her into a roaring, giggling, chasing monster. You have been warned.

Unicorn Costume

This year, she first wanted to be a unicorn.  And she stuck to it for two whole weeks.  I was so excited and instantly started planning. Again, I was going to go with the Bimaa Sweater and Go To Leggings, this time out of the Snow White Jersey from Art Gallery Fabrics.  I was going to make a horn on the top of the hood.  I had not worked out all the details, but it would definitely involve some bright fabric, some wire, some stuffing, and sparkles.  Sparkles for sure.  There was also going to be a mane and tail made of rainbow colors of yarn.  Guys, I was so excited about this plan.

And then she changed her mind.  I might have cried a little.  I might still have to make this costume, just to make myself happy. 

I had even planned for June to be a fairy and Kyle and I could be trees (because clearly, unicorns and fairies live in the forest, duh). 

Fairy Costume

Two times now I have been thwarted on the fairy costume.  The first time I even already had it made, but a certain one a half year old (at the time) was having nothing to do with any part of the costume touching her body.  This costume is a bit different than the two above, but still is made up of parts that can be added to their every day wardrobe and parts that are perfect for a dress up basket. 

Again, Go To Leggings.  I love them, friends, what can I say? The fabric would depend on the colors you are going for with the rest of the costume, a fairy can be anything he or she wants to be!  White is safe, always matches everything, but here are a few options that are just a bit more fun. 

For the top, I used the Bohemian Babydoll Pattern.  The ruffle sleeves and high-low hem line really get me every time.  The Geranium Dress with the ruffle sleeve option would also be a great decision for this costume.  Either way use the top length.  And either way, after Halloween, your little one will have a beautiful new top in her wardrobe.  The fabric on this top really determines the kind of fairy your little one could be (because there are so, so many kinds of fairies, friends, in case you did not know).  You could have a rainbow fairy, a flower fairy, a beach fairy.  The list goes on and on. 

Add a fun, colorful tutu (if you have never made a tutu, they are so quick and easy and here is a great tutorial).  You can use all tulle, all ribbon or a combination of the two.  No matter what, it will be cute, and it will be played with a lot!

Then wings, and a crown and a wand.  All cute, all fun to make (or easy enough to buy), all optional (well, probably not the wings) and all are sure to be played with over and over again. 

Now to just convince one of these children to actually wear this costume! 

When the big kid moved on from Unicorn, the next request was ghost.

Ghost Costume

I came up with some pretty cute ideas on this one too.  Again, white jersey Go To Leggings, for warmth.  A white tee, tank, or even bimaa sweater (depending on Halloween weather in your part of the country).  And a white tutu.  So easy!  The tutu could be long, worn at the armpits and the ghost face could be made with black felt and glued or sewn to the tutu.  The tutu could be short, worn at the waist and the felt ghost face could be sewn, glued or pinned to the top. 

But then, as soon as I came up with the ghost plan... she moved on, of course.

Witch Costume

This is where we are now, and I'm really hoping it sticks!  Here is the plan.

Black Go To Leggings.  A tutu made of black tulle with colored fabric strips mixed in.  A black tee (though I am not totally sure what pattern I am going to use for this yet).  A black cape, a witch hat, a broom and a wand.  These will all definitely involve sparkles and a bit of color.  I will update this post with pictures once I actually get to work. 

And what better to go trick or treating along with a witch than a little black cat.  And luckily, June happens to be pretty cat obsessed and pretty easy going all around, so I have hope this one will stick too.

Cat Costume

Black Go To Leggings, a black tutu, black bimaa sweater with cute black ears on the hood, cute, black fuzzy tail and whiskers painted on her face.  I can not wait to see how cute this little thing will be!

Superhero Costume

This one is another favorite around here, even though it has never been an actual Halloween costume, just pieces in the dress up basket.  And this one is easy as can be!  Go To Leggings, any top that speaks to you (or that you already have on hand), a cape and mask.  Done!  And your little one is guaranteed to feel invincible all night, how could that be bad?

If you are not interested in every day and dress up basket separates and want a costume costume.  I have done a few of those too. 

Penguin Costume

Penguin Costume Tutorial

Annie's first Halloween was spent sight seeing in Washington DC (where we were for a cousin's beautiful wedding).  The kid's all wore costumes to see the White House, the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument and all of the other historic sites we walked and walked and walked to throughout the day.  This big, fluffy, penguin butt was a little squishy in the Ergo all day, but she had no complaints.  Check out the post I wrote way back then to make one yourself. 

Owl Costume

After the first fairy costume was rejected, the thing her little heart wanted most, was to be an owl.  She loved owls!  And luckily, the penguin tutorial works perfectly to be an owl too.  Different colored leggings and shirt underneath.  Brown fabric for the body of the costume instead of black.  Wings that hung from the arms, but connected all the way down the back (and with lots of little feathers on them).  Ears on the hood, different eyes and a different beak.  Such fun details to customize in a different way.  Go to town on these little details.  I love using unexpected fabrics for things like this.  Polka dots, stripes, checks.  I used a mix of browns and white to be like a real owl, with little hints of pink (because my owl lover is also a big pink lover).  And it turned out so cute, friends!

These last few weeks I have been researching costume tutorials like crazy, and there are so, so many cute ones! 

Like this little bat

 bat costume

This parrot.

parrot costume

This shark.  And friends, it is made out of a sweatshirt.  You know I love that.

shark costume

This super adorable chicken.  My sister made this one for her twins two years ago, I pretty much died of the cute. 

chicken costume

There are so many incredible costumes that there is no way to list them all.  But I did get a few special requests from my friends on Instagram that I can't leave out. 

First I found these two dressed up as Mario and Luigi.  This one's for you, Jack!

mario costume

A cute little dog for Norah!

dog costume

And a tree for Shelby!

tree costume

A spider for Isaac.  Well, a tarantula actually, and you should know that it creeps me out.

tarantula costume

A pirate costume for @wolfykisses.  There were so many cute pictures, whose pins led nowhere or were blocked.  Here is one for inspiration!

And an endless, adorable list of costumes that inspire me and that I hope will inspire you (if these options aren't doing it) on my overflowing Pinterest board.  Come follow me, check out the Halloween board, and some of my other fun sewing, cooking, homesteading boards, too while you are there. 

I hope you are as excited as I am about costume making.  One month to go, still plenty of time to procrastinate and then freak out later, or you know, just make your plan today, buy supplies tomorrow and sew at a leisurely pace all month long. Hahahahaha....

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of these costumes.  Any of them you have made before? Anything you are either dreading or excited to make this year?  What is on your list?





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