Three Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Costume Ideas

Let’s face it. Halloween costumes can be fairly expensive for something you are likely to only wear once. Here are three DIY costume checklists that you might be able to make from your own closet. The best part? They are made with clothes you can wear more than once.

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Velma Costume

Velma Dinkley is the petite character from the popular animated series Scooby-Doo. The trade mark features of Velma have changed very little over the years and include her dark brown bob, orange cowl neck sweater, red pleated skirt, orange knee highs and leather shoes.

DIY Costume for Velma
  • Cowl Neck Sweater – Don’t have a cowlneck? Use a cheap scarf from Ardene’s and wrap it around your neck like a cowlneck, attach it to a long sleeve t-shirt or another sweater. Orange is hard to find so feel free to substitute red if you have too.
  • Pleated Skirt – If you don’t have a pleated skirt already they can be hard to find. Check out Value Village or another second hand kind of store. You might have to find a full skirt a few sizes bigger and iron in your own pleats. Dark red is best but brown works too!
  • Knee High Socks Sock Dreams has plus size orange and red socks in a harlequin pattern that would be awesome for Velma. They also have some red and brown if you want to go that route, priced under $13 too. Another option is bright red or orange leggings from We Love Colors.
  • Mary Jane Shoes – Don’t have any? Take a strip of black paper and tape it across the top of your black flats.
  • Dark Rim Glasses – Save up the 3D glasses from the movie and punch out the lenses or check out the dollar store.
  • The Hair – If you have dark hair and it’s short you’re golden. If it is long, tuck it underneath itself and pin, pin, pin. Here is a great video to create a fake bob:
  • Or you can pick up an inexpensive wig from the dollar store around Halloween.
  • Lingo – Add “Jinkies” to your vocabulary.

Pirate Costume

The Pirates of the Caribbean movies have made pirates sexy again, and fun. You can almost wear anything and say, “Arr!” a lot and you are a pirate. But here is a DIY costume check list for a more authentic look. Have fun with it!

  • Ruby or White Peasant Top – Really any blouse with a big collar or ruffled neckline will do.
  • Black Pants / Skirt – A simple pair of black wide leg pants or a short black skirt with black opaque stockings or fish nets.
  • Waist Corset – If you don’t have a waist corset use a long black sash or other piece of fabric that can be wrapped around your waist a few times then tied. You can also wear a black leather vest if you have one.
  • Boots – A great pair of boots (I’m partial to the ones at Torrid). Really, any pair of black boots will work. To make your regular boots look more like buccaneers check out the DIY costume pleather pullovers made from recycled pleather pants.
  • Pirate Accessories – Visit the dollar store and pick up a black eye patch and a sword (make sure you don’t pick up a barbarian sword by accident).
  • Head Gear – For your head, tie another piece of black scrap fabric around the top of your head like a bandanna, tie and let hang down back.
  • Pirate Lass Face — Mischievous has a really pretty tutorial for pirate lass make-up.

Lady Bug Costume

This one involves a little more craftiness on your part. You need to pick a pair of red opaque nylons and an old metal hanger. Then from your closet you need a black shirt and black pants or a black bodysuit, and black shoes for this DIY costume.

  • Black Under Body – For the black under body wear a black long sleeve t-shirt and black pants.
  • Red Wings – Shape a wire coat hanger into wings. Use leg of each pantyhose to cover each wing. Color a few large spots with black spots (or glue black construction paper cut into circles on). Secure your new wings with black electrical tape and any sharp edges. Insert wings into back of top and bra. Tie with black ribbon under breasts to keep from moving.
  • Antennae – Pick up a cheap headband and black fuzzy pipe-cleaners from the dollar store to fashion yourself two antennae for your costume.
  • Lady Bug Family – Finish off the look with lady bug nail art and make-up.

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