Halloween doesn’t have to be stressful or costly.
1. The hardest part is deciding what your costume is going to be, but the good news is you can draw inspiration from anywhere. Think about your favourite books/films/TV shows… You can even mix and match, like Dumble-Dora the Explorer here:
2. Once you’ve decided, research your costume. Use Google Images, YouTube, try and find tutorials. Wikihow is usually excellent for this type of thing. Find out what clothes, prosthetics, make-up, wigs and props you’ll need.
3. Charity shops are your best friend. For Dublin Comic Con this year, I managed to throw together a Ramona Flowers costume for about €20. You don’t need the exact clothes; an approximation will do. I put together a Wonder Woman costume last month for a fiver by buying a red corset and blue shorts from St Vincent de Paul. Also, check your wardrobe; you probably already have several things that can double up as (or be customised to look like) parts of your costume.
4. I’ve always found wigs to be the most expensive part, but they don’t have to be THAT expensive. http://www.thecostumeshop.ie/ has plenty of wigs in various styles and colours that won’t break the bank, and eBay is a great source too. For my Ramona costume I bought three wigs from Costume Shop (pink, blue and green) for less than €15 each.
5. You don’t need to break the bank on make-up either. You can get great face paints from €2 shops and with the help of some YouTube tutorials you’ll be well on your way! For example, if you want to be a zombie, you’ll want realistic-looking wounds, yes? The trick is black paint for the actual wound, followed up with red paint/lipstick for the blood, with a bit of lip gloss or Vaseline to give that glistening effect.
6. You can make pretty much any props you need out of cardboard. Last year my boyfriend dressed as all the male Avengers and made his own Captain America shield, Thor’s hammer and Tony Stark’s arc reactor out of cardboard, grease-proof paper and little LEDs. He also made my Ramona Flowers hammer out of a broom handle, cardboard, duct tape and silver paint. Here’s the shield and Thor hammer:
7. Lastly, have fun! Go out and show off your cosplay skills as much as you can – Halloween is really the only time of year you can get away with wandering the streets dressed as a fictional character!