Closet Costumes – Halloween For Cheap!

Bitches! I’m so excited. My BFF Zarelis from Zarelis Cosplay and the (soon to launch) Spare Time Savages is here with a guest post! She’s got the skinny on all things cosplay and costumes and she’s going to show you how to put together a fab (and fashionable!) Halloween costume without breaking the bank!

It’s a match  made in blogger heaven! I hope you’ll show her some love!

Whats up all you lovely and basic bitches! I am Zarelis!  A new convention cosplayer, nerd deluxe, and lover of all things Halloween.  Basic Bitch asked me to help all of you who want to dress up this year, but don’t want to take another mortgage out on your house to get a movie quality costume for this years Halloween.  

Now that I’ve experienced first hand what goes into building a costume for cosplay, I’ve learned a lot of cheap workarounds, and how to use items you already have, to put together costumes you love!  There are millions of things you can do on the cheap, as far as costumes and makeup go, to keep you looking great and stay budget friendly.

Since I’ve been working on cosplay for conventions, I’ve sadly neglected Halloween the past couple of years.  However, this year I found an event where my husband and friends can dress up and really let our Halloween hair down!  However, time wasn’t on our side as we didn’t find out about the event until about a week ago.  Yikes!  What’s a costume loving girl to do?

Making an elaborate costume was out of the question, based on time, and those premade costumes you can find at places like Spirit Halloween or Party City are really low quality and really high priced.  

Using my Google-Fu as I sat surrounded by stacks of clothes that I had pulled out of my closet to figure out my husband and my costumes I cracked the closet puzzle!

Before I share the costume ideas I came up with for myself and my husband, I want to help you all spark some ideas and get you looking at your clothes a little differently.  You can do this in three simple steps.

  • Step 1: Pick a character from a popular movie, comic book, TV show, podcast, book, etc
  • Step 2: Ransack your closet to find clothes that you can put together in creative ways to best embody the character.
  • Step 3: Booze!  Because it’s Halloween, and you look awesome!

Now I know it’s hard to visualize costumes from high budget movies and shows, I mean, they have full costume departments for this kinda stuff – how am I going to find all that in my closet?  Well that’s a great question – and have no fear!  

If you are having trouble thinking of ideas, or even just finding clothes that you already own that can work for costumes, I’ve taken the liberty of putting a couple of ideas together based on things that I love.  I hope that these ideas help you!

Witches, Cats and Unicorns!

You might not have all of this in your closet, but you might have a good amount!  Ancillary pieces and accessories can always be purchased cheaply (like headbands or glitter). Here are some cute headpiece examples I found on Amazon Prime for under $10 bucks.





Disney Princesses

Here are a few Disney Princess looks I came up with! These are really fun, but don’t limit yourself to the couple of options that I have shown you!  You can do any princess you like! Just start digging around and see what you find!


Favorite TV Show –












Here is my female take on Jughead and Negan!

Have aspirations to be a badass zombie killer? Maybe you like the drama in the newest episode of Riverdale. (BB note: I fucking LOVE Riverdale!) The greatest part about dressing up in costumes is allowing yourself to become your favorite character and slip into that role for the day!

Male? Female? No Matter! Just “gender bend” your favorite TV personality! Wanna be female Dean Winchester? Put on some plaid and denim and top it off with a leather jacket and BOOM!

Superheroes and Villains

Can you guess who is who???

With all the ridiculously awesome stuff happening in the superhero world right now no one would blame you if they want to dress up like one! Don’t want to figure out how to build all that armor or do all that sewing on your own?  Well keep it casual!

Maybe you want to be a strong powerful Wonder Woman! Maybe being bad is more your speed and Joker’s Bottom Bitch Harley Quinn is more appealing!

Other Movie Characters


Do you have some ideas now?  Are you ready to go home and raid your closet?  Great!  Remember, there is no stopping your creativity and imagination, just have fun and try to think out of the box and I know you will come up with something really incredible!

Now to show you what I did for my closet costume!   After bouncing a few ideas back and forth with my hubsicle here is what we landed on.

I am going to be a modern take of Little Red Riding Hood – Trading the cape and dress for a hoodie and denim skirt. I will have a a few gory scars on my face as well as tatter and blood up my clothes a little bit. These are older garments and I am totally OK messing them up a bit.

My husband is going to be the Werewolf that turned me. Again his clothes are a little older so ripping them up a bit won’t be an issue. He is going to distress and rip up an old flannel shirt that he didn’t care much about and then just wear jeans.  Otherwise he’s going to wear a werewolf mask and werewolf gloves.

My purchases were minimal – Fake blood and Liquid Latex for the scars. This cost me around $5 bucks from Walmart. I can deal with that.

For my husband we did purchase on Amazon. We purchased him a inexpensive werewolf mask and wolfy furry hand/arm gloves.

Total cost to us for two pretty rad costumes was only $27 bucks! Compare that with Spirit Halloween.

This werewolf costume, which is pretty much exactly what my husband is doing, is selling at Spirit Halloween for $50.00!

This Gothic Red Riding Hood costume is selling at Spirit Halloween for $60!

So to be able to get 2 costumes for about half the cost of the least expensive one at Spirit is a huge win for us, and for our wallets!

Have any questions? Just ask! I would be happy to help you plan your perfect costume!  I would love to see what you all find in your closets too!  So if this article helped you find you Halloween style, post a picture in the Facebook group and let us know what you look like!

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2 Responses

  1. mary says:

    great ideas! I’m a big fan of closet foraging. And the thing with costumes is– props are key. I went as Medusa one year– went to a 5&Dime type store, bought $12 worth of plastic and rubber snakes and some floral wire– and wove them into my hair. Wore a black dress I owned and some heavy eye makeup– and done!

    My two favorite costume ideas were home made on the cheap: A friend bought a bag of Smarties and glue gunned them on a pair of old jeans and told everyone she was a Smarty-pants. Another friend bought a white t-shirt and wrote all over it things like “It’s not you, it’s me” “The check is in the mail” and “My cell service is weird, I didn’t get your text” and said he was “A Little White Lie”

    • Zarelis says:

      Those are two very awesome costumes! It is awesome to re-purpose and do costumes on the cheap!
      Love the what you did for Medusa’s hair! Great idea! Thanks for sharing 🙂

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