DIY + My Favorite Halloween Costumes

If you know me at all, you know I am a BIG proponent of any activity/holiday that requires a costume. Halloween? You bet. Costume parties? I'm there. So although I've always attempted to avoid the "scary" aspect of Halloween (My neighbor dressed up as the devil when I was four, and I think I've been scarred ever since), I've always loved the dressing up part. The more creative the costume, the better it is. I'm going to be honest and say that there have definitely been years or occasions where I have done store-bought costumes, and that's totally fine if you're in a pinch but.... MAKING THEM IS WAY BETTER! They're cheaper, and you have more fun doing it.

One of my most favorite costumes I ever did was for a holiday dress up party in college. (PSA: I went digging through the trenches for these photos so please forgive the poor quality!) I decided to go as a present, and it was an absolute hit! And it was SO EASY. 

MFF Present Costume

I found the most amazing XXXL jumbo gift bag at Target and went from there. (If you can't find any XXXL gift bags in stores, here's one I found online for $7!) I got some tissue paper, a cheap headband, and a huge gift bow. In all, this whole costume probably cost me under $15.

1. Cut the bottom out of the bag so you can stand through it.

2. Take the handles off and rearrange them so they hang over your shoulders, with the folds in the bag remaining on the sides of your body. Staple or glue them in place. This is how your bag will stay on, with these simple little straps!

3. Glue or staple tissue paper about 4-5 inches from the top of the bag on the inside so it appears as if the whole bag is filed with tissue paper (and you, of course!).

4. Glue your bow onto your headband with hot glue.

DONE! So simple yet so cute. Of course, I was a holiday present, but you can do it for anytime of the year--just switch up your holiday colors to Fall colors!

Now, this other costume was actually for Halloween. I have this crazy tendency to lose my voice whenever a "big" weekend happens. Maybe it's because I talk too much? Who knows. Either way, my "lost voice" sounds identical to Marcel the Shell. If you haven't watched one of the now three videos out, DO. IT. NOW. 

So, it was only natural for me to dress up as the famed shell for Halloween two years ago.

MFF Marcel the Shell Costume

Like all of my costumes, this one was super easy and cheap! I already had the pink shoes (don't ask), but you can get these from Walmart for only $14! This costume can probably be made from pieces you have at home, but if not, it can all mostly be found at craft stores: white/beige long sleeve tshirt, cotton and pillows to stuff your "shell", foam paper with sticky backing, and pink tennis shoes. In all, the whole costume was about $25.

MFF DIY Marcel Costume

1. The only real work you'll need to do with this costume is cut out the sticky-back foam sheets into the shape of the mouth and eye. I used a few different sizes bowls to get the eye shape, and then I winged it on the mouth.

2. You'll want to get a pretty large tshirt, preferably long sleeve. I used a shirt I already had, but you can find an XXL at any craft store. Stuff the shirt with pillows and cotton. Use the cotton mostly on one arm, arranging it so that it looks like you have two "rolls," simulating the spirals of the shell.

4. Stick the eye onto the opposite shoulder of the stuffed arm and the mouth at your bellybutton.

3. Squat down so your shirt covers your knees and it looks like you have no legs, and you've got it!

Of course you don't have to stay squatted down all night, but definitely do it for the pictures--there will be lots!


I hope you enjoyed some of my favorite costumes! What are your favorites from years past? What are you being this year? Let me know in the comments below!


Mary Frances