Easy DIY Costume Ideas for Creative College Students

By: Georgia Schumacher

October 5, 2018

DIY Halloween Costumes

Somehow, October is already here and Halloween is just weeks away. If you’re like the students in our creative arts degree programs , when you’re busy working hard toward your goals, time goes by fast. Luckily, when you’re surrounded by fellow creatives, you know there’s always someone who can help you with planning and creating a fantastic costume.

If you haven’t planned your costume yet, we’ve got some quick ideas and tips for DIY Halloween costumes that could save the day!

5 Places to Look for Inspiration:

1. Artists & Paintings

Have a favorite artist or painting? Recreate their style with some online searches and trips to your local second-hand store! Think Frida Kahlo, Salvador Dali, Van Gogh, or anyone with a distinctive look. (Bob Ross, anyone?) For paintings, Girl with a Pearl Earring, The Son of Man, and American Gothic are pretty simple to recreate. If you’re good with makeup, turn to a Picasso painting or some of Roy Lichtenstein’s pop art for inspiration!

2. Games

Take a minute to think about characters in the games you grew up with or that you play today. Gather some friends, and you can do something as easy as a group of dominoes. There are also the classics like Mario, Luigi, and Princess Peach; Sonic and Tails; the Monopoly man; Pikachu; and even Lara Croft. Make (or buy) the green headband and you can be any kind of Sim you want. Or, grab yourself a red trench coat and go for the Carmen Sandiego look. Go as creative and ambitious as you like!

3. Your Phone

Technology has opened up a whole new world of Halloween costumes: emojis. Get some yellow face paint, add some tears or heart eyes, wear all-black or all-yellow, and voila--your costume is done. Add some cat ears and whiskers to your heart eyes if that’s more your style. Or go for less makeup and give the David Bowie emoji face a try.

Want to avoid face makeup entirely? No problem. Throw on a red dress and be the salsa dancer, or find a friend and two black leotards and you’re the dancing twins. If you have two friends willing to join you, grab some monkey masks, brown outfits, and strike your best “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” poses.

4. Movies and Television

Love movies and tv shows? Look back through your watchlist to find a character whose costume you can duplicate, and don’t forget your favorite children’s shows, game shows, and reality shows. To get you started, ideas for female characters include Orange is the New Black cast members, Wednesday Addams, Mystique, the Bachelorette, and Hey Arnold’s Helga Pataki. For male characters, there’s the Men in Black guys, the Fresh Prince and Carlton, Quailman (Doug), Zoolander, and even the Brawny man, to name a few.

Whether you’re looking for an individual or group costume, movies like Star Wars, Harry Potter, and so many of the comic book movies have multiple characters to pull from as do shows like Bojack Horseman, Star Trek, The Simpsons, Bob’s Burgers, Glow, Futurama, and more. Plus, there’s always your favorite Halloween movies!

5. Word play

If you enjoy puns, there are tons of clever Halloween costumes that are funny, low cost, and incredibly simple. For example, wear a white shirt with a yellow yolk in the middle, add some devil horns and tail, and you’re a deviled egg. Carry around a loaf of bread with a medal on your neck, and you’re the breadwinner. 50 Shades of Grey? Just stick 50 grey paint samples to your clothing. A pig mask with a blanket or warm poncho—we don’t have to explain that one, right? Do a search for pun Halloween costumes and you’ll find many more!

Happy Halloween from all of us at The Art Institutes!

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By: Georgia Schumacher

October 5, 2018