10 Cheap Last Minute Halloween Costume Ideas


Don’t despair if you’re still scrambling for a cheap and easy Halloween costume this year. I’ve had a few emails from readers asking for more costume ideas. So I’ve put together this second Halloween costume article full of unique, perhaps sexy, and punny ideas for your dress-up pleasure.

These last minute costumes are for the budget conscious and time strapped. All you need is a bit of creativity, some regular clothing, and a few minutes to get yourself ready.


Doggone Despair: Tivo, the Blue Heeler wunder mutt, really hates her costume this year. Poor pooch.

Here are 10 last minute Halloween Costumes ideas:

1. Go as Broke

Wear some pants with deep pockets. Pull the pockets out. Wear one shoe. Try not to smile.

2. Devil with a Blue Dress On

Wear some horns, get a pitch fork, and put on a blue dress. Get some stiletto heels to sexy it up! If you’re a guy, fitting into the dress is punny enough.

3. Beauty Pageant Winner

Wear an old prom dress or bridesmaid gown. Put on lots of makeup. Make a sash. Go as “Miss” (something silly): “Miss Congeniality”, “Miss World Peace”, or “Miss Can’t Hold Her Liquor”. Don’t forget to smile, lots.

4. Mail Order Bride

Wear your wedding gown (or dress in white). Draw a postage stamp and fasten it to your gown. Find a tiara. If you’re a couple then bring your man in a tux.

Want something else? Try these:

5. Coffee, Tea, or Me?

Get a white shirt, black pants, and a green apron. Wear a visor or cap. Get some coffee cups from your favorite coffee shop. Wear a name tag. Get caffeinated.

6. iPod Commercial

Dress in black. Wear your white iPod ear phones. Dance around. Wave your hands in the air, like you just don’t care.

7. Michael Phelps

Slip on a Speedo, a swim cap, and a pair of goggles. Get some yellow cardboard and cut out 8 circular medals, string them around your neck. Bring your mom and get her to cheer you on.

8. Carrie

This movie still scares me. Wear a prom dress. Cover yourself in red goo. Scream.

9. Birthday Suit

Wear a suit and a birthday hat. Cover yourself in streamers. Sing “Happy Birthday” at random intervals throughout the evening. Or go naked. It’s your party.

10. Main Street vs. Wall Street

This is a couples costume. One person dresses in a suit while the other wears a plaid shirt, jeans or overalls. Cover the suit in Monopoly money. Cover the plaid shirt in fake overdue bills. Arm wrestle. Or just kiss and make up!

Helpful Halloween Tricks and Treats

Here are some quick tricks for getting Halloween ready.

OK, I’m all Halloweened out (and so is my poor pooch). Get dressed for your scary best and have some safe spooky fun this weekend!

Have any Halloween tricks or treats to share? Got a fun frugal costume idea?


  1. Unspender October 30, 2008 at 4:45 am

    Haha I like “Broke” I will store that idea for the future. I’m going as Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and my partner is Beaker. Meep! Meep! Have a good one!

  2. Dana @ Letters to Elijah October 30, 2008 at 4:56 am

    I love the go as BROKE that is too simple.. and funny!

  3. […] (or “transvestite”). Enjoy it while you can. Squawkfox has a great list of 10 cheap last minute Halloween costume ideas for those who still haven’t decided what to […]

  4. MoneyMateKate October 30, 2008 at 6:39 am

    My brother did this one a couple of years ago…

    Wear whatever you want, and wrap lots of different extension cords around you, the more colors the better. Make sure they’re connected to each other. People will look at you all confused and ask what your costume is. When you tell them “I’m a random hook-up”, they will nominate you for Most Original Costume!

  5. Kerry October 30, 2008 at 7:07 am

    @Unspender LOL I’m a huge Muppets fan. Are you going to blow Beaker up? πŸ˜€

    @Dana Going as Broke is pretty simple…plus no one will ask you to buy them a drink. πŸ˜€

    @MoneyMakeKate I love random hookup. Very creative!

  6. rjleaman October 30, 2008 at 7:42 am

    Beyond funny! And yet, at the same time, so do-able… Trying to think of something to add to your list but (hey, it’s morning) I got nothin’ here. πŸ˜€

  7. […] Squawkfox has a very appropriately-time list of 10 last minute Halloween costumes. […]

  8. CindyS October 31, 2008 at 10:44 am

    I can get into doing the broke one. I wouldn’t even have to try hard….

  9. Catgurl November 2, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    I must ask you Kerry,

    Those pink shoes are Fluevogs, aren’t they?

  10. Kerry November 2, 2009 at 1:23 pm

    @Catgurl Yep, those pink shoes are indeed Fluvogs — so not frugal, but so much fun! I wore them as a bridesmaid and now bust them out every chance I get. πŸ™‚

  11. Melissa October 1, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    Hey there – have to ask – what is “Tivo” mixed with? I have her twin here in Austin TX!

  12. Kerry October 1, 2010 at 5:56 pm

    Hi Melissa: We adopted Tivo (her name is actually Pivo) at the SPCA several years ago. I WISH I knew WHAT she was mixed with — something with ears? What’s your best guess? Is your dog a sweetie? πŸ˜€

  13. Eva W October 12, 2011 at 6:56 pm

    The boss wants us to dress for Halloween… I invested $2.50 at Walmart for 6 small rubber duckies that I strung together for a necklace. Wearing a set of hospital scrubs that a friend gave me, I’m going as a Quack Doctor!

  14. Shann October 15, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Ok first I have to say that I love the puny and off the wall costumes. This year I will be going as my teenagers Bedroom floor! Very scary :)) black sweat suit with random things I find on their floor for my costume…I am pretty sure one of the items is a slice of pizza πŸ˜€

    As for your pup Pivo she is a Cattle dog aka Blue Heeler. I have one and his name is Smokey love his ears! Truly the smartest dog I have ever had!

  15. Jace76 October 31, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    I am dressed up as a Muggle! Easiest cheapest costume going. All I had to do was get dressed same as every day! Got to love Harry Potter!

  16. Lynn October 21, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    Last year a friend invited me to a Halloween party. She forgot to mention it was a costume party until I was almost there. So I bought an IBC root beer at a gas station on my way and went as a drunk uncle. I staggered around slurring my words and hitting on everybody. I won most realistic costume! lol Defiantly going as broke this year.

  17. Stacey Williams October 21, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    Fairy- wear old prom dress, find tiara, wings and wand. Boom.

Leave A Comment