Halloween is right around the corner, and the Web is flooded with costume ideas. This year, forego the predictable store-bought getup and get creative! DIYing your Halloween costume is a great way to upcycle found objects and design a project that fits your budget and skill level. From beginner-friendly to a bit more advanced, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorites that are guaranteed to turn heads.
YouTube star and SFX phenom Mykie, creator of Glam and Gore, recently created a hi-tech bioluminescent mermaid look using a combination of fiber optics, affordable makeup, and special effects prosthetics made using mostly ingredients from the grocery store. These highly-rated fiber optic hair clips are available in a 15-pack for $13 or a 30-pack for $22. You can view the how-to on the Glam and Gore YouTube channel.
Whether you have experience with wiring or not, costumes featuring EL wires are all the rage. For anyone looking to throw together a quick-but-impressive outfit for Halloween, the stick figure is an old standby. If you like going all out and have a little more time and energy to devote to your costume, a Tron-inspired or sci-fi look will definitely impress. EL (eletroluminescent) wires emit no heat and are fairly easy to set up and shape into your ideal look. They’re also fairly inexpensive and come in a ton of different colors. You can pick up an EL starter kit on Amazon for $17 shipped. Online tutorials abound, but this one on YouTube is comprehensive and straightforward.
These Lady Gaga video glasses are an iconic accessory from Mother Monster’s early days. Not only are these glasses easy to make, they won’t break the bank, either! Find an old pair of sunglasses you don’t mind busting up, then gather up the standard crafting supplies—glue gun, pliers, and a little bit of paint (for touch ups). Next, you’ll need to pick up two digital photo frame key chains, like this one by Coby for $10 shipped. Follow the DIY video and you’ll have a set of video glasses in no time. Keep in mind that you won’t be able to see through them, although it might be a sacrifice worth making for such a killer accessory.
Perfect for kids and adults, this glowy jellyfish costume is great for the guy or girl with a little bit of wiring experience. For the tentacles, a few strings of rope lights attached to a power supply are a good option for those with more advanced wiring skills. Beginners can get a similar effect with battery-powered LED lights ($8 shipped), EL wire, or even glow sticks (100 for $10 shipped) held together with a little clear tape. Once you have the supplies for those eye-catching, glowing tentacles, all you need is some (optional) fabric for extra tentacles and a helmet and clear tub or an umbrella to complete the look.
DIY costumes allow you to get creative, learn new skills, and have fun doing it. With October 31st falling on a Saturday this year, there is every reason to pull out all the stops for Halloween 2015!
And of course, if you’re short on time (or creativity!), you can always head over to Amazon and hunt through their enormous selection of costumes to find something easy that fits into your budget.