Halloween Costumes: Cheap Tricks for Last-Minute Moms

Last Updated Oct 26, 2010 7:33 AM EDT

Need an eleventh-hour Halloween costume for Junior? Don't want to spend a fortune on Sleeping Beauty's get-up or Superman's six-pack?

Look no farther than your garage. Or your shed. Or your basement.

That's according to Valerie Deneen, who runs the Frugal Family Fun Blog, which details easy, inexpensive crafts and activities for kids. I cornered her for some Halloween costume ideas and made her stick to the "easy" part, because I own neither a sewing machine nor pinking shears. Here are her suggestions - and how to execute them:

Gardener: Dress your child in overalls and wide-brimmed hat. Put an empty watering can in one hand (for collecting candy) and fake flowers or a trowel in the other. Advanced option: Affix fake flowers on top of hat with a glue gun.

Little Red Riding Hood: Buy a red sweatshirt with a hood. Find a piece of red fabric, cut a hole in the center, drape it over your daughter's head, and hand her a basket. (I'm picturing our Christmas tree skirt, and I think it would work perfectly.) Deneen's two-year-old models the costume, left.

Painter: Buy overalls at a thrift shop. Let your kid paint spots on them. Dress your child in the overalls and a painter's cap. Put an empty paint can in one hand (yes, for candy) and a large paintbrush or paint roller in the other. Swab a little paint on the kid's face for effect.

Cow: Find white sweats for your child. Cut out cow spots from black felt and glue them on the sweat suit with fabric glue. Sew or glue ears on the hood of the sweatshirt. Don't forget to affix a tail from the appropriate location, and hang a bell around your child's neck. If you don't have a bell, take an empty Jell-O box, cover it with tinfoil, and hang that around the kid's neck. Advanced option: Udders. Latex gloves. Have fun.

Mummy: Most dollar stores carry rolls of gauze. You'll need several. Have your kid wear dark sweats, then wrap the child up. "You can do it with toilet paper," Deneen says, "but it's not so great if it's raining."

Have suggestions for easy, budget-conscious costumes? Sign in to share them below.

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