Creative DIY Upcycled Halloween Costumes

By Ebony Porter, October 16, 2017, Events & Fun, Family, Green

Halloween is a holiday that, much like many others, comes with a ghoulish nature of being disposable.

Costumes are bought each year, candy is purchased and consumed in copious amounts, pumpkins are purchased, carved, and then tossed onto the compost pile, and decorations are bought only to be used and then thrown away, in some cases.

We encourage you to put the halt on the disposable quality of Halloween!

Creative Upcycled Halloween Costumes | Bounce Energy Blog

Check out these green and easy DIY Halloween costumes that use items you already have in your home, garden, and closet. All you need is a little creativity and time, and you’ll leave the throw-away of quality of yearly costumes for you and your kids behind.

Upcycled Scarecrow

This is the easiest of all costumes!

Dig out your oldest jeans, a worn-out flannel shirt, and any old dusty hat you may have. On the inside of the hat, tape some grass or straw from the garden, so it sticks out but doesn’t scratch your face or neck.

Add a little face make up for effect by drawing a circle of color on your nose, and some bright rosy red cheeks. Easy!

Betsy Ross

Grab your American flag and drape it around yourself, along with a shower cap, to become Betsy Ross, the historical figure credited with inventing the United States flag.

Read up on her so you can educate everyone who asks you who you are!

Creative Upcycled Halloween Costumes | Bounce Energy Blog

Bridezilla or Zombie

Skip the Goodwill donation and use one of those old prom dresses or suits to shred, dirty, blacken or drip with red nail polish. Go wild! Add some black eyeliner around the mouth and pin some fish net in your hair for added drama.

George Washington

Really show off your green tendencies! Use some card board toilet roll holders, or cut down tubes from paper towels, and paint them white. Create his powdered wig by stringing the toilet roll holders together so they are held in place around your face, and so they fall down on each side of your ears, down to your shoulders.

Don your crispest white shirt buttoned up to the neck, along with a stiff shouldered blue blazer and a vest if you have one. You’ll be a hit!


If you’re a seamstress or craft lover, then perhaps you have a stash of fabric, ribbon or lace, that you can dive into to make a DIY fairy costume.

I recently made some long, shaggy mermaid-inspired bunting for my daughter’s birthday party, using teal colored strips of cotton and long pieces of colored wool. Since I attached all the long flowy pieces onto a wider piece of cotton, the bunting can now double to wrap around my daughter’s waist into a fairy skirt!

The bunting will tie around her back into a bow. We could then upcycle it again, and use it for another birthday celebration.

Pippi Longstocking

Go as your favorite childhood character by wearing some mis-matched socks, a flowing floral dress, brown boots, and your hair in braids!

Keep your braids standing straight out, like Pippi’s, with wire coat hangers.

You could also add a few colorful patches to your outfit to make it even more spirited. Take eyeliner and add freckles to make yourself look more like Pippi.

Rosie the Riveter

Don yourself from head to toe in a pair of denim jeans you already own, boots, a denim shirt, and then wrap your head with a red and white polka dot scarf. Use the scarf long after Halloween is over!

Creative Upcycled Halloween Costumes | Bounce Energy Blog

Football Player

Dress your kids up as their favorite football player by wearing a simple jersey, smearing black eyeliner under their eyes, and placing grapefruits on their shoulders to give the effect of wearing pads!

American Gothic

This famous painting by Grand Wood from 1930 depicts a couple standing in front of an American Gothic House that is true 19th century Americana. It’s been seen all over pop culture, and is a recognizable image to many.

It’s an easy costume to pull off with your partner! Dress in overalls and a jacket for the gentleman, and a black blazer, white shirt, brooch at the neck, and apron for the lady.

The female character can part her hair in the middle and pull it back in a bun. And the gentleman should carry around a pitchfork. This will be the true telling sign of what the costume is!

Frida Kahlo

I’ve been Frida more times than I care to admit, simply because I love to wear as much jewelry as possible at one time, draw in a unibrow, and pin fresh flowers in my hair!

Go as the famous Mexican painter by wearing a long flowing dress or skirt, and a blouse or top that has lots of color, pattern or embroidery. Wear the biggest earrings you own, along with large necklaces, tons of bracelets, and more than 3 rings on each hand.

Don’t forget to draw in Frida’s iconic unibrow with brown eyeliner and braid your hair onto the top of your head. Fresh flowers make the added authentic affect. You could also carry around a paint brush just for fun.

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