It’s October, and I am gearing up for a spooky month!! I need to decide on a Halloween costume, but first, I thought it would be fun to review the costumes I’ve worn in the past from worst to best. I’ve had costumes both store-bought and homemade, both strokes of genius and remarkably ill-advised. Where possible, I’ve included pictures. Let’s dive in!
When I was in fifth grade, my two best friends and I agreed to trick-or-treat as gypsies together. One of their moms was hugely into witchy stuff, so she had a lot of fancy cloths, crystal jewelry, and things like tarot cards. At the time, it seemed like a good idea and we were all proud of our costumes, but in retrospect, I cringe. “Gypsy” is a slur toward Romani people, and it’s never okay to make someone else’s culture into a costume. Plus, I wore a bandanna as a top, and while it looked cool, I was freezing and uncomfortable the entire time.
This was a cop-out costume I wore my freshman year of college when I realized I didn’t have a real costume. I put on a hat with a monster face on it, then coordinated the rest of my outfit with the hat. I looked more like a quirky scene kid than a monster.
I’m actually really fond of this costume. I wore it my freshman year of high school. Halloween was on a Saturday that year, so everyone wore their costumes to school on Friday, then again to trick-or-treat the next day. Unfortunately, through all of Friday, over a hundred people (I counted!) obnoxiously yelled “I FOUND YOU!”, which is why this costume is so low on the list.
However, it did redeem itself slightly. That Friday after school, I went to get a haircut. On a whim, I cut off all my hair to donate to charity. When I went trick-or-treating, the hat covered my newly shorn head. I trick-or-treated at my friend’s house and chatted with her for a solid ten minutes, and she never suspected a thing. When I came in to school on Monday, I gleefully told her that my hair had been short the whole weekend already!
This one is an elementary school staple. A simple store-bought costume handed down from my sister, it never failed to make me feel like a princess. It did get worn down a bit over the years, but it was a trusty friend.
My grandma wore the dress for Halloween one year, then lent it to me for a project on the 1920s. I never ended up giving it back, and I used it a couple times over the years when I needed a costume. It was cute and recognizable, if a bit generic. It was a good last minute option and easily spruced up by a solid makeup job.
5. Peter Pan
I ordered this costume online and it looked great! I love wearing costumes that complement my appearance, and at the time, my hair was still pretty short, so I really did look like I could be one of those female actors playing Peter Pan onstage. The one drawback is that the tights that came with it were cheap and too small, and I was also pretty cold in it.
4. Dead Person
In eighth grade, my best friend and I thought it would be fun to go as dead twins. Then my other best friend didn’t want to be left out. Suddenly, my entire friend group, at least six of us, had decided to be dead people together. We spray-dyed our hair black, painted our faces white, gave ourselves raccoon eyes, and even wore black lipstick. Our uniform? Pure black. We bought spiderweb patterned socks and mix-and-matched them. We probably looked more fake goth than dead. In fact, that’s how most people saw us. Older women would chuckle as we walked by. “I looked like that all through college!” “Just don’t dress like that every day!” When people asked us if we were goths, we solemnly told them we were dead people. It was an unintentional hit.
3. Draco Malfoy
This was me in peak pixie cut era. I asked my dad to get me a black robe, but he got one that didn’t open in the front, so I had to cut it the way I wanted. Everyone seemed really offended that I chose to be a Slytherin, but honestly, that’s my Hogwarts house IRL. I’m not trying to be edgy. It’s not a phase. It’s who I am! Anyway, I was proud of the way I put everything together.
2. Calvin & Hobbes
Even though my hair was short at the time, I bought a wig to get that spiky texture. It was really cute and easy to put together at home. I carried around a stuffed tiger with me, although it would have been even better if I could have gotten one that looked more like Hobbes. Still, it was so satisfying whenever someone recognized my costume. A good portion of people didn’t know who I was supposed to be!
1. Fairy Princess
This is the first Halloween costume I ever remember wearing, and it’s definitely the most magical. I went to the craft store with my mom and she helped me create a genuinely gorgeous wand out of Styrofoam and rhinestones. The dress was extremely poofy. I was blown away by the idea that I could be a fairy AND a princess at the same time. I felt invincible!
What should I be for Halloween this year? What are you planning on being? Tell me in the comments!
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