As a rule of thumb I think Halloween costumes shouldn’t cost a lot of money especially since it is usually only worn for one day. My school of thought is that with limited resources in my case under $30 you are forced to be more creative and resourceful in finding and re-purposing house hold items laying around. You are forced to think outside the box and forced to hunt for various supplies that can be used for your project. Maybe it is the sadist in me that likes to make things more challenging than they need to be but I am up for tough challenges because the result is always that much more rewarding or maybe you can just call me frugal.
I also think Halloween costumes should always have a hint of spookiness or cleverness. This year I decided to be a gargoyle but being a girl, of course I wanted to look cute as well. I started with some left over gunmetal color metallic fabric I found from a costume I had made for a friend some time ago. The pieces of fabric were small so I was forced to do a lot of patching small pieces together which turned out well creating more detail and texture to my bustier and tail. Then to attach the tail I sewed it to a thong I made out of the same fabric which is to be worn over top of the heather grey tights I found in my closet.
Next step were the feet, I used some molded cardboard found in the toe bed of new shoes to help keep the shoe’s shape, it fit perfectly over the front portion of my foot. I used tin foil to shape the toes and paper mâchéd some texture and build up the shape a bit more. For the horns and ears I cut pieces of an egg carton and shaped it with grey duct tape. To give all the pieces a stone like texture I used a grey textured stone finish spray paint which was the most expensive item I had to buy for this project at a whopping $14. It really completed the look and made my mâché just a bit more weather proof, after all I do live in rainy Vancouver.
Now the wings; this was a bit more challenging as I had some more criteria to meet as far as functionality. I did not want it to be too comber some yet still had some movement and it also had to be weather proof of course. I searched far and wide for a material that worked that was “cheap” because trust me, there were some amazing fabrics I could have used but that would have put the cost of my costume way over budget.
After a long hunt I came up with a grey disposable table cloth from the dollar store for $1.50 that was nice and big to work with but a bit thinner than I had hoped. I cheated a bit and scored on a random kid’s red devil maybe gargoyle wings at a thrift store for $3 and used that as the start of the frame work for my wings. I wish I had taken a photo. I then taped the kid’s wings onto the plastic tablecloth and extended the framework of the wings larger with more wire. Using spray glue I sandwiched the wing’s wired framework between another layer of the tablecloth.
I then trimmed the wings to the desired shape with scissors and finished the edges with my serger to reinforce the edges. I then used my sewing machine to sew a few lines along the wire frame to add more detail and stabilize the wing. Final touches to the wings, of course I gave the wings a little spray of the stone finish paint. During all this spray painting I had worn a pair of cotton gloves which of course got messy with paint; so I decided “why not, I need gargoyle hands too”, so I covered the rest of the gloves with more paint.
Now the look is complete! But the paint didn’t dry in time for Halloween night! Booooo… Thank god for my old back up Evil-Lyn costume which is a whole other entry in itself.