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Related Articles: Easy Costumes Kids Can Make | Cardboard Box Halloween Costumes

30 Quick and Easy Kids Costumes
by Patricia B Jensen

What happened to the " good ol' days" when a Halloween costume was your Dad's old shirt and cap, and a burnt cork beard? Kids costumes don't have to complicated to be cute! Each of these quick and easy costumes starts with a few simple materials like hooded sweatshirts, sweat pants, posterboard, craft foam, felt, face paint, and a little imagination.


Black sweats, white shirt, red sash and bandanna, cardboard sword covered in foil, parrot beanie baby, stubbly face made with burnt cork or tobacco sprinkled on vaseline covered cheeks

Kid Hit by Lightning

Gray sweats with large yellow felt zigzag pinned to the back, blackened zigzag tears in here and there on suit, hair gelled to stand straight up, burns on cheeks

Wrapped Present

Cover a large box with colorful wrapping paper. Make a hole in the bottom and invert over child's head. Add lots of matching ribbons in child's hair.

Pair of Dice

Paint two large boxes white and add black dots on each side to represent a pair of dice. Cut hole in bottom and invert over children's heads. You need a friend for this one!

Reader comment: When I was a kid my mom made me a costume, a clear plastic garbage bag with different colored water balloons filled with air, and on the bag it said Jelly Belly. Another costume she made me was a Pepsi can. She started with two hula hoops and an old white sheet, she attached the sheet from one hula hoop to the other, a piece of cardboard attached to the top hula hoop with a hole cut out for the head, then she painted the sheet to look like a Pepsi can. I think that was the coolest costume I ever had...Michael
Box of Popcorn

Cover a large box with white butcher paper. Add wide red stripes with markers or colored paper. Make a hole for child's head. Hot glue some popcorn to the top of the box. Wear red or white tights or sweat pants.

Placard Costumes

Another quick and easy idea for kid costumes is a "placard costume" in which the child wears a hooded sweatshirt and pulls front and back cardboard panels (the placard) on over it. Shape the placard (poster board works fine) as needed for the costume desired, and design it with markers or felt pieces. This type of costume can be adapted to many different themes, such as:


M & M (two kids of different heights can be "plain" and "peanut"!)

Soccerball, Basketball, or Baseball

Apple or Pumpkin

Deck of Cards

Favorite Book


Yellow sweat suit. Staple craft foam flower petals end to end onto a wide ribbon and tie around child's face to make the flower. Paint the face reddish brown with black spots. Make a couple of bright green leaves from craft foam and pin side by side onto front of sweat suit.

Bunch of Grapes

Start with a purple sweat suit. Blow up several purple balloons to the same size and attach to the sweat suit with small safety pins. Complete the look with a green knit cap with a couple of large green felt leaves attached.

Bag of Trash

Make two leg holes is a large sized trash bag. Have child step into the bag, then add balls of crumpled newspaper to hold a round shape. Make two armholes in each side and secure around the neck .

Little Old Lady

An old house dress with torn stockings and slippers. Curlers in the hair or white wig. Glasses, blacked out tooth, old fashioned pocketbook.


Hawaiian shirt or other loud clothes, camera, hat with pins all over it, maps sticking out of pockets, sunglasses.


Sweat suit in the chosen color of your crayon. Design the crayon wrapper from poster board, felt pieces or craft foam and baste or pin onto the sweat suit. Add a like-colored plant pot for a hat, or use a large round of poster board, cut from edge to center and make into a pointy hat. Secure under child's chin with a wide strip of elastic stapled to the hat.

Static Cling

Start with sweat suit of your choice, pin on small clothing items such as socks, hats, mittens, and underwear along with a few dryer sheets.

Cow, Pig, Kitty, Doggy

Hooded sweat suit in the appropriate color (white cow, pink pig, brown dog). Embellish with felt scraps to make spots, ears, tail, etc.

Backwards Costume

Put clothes and hat on backwards, sunglasses on back of head, say "Treat or Trick!"


Tear a white sheet into strips. Paint face white and spray hair with white paint. Smear black under the eyes. Wrap child dressed in white long underwear with sheet strips, securing with clear medical tape, leaving eyes and mouth open.

Note on mummy costume: I wish to give a warning about the mummy costume. It's probably been forty to forty-five years ago as children we helped each other out in our costumes. My brother decided to be a mummy so we tore a old sheet in strips. I'm not sure if we sewed them together, I think we did. Any how we wrapped starting at the head working down it looked fantastic. My brothers both were ready so they left. After only a few minutes they were back both in a panic. It took us a few seconds to realize my brother was being chocked apparently we wrapped him in such a way that every movement tightened the strips around his neck. So I was hoping this warning will help so people will think through how they do the wrapping, we redid my brother's and all went well the rest of the night...Mar

White sweat suit with wings of tulle stretched over shaped coat hangers. Glittery headband made from wire circle covered with foil and colorful curling ribbon. Wand made from thin dowel with cardboard star attached to one end, painted silver or gold with glitter and curling ribbon added.


Sweat suit with colorful felt or fabric paint polka dots. Clown collar made from felt triangles attached together in a circle to go around child's neck. Colorful clown wig, nose, and oversized glasses. Facepaint simple blue crosses over eyes, red cheeks, and large red mouth.


White sweat suit, chef's hat, large wooden spoon, cookbook under the arm, curly mustache drawn in face paint.


Too small pants, shirt buttoned up wrong, pocket protector, hair slicked back, old pair of glasses with tape, white socks, large textbook to carry under the arm.

Patricia B. Jensen is a mother of three and kids party enthusiast. She is the webmaster and owner of - a comprehensive resource for kids party ideas and complete party plans for many popular themes, including invitations, cakes, decorations, games, costumes, favors, and food.

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Would you like to quickly make creative Halloween costumes that you and your children will be proud of -- for a fraction of the price of store-bought? Click here!

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