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Sunday, 16 October 2016

How to Create an Epic Halloween Costume on a Budget

Blimey, I haven't done a blog in ages! I've been pretty rubbish the past few months and I can only apologise for that. I really love writing these blog posts, but I've been working 7 days a week since July - so as you can imagine I've had very little time to catch up with myself, particularly as I work in a career that requires so much extra self promotion.  

As I result I am KNACKERED, but it's all going to come together now I have started my new radio show on Juice 107.2 in Brighton (which I am mega excited about). 

Anyway, Summer is finally drawing to a close. And my goodness it's been amazing hasn't it? The UK were pretty lucky this year, we all bang on about wanting a nice Summer all year long and in 2016 we actually had one. Next on the list is Autumn. I love Autumn, I think its actually my favourite season. The colours of the leaves are beautiful, and I can start throwing on knitted clothing and ankle boots again, and don't have to stress about covering myself in SPF 30 every day. And with Autumn, comes Halloween...

Anyone who knows me will tell you that I love fancy dress, I won an award at University and I recently made it onto a Buzzfeed list with my Halloween costume (one off the bucket list, genuinely). I take this shit seriously. And I think Halloween is so much fun when it comes to fancy dress, as you can well and truly go all out with gore and fake blood. However I appreciate not everyone wants to splurge £50 on a costume that you are only going to wear for one evening, no matter how many likes it gets you on Facebook.

I tend to get quite creative with my fancy dress, and avoid buying ready made costumes if I can. So I thought I'd pass on some of my favourite tips and tricks to keep the cost down whilst looking epic.

Don't use Fancy Dress shops as your first resort 

Don't get me wrong, there are some Fancy Dress items that can only be found in Fancy Dress Shops or online stores - but generally they are a lot more expensive or you could potentially make them yourself. Have a browse around Fancy Dress Shops/Websites for inspiration, but do it with the mentality that you'll look elsewhere. 

Go Second Hand

Ebay and Charity Shops are so brilliant for stuff like this! The thing with Halloween is you aren't wanting to look prim and proper, so if something is a bit tatty or ill fitting it doesn't really matter as odds are you'll either be tearing it up or covering it in fake blood. And I reckon you are more likely to find what you are looking for second hand, rather than full price amongst all the current fashion in a regular clothes shop. Take my costume this year for example, I'm going as a dead, blood covered person at a masquerade ball. I went on eBay and found a second hand full length elegant dress that was originally from Boohoo for under a fiver! And as it's lace it means it doubles up as perfect Masquerade Ball themed attire. 

Something Small Can Completely Change Your Costume

A few years back I dressed up as a Zombie Cheerleader (see above!). I obviously had to buy the Cheerleader outfit, as that was something that would be difficult to replicate. But I found some temporary tattoos online for no more than a couple of quid that were fake cuts and wounds, I also bought some Zombie contact lenses. My costume looked about 10x better with those minor additions, especially as the temporary tattoos cost hardly anything and unlike fake blood they didn't stain my skin! 

As a side note, before buying Halloween contact lenses make sure you do your research. Putting something of dodgy quality in your eye can end terribly, so make sure you are buying them from somewhere reputable. Escapade are a perfect example of this, they have an entire FAQs section on their contact lenses. Read the instructions as well, as you hear horror stories about people falling asleep with the lenses left in. 

Things Can Be Altered

One year my friend gave me a budget of £15 and asked me to make her a Halloween costume with it, I was well up for the challenge. I managed to find a doll-eque dress, a plastic beaded necklace and pair of tights, which I then ripped and tattered so they looked dishevelled. Paired with a belt and some creepy make-up and it did the job! Halloween costumes are allowed to be tatty, so often dishevelling some clothing does the job for you. 

Have a Look in Shops that aren't chain stores

You know the ones I mean. They normally don't have a name, or if they do it's something like "Gorgeous" or "Glamour". Not somewhere I'd go to for my regular wardrobe...but for Fancy Dress they are perfect, as the clothes are cheap. I dressed up as a Zombie Bride once, and it was in one of these shops that I found a white lace dress and some big glittery tacky earrings. Which I then paired with a veil I found in a Hen Party section. 

Borrow or re-use old stuff

Now this probably partly depends on your age, at University I did Fancy Dress all the time so I had an abundance of stuff in the corner of my room. However people still have fancy dress parties or hen/stag parties, so I bet someone has something you could borrow. I once dressed up as Barbie, and I bought these cheap tacky blonde hair extensions, when Halloween came around I re-used them when I dressed up as a doll and just tied some ribbon around them so they became ponytails. Or you can take a previous Fancy Dress costume and just add some fake blood and gore to it, never fails. Dead Minnie Mouse anyone? 

Happy Halloweening! Would love to see some of your costumes, send them to me on my Twitter, and I'll definitely be posting this year's costume on my Instagram

Emma x

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