Three Do-It-Yourself Costumes

Let’s face it. Halloween costumes can be fairly expensive for something you are likely to only wear once. Here are three costume checklists that you might be able to make from your own closet. The best part? They are made with clothes you can wear more than once.

Velma Costume

Velma Dinkley is the petite character from the popular animated series Scooby-Doo. The trade mark features of Velma have changed very little over the years and include her dark brown bob, orange cowl neck sweater, red pleated skirt, orange knee highs and leather shoes.

Velma and the Gang courtesy of Warner Bros. Consumer Products.

  • Cowl Neck Sweater – Don’t have a cowlneck? Use a cheap scarf from Ardene’s and wrap it around your neck like a cowlneck, attach it to a long sleeve t-shirt or another sweater. Orange is hard to find so feel free to substitute red if you have too.
  • Pleated Skirt – If you don’t have a pleated skirt already they can be hard to find. Check out Value Village or another second hand kind of store. You might have to find a full skirt a few sizes bigger and iron in your own pleats. Dark red is best but brown works too!
  • Knee High Socks Sock Dreams has plus size orange and red socks in a harlequin pattern that would be awesome for Velma. They also have some red and brown if you want to go that route, priced under $13 too. Another option is bright red or orange leggings from We Love Colors.
  • Mary Jane Shoes – Don’t have any? Take a strip of black paper and tape it across the top of your black flats.
  • Dark Rim Glasses – Save up the 3D glasses from the movie and punch out the lenses or check out the dollar store.
  • The Hair – If you have dark hair and it’s short you’re golden. If it is long, tuck it underneath itself and pin, pin, pin.Here is a great video to create a fake bob:

    Or you can pick up an inexpensive wig from the dollar store around Halloween.
  • Lingo – Add “Jinkies” to your vocabulary.

Pirate Costume

The Pirates of the Caribbean movies have made pirates sexy again, and fun. You can almost wear anything and say, “Arr!” a lot and you are a pirate.

  • Ruby or White Peasant Top – Really any blouse with a big collar or ruffled neckline will do.
  • Black Pants / Skirt – A simple pair of black wide leg pants or a short black skirt with black opaque stockings or fish nets.
  • Waist Corset – If you don’t have a waist corset use a long black sash or other piece of fabric that can be wrapped around your waist a few times then tied. You can also wear a black leather vest if you have one.
  • Boots – A great pair of boots (I’m partial to the ones at Torrid). Really, any pair of black boots will work.
  • Pirate Accessories – Visit the dollar store and pick up a black eye patch and a sword (make sure you don’t pick up a barbarian sword by accident).
  • Head Gear – For your head, tie another piece of black scrap fabric around the top of your head like a bandanna, tie and let hang down back.
  • Pirate Lass Face — Mischievous has a really pretty tutorial for pirate lass make-up.

Lady Bug Costume

This one involves a little more craftiness on your part. You need to pick a pair of red opaque nylons and an old metal hanger. Then from your closet you need a black shirt and black pants or a black bodysuit, and black shoes.

  • Black Under Body – For the black under body wear a black long sleeve t-shirt and black pants.
  • Red Wings – Shape a wire coat hanger into wings. Use leg of each pantyhose to cover each wing. Color a few large spots with black spots (or glue black construction paper cut into circles on). Secure your new wings with black electrical tape and any sharp edges. Insert wings into back of top and bra. Tie with black ribbon under breasts to keep from moving.
  • Antennae – Pick up a cheap headband and black fuzzy pipe-cleaners from the dollar store to fashion yourself two antennae for your costume.
  • Lady Bug Family – Finish off the look with lady bug nail art and make-up.

Have fun!
Topic Links
* Get a plus size costume from Buy Costumes

Zombie Parties

What? That’s right, zombie parties actually happen outside the scope of Halloween. And now happens to be a perfect time to stock up on your plus size zombie costumes and make-up as they prices are drastically reduced. For example my favorite zombie costume, Undead Teacher’s Pet Adult, is 50% off:

plus size zombie costumes from Buy Costumes

Whether you are planning your zombie party or going to someone else’s make sure you are prepared.

Topic Links
* Shop for plus size zombie costumes at Buy Costumes
* Other places to shop for zombie costumes

Plus Size Sailorette Costume

Would you pay $55 for a dress and only wear it once a year? Maybe, but not likely. When it comes to Halloween costumes that is pretty much what we do. And depending on how boisterous we were when wearing it chances are they are many one hit wonders because Halloween costumes do not seem to be made with durability in mind (at least not the ones under $60).

When you spend $50+ you want to make sure you are getting your money’s worth. That is one of the reasons I love this nautical dress ($56) from Domino Dollhouse — it makes a perfect sailorette costume with the edition of a cute hat and retro makeup but it can be worn any time year round in a full nautical theme or not. As a costume it is especially cute with the Meringue Petticoat in Red. While it does not look like they still have the red there are eleven other colors to choose from.

plus size sailor dress from Domino Dollhouse

Topic Links
* Get your plus size sailor costume from Domino Dollhouse
* Get the plus size Meringue Petticoat from Domino Dollhouse

Getting the Cleopatra Look

This year Buy Costumes has three plus size costumes for the Egyptian Queen ranging in price from $40 to $80 (not including any discounts you may find on their site).

My absolute favorite is the Queen of the Nile which is new this year. I like it because it gives the Queen a darker look than we have seen in the past and I love the details put into the cape, neckline and waist band. The costume kit includes dress, cape, collar, and headpiece. It is currently available in 2x and 3x.

plus size Queen of the Nile costume from Buy Costumes

As I mentioned Buy Costumes has a few, the traditional white Goddess of the Nile is very pretty but something tells me there may be some concern with the the sheerness of the white so proper undergarments would be a must. The Egyptian Jewel in teal is gorgeous too but I think it might make it awkward to go up stairs and sit comfortably. But both costumes come in separate sizing of 2x or 3x.

plus size cleopatra costumes from Buy Costumes

Channelling Elizabeth Taylor

If you want to channel Elizabeth Taylor, one of the best movie icons of the Nile queen, then the best way to do that is with the make-up –perfectly detailed for you by Pixie-woo:

And in case you have not seen Cleopatra with Liz Taylor here is the trailer. Scroll through to see the different costumes she wears as well as the changes in hair and make-up.

But, “What about the jewelry?”, you ask. I was just over at Etsy and they have a huge selection of Eqgyptian inspired pieces sold separately if you want to make your own or already transformed if you are not feeling crafty — there is a huge range of prices and styles to choose from.

Topic Links
* Get your plus size Cleopatra Costume from Buy Costumes
* Check out Egyptian jewelry on Etsy

Costumes I am Tired of Seeing

Every year costume companies release a few new styles but for the most part they stay reasonably the same. I never tire of vampires and witches — probably because I am into movies, tv shows and books along the same theme. But there are some costumes I am just so tired of seeing. Here’s a quick list of costumes I think should be retired for a few years at least:

plus size costumes for women

Snow White Costume

I love the Snow White fairy tale and I love Disney but this is my first choice of costume that needs to be retired. Unless it is one of the high end ones which are truly beautiful. Because of Snow White and the Huntsman movie there is a new series of costumes for Snow White unfortunately not of them are plus size.

The Poodle Skirt Costume

I love retro and I love Grease but the poodle skirt for the plus size woman has had its day. It is time it retired; unless of course you do something ingenious like a zombie in a poodle skirt — how cool would that be.

The Flapper Girl Costume

This seems to be the other go-to safe costume for plus size women. Flappers are cute and there are a few different styles to choose from but I am just so tired of them. Retire it please or if you have an old one do something unique with it.

Sexy Costumes

For some reason, in the costume industry “sexy” has come to mean, reallly-short-I-can-see-up-your-butt-if-you-move-the-wrong-way costumes with major cleavage. Women can be “sexy” without having to show all. I think these options need to be lessened and more authentic costuming offered where women can go out and party and have fun — most of the sexy costumes for plus size women were not meant to leave the bedroom. Instead of a “Sexy Alarm Hottie” how about a “fire woman costume” instead of a “Sexy Quarterback” how about just a “Woman Quarterback”. Instead of a “sultry” SWAT girl how about a real Swat costume for a woman. I am not completely opposed to sexy costumes, but can we tone down the ratio a bit? There is a fine line between sexy and just plain sex pot.

Most plus size costume companies offer a similar selection. If you see something in regular size that you want in plus size then tell them. Only by telling them, and them relaying customer feedback to distributors, will the future options change in our favor.

I have told what costumes I am tired of seeing, now you tell me what costumes you are tired of seeing.

Topic Links
* Get your plus size costumes from Buy Costumes
* Other places to buy plus size costumes

Costumes I’m Glad to See in Plus Size

Every year I get disappointed that there are certain costumes that are not offered in plus sizes. While I was sifting through this year’s offerings I was pleasantly surprised to find these interesting costumes in multiple size offerings.

From Buy Costumes

Round ‘em Up Adult Plus Costume, $70

plus size western costume for women from Buy Costumes

Sister Spirit Nun Adult Plus Costume, $49

plus size haunted nun costume from Buy Costumes

Lady Liberty Elite Collection Adult Plus Costume, $145

plus size lady liberty costume from Buy Costumes

Beautiful Bandida Elite Collection Adult Plus Costume, $160

plus size bandita sword fighter costume from Buy Costumes

Cleopatra Adult Plus Costume, $75

plus size cleopatra costume from Buy Costumes

From Halloween Costumes

Plus Size Sexy Top Gun Costume, $55

plus size top gun pilot costume for women from Halloween Costumes

Plus Blue Sailor Girl Costume, $49

plus size blue sailor costume for women from Halloween Costumes

Plus Size Devil Temptress Costume, $65

plus size devil women costume from Halloween Costumes

Plus Size Deluxe She Devil Costume, $49

plus size devil woman costume from Halloween Costumes

Plus Size Lady Marian Costume, $59

plus size maid marian renaissance costume from Halloween Costumes

Wish They Came in Plus Size

As wonderful as the new selection of costumes are, there is still room for improvement (isn’t that the case with everything though). Here are a few that I would like to see in plus size (you know, larger than Queen Size):

  • Mainstream Superheroes! I want to see more mainstream female superheros that go beyond the Queen Size which is not plus size at all. I want to see a 3x/4x Wonder Woman, Supergirl, Batgirl, Avengers, Alice, or whatever and I do not want it to be some sleazy fetish costumes please. It should be public friendly.
  • Retro Television stars like Lucy, Betty Boop
  • Ninja
  • Ms Popeye
  • Female Knight
  • Snow White and the Huntsman (there are more than a few in regular sizes and they are awesome).
  • Tombraider (even though she is not super popular at the moment).
  • LeeLee
  • League of Their Own baseball uniform
  • Mary Poppins
  • Princess Leia
  • Medusa
  • The cute Angry Birds costumes (not the bulky ones)
  • Genie
  • Star Trek
  • Avatar
  • Pink Diamond Marilyn
  • Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunter
  • Khaki Camo Lady
  • Authentic Adult Corpse Costume

And many, many more. What costume would you like to see in plus sizes?

Topic Links
* Get your plus size costumes from Buy Costumes
* Get your plus size costumes from Halloween Costumes

Ombre Costumes

First it started with ombre hair, then scarves, then nails, then maxi dresses and jeans… Nothing is above being ombre-ized, not even costumes. Some of the hottest costumes featuring the ombre technique tend to be Gothic in nature like vampires and witches but you can find really nice ombre goddess costumes too.

plus size ombre costumes from various retailers
From left to right:

* Blood Vamp Adult Plus Costume (16 to 24), $38 from Costume Super Center
* Plus Size Magical Witch Costume (16 to 20), $47 from Costume Craze
* Ombre Hooded Adult Cape, $20 from Buy Costumes
* Plus Greek Goddess White & Blue Costume (16 to 24), $40 from Costume Super Center
* Plus Size Venus Goddess of Love Costume (16 to 20), $40 from Costume Super Center
* Plus Size Gypsy Costume (18 to 20), $88 from Costume Craze

And to go with the ombre dress how about ombre eyes and lips! Here is a tutorial from Pixiwoo to practice:

Topic Links
* Get the Ombre costume from Costume Super Center, Costume Craze, and Buy Costumes

Beyond Vampires, Witches, and Wenches

Flipping through the plus size costume pages it sometimes feels like there are little options beyond being a vampire, a witch, or a sexy wench. Sure there are the goddesses but you already know you are a goddess 365 days of the year. So what are your other options:

plus size Halloween costumes from Buy Costumes

The Eskimo Kiss costume is cute as a button. Not realistic, but cute as a button. I would add some dark tan tights. The Cave Beauty is half the price of the Barbarian costume I have mentioned in previous posts. The Ship Shape Captain is cute and sexy but I would have to add full white leg tights (it is cold on Halloween here). I love the Boxer Girl and it would be fun to add some fake cheek bruises and take my pink boxing gloves along (yes, I really have pink boxing gloves). The T-Bird Sweetie screams Grease and is probably one of the only full body costumes I have seen that does not involve a renaissance dress — it would definitely be a breeze getting around in this.

All these plus size costumes are from Buy Costumes which is currently promising delivery by Friday just in time for Halloween weekend parties.

Topic Links
* Get your plus size costume from Buy Costumes
* Get plus size tights from We Love Colors

Geeky or Sexy Costume?

Halloween is only two weekends away but you still have time to shop for plus size costumes at Buy Costumes. They currently have a discount promotion running: spend $25 get $5 off, Spend $50 get $10 etc.

When I was looking through the selection I noticed there were many styles already sold out but I did find two fun favorites that had combo plus sizes. The Immortal Seductress ($40) and Where’s Wenda for $37 (come on! she’s cute!). I’m calling them the sexy and geeky costume options:

plus size witch costumeplus size waldo costumes

One of these costumes is more practical than the other one. Can you guess which and why? In my opinion the Waldo costume is more practical for a plus size frame. A woman can wear her own skirt and can be pretty much confident she will be comfortable for the evening. The vampire costume while sexy and cute in its own way it may be awkward for sitting and going up stairs because of the way it comes in tightly at the knees — that train is awesome though.

One looks cool, one looks geeky. Which one is your favorite for look and which is your favorite for practicality?

Topic Links
* Get your plus size costumes from Buy Costumes

Fun DIY Costumes

Here are three quick do-it-yourself (DIY) costumes:

Bag of Jelly Bellies

  • Equipment: Large clear garbage bag, bag of colorful balloons, thick satin ribbon, white tights, shorts and t-shirt.
  • bowl of jelly beans

  • Directions: Hold plastic bag up to yourself with opening of bag at head. Mark spot for the thickness of your thighs on bottom edge. Mark on sides for location and thickness of your arms (it might be easier to lay the plastic flat on the floor and lie on it). Try bag on to make sure you can comfortable get legs and arms in. It should come up high enough that you can bunch the opening of the bag around your neck and tie into place with the red satin ribbon. Blow up the balloons a quarter full so they are still a deep color but big enough to take up space in your jelly bean bag. Blow up enough to fill your bag but not too full because you want to be able to move around comfortable. If you want or need to be able to sit then you can cut one hole at the bottom of the bag (instead of two) for your butt to fit through then tuck the edge of the plastic into your shorts to make sure your jelly beans are secure. Put on fun bright makeup and you are ready to go.
  • Bonus: Carry a bag of real jelly beans in your purse to hand out to people you like — they are always good for a smile.

Zombie Surgeon

  • Equipment: Scrubs from second hand store. Red make-up
  • Directions: Make tiny cuts in scrubs (not too many) then extend them into small tears like someone has clawed at them. Apply red makeup to edges. Make your face bloody from with make-up from eating people.


  • Equipment: Cotton shirt, bow tie, dress pants, belt (optional), calculator, dark rimmed glasses, fun print socks, loafers, and calculus textbook — all items that can be found at second hand store or closets.
  • Directions: Button the shirt right up to top, and add the bow tie. Slip the calculator in the shirt pocket along with a pen. Put on pants, pull up higher than normal and fasten with belt. Roll up cuffs once or twice to expose socks (you might have to press pant cuffs into place. Put on the rimmed glasses and carry your calculus book.

If you do not want to go to the trouble of making your costume, Buy Costumes ships up to the last few days before Halloween.

Topic Links
* Where to Buy Halloween Costumes
* DIY Zombie make-up on a budget

DIY Costume Projects for Adults

If you have the time, the initiative and the moxie you can create a pretty awesome Halloween costume in your size. Here is a listing of ten of my favorite do-it-yourself (DIY) ideas from around the web. You do not need to be a seamstress to try these although some will be easier than others: ghost saying boo

The great thing about DIY costumes is that you know for sure it will fit your plus size curves.

Topic Links
* Where to Buy Halloween Costumes

Deluxe Plus Size Flapper Review

A few weeks back Halloween Costumes asked me if I would review one of their plus size costumes. I chose the Deluxe Black Plus Size Flapper which is available in sizes 1x to 4x. I was told at the time that this costume is “exclusive to our company” so you know there will not be a lot of them around.

This costume deluxe kit includes a “high quality dress, black sequin head piece with feather, sequin choker neckband” for $49.99. The representative also sent along a black feather boa and a fringe purse.

I pulled out the dress to put in on the other day and fought to pull it over my head until I realized it had a built in panty unitard. I then stepped into it and pulled it up. Apparently, I am too tall (or at least long in the torso) as I was only able to bring it up to my armpits. Luckily I have a short friend (Lana) with a sense of humor who came over today to be my costume guinea pig model.

Here are a few images of her dressed up with no place to go (click for larger image):

One of the first things I noticed when I pulled the dress out was how heavy it was; or I should say, heavier than what I expected for a costume. It is made with black velour has lots of sequins and fringe. It is a bubble type dress that folds over on itself at the hip detailing. Here is a short video of the flapper dress in action:

Here is Lana’s video opinion of the Deluxe Plus Size Flapper costume (I must apologize for the off angle near the end which I did not notice until Lana went home. I tilted my iPod which I am used to self adjusting when tilted and I have learned does not happen while recording.):

As for the accessories the boa was horrendous. The first time I unpacked it there were feathers all over the place. I took it out gingerly today and shook it off out side but still ended up with feathers throughout the house. Lana said it was picky and uncomfortable and refused to take it home with her when she left. The little flapper bag is cute but cheap and you could probably get away with a mini black clutch from your closet. I would not trust the strap on it to hold anything.

Overall the 3x costume is well made, comfortable and is a great style but the sizing seems a bit off. I was too tall for it but the costume fit Lana who is a 14/16 perfectly. I was expecting it to be too big on her and that she would have to pin it. We both thought it could fit up to a size 18 even with large breasts.

Topic Links
* Get your plus size flapper costume from Halloween Costumes

Plus Size Alternative Costumes

Here is a price comparison of three of my favorite plus size alternative costumes (this is part of my Top 15 Plus Size Halloween Costumes). When I say “alternative” I am referring to any costume that is not of the traditional vampire, witch, pirate theme. :

plus size zombie or maiden costume

Day of the Dead Bride – This kit includes the dress, choker, veil, and bouquet.

Barbarian Woman – This kit includes the dress, the belt, the glovettes, and the arm cuffs.

Maiden of Verona – This kit includes the hat and dress.