Nadler: Self-made costumes for the win

The best costumes are self-made with cleverness and originality.



Costume stores are selling out of Hazmat suits as customers have Ebola on their minds this Halloween in Arlington, Va., on Friday, Oct. 17, 2014. (Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/MCT)

Zohar Nadler, Opinion Columnist

Halloween is all about the spook, the candy, and the costumes. On the other hand, Halloween is also an opportunity for people to channel their inner creativity and share humor with their costumes. From ghosts to ghouls, people dress up as all sorts of things and eat all sorts of sugar.

While many people celebrate Halloween, the greatest Halloween junkies come up with clever costumes. After all, the best and funniest costumes are self-made.

There is something to be said for someone who can take a few things in the closet and a $5 budget at Walmart and come up with a hilarious and ingenious costume. A costume that will catch the attention of many. It takes great inventiveness to make an item or pun and turn it into a wearable outfit that the public will understand. The effort is worth the time.

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In my eyes, cleverness is the beautiful part of Halloween. Very little compares with walking around downtown Iowa City on Halloweekend and seeing all the wild costumes people wear. The most striking costumes are the homemade ones.

For example, this past weekend I saw people dressed up as a cobweb, a mailman, and a Natty light beer. All homemade. The simplest of ideas can be absolutely hilarious on Halloween. 

Creative costumes don’t just end at their appearance, they include creative jokes throughout Halloween. My friend who was a mailman made delivery jokes all night to everyone he saw, and my cobweb friend collected random things in her cobweb throughout the night — now that’s a way to hold your trick or treat collection. Homemade costumes and ideas spark hilarious conversations throughout every night of Halloweekend.

While the thought put into Halloween is amazing, I also think Halloween is an opportunity for people to have good laugh. Having people go along with your costume and make jokes with you about it is a great feeling. It’s an opportunity to experience the comedian lifestyle. In some sense, costumes provide a creative outlet for people to make light of political situations or historical events.

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For example, being a former president or guy from the ’80s. Creative costumes can bring humor to understand history like a comedian does for a living.

Yes, making your own costume takes more time than buying a costume — but there is a return on time investment. On the one hand, your inner artist gets released (and if not, Pinterest can help). On the other hand, you can get more compliments, more laughs, and maybe even more candy with a clever costume. Two great reasons that highlight my favorite part of Halloween: thinking of an original costume.

We have all seen the witch, the cat, and the bunny costumes. I challenge everyone to create hilarious costumes that will change the Halloween game. While you contemplate on what to wear this year, consider how many jokes you can make and fun you can have with a creative and original self-made costume. If people want to have a “Happy Halloween,” they will undoubtedly take the creative-costume route to ensure a night full of laughs.