If you’ve waited until the week before Halloween to start planning your kids’ costume, fear not.

We outline the places (and some ideas!) for last-minute creations that are both cost-efficient and memorable.

Where To Get Started

The likely places where most parents will begin their searches are the major department stores (Wal-Mart, Target, etc.) or the seasonal pop-up shops.

And why not? They are somewhat cost-efficient and have a plethora of options however, there will be millions of comic book characters and princesses.

Depending on your child’s age, you can either help guide their input or sit down with them and ask what they had in mind. This brainstorming session can be a moment to gather excitement for the creation and shopping process, and sell your idea that they might not have been entirely accepting of at the start.

Once you’ve settled on the theme or character you’re going for, there are a few ways to begin your costume planning. First, take a look at what you already have. Be resourceful and search closets, garages, and other family members’ stashes to avoid unnecessary spending.

Places To Look

Thrift store:

Whether it’s fabrics or old clothes that you can re-purpose, or props and strange knick-knacks, the local thrift store can be a gold mine when searching for pieces to pull off a Halloween costume. Plus, the pricing can’t be beat, and the selection or variety will be more than enough to pick from.

Costume example: lumberjack (beanie, flannel shirt, denim, and suspenders)

Hardware store:

This shouldn’t be your first stop, but, if you know exactly what you’re looking to create and know the items you need to pull it off, the hardware store can provide the finishing touches to a homemade costume. Be imaginative when perusing the aisles as there could be something you’d never expect that can give a look or feel the costume really needs. Just be aware of the materials (weight, fibers, etc.) when choosing what your child will wear.

Costume example: tin man (oil funnel and silver spray paint for a hat)

Final Thought

Be creative, and most importantly, have fun.

This shouldn’t be a stressful process. Rather, a chance for you and the little ones to spend time together planning a costume that you can’t find at a store, and one that will not be replicated during trick-or-treating.

Tag @the_PTOffice in your Halloween photos on Instagram, and show us what you came up with!