Sew Cheap: Last Minute Halloween CostumesSew Cheap: Last Minute Halloween Costumes – Sew Daily

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It never fails; I seem to procrastinate every year on creating my Halloween costume. At the last minute, I find myself scrambling to put something together. You too? Well, this year I'm looking for inspiration on simple t-shirts. Depending on the color of the shirt and a little creative planning, they can become anything you can think of. The best part is that you can find inexpensive t-shirts at thrift stores, craft stores, and in your own closet. Make these last minute Halloween costumes easily and inexpensively!

Create Halloween Costumes From T-Shirts

I created three Halloween looks to celebrate this spooky season. I started with a black jersey t-shirt dress from the thrift store, a black t-shirt from my husband's closet, and a black jersey ¾ sleeve top.

Spider web dress

My Cricut cutting machine came in handy for this one. I simply used holographic iron-on material and a spider web cut file I found online. I ironed it on my second-hand dress, and voila, my Halloween costume is complete! I plan to pair it with my handmade spider web leggings, spooky makeup, and spider earrings, and I'll be all set. Is it that simple?

Vintage Lace Ghost T-Shirt

I found this vintage stained tablecloth that is perfect for creating this cute ghost t-shirt for my oldest. I applied it to an unwanted t-shirt that I found in my husband's closet. I drew a ghost shape on a piece of paper, transferred it to the lace, cut it out and sewed it to the t-shirt. I added an orange bow from a piece of ribbon from my stash. My kids' school colors are black and orange, and they will be able to wear them for high school Halloween spirit events. Cute and simple!

Black Cat Top

For this one, I cut out felt shapes and used an embroidery stitch on my machine for the whiskers of a simple jersey top from my own wardrobe. To make application easier, I used a washable self-adhesive stabilizer on the back. My youngest teenager's favorite color is pink, so the little cat nose will pair well with all her pink outfits and a pair of cute cat ears she already owns. Perfect for my punky pink teenager!

Sew the mustaches
It's me, my daughter Willow and her best friend.

Halloween costumes with more amazing t-shirts

I took a quick look around the World Wide Web and found some super cute Halloween costumes in dresses and t-shirts.

Citrus Halloween Costumes
Kelly from DIY IN THE WORKSHOP created a whole citrus basket with just simple dresses and felt.
Sriracha Halloween Costumes
I love hot sauce, and this cute t-shirt costume from Sarah Hearts is just spicy enough!
Create Halloween Costumes From T-Shirts used black t-shirts, spray and bleach to create fun and scary t-shirts.

If you're looking for more last-minute Halloween costumes, watch our Costume Essentials episode of Stitch Lab, listen to Flex Your Costume Sewing Muscles on Sew & Tell, take a look at some easy cosplay costumes that would be perfect for Halloween, and sew a few headbands that will complete easy costumes for the kids. If you're a fan of upcycling, I recently wrote about some fantastic costumes from seamstresses I follow, as well as some I made myself from thrift store finds.

Do you want to put together a last-minute, budget-friendly Halloween costume this year? Take a look in your t-shirt drawer and see what fun, thrifty ideas you can come up with!

Happy Halloween sewing!


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This article was originally published on October 20, 2022 and was updated on October 30, 2023.

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