This article is written for Halloween fashionistas who are looking for fashion-forward costumes this year. This won’t be your run-of-the-mill DIY Halloween costumes article. I’ve curated a list of the chicest last-minute Halloween costume ideas that you can pull together with items in your closet. Whether you’re looking to save money, reduce waste, come up with a costume idea with hours to spare, or just use and appreciate more of your closet this Halloween, we’re giving you 19 easy costume ideas for all the Halloween parties you’ll be attending this year (even if they’re via Zoom).
Psst… If you don’t have time or DIY skills, no worries! I’ve selected costumes that are not only crowd-pleasers, but they’re also super easy to throw together without crafting skills– and you’re bound to look gorgeous and fashionable in them, too!
1. Great Gatsby costume
Like a lot of fashion-lovers, I have always been obsessed with the flapper girl style. It was such an elegant and fun time period for fashion, where women were looking to add some excitement to their lives following the war and pandemic. If you have any sort of ‘20s style flapper dress in your closet (extra points for fringe), pair it with stockings, pearls, a feather boa necklace, and a fancy feathered headband. There’s a lot of room for creativity with this outfit, so raid your closet to get inspired!
2. Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Another fashionista dream costume, there’s nothing quite as timeless as Audrey’s look in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Pair a little black dress with a short pearl necklace, drop earrings, and large black sunglasses. Put your hair in a high bun with a tiara if you have it. Don’t forget the black gloves and cigarette holder! (If it’s cold, wear stockings underneath as well.) You’ll feel instantly feminine and stunning, so much so that you may even want to wear this outfit every day!
3. Baby from Dirty Dancing
Any of Baby's stylish looks become a simple and comfortable Halloween costume (especially if you live in a hotter climate since Dirty Dancing takes place in the summertime). For the most iconic Baby look, wear acid-wash short denim shorts, rolled at the bottom, paired with a brown or black belt. Throw on a salmon-colored leotard or tank top with white Keds-style sneakers, and don’t forget those ‘80s style curls! Carry around a watermelon for a little detail that will thrill every Dirty Dancing fan.
4. Flight attendant
Are you eager to hit the skies and start traveling again? Channel that travel energy into a sophisticated DIY costume that you can pull together in just minutes. Transform into a flight attendant with a black blazer, matching black pencil skirt (a work wardrobe essential), a nice white blouse, a silk scarf tied around your neck, and sensible shoes. Use a small carry-on or tote suitcase as your bag for the evening and add a wing pin if you have one! Bonus points if you have a pillbox hat for that old-school flight attendant look; if not, pull your hair into a fashionable bun to keep the hair off your face.
5. Bachelorette contestant
This ultra-easy costume will help you live out your Bachelor/ette fantasies while also looking your best at any Halloween party. Just throw on your fanciest Rose Ceremony worthy dress (the sparklier the better) and carry around a single rose (or attach it to your wrist or chest so your hands are free). I love this costume because you can wear that lavish dress you adore but have too few occasions to wear. Plus, you have freedom with your hair and makeup to get as creative as you’d like. Halloween is basically just playing dress-up, right?
6. Rosie the Riveter
This feminist icon has also become a Halloween icon – and for a good reason. This costume is simple to throw together while also making a powerful activist statement. If you have a denim jumpsuit, use that! If not, pair a denim long sleeve or denim jacket with a pair of jeans in the same wash and color. You can also wear a pair of denim overalls with a plain white tee underneath. Throw on a brown belt to cinch the waist and black combat boots or red heels. Tie your hair up in a bun and tie a red (or red with white polka dot) headwrap with a bow at the top. If you want to go the extra mile, check out this Rosie costume kit with tied bandana and Rosie patch and pin.
7. Cruella De Vil (the Emma Stone version)
Cruella has become a fashion icon since the release of the live-action Disney movie. This gives freedom for a more fashion-forward take on this character as opposed to the more cartoonish look of years past. For a costume worthy of Emma Stone, wear a little black dress with a black trench coat—the more dramatic the better. Pair with bright red accessories like red gloves, red heels, and bold red lipstick. If you have some Dalmatian print, you can take your look up a notch too. Most importantly is the black and white Cruella hair, so you may want to get a wig for that final touch.
Pull out a maxi sparkly or satin skirt and pair it with a beachy bikini top for a mermaid look. If you’re looking for something more conservative, wear the bikini top over a nude or white long sleeve shirt. Add your best beach-ready jewelry and throw on a long, brightly-colored wig if you have it! Do your makeup with extra sparkles, and maybe paint on a seashell or two. This look is simple, easy, and everyone will know what you are!
9. Elle from Legally Blonde
If your entire wardrobe looks like Barbie’s dreamland, Elle from Legally Blonde is an easy go-to costume idea. Wear a pink top, pink skirt, pink sunglasses, pink nails—pretty much pink everything! Carry around a briefcase (you are in law school, after all), a stuffed or real chihuahua (optional), and your best can-do attitude! This stylish Halloween costume is so fun, and you can sport as much bright pink as your heart desires!
If you have a metallic gold, white, or black dress in your closet, now’s the time to break out your Cleopatra attitude. Throw on something shimmery and add Egyptian-worthy accessories like a black choker, gold and teal jewelry, dark eyeliner, and black or gold sandals. It's all about the makeup - check out this Cleopatra makeup tutorial. Complete the look with a bold black wig and/or headdress that adds that level of spunk, passion, and intensity that Cleopatra is known for.
What about a mythical “monster” who can become a sultry costume with just a glance? Throw on a white or green dress paired with metallic accessories and nails. Now the important part. You’ll need rubber snakes to put in your hair! If you find large rubber snakes, keep your hair down and pin the snakes with lots of pins and clips to keep them on your head. If you use small rubber snakes, pin your hair in an up-do and go crazy pinning snakes in your hair! You can make this as sexy, mysterious, or spooky as you like, so have fun with it.
12. Inside Out characters
Looking for an easy group costume you can pull together at the last minute? Dress as the emotions from Inside Out!
- Sadness: jeans, white sweater, and blue everything
- Joy: light green or yellow dress (with flowers), blue wig, and yellow everything
- Disgust: green dress, green leggings, purple neck scarf, and green everything
- Fear: white long sleeve under argyle sweater, red bow tie, and purple everything
- Anger: white blouse, brown pants, brown tie, fiery hair or makeup, and red everything
Really commit by face and body painting with your emotion’s color, and stay in character!
13. Mary Poppins
Another Disney favorite is Mary Poppins, and you can construct an elegant costume with just a few wardrobe essentialsyou probably already have. You’ll need a white blouse, black midi skirt, black blazer (if you’d like), red bowtie, white gloves (one of our favorite trends for fall 2021), a black hat, and an oversized tote bag for all your enchanted items. Don’t forget your magic black umbrella!
If you have a light blue dress and a black choker in your closet, Cinderella is the perfect costume for every princess-at-heart, no matter how old. Get yourself a tiara (you deserve it), a pair of glass slippers (your favorite silver heels work just fine), and a pair of white gloves if you have them!
Check out these other 31 DIY Disney Princess Costumes if you’re feeling a little ambitious (and regal) for your Disney Halloween look!
15. Minnie Mouse
Now on to the Disney queen herself: Minnie Mouse! This costume is always cute and super easy to pull together. All you need is a black shirt, black leggings or stockings, and a red skirt. Tape black polka dots on your red skirt and pair with yellow shoes, if you have them (otherwise, black works fine). Slip on a pair of Minnie ears and you’re ready to go!
16. Men in Black
It’s about time we get some use out of our work suits since we’ve been spending so much time in our work from home clothes. Brush off the dust and pull out your snazziest black jacket and pants. Pair with a black tie and dark sunglasses for an easy Men in Black (or spy in disguise) look. If you have a pug, dress them in a suit too and bring them along to the party!
17. Pantone colors
This is a creative, simple costume that lets you raid your wardrobe for your favorite color. Choose one sole color for your whole outfit, like a red dress with matching red shoes. Then, tape a printed Pantone logo and code on your chest, and you’re instantly the Pantone color of the day! For a couple’s costume, throw on complementary colors and take cute pictures when you find your color around town while out trick or treating.
This DIY Halloween costume is best for those ladies who are makeup pros. For the outfit, all you’ll need are a pair of denim overalls over a flannel shirt, paired with boots or heels. Then, paint on a scarecrow face and you’re ready for a party! Check out this scarecrow Halloween makeup tutorial, but you can google others to find one that suits your style and makeup skill level.
19. Netflix and chill
For a cute-cheeky outfit, wear a bright red dress and tape on a black Netflix logo. Then, carry an ice bucket that has the word “CHILL” taped to it. Pair with cute heels and any makeup you like, and you’re ready for a Netflix and chill kind of evening.
I focused on fashion-forward costumes, but don’t neglect punny DIY costumes either! Check out this list of 39 pun costumes to help creep it real this Halloween by Country Living.
What are you wearing this Halloween? Tag us in your fashionista Halloween looks on social media so we can share with our community of fashion-lovers!
- 3. Baby from Dirty Dancing: Oliva Swimwear, https://www.pinterest.com/pin/807622145649615112/
- 4. Flight attendant: http://worldscrews.blogspot.com/2011/11/red-bull-stewardess-costume-in.html
- 5. Bachelorette contestant: http://www.southernbelleintraining.com/2015/10/easy-diy-halloween-costume-bachelorette.html
- 6. Rosie the Riveter: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/102527329006348859/
- 7. Cruella de Vil: https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/24/entertainment/emma-stone-as-cruella-de-vil-trnd/index.html
- 8. Mermaid: https://www.instagram.com/p/Ba105INFMWD/?taken-by=officialktr (@officialktr on IG)
- 9. Elle from Legally Blonde: https://www.seventeen.com/fashion/style-advice/g28677600/diy-legally-blonde-costumes/
- 10. Cleopatra: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/75013150020974390/
- 11. Medusa: https://refashionnation.com/2017/10/27/simple-upcycled-medusa-costume/
- 12. Inside Out characters: https://www.costume-works.com/inside-out-family7.html
- 13. Mary Poppins: https://www.musingsbymadison.com/a-style-bloggers-guide-to-diy-halloween-costumes-ideas/
- 14. Cinderella: https://www.polkadotchair.com/easy-diy-cinderella-costume-ideas/
- 15. Minnie Mouse: https://www.iamstyle-ish.com/2015/10/diy-minnie-mouse-costume.html
- 16. Men in black: https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/holidays/halloween-ideas/g1709/homemade-halloween-costumes/
- 17. Pantone colors: https://sugarandcloth.com/hipster-halloween-diy-pantone-color-combo-couples-costume/
- 18. Scarecrow: https://www.womansworld.com/gallery/entertainment/halloween-costume-ideas-168108
- 19. Netflix and Chill: https://www.insider.com/diy-halloween-costumes-2017-10