She's Crafty

Pin-speration: Hello, Halloween!

I’ll admit it. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays.

It’s not the candy (though I’m not adverse to those mini Reese’s cups); it’s not the movie marathons showing Friday 13th Part 37 or Halloween 200 (though I did watch An American Werewolf in London this afternoon); it’s not the cute little kids dressed up as ladybugs or lions or tiny super heros (though they are pretty cute–except for the ones dressed as food. That’s just wrong).

It’s the costumes. Yes, costumes. Plural.

I love coming up with an idea, thinking about how to execute it and, occasionally, it works out the way that I want it to. This year, there have been multiple opportunities to dress up, so I thought I’d share a few of my ideas and even throw in a tutorial.

Fighter Pilot

This is my dad’s “party suit” from when he was a hot-shot fighter pilot. It’s a royal blue one-piece with patches and references to his squadron. Yes, it’s polyester. This is apparently what he would wear when he wanted to be suave and debonair.

The hot-shot fighter pilot. My friends are jellyfish. How cute are they?

Tip: Don’t be afraid to raid your family’s closets and attics. You never know what you might find there.

Día de los Muertos Skull

This is, for all intents and purposes, an easy costume. I wore a dress and flower I already owned; the most labor-intensive part was applying the makeup. I’d imagine that more professional supplies create an even better effect, but I created the below look with a pack of makeup crayons from WalMart. Price = $1.98.

Tip: Allow yourself a good hour or so to apply the make up; I recommend sketching out the design on paper beforehand.

Fifty Shades of Grey

I am particularly proud of this one. While it definitely is more labor intensive than the others, it’s not that difficult and the overall effect is pretty awesome, if I do say so myself.


  • As many different gray paint samples as you can get your hands on. I made trips to Home Depot, Sherwin Williams and WalMart and gathered as many as I could. I didn’t know how many it would actually take, but I’d rather be prepared.
  • Gray dress. I got mine at H&M for $12.99
  • Hole punch
  • Needle and thread
  • Safety pins (for when you get tired of using the needle and thread)


  • Lay out the dress and assemble the paint samples in rows. I wanted it to look like fringe, so that’s how I arranged them, but it’s completely up to you.
  • Punch holes in the tops of the paint samples. Avoid the names of the samples if you can.
  • Using the needle and thread, sew the samples onto the dress in rows. Keep the loops a bit loose so that the samples are able to move.

Dress with paint samples attached with thread loops.

Close up of loops.

  • Continue until the dress is covered. I ended up using safety pins for the last part of the dress as it was easier to attach the samples (and faster). You can’t see the safety pins as they’re hidden by the other samples and the swatches still move nicely.

The finished dress (with more than 50 shades of gray).

I’m sorry I don’t have a picture with the full costume effect, but I’m debuting this costume on Friday. I’ll post a picture update after Friday evening.

Update: Here’s the finished costume, along with my friend Ariadyn, who is a bath poof.

Before the Halloween party at The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch. Oh yes, we’re fancy.

Tip: A costume based on a “play on words” is always fun for me and usually fairly easy to construct. I’ve seen examples of a “Freudian Slip,” “Bag Lady” and “Chick Magnet. For other fast versions of puns, check out this video from Refinery 29.

What is your favorite part of Halloween?

2 thoughts on “Pin-speration: Hello, Halloween!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s