A Little Elbow Grease, and A Whole Lot of Fun

As a child I did not participate in Halloween. Not only was I terrified of people in costumes, but my family was very religious. It was not until I was an adult that we began to change our views.

As an adult I began to embrace all things horror, loving Halloween for the magic it provided. My parents even began to embrace the holiday, even walking with my niece and nephew as they went trick-or-treating.

As a child I loved arts and crafts, but it was not until adulthood that I took it seriously. I discovered that I could use my imagination and experience to create anything I wanted, and that was what I did!

I began to create costumes for myself and my husband. He hates dressing up. Therefore, most of the costumes are for me, but I have made him a few πŸ™‚

In school we learned to sew, but after an accident in which I was practicing sewing at home and accidentally sewed through my finger, I gave the hobby up.

It was not until adulthood that I asked my mom for a refresher. And, believe it or not, no accidents so far!

Here are a few costumes I have created. Most of what I use is clothes I buy at the thrift store, rather than fabric. I love upcycling and repurposing clothing that would have otherwise been forgotten πŸ™‚


Stories of Petey - A Little Elbow Grease and A Whole Lot of Fun - Cleopatra

To make this piece, I took a white muslin dress, and cut it into strips. I then sewed the strips onto a white cotton dress, creating the mummy wrap effect.

For the necklace, I took a cereal box and cut out the shape seen above. I used acrylic paint to paint the blank side gold, and then used different colors of acrylic paint to create the gems. When the paint was dry, I applied a layer of Mod Podge to seal it. I used a piece of string to hold it on like a necklace.

To get into the look, I wore a gold head band that I had purchased at the store, and applied powder and cocoa powder to my skin, to create the look of a mummy who had just woken up after years of sleep in the desert.

It was so fun wearing this costume! I do believe I have more fun wearing costumes than the kids we give candy too!


Stories of Petey - A Little Elbow Grease and A Whole Lot of Fun - Sally

This dress was a spur of the moment idea. I was at a garage sale, and noticed quite a few clothing items that had colors matching Sally’s dress. I purchased the clothing items, and went home immediately with a plan in mind.

I am not one who measures or is exact when sewing. Most of what I do is not pinned, and is doing by what I picture rather than what is planned.

This dress was pretty much me tearing apart clothing items, and sewing them together. That is really it. That is why the dress looks raw and tattered. And, that is why I love it! It does not look exactly like her dress in Nightmare Before Christmas, but it looks like how I imagined her dress to look like πŸ™‚

I used a sharpie to create the markings on the fabric, and some yarn to create the wig. It’s not perfect, but I love it! That is all that matters πŸ™‚


Stories of Petey - A Little Elbow Grease and A Whole Lot of Fun - Marceline

My husband and I adore Adventure Time! We have most of the Card Wars decks, and constantly quote the show! It resonated with us in a way we did not expect.

One year we decided to dress like Marceline and Finn. Yes, my husband did dress up, proudly wearing his Finn hat and backpack, holding the sword!

For me, this costume was very simple. I purchased a wig, and wore a tank top and pair of jeans I already owned. The only thing thing that took any effort was my axe bass.

The character Marceline has a bass guitar that is also an axe. For me to recreate this, I had to think of my feet. I purchased a plastic axe at a local Halloween store, and began to paint it the colors matching her guitar.

I added push pins to create the different silver buttons on the front, and attached string to resemble a guitar.

This took a lot of work, but it was worth it! It is lightweight, sturdy, and looks amazing!

You simply can’t enjoy a Halloween night with Marceline without a song, and there can’t be a song without a rocking guitar πŸ™‚

Bride of Frankenstein

Stories of Petey - A Little Elbow Grease and A Whole Lot Of Fun - Bride of Frankenstein

These costumes were fun to make! For the Bride of Frankenstein dress, I cut up some of my husband’s old white t-shirts, and sewed them together to make a baggy, extra long white dress. I attached white strips to the shoulders for the torn sleeves, and wrapped white strips around my arms.

I purchased my wig, and an extra big blazer for my husband.

As I said before, my husband hates dressing up. To convince him to be Frankenstein was no easy task, believe me! I had to make it easy for him. I think we all know, for something to look easy, it is the exact opposite! I think I put just as much time into his “hat” as I did my dress πŸ™‚

I created a Frankenstein “hat” for my husband to wear. This would require no makeup and no fuss, for which he was grateful.

I purchased a black felt hat with a brim at a discount store, and cut off the brim. I used acrylic paint to paint the felt to match my husband’s skin tone. This would mean the hat was the upper forehead of Frankenstein, since he had such a long face.

I used a red acrylic paint to create a scar. I bought a black wig, and cut a hold through the top of the hat. I pulled the wig through the hole, knotting it on the inside so the wig would sit on top of the hat nicely.

I wrapped the wig around the hat, like hair, and trimmed the bangs.

The whole thing was so fun, and truly gave me a thrill! I know my husband only wore the outfit for the photos, but it brought such joy to my heart πŸ™‚ There is nothing in this world like dressing up, and living an adventure all in one night πŸ™‚

I hope these costumes inspired you to use your imagination to create your own. You never know what you are capable of, unless you give yourself a chance πŸ™‚

What was your favorite costume? Don’t forget to comment or reach out to me on:





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Published by storiesofpetey

I am a lover of stories, addicted to reading and writing. I love to draw and paint, sew and work on projects. My greatest moments are spent escaping into the little adventures of life. I love little adventures!

2 thoughts on “A Little Elbow Grease, and A Whole Lot of Fun

  1. I adore home made Halloween costumes! Funny, scary, or of someone popular, they are all unique which makes them so special. You did an amazing job!

    Liked by 1 person

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