5 Reasons We’re Spending MORE on Halloween Costumes This Year
The frugal gal in me would seem poised to present several homemade options for the trick-or-treat crowd. After some careful thought and an analysis of what we truly needed for costumes the past few years, I have done a complete 180, and ended up buying some of the most expensive costumes we could find. Here’s why….
Super cheap costumes never last.
Two seasons ago, I purchased identical Batman outfits for the boys. I had spent $5 for $20 outfits on clearance. They should have made it until a couple of weeks after Halloween. They ended up tearing before we even made it inside the community party on the 31st. Tears and duct tape are what my boys remember most about the holiday. What a shame.
Stair step kids make hand-me-downs the “only” way to go.
I have three boys, ages 6, 4, and 2. Simply stated, anything I buy had better last one season, for sure. Extra points if it can last three. When choosing our costumes this year, I went with a high-end children’s clothing retailer to make my purchase. I knew from experience that these would not only be around this year, they would be around 10 years from now. (We also go with themes that are somewhat timeless. Superheroes will generally be cool for years to come. Disney movie megastars like Monsters, Inc? Not so much.)
Higher prices sometimes mean better selection (and more clothing).
Try telling your 11-year-old daughter that none of the outfits marketed to the “tween” crowd will be acceptable this year. (This “tween” Goldilocks looks eerily like this “adult” costume sold at a different website. Why can’t it look more like this one?) Instead, we will take after my daughter’s own cues, and invest in a nice pair of scrubs so that she can go as someone a bit more respectful — a veterinarian.
Bigger price tags can equal bigger savings.
Several retailers are offering 20% off their prices during these last few weeks before the big holiday. This won’t seem like much if the costume was $8 to begin with (you’ll save $1.60). If the outfit is closer to $50, however, you’ll see a good $10 knocked off the price tag, which may help you get over your initial shock of spending that much (if the first three points were lost on you). Factor in the fact that some high-end shops offer points or loyalty programs and free shipping, and you may walk away with high-quality costumes for the whole family — at a cost closer to what you were hoping to spend at that discount store.
Nothing is cooler than a box of dress-up stuff.
When friends come over to play with my boys, they are instantly mesmerized by the laundry basket hiding in their closet. No, it’s not harboring video games and trading cards. It’s filled to the brim with past years’ costumes and well-made accessories. Among the collection resides a plush dino costume, cowboy attire, plenty of Spiderman masks, and the best Jedi swords this side of the Missouri River. All are the result of carefully-made Halloween purchases, and all get plenty of use throughout the year. (They have put the phrase “Mommy, I’m bored” completely out of commission around here.)
If the thought of buying yet another plastic garbage accessory has you dreading this year’s holiday, look at it from another perspective. The healthy imagination that comes automatic with Halloween is a chance to feed your kid’s more lofty dreams with high-quality clothing and costumes to provide years of entertainment and learning. (And the after-season sale just makes it that much better!)