Tips to Keep Halloween Frugal This Year


Note: This is a guest post, if you are interested on being featured on Aspiring Blogger, make sure you check out my guest posting page for details. Kyle has been joining us regularly to help us with staying frugal and all the fun it entails. Oh, and bringing us some sweet coupons at the same time – I hope you enjoy!

With fright night quickly approaching, it got me thinking about some practical ways to keep Halloween frugal this year. According to the National Retail Federation, the average American is planning on spending just over $75 on decor, costumes, and candy this Halloween. But with a little planning and creativity it doesn’t have to be so expensive. Here are a few tips and resources to get you started in the right direction.

Build Your Own Costume

I have 3 kids that are of ‘trick-or-treat’ age and it can get expensive outfitting them every year. So a few years ago my mother-in-law was gracious enough to start making costumes for the kids for Halloween and it has saved us a ton of money. Check out this article from titled 35+ Easy Homemade Halloween Costumes for Kids as it is a terrific resource and an excellent place to get some ideas. We have used several of their costume ideas in recent years and they were all a smashing success. We typically save 50% by doing Halloween costumes ourselves and always end up with some very creative and original costumes.

Use a Halloween Coupon

If you don’t have the time required to build your own costume at home, be sure to use a coupon code to save money on one.

Throw a Frugal Party

You don’t have to spend a lot of money on decorations to have a rip roaring kids Halloween party. For example, one of my favorite frugal party decorations include using a couple orange or green light bulbs to make the room like extra eerie. Then play frugal games like ‘Wrap the Mummy’ where you break into teams and the team that can wrap a fellow team member the fastest with nothing but toilet paper wins. I also found a great resource from Amanda Bradbury that has a list of really cool Frugal Halloween Party Ideas.

Decorate on a Dime

The key with Halloween party decor is to use what you have and only buy things that are a great deal. Let your creativity guide you. A couple of my favorites include using a few plastic 1-gallon milk jugs, decorate them like you would a jack-o-lantern with a Sharpie, and light them up with LED lights. They make really cool ghostly decorations on your front porch or entry way.

Another one of our family favorites is to make our own fake blood to use when the kids wear a scary costume. Simply mix together 2 tablespoons of corn syrup, 1 teaspoon of cocoa, mix, and 6 drops of red food coloring. Not only edible, but amazingly realistic. For even more inspiration check out this great article from Better Homes and Gardens titled Quick & Inexpensive Halloween Decorations.

Aside from a moratorium on the pagan festival, can you add any tips to make Halloween a little easier on the pocketbook this year? I look forward to your comments and suggestions.

About Kyle James: Kyle operates which lists online coupons to over 900 stores and has been featured in the New York Times and on NBC’s Today Show.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Daisy Coleman October 9, 2013 at 10:26 am

Great tips here! I always think that handmade things are a lot nicer than shop bought. Plus it is quite fashionable at the moment. I am quite excited about making the fake blood!! To add a suggestion, you could get an old pillow case and some black felt. Use the felt to create a picture of a scary face and some bats and sew onto the pillow case. Then place the pillow case over the back of a chair! Enjoy Halloween!


Bryce @ Save and Conquer October 9, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Nice post. My wife and son enjoy carving and painting pumpkins to place around the front entrance. We put battery-powered blinking LEDs inside the jack-o-lanterns so there is no fire hazard. Of course we have had several stolen over the years. I guess kids liked the flashing lights.

My wife always builds hers and our son’s costumes from scratch. Some have been wonderfully creative. One year our son said he wanted to be fire. Not some super hero or anything, but the elemental fire. My wife sewed scraps of various colored material to an old jacket and pants. She also made a fire crown. She then weaved a battery-operated string of blinking LEDs around the built-up collar. Our son really did look like walking fire as he went from house to house.


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