Typically, I’m the type of person that spends WAY more than they care to admit on their Halloween costume. That’s primarily because when I’m looking for my costume, I know that I’ll end up wearing it on Halloween and for Comic Con a few months later.

I wanted to give Goodwill a shot after sitting through a cosplay panel this summer. During the panel, they talked about something called “closet cosplay.” The ideas is that once you picked out an item you already had in your closet, with a little bit of creativity you could build an entire costume around it with affordable items from secondhand stores like Goodwill.

Goodwill's online costume generator made that even easier. I loved that you could play with it ahead of time on your laptop or pull it up easily on your smart phone while you’re at the store. I found some cool pieces for a great witch costume. (I’m re-watching American Horror Story: Coven right now, so that’s kind of where my head’s at).

I loved that they had some pre-packaged costumes as well! When you look at the original price on those versus what Goodwill was actually selling them for, you could really see your savings adding up. The accessories were anywhere between $1.50 and $4, so it was super affordable to really bring your costume to the next level.

If you dress up a lot, parts of your costume break, get damaged or lost over the years.  Goodwill’s got a ton of things that you can replace those pieces with for pennies compared to what you paid in the first place!

Last year, I was a scary clown (a la Pennywise):

This year, though, I knew I wanted to stay away from scary. I knew I'd be participating in a bunch of trick or treats this year, so I wanted something a little more family friendly that also would work for fun stuff we do throughout the year, like the Canyon County Kids Expo and Boise Music Festival.

So, I went with Goodwill's happy clown, because it fit great, had all of the essential pieces in the bag already and went great with a wig I already had at home.  And the Goodwill price? Half of what I paid elsewhere for my scary clown last year (that was a similar packaged costume)!

One final thought: I don’t have any kids of my own, but if you’re a parent who has 0 sewing skills, Goodwill’s definitely the first place to stop. Their selection of pre-packaged costumes for kids was even more expansive than the adult section.