5 Easy Halloween Costumes You Can Make With a T-Shirt

We're taking the plain white tee to a whole new level.

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So you’ve been racking your brain for the perfect Halloween costume, and all you really know is that you want it to be cheap, creative and seriously easy. Well, you’re in luck! We’ve come up with five super simple DIY costume ideas that all revolve around materials you likely already have or can easily pick up on the cheap. The common factor: a white T-shirt. 

5 Easy White T-Shirt Halloween Costumes 02:37

A plain white T-shirt is all you need to recreate one of these fun, last-minute DIY Halloween costumes.

Ice Cream Sundae

DIY Ice Cream Sundae Halloween Costume

DIY Ice Cream Sundae Halloween Costume

Turn a plain white T-shirt into an adorable ice cream sundae costume with a few easy steps and basic materials.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Materials Needed

  • white T-shirt
  • glittered cardstock
  • scissors
  • hot glue gun + glue
  • coffee filters
  • plastic headband
  • red balloon
  • red pipe cleaner
  • red electrical tape

This sweet costume couldn’t be easier, especially if you already have a brown scarf and headband! Start by cutting glittered cardstock or scrapbook paper into long sprinkles. Hot glue them to the top of the shirt and on the brown scarf. The scarf serves as the hot fudge, but if you don’t feel like buying a new scarf, the look totally works without it. 

Next, grab a few coffee filters. After folding a filter in half, fold it into thirds and glue the pointed end to the top of a plastic headband. Do this until you have a full circle of coffee filters. These will act as the all-important whipped cream. 

A small red balloon is the cherry on top, literally! You can safely use a hot glue gun with a low setting for this, but be sure not to touch the tip of the gun to the balloon. Once the cherry is attached, use red electrical tape to add a pipe cleaner stem. 

Spooky Skeleton

DIY Skeleton Halloween Costume

DIY Skeleton Halloween Costume

Turn a simple white T-shirt into a seriously creepy Halloween costume with a pair of scissors and a little imagination.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Materials Needed

  • white T-shirt
  • marker
  • scissors

This skeleton costume really couldn’t be easier. Start by drawing diagonal lines on both sides of the shirt that will represent the space between the rib bones. Roughly cut them out — it doesn’t need to be perfect! Cut out a small triangle at the top.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

For an extra tattered look, cut off the top of the neck and the sleeves at the seam. Layer over an all-black ensemble. A full face of skeleton makeup doesn’t hurt either. 

Mummy

DIY Mummy Halloween Costume

DIY Mummy Halloween Costume

Craft this easy Halloween mummy using some old T-shirts and a bowl of coffee. It's that simple!

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Materials Needed

  • white T-shirt(s)
  • bowl
  • coffee
  • scissors

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

This versatile mummy costume can be as easy or as extreme as you want. Start by soaking a few white T-shirts in coffee. We found that 10 minutes creates the perfect look for aged mummy wrappings.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Once the shirt has fully dried, cut it into strips that are about two inches wide. Now get busy tying the strips all around your torso, arms and head (and legs if you want to get full-on mummified). It’s that simple!  

Mad Scientist 

DIy Mad Scientist Halloween Costume

DIy Mad Scientist Halloween Costume

Turn a basic white T-shirt into a clever last-minute Halloween costume in just a few steps, using materials you likely already have at home.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Materials Needed

  • white T-shirt
  • white duct tape
  • scissors
  • black marker
  • old sunglasses
  • dish gloves
  • beaker

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

For the mad scientist, you really need to be ready to commit — or be committed.  Start by adding a strip of white duct tape down the side of the shirt. Tape will make it easier to draw buttons and the seam, turning your plain shirt into an easy lab coat.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Add a pocket with a few strips of tape, and don’t forget to give yourself a clever Halloween-themed name. To take this look to the next level, we recommend popping the lenses out of some old shades and adding a beaker and dish gloves to finish it off. Crazy hair is optional but definitely a plus. 

Soap

DIY Soap Halloween Costume

DIY Soap Halloween Costume

Turn a plain white T-shirt into a clever bar of soap for a simple Halloween costume that is sure to impress.

Photo by: Jennie Andrews

Jennie Andrews

Materials Needed

  • white T-shirt
  • white duct tape
  • scissors
  • marker
  • blue paint
  • paint brush
  • glitter
  • white balloons
  • hot glue gun + glue
  • clear balloons
  • plastic headband

Keep it clean this Halloween with a DIY soap costume that will get the party popping. Start by adding several strips of white duct tape down the center of the shirt. Then cut the sleeves off to make the shirt a perfect rectangle.

Draw or paint S-O-A-P down the front of the shirt. We added glitter for some extra sparkle.

Photo by: Jalynn Baker

Jalynn Baker

Using a variety of sizes, carefully glue a mix of white and clear balloons all over the front of the shirt. A headband with a few small balloons really takes this look over the top. 

More Easy Costumes + Makeup Tutorials to Try

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Go With a Classic

Turn items you probably already have on hand like a king-size pillowcase, cereal box and flip flops into this last-minute costume that's fit for Roman royalty. Our step-by-step instructions make this clever costume a snap.

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Mad Scientist Costume On the Cheap

Turn a basic white T-shirt into a clever last-minute Halloween costume in just a few steps, using materials you likely already have at home. Get ideas for 4 more last-minute costumes you can create from white T-shirts.

Photo By: Jalynn Baker

Fun Frog Hoodie Costume

Kids will love this fun costume that doubles as an imagination-stirring jacket they can wear anytime. Our step-by-step instructions and free printable templates ensure that even a sewing newbie can stitch one up for their little tadpole.

Unleash Your Child's Inner Ninja

Faux leather material and all-black clothing will get your little warrior ready for Halloween with a no-sew costume that's a snap to pull together. Get crafting with our step-by-step instructions.

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Turn Your Toddler Into a Cute Cactus

This super-easy costume is perfect for little ones just learning to walk with their hands in an adult's for assistance — their arms-up position gives their body the shape of a saguaro cactus. Our step-by-step instructions show how to turn a comfy infant's onesie into one prickly character.

Old White T-Shirts = Easy Mummy Costume

Coffee and a few old T-shirts are all you need to create stained mummy's rags. Finish the look w/ a layer of all black clothing underneath and makeup. Get ideas for 4 more last-minute costumes you can create from white T-shirts.

Photo By: Jalynn Baker

Pretty as a Peacock

This is one costume she'll want to wear year-round for imaginative play. The fluffy tulle tutu is sure to be a hit and so easy to craft that you'll want to make them in lots of colors. Learn how to make the no-sew tutu plus a peacock feather headband with our step-by-step instructions.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Let Them Show Their Strength

This no-sew costume is a showstopper but can be pulled together last-minute using a few inexpensive supplies from the craft store. Learn how to make your own.

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Mommy-and-Me Costume: Cookies and Milk

You and your toddler go together like ... well, milk and cookies! Whip up this cute costume using a cardboard box, felt, round chair cushions and basic craft supplies. Learn how to make your own.

Glow-in-the-Dark Stick Figure

An all-black outfit, glow sticks and packing tape are all you need to pull together this last-minute costume that gets 'glowing' reviews. Get our tips for dressing the kids or yourself in a snap

Photo By: Chelsea Faulkner

Adorable Baby Bull Costume

Inexpensive felt, a ready-made beanie cap, black leggings and a top and are all you need to craft this cute (and comfy!) bull costume for your baby or toddler. Get crafting to make this cute cap.

Easy Skeleton Costume

Turn a basic white T-shirt into a seriously creepy Halloween costume with a pair of scissors and a little imagination. Get ideas for 4 more last-minute costumes you can create from white T-shirts.

Photo By: Jalynn Baker

Scary Skeleton Makeup

Realistically resemble the deceased with this skeleton makeup treatment. Although the finished result looks hard, our how-to instructions will make creating a skeletal look quick and easy — transform yourself in under an hour. Learn the trick to making your eyebrows disappear.

Sweet in a Snap

Card stock, coffee filters and a cherry-red balloon are all you need to turn wardrobe basics into a last-minute ice cream sundae costume. Get our tips for pulling off this oh-so-sweet look

Photo By: Clara MacLellan

Pirate Makeup

Transform your little buccaneer into a pillaging pirate this Halloween with our easy-to-follow makeup tutorial and costume tips. Get step-by-step instructions.

Witch Costume

Your little one is sure to cast a spell in a wee witch's costume made up of a no-sew tulle tutu, pointy craft-foam hat, DIY twig broom, black T-shirt and striped tights.

Lion Makeup

Turn your cub into a roaring lion for Halloween with our easy-to-follow makeup tutorial. Learn how to replicate fur with face paint.

Troll-Tastic Headband

Harness a little good luck this Halloween and craft this troll-themed headband. It's a no-sew accessory that'll put the easy finishing touch on a colorful costume. Get crafting with our tutorial.

Squeaky Clean Costume

Channel your inner clean freak to turn a plain white T-shirt and balloons into a clever bar of soap costume. Get ideas for 4 more last-minute costumes you can create from white T-shirts.

Photo By: Jennie Andrews

Hoodie Costume: Black Bat

Our printable templates make it easy to turn a basic black hoodie into a warm and cozy bat costume that's perfect for trick-or-treating on a chilly night or just a game of pretend in the backyard. Sew up one of your own with our free printable templates and step-by-step instructions.

Mommy-and-Me Costume: Kangaroos

Keep your baby close with a clever costume idea that's comfy for your little one while keeping your hands free. Our downloadable templates and step-by-step instructions make crafting the hats quick and easy.

Adventurous Explorer Costume

Adventure awaits! Outfit your little one for the wilds of trick-or-treating in this easy-to-create Halloween costume that uses clothes they already have and a few materials from the fabric store.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Dinosaur Costume

This inexpensive dino costume is easy to make with just basic sewing skills, and so comfy that kids big and small will want to wear it long after Halloween. Get crafting to turn a basic hoodie into a kid-pleasing costume.

Mummy Makeup

Basic makeup, coffee (yes, coffee!) and spirit gum are all you need to turn your kid into a card-carrying member of the undead. Our step-by-step instructions show you how to perfect the sunken eye look.

Ladybug Costume

A handmade tulle tutu (that's actually reversible), basic red sweatshirt and felt are all you need to craft this comfy ladybug costume complete with a personalized leafy trick-or-treat tote bag. Get crafting to make this cute costume.

Cupcake Costume

An old laundry basket, wrapping paper, felt and basic craft supplies are all you need to dress your little sweetie up as their favorite icing-and-sprinkle-topped treat. Get crafting with our step-by-step instructions.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Glam Dark Fairy Makeup

Adults with a flair for the dramatic can take the typical fairy costume for a walk on the dark side with this step-by-step makeup tutorial.

Aviator Costume

Get your little flying ace ready for a night on the town with our easy-to-follow instructions for transforming everyday clothing into a vintage pilot's uniform complete with a custom-fitted aviator's hat.

Candy Dots Costume

Need a little girl's costume you can whip up in a flash? Then this clever costume idea is for you. Just hot-glue painted foam halves onto a white jumper for a sweet disguise based on the classic candy. Make your own with our step-by-step instructions.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Adult Pirate Makeup

Turn your childhood dreams of Caribbean piracy into reality with this silver-screen-worthy makeup treatment. Basic makeup plus a specialty item from the costume shop will have you shiverin' timbers in under an hour. Learn the easy trick for faking gold or blackened teeth.

Feathered Fairy or Angel Wings

These feathered wings are perfect for occasions that require a costume, like Halloween or a Christmas nativity play, but are also sturdy enough to be worn for everyday imaginative play. Learn how to make your own.

Creepy Ragdoll Makeup

Go disguised as a ragdoll this Halloween. Our easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructions will show you how to totally transform your look with makeup. Plus: Learn how to add 3-D stitches with yarn and eyelash glue.

Shark Costume

Inexpensive felt and basic sewing skills are all you need to turn a child's gray hoodie sweatshirt into a warm-and-cozy great white shark costume. Get step-by-step instructions.

Teenage Frankenstein Makeup

Little girls and tweens will love going decked out as this fashion-forward monster teen. Our step-by-step makeup tutorial shows you how to get the look.

Brave Knight Costume

Turn your little hero into a brave knight for Halloween. Our free printable template and step-by-step instructions make it easy to pull this look together even a last-minute costume.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Easy Viking Costume

For less than $25, turn your little marauder into a fearsome Viking warrior with furry brown toilet seat covers or bathmats, leather cording and a store-bought helmet and hammer. Get crafting to make your own.

Cute Puppy Makeup

Turn your little one into a cute puppy this Halloween with minimal makeup you can apply in a jiffy. Requiring just cream face paint, a black eyeliner pencil and basic tools, kids will love this makeup treatment so much that you may want to keep extra supplies on hand to pup them up for birthday parties or school carnivals.

Wee Golfer Costume

Just a few easy do-it-yourself additions will turn clothes they already have into a cute Halloween costume on the fly. Dress your little duffer in traditional golf attire, then finish the look with a DIY pom-pom topped knit hat and golf bag that can also be used to stash their candy haul. Learn how to quickly craft a yarn pom-pom with our step-by-step instructions.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Hula Girl Costume

A hula girl costume is a classic but rather than dressing your little girl in a store-bought costume, craft a one-of-a-kind look using crepe paper and air-dry clay. Get step-by-step instructions.

Let Halloween Go to the Dogs

Don't forget to get your best friend in on the action. When constructing your pup's costume, just be sure to use only soft, lightweight materials that won't obstruct their eyes, nose or mouth. Also, don't pile on the layers as pups tend to heat up quickly, making a minimal costume best. Note: Always keep Halloween treats safely out of your pup's reach. Both chocolate and the sugar-free sweetener Xylitol can be deadly for dogs.

Ghoulish Vampire Makeup

Turn your teen into a bloodthirsty vampire for Halloween with our easy-to-follow makeup tutorial. Get step-by-step instructions.

Robin Hood Costume

Easily turn budget-friendly felt and polyester fabric into a no-sew Robin Hood costume that you can pull together in a jiffy. Make your own with our step-by-step directions.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Chalkboard Treat Bucket

Create a Halloween treat bucket that can be decorated and customized each year to coordinate with a costume or theme. Kids will love this interactive trick-or-treat accessory that can be topped with a lid to safely store their stash. Make your own.

Ice Cream Cone Costume

Your trick-or-treater will have a license to chill in this clever homemade costume that uses craft store supplies and white tights to transform your little ice cream fan into a giant soft-serve cone. Get crafting with our step-by-step instructions.

Photo By: Rennai Hoefer, Ten22 Studio

Fairy Princess Makeup

Give your little girl a glittering fairy princess makeover for Halloween with our easy-to-follow, step-by-step makeup tutorial.

Glittering Trick-or-Treat Bag

Get kids ready for trick-or-treating with a custom-painted and glittered Halloween tote bag. Our free printable templates and instructions make this a great kids' craft.

Enchanting Mermaid Makeup

Fishnet hose and shimmering eye shadow are the trick to replicating fish scales for a seductive-siren look this Halloween. Our step-by-step makeup tutorial shows you how.

HGTV Fans' Best Costume Ideas

HGTV fans are a creative bunch! Check out 25 of our favorite ideas submitted by folks just like you.

Garden Goddess Makeup

This Halloween, go as the enchanting comic book and feature-film villainess. Our easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructions show you how to apply the fantasy makeup to give even a basic costume a silver screen-worthy look.

Halloween Headbands

Turn plain headbands into fun Halloween party favors and costume props with card-stock cat ears or a tiny witch's hat. Get the kids crafting with this easy project.

Zombie Makeup

This Halloween stop them dead in their tracks with this ghoulish zombie bride look using makeup you already have on hand plus a few extras from the costume shop. Learn how to create a corpse-like pallor.

Paper Princess Crowns

Surprise your little princess with a handmade Halloween crown. Perfect as party favors, these crafty goodies also make great costume accessories or gifts for your favorite trick-or-treaters. Our (free!) printable templates make this craft a snap.

Butterfly Makeup

Face paint, gel glitter and basic makeup are all you need to transform your little one into a beautiful butterfly this Halloween. Our step-by-step instructions make it a snap.

Mini Witch's Hat

This fascinator is the trendy finishing touch to an adult or kids' witch costume. Felt and cardboard are all you need to make the basic hat which you can embellish with feathers, ribbon, lace, rhinestones or whatever you'd like. Learn how to make your own.

Capitol City Vixen Makeup

This Halloween show that you're a fan of the popular book series and feature films with this step-by-step makeup tutorial for achieving the Capitol's big-screen look.

Spider Makeup

If your little one is a fan of spiders, this makeup treatment is for them. Use everyday makeup, white face paint and liquid latex to give them a serious case of the creepy crawlies, our step-by-step instructions show you how.

Pumpkin Mini Hat

Budget-friendly felt, quilt batting and cardboard are all you need to craft this cute pumpkin top. Stitch on a bit of ribbon as a chin strap to create a quick-and-easy costume accessory. Get step-by-step instructions.

Cat Makeup

Let your inner party animal roar with this Broadway-stage-worthy cat makeup that takes only 30 minutes to apply. Finish the look with a headband with attached felt ears, a solid color ensemble and a tail. Learn the trick to creating dramatic cat's eyes.

Sunflower Mini Hat

Top a cardboard circle with layers of felt petals to craft this cheery sunflower hat-ette.

Dragon Makeup

Use face paint and craft brushes to turn your little one into a colorful dragon this Halloween — complete with scales. Our step-by-step instructions make it easy.

Match the Setting to Your Costume

HGTV fan 1flatoolman put his handyman skills to work turning the bed of his truck into a pirate's ship to delight kids at his local trunk or treat. A concrete tube forms the mast, while old sheets were dyed black to create the weathered sails.

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