When I was a kid, Halloween costumes had a homespun simplicity. You were either a ghost (throw a sheet on and voila!), a vampire (five-and-dime fangs and some red lipstick were all you needed), or maybe a witch if your mom didn’t mind you taking the broom out for the night. Today’s Halloween costumes are more sophisticated, and definitely more imaginative. Zombie Cinderella? Why not? ‘Tis the season to let the creative spirit—or spirits, rather—run wild.
For a truly green Halloween experience, skip the store-bought costumes. They’re usually manufactured with super-scary polyvinyl chloride, which releases phthalates and other toxic substances onto unsuspecting ghouls and goblins. Instead, hit your nearest thrift store in search of inspiration. Look for old uniforms, wigs (if you dare), or crinoline skirts as starting points and build your look from there.
If you strike out at the second-hand shops, join the latest Halloween craze: the DIY costume swap. GreenHalloween.org organizes National Costume Swap Day (this year, it's October 13th). Visit their site for helpful tips on how to organize a costume swap in your neck of the woods.
If you’re feeling extra crafty, use face paints to transform yourself into a wicked witch, a Day-of-the-Dead skull, or something less spooky, like a tiger or a fairy. Lyra Skin Color Pencils (http://store.imaginechildhood.com/lyraeuropeanfacepaints.aspx) are perfect for the job, since they’re totally non-toxic, cruelty-free, and come in a rainbow of bewitching colors.
For munchkins hitting the streets for some trick-or-treating fun, a recycled goodie bag is a must, but for an extra dose of Halloween flair, collect your candy in this jack o’lantern-print Chico Bag (http://www.chicobag.com/product/halloween-jack-o-lantern). Its finest selling point might also be its curse: It’s strong enough to carry 25 pounds of sugary loot!
Wanna whip up some tasty homemade Halloween treats for your little ghosts and goblins? Check out VT's 5 Scary-Good Halloween Treats.