Halloween Costume Ideas for Women

Pre-made halloween costume prices are astronomical and quite frankly so boring. How many witches, pirates, slutty “everything,” and vampires can you possible pack into one holiday. Stand out this year and save a ton of cash by getting your costumes at you local clothing exchange or thrift shop. This mini Halloween series will serve as an inspiration guide to crafting that perfect halloween costume from your local clothing exchange shop creatively and on the cheap.

Women often get pegged into being a witch or a provocative witch for Halloween. Why when there are so many really cool and fun options?! Check out these retro glamour girls for some costume inspiration.  

1.) Margot Tenenbaum (The Royal Tenenbaums): This apathetic character can only be complete with the accompanied demeanor so get ready to do a lot of sighing and frowning, but it’s such a fun role to play if only for a night!

What you’ll need

  • An oversized faux fur coat. You’ll probably find one towards the back of the clothing exchange shop. It won’t be really hard to find.
  • A striped dress
  • Some simple hair clips
  • Brown oxfords or flats
  • Heavy black eyeliner
  • Lollipops make great prop cigarettes and please please please do the iconic Margot Tenenbaum hair.

2.) A PanAm Stuartess: These quintessential glamour gals ruled the skies. You might have to do a little digging but chances are a bright blue skirt and jacket will probably have gone untouched.


  • Check the accessories section of your local clothing exchange shop for the scarf, sunglasses and flight pin. I routinely find funky retro accents for all of my outfits and costumes here.
  • You don’t need a Pan Am bag exactly. A patent leather blue bag will probably be hiding somewhere.

3.) Cher Horowitz (Clueless): Just because you’re Clueless doesn’t mean you’re a virgin who can’t drive. Any one out there get that? No, just me, right… just make sure you have a grounded friend to play Dionne to help you out of awkward situations like that.


  • This is probably the only instance where a plaid suit jacket will get bought at your local clothing shop. Grab that baby up!
  • A fluffy pen is key as well as bubble gum
  • Check the hat section for a great Dionne hat!

Who else misses the 90’s!? Just me again huh?

4.) Holly Golightly (Breakfast at Tiffany’s): Stepping into Audrey Hepburn’s shoes for the night will have you wanting to adorn a little black dress and tiara everyday of the week.


  • Tease your hair a bit to get the tiara to stay in place
  • Most of the jewelry you’ll have an easy time finding in the jewelry cases
  • Carry a tiffany’s retail bag to really drive the point home.
  • You can usually find a smoking stick in vintage or antique consignment shop.

Stay tuned for the follow-up post in the mini series “Funny and Topical Halloween Costume Trends for 2013” and check out our “Halloween Costume Ideas for Men

Leave a comment if you have something you want to add or take a picture of your clothing exchange costumes and share them below!

Sierra Adkins

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