Last minute videogame costumes

It's the weekend before Halloween and you have nothing to wear. Fear not, for we've compiled a list (with some step-by-step tutorials) of some quick costumes you can whip up without having to step anywhere near a costume store.

By scouring our local big box retailer famously known for their bullseye logo and a nearby office supply store we were able to compile everything we needed to create the following costumes. While you may not win any costume contests in any of these, at least you won't be that party pooper in jeans and a t-shirt when everyone's dressed up as a sexy (insert profession here).

Floating Present - Animal Crossing

Above: Amber later floated into a tree and then gave us all candy after we shook her down

What you'll need:
- a large box (we used a 20" x 20" x 24" one)
- 1 roll of white wrapping paper
- 1 roll of red crepe paper (streamers, found in party section)
- 1 balloon
(if you get a helium balloon you'll save yourself a step, otherwise you'll need something like a coat hanger to prop up your balloon from your head)
- wide headband
- glue
- scissors
- heavy-duty tape (we used the clear packing kind)

Above: We used a plate to figure out the size for the head hole and eyeballed the arm holes

Above: Painting the box with spray paint is an option, but we chose to use wrapping paper. Feel free to decorate your room with the leftover crepe paper after successfully completing this costume

Above: We wrapped three sides of the box in one pass using glue to hold down the edges then cut square panels for the two remaining sides

Above: For the arm and head holes, cover entirely with wrapping paper, punch a hole through the middle with scissors then cut slits like above

Above: Add glue around the inside of the hole and then fold the slits inside for a clean look

After wrapping the gift, we glued down strips of red crepe paper for the ribbon around the box then fashioned a bow out of the same material for the headband.

Above: We discovered that you'll want a wider headband than this or else the weight of the balloon will make it difficult to wear

Above: Helium balloon users can skip this step. This is how we made our balloon look like it was floating

Above: Simple, yet effective

Mystery Box - Super Mario Bros.

Above: The jaunty angle of Henry's fire flower gives this costume a more festive look

What you'll need:
- a large box (we used a 20" x 20" x 24" one)
- wide headband
- glue
- scissors
- heavy-duty tape (we used the clear packing kind)
- color printer
- fire flower template (PDF file)
- question mark design (PDF file)

Both the fire flower and question mark templates are formatted to print on standard 8.5" x 11" paper and you'll need to print four copies of the question mark file to cover each side of your box. After cutting arm and head holes like in the example seen above we glued the fire flower design to another piece of cardboard then cut around it to make it stiffer.

Above: We attached another strip of cardboard to the back with tape

Above: Then we looped the strip around the headband (again, you should use a wider one than this) and taped it down

These are just two simple examples of box-based costumes, but here are a few more ideas that can be easily produced:
- Cardboard box from Metal Gear Solid
- Anything from Minecraft
- Weighted Companion Cube from Portal
- Monster-in-a-Box from the Final Fantasy series where your head is the monster

For those unwilling to wear the latest in cardboard couture we have a few non-box options on the next page.

Cheryll Del Rosario
Photoshop is my friend!