How to Make a Ghost Costume (Lessons Learned)

Why, WHY can’t it just be easy?

My son, Charlie, has no interest in superheroes or movie characters. So when it comes to finding a Halloween costume for him, I am often put in the position of making rather than buying something. (It sure was a lot easier when he was really little and would just wear whatever I put him in!)

One year, he wanted to be a snowman for Halloween. So, I had to figure out how to make a snowman costume and in doing so I nearly LOST it.

Lessons Learned in Making a Ghost Costume

So, one year, he wanted to be a ghost. Easy, peasy, right? Mmmm, not really. I sacrificed a sheet, placed it over his head and tried to get him to be still while I cut around the base of it. You can cut the eye-holes first, but if you do and you don’t place them well, you are screwed.  The sheet was WAY too much fabric. He ended up trick-or-treating in his regular clothes and it was funny to watch people at doors try to guess what he was. Fortunately, he’s super cute so he totally got away with it.

In the end I wish I hadn’t ruined a sheet – or at least, I wish I had bought an el cheapo one and cut that up. (But, of course I waited until the last minute).

Last year, Charlie wanted to be a ghost again. And I had a geeeeeenius idea. Instead of buying a sheet, I got a round table cloth. It was PERFECT! It wasn’t too much fabric and it was hemmed around the bottom. Unfortunately, I didn’t cut the eye-holes big enough. Live and learn. Poor kid, it’s kind of hard to run around at dusk when you can’t see.



Fortunately, I had my Billy Bad Ass and was able to fix it on the spot.

Another thing that helps is to create sleeves so they can carry their candy holder. I used two or three safety pins under each arm, and left enough room for him to be able to take it off – which he did. Ghost costumes that cover your head are annoying to wear.

If he wants to do this again, I think next time I might just cut a big hole for his head and pin the arms. That way, he might actually wear it. Although, I will have to make sure and ask him first, because once I cut it, there’s no going back.

Hope this was helpful. If you have any ghost costume making tips, please share them in the comments below. I may end up making yet another ghost costume at some point.

Although, this year, he is saying he wants to be – get this – a bottle of shampoo!  (This makes me snort laugh.) NO idea how I am going to pull that off, so I sure hope he changes his mind. Send prayers. And vodka.

UPDATE: Oh it got worse before it got better: Choosing a Halloween Costume. Daily.




6 Responses to How to Make a Ghost Costume (Lessons Learned)

  1. Grace October 31, 2013 at 12:52 pm #

    OH my gosh…I can totally relate to this! My now-five-year-old son was a football last year–not a football player, but a football; the previous year he was a snowman (I opted to purchase the snowman costume, though I made the football out of felt). For a while this year, he wanted to be a box–not a Not-A-Box, like in the story, but just a box–then it morphed into a house. Now it’s a ghost (that led me here, via Pinterest). I admit I kind of wish he still wanted to be a box (it seems easier, somehow, given it’s almost 10:00A on Halloween and all I have is a white sheet). Hope the shampoo bottle worked out for you guys. Happy Halloween!

    • Heather October 31, 2013 at 10:53 pm #

      Oh Grace. I am so glad I am not alone. And how funny that he was a football. Sometimes all you can do is laugh and make a football costume. Ahhh, that’s good stuff right there.

      In the end, he decided to be Pat Sajack. But before we got there, here’s a conversation we had. I know you will also appreciate this bit o funny:

  2. Sasha October 17, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

    My 3 year old son wanted to be a ghost this year and I was like ok it can’t be that hard to make….yea right?! First trying to get him to stand up straight and still so I could mark the correct length of the sheet to hem and trying to mark the eye holes was a huge task and made us both get frustrated. Then the sheet moves and slides so much that the eye holes keep shifting so he can’t see…..been trying to fix this costume for 3 days now and feel like tossing it out. Oh and I am almost 100% sure he will wear it for all of 5 seconds before he wants to take it off

    • Heather October 20, 2014 at 5:13 pm #

      I feel ya, Sister! I think it will be worn longer if the head is not covered. Maybe a white hoodie?

  3. Kelly October 11, 2017 at 10:02 am #

    White tablecloth! Genius! Thank you. My two girls want to be ghosts this year and they want our dog to be too! Granted she is all white. Check! Thanks for the tips, may cut the hole out for the head and then do a white hoodie and white makeup like you recommended. Happy Haunting!

  4. Robin October 12, 2018 at 8:11 pm #

    I am as of right now doing my first ghost costume. I also started with a beautiful white sheet. I sewed a long sleeve white t-shirt in that i got for 50 cents on clearance. I now am struggling with the head. My son is 4, very excited about being a ghost. So happy I found this post before continuing to frustrate myself. I will now cut the head off and maybe sew it onto a winter cap. My area is pretty cold. Thank you so much for the idea. Also the reminder that kids don’t like to be restricted.

Leave a Reply