This year we went all out since it was our first Halloween together as a family and Cameron's first time trick-or-treating. We decorated (a little) and had matching family costumes!
Cameron and I went to a local Halloween store for costumes. There were some amazing pirate costumes available but they were expensive, at least $75 or more. If we were going to a big Halloween party, I might have considered spending some money but we were simply going to walk around our neighborhood and then sit and hand out treats. The choice was simple... buy the cheapest ones available. This unknowingly set everything in motion for our matchy family costumes.
The cheapest woman's pirate costume was a one-size-fits-most... that "most" does not include 5'1" people like me. It needed taken in all over so I started cutting and sewing: removing a lot of fabric from the skirt, detaching the attached vest (which therefore detached the sleeves), using the sleeves to make the back of the shirt, raising the waistline, and adding lace to the top front edge of the shirt. I bought some super cheap pirate jewelry separately (earrings and a necklace) which I ended up modifying to add to the other costumes. The skull wine goblet was my favorite accessory :)
Seeing all that extra black and red striped fabric sparked my creativity. Dulce's costume was pale pink which didn't seem very pirate-like. I started cutting and sewing: removing the pink fabric and lace, adding a wide elastic neck strap, shortening the black skirt, adding a skirt using fabric from my costume, adding gold ribbon and gold coins (part of my pirate necklace) to create a bodice, and adding a pirate skull crossbones cut from white fabric. I cut the pink lace off of the hat and painted a layer of white acrylic paint over the pink skull.
Johnnie's costume didn't really need any modifications but I added just a few. His costume was a polyester jumpsuit with an attached vest (a partial vest only on the front) and had only a few small pieces of velcro closing the back. I started cutting and sewing: removing the attached vest, making a new black vest (therefore covering the unsightly back of the costume), adding a pirate skull crossbones to his bandana (taken from Cameron's costume), and making him a belt out of scraps from my skirt so he would have something that matched the rest of us. The vest was very quickly made from a polyester-ish material so I didn't have to sew all of the edges... I just melted them with a lighter so it wouldn't fray.
Johnnie, Dulce, and I now all had matching costumes but Cameron's costume was hot pink. It was a super cute costume that didn't need modified at all... but I had an overwhelming urge to change it to match the rest of us. So I started cutting and sewing: removing all of the pink material and trim, opening the balloon skirt and cutting triangles into the bottom, removing the balloon sleeves and replacing them with lace, adding lace to the top edge of the white shirt, adding red trim to the bodice (fabric from my skirt), adding gold ribbon and gold coins (part of my pirate necklace) to the bodice, making a new belt (originally ties from my costume), and adding a black skirt (same material as Johnnie's vest).
Cameron's trick-or-treat bag was a 99¢ paper gift bag. I decorated it with crossbones printed from the internet and gold ribbon (from the costumes) attached with double-stick tape.
Trick-or-Treating hours were in the evening from 6 to 8pm. We headed out a little earlier with Cameron so she could walk without the competing with crowds of people.
We stopped at a grand total of four houses but that was enough for Cameron. I didn't let her eat any candy this year but she was more mesmerized by the crinkly wrappers anyway.
After walking through the neighborhood, we went back to our house to hand out treats to the trick-or-treaters. The evenings are warm here in Hawaii so everyone sits out on their driveways to hand out treats - no doorbell ringing here! This year was bigger than last year. It was supposed to be trick-or-treating just for our neighborhood but many people from other neighborhoods on came. I can't blame them, it's a jackpot of candy with all the close houses here.
We didn't give out candy this year. I knew the kids would get enough candy at other houses and I didn't want to be tempted to eat any so I bought some toys instead. We gave out glow-in-the-dark vampire teeth and vampire lip whistles, purchased from the Oriental Trading Company website (who offered free Halloween shipping to all states except Hawaii... thanks a lot). Despite the ridiculous shipping cost, the total was still the same as that much candy would have been anyway. We had 300 toys to give out. Each kid took one and we still ran out early! It was a crazy fun night :)
I made a Halloween door wreath by wrapping decorative "spider web" around a grapevine wreath and tucking plastic spiders in it. I didn't use any glue so everything was easily removed, freeing the wreath to decorate again for the next holiday!
"I don't know that there are real ghosts and goblins, but there
are always more trick-or-treaters than neighborhood kids."