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Now here’s a tip

Halloween can be a spooky good time for children and adults alike, but the cost of costumes can be downright scary. When I was a child, my brother and I dressed as a pirate and a gypsy, respectively, for several years, as they were costumes that could be put together using things you might find around the house. This week’s focus is on inexpensive or FREE Halloween costumes. Happy Halloween!

• Most anyone can come up with a ghost costume ( basically, a white sheet with eyes cut out and cut off at the bottom so it’s not too long). How about dressing up that ghost with costume jewelry and makeup, or a mustache/beard drawn on, with a tie and carrying a briefcase labeled “Scare Corporation”? Use hats or other dress-up accessories to make Dr. Ghost or Officer Ghost. The possibilities are endless.

• A basic scarecrow needs only a flannel shirt, a pair of jeans and socks, a floppy hat and some straw. Stuff wadded-up plastic bags into shirt or pants to fill, then use rubber bands to secure straw at the cuffs. Paint on a funny face. (Thanks to J.R. in Illinois.)

• Be an over-the-top tourist: A loud Hawaiian-style shirt paired with a pair of shorts, perhaps socks with sandals? Carry a camera on a strap around your neck. Use a small carry-on bag as your treat bag, or decorate a paper sack by gluing on squares cut from a map.

• Be Static Cling! Use safety pins to pin a variety of small items to your outfit — think socks, scarves, even a pair of undies if you dare! Tease hair until it’s standing straight up, and use hairspray to keep it that way.

• If you have a box, you can cut arm and leg holes in it and draw a grid on all sides. Fill in the squares with different colors to make a Rubik’s Cube. (Thanks to F.S. in North Carolina.)

Send your tips to Now Here’s a Tip, c/o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475 or e-mail JoAnn at heresatip@yahoo.com. (c) 2011 King Features Synd.

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