Happy Halloween!

by Erin on October 31, 2007

Lego Costume

So on Monday, about lunchtime, my sister Kate sent me a link to the awesome Diana Eng's supercool Lego costume.

I desperately needed a costume for my son's school Halloween party THAT SAME NIGHT, so I went ahead and put one together … with a few modifications for the lazy.

First of all, you can't buy spray paint in Chicago (and I didn't have time to wait for it to dry anyway) so I ran to Home Depot and bought a roll of the widest blue painter's masking tape they had (cost me about $11). Then I hopped across the street to Party City and bought a package of plastic bowls in the same blue ($4). I taped the box completely, then I cut the holes for my head and arms. (I use an old serrated steak knife to cut cardboard.)

After trying it on to gauge proper placement, I stapled the bowls to the front of the box with an ordinary Swingline stapler (not a red one). I used a stapler because I'm sure I have a glue gun around here somewhere, but bless me if I can find it. I asked my son to bring me a real Lego block for reference, grabbed a Sharpie, and wrote LEGO on all the bowls.

The whole costume, not counting driving to the store or the time it took me to move some bikes in the garage so I could get to the right-size box, was done in about twenty minutes. Sweet! No sewing required, even!

I have to say that it was really fun to be a giant Lego. Lots of kids came up to me and said "ARE YOU A … LEGO?" (I was good and said "Yes" and not "No, I'm a banana.") I also joked that Legos are very scary to parents. They multiply and always end up underfoot …

Thanks very much to Kate for the link and to Diana (and the folks at CRAFT) for the idea!

And in unrelated news, if you want to see me wearing the yellow-bird dress, there's a picture up here.

{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

Miss Kitty October 31, 2007 at 10:18 am

That is FREAKING. AWESOME. Love the part about multiplying and always being underfoot.


MadeByAmanda October 31, 2007 at 10:35 am

That is an awesome costume. Why can’t you get spray paint in Chicago?


Erin October 31, 2007 at 10:41 am

It’s an anti-graffiti thing. You can’t buy paint pens, either. Or guns (okay, that last is not a graffiti thing).


Kate October 31, 2007 at 11:02 am

The blue plastic bowls? Genius!


Christy October 31, 2007 at 11:05 am

I love it! I made the same costume for my son a few years ago. We still haven’t managed to top it.


Wendy October 31, 2007 at 11:32 am

I really love the bird dress and the LEGO costume is a kick!Wendy in NM


Julie October 31, 2007 at 11:49 am

Weird about the spray paint. But I love the costume, and Captain Underpants up there on the wall!


kim p. October 31, 2007 at 12:18 pm

I see LondonI see FranceI see Captain Underpants!(Sorry, I guess I’ve been working on the Homer Simpson costume a bit too much this week!)Costume and dress are both terrific.


Jill B October 31, 2007 at 12:20 pm

great costume – love the article and especially the photo of you IN the bird dress.


Margo October 31, 2007 at 12:41 pm

So clever! And so simple to execute! How kind of you to answer the kids directly. My husband adores using sarcasm with our 2 year old who either doesn’t notice or bursts into tears.


Natalie October 31, 2007 at 12:43 pm

You look amazing! Glad we could help you in a jam. I’m laughing that a kid asked you if you were a banana.


JuliaR October 31, 2007 at 2:00 pm

This is really eerie – I can’t find my glue gun either.


john October 31, 2007 at 2:01 pm

a creative person could probably do grafitti with the right gun and enuf ammo-very good use of what you could get to make a fun costume-


Arwen October 31, 2007 at 2:02 pm

Erin, it looks fantastic! Love the blue tape…Happy All Hallows Eve!


Pencils October 31, 2007 at 2:16 pm

I love your costume. Wish I had thought of it!Bird fabric, though–I love that fabric. I believe Repro Depot has it, unless they’ve sold out. Thing is, they used to have it in a turquoise and orange colorway, and that’s the one I NEED. Anyone know where I could find it? I love the yellow, but the turquoise and orange goes perfectly with my kitchen, where I have vintage turquoise Fiesta, modern tangerine Fiesta, an orange KitchenAid mixer, some orange kidney-shaped Homer Laughlin plates, and other assorted items in those colors (and others, too, don’t get me started about the chartreuse Fiesta…) It really is perfect for me, and I was pulling my hair out at missing it. Help!!


Julie The Vintage Goddess October 31, 2007 at 2:31 pm

HA! What a clever costume, glad folks in Chicago are protected from the evils of spray paint.I’d never paint anything if I could not use spray paint.;-)Cute, super cute dress…of course I love the fabric (who wouldn’t?), but the green makes it awesome.Happy Halloween everyone, hope your kids bring home tons of yummy candy for you to snag.


saidee October 31, 2007 at 3:23 pm

Great costume! Must forward to my friend’s 36 yr. old son who still puts Lego stuff on his XMAS list, though he may not have to now, because he has his own son…Spray paint in CA is under lock and key in most stores, but we can purchase it, FYI.We had a 5.6 earthquake in the San Jose area last night, but your bookcase looks like it was affected by it, though so far the farthest east it was felt was our Central Valley. Is it hazardous to remove a book because of the domino effect?I still love that fabric, too, but I have sworn off buying fabric just because I like it: I have to have a specific purpose. Let’s see, I’m sure I can come up with something…! 😉


Erin October 31, 2007 at 3:26 pm

The bookcase is straight — the photographer, though, is as bent as they come. :-)


Prismglass October 31, 2007 at 4:11 pm

Perfect! I think kids just can’t fathom that adults might still like Legos – they must expect that they will grow out of it. Well, my friend Sean didn’t grow out of it – he makes money building lego sculptures for people now! Check out http://www.seankenney.com for his portfolio.-Robin


enc October 31, 2007 at 4:17 pm

Gee whiz, that’s a brilliant costume. I may have to steal that idea at some point. (I said no salt NO SALT on my margarita!)


lilymarlene October 31, 2007 at 5:04 pm

I’m pretty sure you would enjoy a fascinating programme we had on our BBC Radio 4 this morning about “The New Look”. You can hear it if you go to this linkhttp://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/mainframe.shtml?http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/radio4_aod.shtml?radio4/newlook


Gidget Bananas October 31, 2007 at 5:17 pm

The costume is very cute, but the bird dress is AWESOME.And pencil — gooooooo ORANGE!


bani October 31, 2007 at 5:20 pm



paisleyapron October 31, 2007 at 5:36 pm

I’m glad I am not the only one with so many books and in such an array.Sarah


Nora October 31, 2007 at 6:33 pm

GREAT costume! And love that bird dress. Happy Halloween!


Lenore October 31, 2007 at 11:15 pm

Probably better that you didn’t mention bananas. I can’t help but respond: “My spoon is too big.”


Rachel November 1, 2007 at 1:51 am

I deeply, deeply covet that bird dress. cute on the mannequin, object of desperate desire when actually on.


Sandy November 1, 2007 at 7:26 am

Awesome costume and I love your glasses!


MadeByAmanda November 1, 2007 at 9:38 am

Does banning the spray paint actually reduce graffiti? (I’m just imagining how easy it must be to get spray paint from other places and sell it to those who really want to graffiti.)


MadeByAmanda November 1, 2007 at 9:41 am

And that dress looks way more awesome in person. Why is that? Dress forms technically have the form, but dresses never look as good on a form as on a person. (and may I say very few people can pull off looking like they mean business while wearing a yellow bird dress, but you manage it)


La Rveuse November 1, 2007 at 10:42 am

Cute! Great idea. Have you seen the Lego cake on the net? Cake mix, frosting (dyed with tons of dye) and jumbo marshmallows. Love it.My personal favorite was when my hubby and I went as bacon and eggs. (I was eggs.) White, gold, tan and burgundy felt, a little cotton batting, some sharpies, scissors and a glue gun. We were a hit.This year I just raided my closet and went as a choreographer. My daughter was a tiny dancer in a quickie no sew tutu. Hubbs went as a professor. He is one. Very creative, non? 😛


M. November 2, 2007 at 4:11 am

1) Love the costume! Maybe that’s what I’ll be next year. :D2) Can I just say that you are adorable+awesome? (I read your site all the time but rarely comment. This though, was too good pass up.)


karen November 2, 2007 at 8:25 am

Absolutely adorable!I sooooo admire your creativity!


ceri November 2, 2007 at 11:10 am

That is a beautiful, beautiful dress! And do you still work for OUP/OED? I used to work there but in Oxford… I was very excited to find a dress a day/oup connection!


Erin November 2, 2007 at 11:13 am

Ceri, I’m a consultant for OUP — the American dictionaries. I’ve never worked on the OED. With, yes, but on, no. :-)Thanks!


demondoll November 3, 2007 at 9:01 pm

I was also a Lego block for Halloween! I guess great minds, and all 😉


Sara November 6, 2007 at 1:30 pm

The bird dress is super freakin awesomely fantastic. The yellow necklace is the BEST part. :-)


ratiocination November 7, 2007 at 2:50 pm

WHoa! You live in Chicago and Vogue fabrics doesn’t satisfy your need for fabric? I used to live in Evanston, and I’m still mourning the loss of easy access to Vogue Fabrics. I once got the most gorgeous embroidered linen there for just $2.99 a yard. Now I wish I had bought every yard they had. :)


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