I liken dressing up for Halloween to prom night for youngsters. It's typically one night of makeup and specialty clothing that can come with a steep price tag.
But it doesn't have to be so.
Budget-conscious parents can bypass the $30 costumes at Halloween stores and party shops and easily assemble a cute or ghoulish costume for kids (or yourselves) for about $5.
It's all about knowing where to shop and what type of costume you're looking for.
Dollar Tree at the Village Mall shopping center on Blair Mill Road in Horsham is a great go-to place. The store has a wide selection of face paint for crafting everything from vampire to clown, as well as fangs, hats, masks, plastic swords, toy guns, assorted headbands, wigs and lesser-thought-of accoutrements like over-sized ties and glasses for the bozo types.
For $5, I bought my daughter a cute getup to bring out her inner-fairy - a set of purple wings, matching beads/bracelet, rings, a Rapunzel-like hairpiece and a pair of frilly purple socks to tie it all together.
Dollar Tree also sells glow stick bracelets and necklaces that are great for helping to keep kids in sight while trick or treating at night.
In Hatboro, more costume ideas can be found by perusing second-hand clothing, costume jewelry and accessories at Impact Thrift on East Moreland Avenue. With an open mind, an unfashionable shirt, loud pants, or patterned scarf could be the makings of a great costume.
For folks looking for a traditional, already-put-together kid's Halloween costume, Second Fiddle in Hatboro offers gently used costumes, priced under $14, according to store owner Christine Graber.
No matter how you choose to dress your ghost, goblin or princess this Halloween, remember it's only one night and there are plenty of options to keep you from breaking the bank.
Have a great costume idea? Have you found an inexpensive Halloween costume somewhere else? Tell us in the comments.