Calling all aspiring flappers, Marios, and baby dragons: let’s talk about what your family is going to be for Halloween

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This Owl Toddler costume! CANNOT HANDLE THE CUTE.

Who wants to do some Halloween window shopping?! Even if you already think you know what your various family members are going as this year (please tell me SOMEONE has a family that’s all going as Harry Potter characters), you might be pleasantly surprised by the overwhelming amount of awesome that’s available out there.

This year my favorite one-stop is Spirit Halloween, mostly because their costumes range from the seriously adorable (like a BABY KANGAROO costume! A BABY KANGAROO) to seriously awesome and NOT overly sexualized options for tweens (Wednesday Addams! Zombie girl! and so on).

We are all about making your own costumes — and there’s a great set of ’em coming up later today! While we wait, let’s take a virtual tour of all that Spirit Halloween has to offer, shall we?

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Of course these costumes are only the tip of the candy corn — Spirit Halloween has a gigantic variety of costumes available for your perusal. AND BONUS:

PSST: You can also get 20% Off one item — just use the promo code SPOOKY!

What are you guys and your family members going as for Halloween? We want to see photos!

Comments on Calling all aspiring flappers, Marios, and baby dragons: let’s talk about what your family is going to be for Halloween

  1. I am usually extra proprietary about my Halloween costumes, but this one can only benefit from THOUSANDS of people doing it:

    This year, my partner, friends, and I are going to be . . . a ZOM-BEE HIVE!!!

    Throw on a bee costume (or a striped shirt, cardboard tube stinger, and wire antennae), dirty it up a bit, and paint your face all rotting flesh and sunken eyes.

    Stumble around groaning BRAAAAIINNNZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ or HONNEEYYYY and wait as the crowds go “What are you gu- OHHH!!!!”

    Classic.

  2. We are doing an Alien theme. I’m going as Ripley, flight suit, Nostromo patches, teased hair. My husband will be Kane- ripped up white t-shirt, fake blood. And the 6 month old will be a chest burster. That’s the plan. But babies hate plans. So if we manage to pull it off, I will post all kinds of pics πŸ™‚

    • Hey Lena!

      Thanks so much for your comment! We definitely always try to be mindful of cultural appropriation, which is why none of those costumes are on this post. We regularly link to all kinds of websites through our various affiliate programs — including Amazon, which I’m sure has any number of potentially troubling, unsettling, or offensive items on its website. Ultimately, we feel that our readers should make their own decisions about who they do and do not support monetarily — just because we link to a website doesn’t mean you have to buy from it.

      Ariel actually addressed the idea of a “responsible buyers guide” on another post recently, and I feel like it’s relevant here:

      “…the answer is yes (we’ve thought of it), but no, we won’t be doing one. Ultimately, Offbeat Mama’s readership is wide and diverse, and the issues that are top priority for one reader (environmentalism!) could clash with another reader’s pet cause (animal rights!).
      We trust readers to know their progressive priorities, and make their own purchasing decisions based on those priorities. I don’t feel it’s our place to tell anyone what their values or priorities should be.”

      Let me know if you have any other questions — we can totally hash this out via email!

      • Thanks for replying to me and I agree that the buyers have to make their own decisions. However,I hoped that the values the Offbeat Empire stood for in many posts didn’t stop being important when money was involved. I guess it was naive on my part.

        • Your going to be hard pressed to find ANY Halloween costume store that is both comprehensive in it’s selection but also is 100% PC. If people don’t buy those types of costumes, they would quickly fall off the market.

          Plus, I don’t really see how the geisha costume is cultural appropriation. There have been non-Japanese geishas just as there have been non-Japanese sumo wrestlers. I’d hate to think someone believes I’m being racist when I wear yukata I bought while living in Japan.

          • I was expecting to find such an option on Offbeat mama that has always strived to promote certain values. To me, this approach it’s very similar “I eat at Chick-fil-a because I like the food”. It’s pointless to preach about equality if we keep supporting this type of organizations.
            I also think that any costume that takes a cultural complex and nuanced entity and reduces it to a cheap product for white people to have fun is wrong. This campaign explains it much better than I do:
            http://thesocietypages.org/colorline/2011/10/25/were-a-culture-not-a-costume/
            Also some insight here:
            http://racerelations.about.com/od/understandingrac1/a/RaciallyOffensiveCostumes.htm
            It is about cheapening and generalizing, while using the same old racial sterotypes. In this specific case mysterious, sensual Orient. So it is very different from you wearing an original kimono, which I am sure you do to honor and celebrate the culture, not to make it a costume.

          • We would have like 5 links to choose from empire-wide if they ALL had to be 100% free from “potentially troubling, unsettling, or offensive items on its website.” Let’s try something new: NOT getting offended so easily. Yeah? Everyone has the right to question, but we shouldnt nit-pick

    • I really feel like there’s a difference between playing pretend and dress-up, and cultural appropriating. Halloween is about being something or somebody you are not. This may include “trying on” a different culture than the one you are/were raised in. In a perfect world, we would be mindful of this fine line and at least do some research on the culture, and try to put together a costume that is not based on stereotypes but actual research. One might argue that even this would not be enough, and we should never dress up in a costume from another culture except in cases of historical accuracy or reenactment. But I would argue that instead of banning these types of costumes, we use the opportunity to do it “right”, therefor encouraging the exploration of other cultures, the process of research and historical costume design. I’m not suggesting that it’s practical to go through this with a toddler (in that case I might personally chose to stay away from the “Indian” costume), but it could be a useful tool with older children.
      Also, if you are aware of costume companies that steer clear of the type of costumes that cross this cultural appropriation line, I’d love to see the links. Then instead of getting on Offbeat Mama’s case about supporting these companies, the readers could possibly choose to support another company.

      • I am sorry but I don’t feel it is my responsability to give shopping alternatives. I saw something that bothered me and expressed my feelings about it.

    • I feel like this comment and the tangent that follows assume only white people read Offbeat Mama, click on their ads, and shop for Halloween costumes.

      • Well… that escalated quickly.
        Being a consumer is means that you have the choice to support and spend with companies who are in line with your ideals and beliefs. You also have the right not to spend your money with a company. Just my two cents.

      • I also found the comment “I also think that any costume that takes a cultural complex and nuanced entity and reduces it to a cheap product for white people to have fun is wrong” curious.

        1) It assumes only “white people” buy these products. I am of Hispanic descent and can tell you I have seen plenty of these types of costumes on friends and relatives. It seems like a huge stereotype to say these costumes are only for “white people”‘s enjoyment.
        2) Would these costumes somehow be less offensive when worn by minority groups? Is it okay for a black person to wear an Indian costume and not a white person? Where exactly do we draw the line?
        3) Again, in the case of the geisha costume, a geisha is a profession. I don’t see it much different from a doctor costume or 50s waitress costume etc. Japanese are not the only people who can become geisha in the real world. In Japan, you’ll often see kids dress as “geisha” at their school festival for laughs or photography studios in touristy areas like Kyoto will dress you up as a geisha and take your picture, regardless of your race. So how would it be offensive to dress as a geisha for Halloween but it’s not offensive to dress as a German barmaid? Or is it only offensive when a white person does it? Would it be okay if a person of Japanese descent to wear the costume?
        4) Finally, in the big picture, should people only wear costumes “appropriate” for their race? Am I being offensive, as a Hispanic, if I wear an Oktoberfest costume for Halloween since I am not German? Would you tell a little Asian girl that she’s not allowed to dress as Storm for Halloween because Storm is a black woman?

    • Offbeat Mama has not specifically promoted those costumes, so I don’t see why it’s an issue. I also don’t believe that they are losing their values in light of money – I don’t think they can be held responsible for every single thing that other companies offer, even those that they partner with.
      As Ariel said on the link Stephanie posted, everyone has different priorities which can so easily clash. Nothing and no one in life is perfect, especially when you talk about companies, so we all have to find our own centre and make decisions accordingly as individuals.

  3. Sadly my reply hasn’t been published so I can only say that different people find different things offensive and that minorities’ voices should not be silenced. When it comes to issues of cultural appropriation I firmly believe it should be left to the people affected by it to declare it offensive or not.
    I personally feel they expressed it better than I can:
    http://www.ohio.edu/orgs/stars/Home.html
    Making a cheap costume of a complex cultural entity for fun and laughs and honoring and cherising that culture are two very different things (regarding the wearing a kimono vs. wearing a geisha costume).

    • I don’t think anyone here is arguing with you that those costumes are inappropriate, Lena – but they’re not featured on the blog post, nor is anyone commenting that they like them or want to wear them. It seems a little like you’re looking for stuff to be offended about. Maybe email the website that sells the costumes? No one here is advocating for the costumes you’re offended by, so I’m not sure why you’re upset with OBM or its commenters.

      • Hello Jill, it’s just that I was expecting more from Offbeat Mama, that’s all. I love the site, so it made me sad to see this post. I wouldn’t have said anything on websites that wouldn’t have been so on point on these issues before. I hope it makes it clearer, I don’t have a grudge against Offbeat mama or the commenters, I was just saddened that even here I couldn’t escape geisha and “indian maiden” costumes. I love the site and that’s why I was saddened by the fact they didn’t promote a shop without this kind of costumes.
        p.s. the comment above was intended as a reply to someone else, sorry about misplacement.

    • Hey Lena, the reply is published now. It was held for moderation because it has links, that’s an auto setting we have. Sorry I couldn’t get to it immediately.

      • thanks Stephanie, I just thought it wasn’t going to be published because I didn’t phrase it correctly enough, thanks for explaining πŸ™‚

        • Nope! I think that if a comment has one link, it’ll go through, but if there are more than one they’re held. Most of the time either Ariel or I catch them pretty quickly!

          And again: thank you for bringing up this point. I don’t disagree with the root of your argument, but I did do my best to avoid including any costumes in the post that could be offensive. We’re always trying to consider as many angles as possible with all of our posts, and especially stuff like this. Like, to the point that when I saw the pirate costume I was like “ehhhh?” for half a second, but figured it’s ok. πŸ™‚

  4. we generally refer to the younger kid as “the barnacle” for his attachment to my wife. so we’re going to dress him as a gorilla and her as the empire state building =) i think we’ll have to get him a barbie to wave around.

    the elder is going to be a dinosaur – he’s been talking about it for ages. unfortunately, i don’t know what *i’m* going as!

    we tried, selfishly, to talk him into going as max so we could be wild things, but that was, notably, not a dinosaur – so it didn’t work out.

  5. First we were going to go as Han Solo, Princess Leia and Yoda. But Our 11mo Yoda has grown out of his 0-6mo Yoda costume. :/ And I was not impressed with the $50 price tag on what is essentially a sheet with a belt. So…. we’re all going as Han! Han Trio! And all hand-gathered, too. I will send in a pic as soon as all the parts arrive in the mail πŸ™‚

  6. For my company party, baby girl is going to be a duck. For trick-or-treating, she’ll be a strawberry. I haven’t thought of anything clever to go as that matches either one.

      • haha! i told my husband we should be a duck and a goose, but he’s already going as The Black Dude (a la Big Lebowski)

    • You could be a mouse..like the book…The Little Mouse,the Red Ripe Strawberry,and the Big Hungry Bear

      The strawberry is bigger than the mouse but that’s ok. It’s a super cute book.

  7. Family of dragons here! I’m thinking that our halloween photo might be used as a Christmas card later on: here be dragons.

  8. My daughter has two, soon to be three costumes (what- mommy costumes at DragonCon) The two of us are steampunking it. She and daddy are going to a father/daughter event as batman and robin (with a tutu). She’s going to daycare as a fairy.

  9. We’re going as the AVENGERS!! My two year old is going to be Thor (he’s got the long blonde curly hair, so it’s perfect!), I’ll be Black Widow (I have red hair… apparently I planned this out because of our geekiness and physical traits ha), and my husband will be going as Tony Stark with the full-on LED shirt and Stark Industries mug. SO EXCITED!

  10. My husband is 6’3″ and my toddler is blonde, so they will be Fred Flinstone and bam bam. Since I have dark hair and bam bam isnt Fred’s son, I will be Betty Rubble. Im thinking of being Rockabetty Rubble, and making it a little more awesome, with curled betty bangs. My 9 year old doesnt like to go along with themes, so he is going to be Link. All will be homemade, as it should be ;P

    • I was Betty Rubble last year (made the costume out of felt and a glue gun!) and my baby was Bam-Bam since he had the blonde, curly hair. Made his costume too. πŸ™‚ Have fun!

  11. My husband and our 2 year old son are going as a ghostbusters. I was trying to decide what to do since we are welcoming a newborn soon and I don’t want to freak her out…. Yet

  12. The child is being Ash from Pokémon. My son is obsessed with old school Pokémon these days, and it’s such an easy costume. He already has a stuffed Pikachu my sister gave him, and my mom crocheted him a little Pokéball, so really, I just need to make a hat, vest, and gloves to go with his jeans and t-shirt.

    It’s his first Halloween in a costume, so we’re excited. πŸ˜€

  13. My 18-month old is going as a baby dragon, so I, of course, am going as Daenerys Targarean from Game of Thrones.

    • My “family” includes three children and a muscular boyfriend (and a couple of spouses who aren’t SoIaF fans :-P). I really want to dress the kids up as dragons and then do us as Dani and Drogo. I think it would be fabulous! But I’m more likely to pull it off for Dragon Con next year than Halloween.

  14. When my sister was pregnant with her first, she dressed up as a kangaroo for Halloween, which was TOTALLY appropriate since her unborn son was going to be named Joey…which is what a baby kangaroo is called.

  15. This will be my daughter’s first Halloween, so I’ll finally get to live out my dream of having the entire family dress up as Star Wars characters. My husband will be Darth Vader; I’m going as Queen Amidala; my daughter will be Princess Leia; and I’m trying to find a doll that looks like Luke Skywalker so the whole family will be complete.

  16. I noticed that my son’s sleeveless blue and white striped romper that I got at a consignment store looks like an old-timey strongman from a circus getup. So that’s what he’s going to be – an old timey strongman, complete with drawn on handlebar mustache, and papermache barbell. Then I’m going as the fortune teller and my husband as a lion tamer. We’re going to be the circus/sideshow!

  17. My two sons actually went as Harry Potter and Voldemort two years ago. Last year was Mario and Luigi.

    This year they can’t agree, so Link and a “super creepy ghost monster guy” are what they want to be. I’m going to try to make a Twilight Princess Zelda costume to go with them if I have enough free time.

  18. We’re thinking of either going as Lily and James Potter (ghostly, of course) with our little dude as a recently-orphaned Harry. (It makes no sense for him to have the scar if we’re still alive, obvs.) If we’re feeling less morbid, we’re planning on a “Moby Dick” theme. Little Dude will be a tiny white whale, my husband will be Ahab, and I’ll be Starbuck…from Battlestar Galactica, because that’s way sexier.

    • We tooootally did Lily/James/Harry for our son’s first Halloween! Def a little morbid, but it was fun.

  19. We are flying on Halloween so we’ll dress 18 month old boy as a pilot. I because seriously the pictures will. be awesome

  20. My brother nicknamed my son “Thor” while he was still in my belly. So this year he will be dressed as Thor. At 18 months, he is most excited about the hammer.

  21. My daughter will be a ladybug, I’m gonna rock some antennae and a bee shirt, and my husband is going to be The Fly. Halloween just might be my favorite holiday, and it’s so much more fun with kids! Though it’s a different kind of fun than we had on Halloween before kids πŸ™‚

    Not to breathe life back into an argument, but I was pleasantly surprised to see a more commercial retailer on here. I love independent businesses as much as the next gal, but some of us “offbeat lites” still hit up places like the Spirit store on occasion. I understand the idea of cultural appropriation enough not to buy the poncho packaged with the thick black moustache, but I don’t get offended when I walk by it in the store. I’m half Mexican in case that matters, but I’m not sure it does. The people who are offended by cultural appropriation are not always the people whose culture is being misrepresented.

    Anyhow, thanks for the post. I love being able to get brain candy and brain food from the same place πŸ™‚

  22. I’m going as “Attacked by the 80s”. My boyfriend and our youngest son are going as David and Goliath. My oldest son is going as an Army guy. My stepson is going as the red robin from Angry Birds. I’ve made the red robin costume already, out of felt and a glue gun. Making the David and Goliath ones this weekend out of the same stuff.

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