One thing that most students remember about their university experience is going out in fancy dress costumes; and the best time of the year to really make the most of your dressing up skills is Christmas, when the majority of students in university accommodation can be seen wearing some elaborate outfit or another.
You needn’t worry about having to spend a fortune on your costume either, as we’ve put together some ideas on how you can dress up in a festive frock without breaking the bank.
Most people think of dressing up as Father Christmas or Mrs Claus when considering their festive costumes, but there are many other innovative outfits you can wear if you want to look a bit different this year and stand out from the crowd. A great idea is dressing as a Christmas present; not only will few other people have the same plan, but it will also be a very cheap option.
All you need is a large cardboard box, some wrapping paper (the shinier the better), ribbon and a big bow. Slip on some simple black jeans and a long-sleeved black top and cut four holes on each side of your box – one for your head, two for arms and one large enough to slip your body in. Next, wrap your box in the wrapping paper and adorn with the ribbon, sticking a big bow in the centre of the gift. Voila, your costume is now complete!
Lots of people buy ready-made costumes, but these can cost a substantial amount and may push you over your budget if you’re a student. That’s why, it’s a great idea to make your own outfit, and this doesn’t necessarily involve you being a creative whizz! You can find a lot of costume ideas in cheap pound shops.
For instance, you could easily dress up as a Christmas tree, simply by wearing a green outfit (everyone has evergreen-coloured trousers and tops, right?) and accessorising with tree decorations. You can buy tinsel for next to nothing, while you can also hang baubles off your outfit if you hook them to your clothes with safety pins. To have a real impact, you can buy battery-powered Christmas lights to sparkle all night long, and for the finishing touch, you can buy a star or angel tree topper and stick to a hairband to place on your head.
You can be similarly creative with your costume if you decide to be a snowman (or woman). Simply get a white dress or white top and trousers. Then buy three brown or black baubles or furry pompoms – these can be attached to the centre of your costume in a line to represent the snowman’s buttons. You can fashion a big black or brown belt out of another piece of material – or, you might actually have a wide belt already that you can use. If you are making one, don’t forget to draw on a buckle in marker pen.
To complete the outfit, don’t forget to slip on a colourful scarf and hat (matching sets are best, although not necessary), and you can draw on an orange carrot on your nose if you really want to.
If your budget is running really low, you can pop to your local pound shop and see if they have anything suitable for you to dress up as an angel. Lots of children are often angels in nativity plays, so they are bound to have some props you can buy. Creating a halo is simple, as all you need is two pieces of wire; one that you turn into a circle and the other you can attach to this and the rest of your costume so that the halo hovers just over your head.
For your main outfit, get a white dress or a white sheet if you don’t have a frock you can use. Then buy some silver or gold tinsel and attach this to the neckline, hem and wrists of the costume. You’ll be able to pick up some wings from a cheap shop, making your outfit complete!
For something really humorous, why not dress yourself up as a reindeer this year? Lots of people might fork out a pretty penny for a proper reindeer outfit, but this isn’t strictly necessary as you can make your own version easily.
Get a plain brown top and trousers, cut a white oblong shape out of a piece of material and attach it to the top (craft glue should do the job). Then all you need to do is buy a pair of antlers – you can find these in abundance during the Christmas season – and wear a pair of white or brown gloves for paws. You can finish the look with face paint or simply buy a red nose that you can attach if you want to be Rudolph!
Nigel Walters is an ex student and currently blogs on student news and property. He is passionate about his family and sport, you can read some of his posts over at Vita Accommodation for Students.
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