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Thrift Stores, Hot Glue and Halloween

Who goes through this much effort for a Halloween costume?

Holy crap: This is the greatest costume ever made.

This past week, in between feature stories, corporate meetings and government town hall sessions, I've been dabbling in fashion design.

By that, I mean I've been designing my Halloween costume this year.

I know what you're thinking: How old are you? But when there's a prize on the line, and where you are asked to dress up, I've got to wow 'em.

I'm not the type of person to just go out to Halloween Adventure and buy a $50 costume of Rowdy Roddy Piper or an evil clown or something like that.

My attire must be original.

Last year, I went as Kenny Powers from "Eastbound and Down." I ordered a curly mullet wig and T-shirt online, and found the rest at the in Montgomery Township.

I went all out. It turned heads. I won the $50 first prize at

In years past, I've tried to outdo myself - what's the point of dressing up if you can't act a part?

One year, I went as Tyler Durden from "Fight Club." For more than Halloween I've gone as The Dude from "The Big Lebowski," and yes, I drank White Russians throughout the night. Two years ago, I went as The Joker from "The Dark Knight," complete with custom green vest, courtesy of my fiancee's sister.

Halloween costumes, for me, have evolved as I've gotten older.

When I was a kid, I did the normal thing: pirate, ninja, superhero. One year, my aunt Renee Di Domizio, made a custom Spider-Man mask from a ski mask. It was awesome.

When I was 17, I dressed up like Shaggy 2 Dope from Insane Clown Posse. I mocked the makeup as best as I could. I drove to a show in Doylestown like that; people in traffic next to me didn't know what to think.

At that same show, people didn't know who I was. I fooled them. I succeeded in doing what a costume should do on Halloween.

And so a passion was born.

This week, I've been doing nothing but driving from thrift store to thrift store. While had some options, I found the perfect ensemble at The Salvation Army. Again.

I spent under $30 for everything. It was golden.

Today, I had to make some adjustments to the costume. These adjustments required me to go out and purchase a hot glue gun from . I've never used one of these things. All I know of it is from seeing my mom use them with her crafts.

This thing is remarkable! Hot glue, out of a gun. I wonder what else I could adhere together? (I thought about a cat-dog hybrid, but not only is that creul, it wouldn't go over well with the Mrs.)

I also had to trek to Halloween Adventure today to find a hat and a wig. The one in Montgomeryville next to A.C. Moore had both. I even got to try the wig on, even though there was a sign that said, "Do not open the packages to try on the wigs." The associate opened it, not me. "How are you going to know if it's right if you can't try it on?" he said.

Good point, my good man.

So, here I am, at 4:30 p.m., finishing up my costume. I've got spraypainted fingertips and a messy kitchen table.

But it looks great.

I don't want to reveal what it is just yet, as I'd like to surprise everyone. I'll be sure to come back and post some pictures too.

Let me just say, this Halloween, the madness is running wild.

Will I do this every year? Probably. It's only going to get extreme when my fiancee and I have kids.

Ever seen a 5-year-old transform into Optimus Prime and back to a robot? All by wearing cardboard boxes?

Just wait ... just wait.

Leann Pettit October 28, 2011 at 09:18 PM
I completely understand! This year my niece picked out a store bought Halloween costume, and, after having it on for less than 5 minutes, turned to me and her grammy and said, "I want to be a pony" meaning a My Little Pony, which there are absolutely no costumes for. So, for the last week, my mother and I have been trying to figure out and hunt down any possible way to make this 4-year-old into a pretty pink My Little Pony (for those who know the Little Ponies, she specifically wants Pinkie Pie) for Halloween. Found the best pieces at 2nd Ave Thrift in North Wales.
Tony Di Domizio (Editor) October 28, 2011 at 09:26 PM
2nd Ave is also a quality thrift store! I'm telling you, custom-made costumes rock. Plus, they allow us to support local thrift stores!


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