Halloween costumes are costumes worn on or around Halloween, a festival which falls on October 31. An early reference to wearing costumes at Halloween comes from Scotland in 1585, but they may pre-date this. There are many references to the custom during the 18th and 19th centuries in the Celtic countries of Scotland, Ireland, Mann and Wales. It has been suggested that the custom comes from the Celtic festivals of Samhain and Calan Gaeaf, or from the practise of "souling" during the Christian observance of Allhallowtide. Wearing costumes and mumming has long been associated with festivals at other times of the year, such as on Christmas.[1] Halloween costumes are traditionally based on frightening supernatural or folkloric beings. However, by the 1930s costumes based on characters in mass media such as film, literature, and radio were popular. Halloween costumes have tended to be worn mainly by young people, but since the mid-20th century they have been increasingly worn by adults also.

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Nothing says "autumn" like scarecrows, so why not dress up as them? This group costume idea calls for straw hats, denim overalls, and plaid button-down shirts. If you'd like to get crafty, loosely stitch fabric squares onto your overalls. You can simply cut them off after Halloween. Finally, paint on the "stitching" with black eyeliner or face crayon. 

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^ Hörandner, Editha (2005). Halloween in der Steiermark und anderswo. LIT Verlag Münster. p. 99. ISBN 9783825888893. On the other hand the postmodern phenomenon of "antifashion" is also to be found in some Halloween costumes. Black and orange are a 'must' with many costumes. Halloween - like the medieval danse macabre - is closely connected with superstitions and it might be a way of dealing with death in a playful way.

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I think it's about 50/50 in participation here in Central Texas, but if you look at the Halloween store, they have more adult-sized costumes and themes than they do for small kids. My husband has only been in the states here (from England) for 4 years and he finds it fascinating as well. He has a Guy Fawkes costume he wears each year and told us the story and we "celebrate" Nov 5th with fireworks and sometimes a small fire where we have been known to burn a scarecrow. :)

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We know that you're already part of a super family. All you need are your costumes! Until Edna Mode is ready to get your custom apparel ready, you can enjoy an incredible group costume idea courtesy of Disney's superheroes: The Incredibles. You can bring the whole family along and enjoy their original looks, with or without muscle padding! Even Baby Jack-Jack is ready to go!

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If you and your group are fans of all things winter, dress up as snowflakes. This idea is especially useful when your crew is exceptionally large, since everyone doesn't need to necessarily match. Each person needs an all-white outfit and an adorable snowflake accessory, like a headband. Alternatively, you can wear a jeweled tiara or hair clips. There's a lot of room for personalization here, so don't be afraid to get creative!
What stands out as the biggest and brightest of ‘80s fun? Was it the fashion? Was it the music? How about the movies? Actually, it was probably when all three of them blended together! We have a ton of 1980s costumes that are perfect for a group look. Get your legwarmers warmed up! When you go out in ‘80s style, it’s time to get physical with the ‘80s Workout Challenge. Have your entire squad star in their very own music video...or at least enjoy the wild colors.

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^ Hörandner, Editha (2005). Halloween in der Steiermark und anderswo. LIT Verlag Münster. p. 99. ISBN 9783825888893. On the other hand the postmodern phenomenon of "antifashion" is also to be found in some Halloween costumes. Black and orange are a 'must' with many costumes. Halloween - like the medieval danse macabre - is closely connected with superstitions and it might be a way of dealing with death in a playful way.

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Think of a unique way to combine the supplies. The saying goes that if you have a better costume, the more treats you earn. This is true! Combine the wings of a fairy's dress with a pirate's hat so you have a pirate fairy! Instead of wearing a lion costume, cut the head of the lion and turn the lion into a hat, similar to Luna Lovegood's hat in Harry Potter.

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From at least the 16th century,[5] the festival included mumming and guising,[6] which involved people going house-to-house in costume (or in disguise), usually reciting verses or songs in exchange for food.[6] It may have originally been a tradition whereby people impersonated the Aos Sí, or the souls of the dead, and received offerings on their behalf. Impersonating these beings, or wearing a disguise, was also believed to protect oneself from them.[7] It is suggested that the mummers and guisers "personify the old spirits of the winter, who demanded reward in exchange for good fortune".[8] F. Marian McNeill suggests the ancient pagan festival included people wearing masks or costumes to represent the spirits, and that faces were marked (or blackened) with ashes taken from the sacred bonfire.[5] In parts of southern Ireland, a man dressed as a Láir Bhán (white mare) led youths house-to-house reciting verses—some of which had pagan overtones—in exchange for food. If the household donated food it could expect good fortune from the 'Muck Olla'; not doing so would bring misfortune.[9] In 19th century Scotland, youths went house-to-house with masked, painted or blackened faces, often threatening to do mischief if they were not welcomed.[6] In parts of Wales, men went about dressed as fearsome beings called gwrachod,[6] while in some places, young people cross-dressed.[6] Elsewhere in Europe, mumming and costumes were part of other yearly festivals. However, in the Celtic-speaking regions they were "particularly appropriate to a night upon which supernatural beings were said to be abroad and could be imitated or warded off by human wanderers".[6] It has also been suggested that the wearing of Halloween costumes developed from the custom of souling, which was practised by Christians in parts of Western Europe from at least the 15th century.[10][11] At Allhallowtide, groups of poor people would go door-to-door, collecting soul cakes – either as representatives of the dead,[12] or in return for saying prayers for them.[13] One 19th century English writer said it "used to consist of parties of children, dressed up in fantastic costume, who went round to the farm houses and cottages, signing a song, and begging for cakes (spoken of as "Soal-cakes"), apples, money, or anything that the goodwives would give them".[14] The soulers typically asked for "mercy on all Christian souls for a soul cake".[15] The practice was mentioned by Shakespeare his play The Two Gentlemen of Verona (1593).[16][17] Christian minister Prince Sorie Conteh wrote on the wearing of costumes: "It was traditionally believed that the souls of the departed wandered the earth until All Saints' Day, and All Hallows' Eve provided one last chance for the dead to gain vengeance on their enemies before moving to the next world. In order to avoid being recognised by any soul that might be seeking such vengeance, people would don masks or costumes to disguise their identities".[18] In the Middle Ages, statues and relics of martyred saints were paraded through the streets at Allhallowtide. Some churches who could not afford these things had people dress as saints instead.[19][20] Some believers continue the practice of dressing as saints, biblical figures, and reformers in Halloween celebrations today.[21] Many Christians in continental Europe, especially in France, believed that on Halloween "the dead of the churchyards rose for one wild, hideous carnival," known as the danse macabre, which has often been depicted in church decoration.[22] An article published by Christianity Today claimed the danse macabre was enacted at village pageants and at court masques, with people "dressing up as corpses from various strata of society", and suggested this was the origin of Halloween costume parties.[23][24]

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