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halloween costume ideas

Fall 2016

This Is Halloween



Happy Halloweekend, everyone! It’s finally that time where it’s completely socially acceptable to dress in costume and consume copious amounts of candy, and the Trendsetters are all about it. Whether you like to buy your costume from the store, do a little DIY, or insanely spooky makeup, we’ve got some costume inspiration for everyone!




“I love Halloween and I love that feeling: the cold air, the spooky dangers lurking around the corner.” -Evan Peters

October is something special. The leaves have turned beautiful shades of gold and crimson and are littering the ground, the air has adopted a bitter chilliness that is surprisingly refreshing after the blazing summer heat and no one can judge you for eating tons of candy because they’re most likely right there with you. It’s also the perfect time to flex your creativity and become who or whatever your heart desires!

I’ve been obsessed with makeup since my early teens; when YouTube makeup tutorials became popular. I would and still do, spend way too much time watching people blend their eyeshadow and review lipsticks. While I’m incredibly comfortable experimenting with beauty makeup now, the special effects makeup world is a whole different beast. I’ve always watched shows like Face-Off, a special effects makeup competition series on the Syfy network, and wished I could create cool and creepy characters. It was so intimidating to me that I never even tried. Halloween is the perfect time to face your fears, so with that and inspiration from some of my favorite YouTube beauty gurus like Desi Perkins and Nicole Guerriero in mind, I bought some black and white face paint from Michaels. I ended up layering eyeshadows and eyeliner over the face paint to create the depth I was looking for.

The most important thing to keep in mind if you want to try a look like this is practice, practice, practice! It’s all too easy to get discouraged when things don’t come out the way you imagined, but keep trying and you will improve. I tried four different variations of this look over the course of the week before the shoot and took photos of each one. I was then able to compare them all and take bits and pieces that I liked to create this fierce half-skeleton character.

To keep up the spookiness, I went for an all-black outfit and decided on a dress because this half-dead girl still has a living side and that side is totally glam. I can’t help but feel like I could be a member of American Horror Story: Coven in this Zara dress with the slightly flared long sleeves and turtle neck details. This, I felt, was an absolutely appropriate feeling for a Halloween look, but who am I kidding, I’d love to feel that cool every day. Lastly, I threw on these black, glittery, pointed toe flats from H&M to add a bit of sparkle.





Sally & Levi

img_4397_picmonkeyedI’ll be the first to admit that I usually go the lazy-girl route when it comes to dressing up on Halloween. I tend to opt for more culturally relevant or humorous costumes, and as long as the items can come from my closet or a thrift store, I’m in. This year, my boyfriend Levi and I knew we wanted to go as a classic TV duo. After much debate (Jim and Pam? Luke and Lorelai? Leslie and Ben?) we decided on perhaps the most iconic couple of recent years: Ross and Rachel.

This would be a great last minute costume if you’re looking for something to pull together with another person. All the items came out of our own closets and kitchen! I decided to go with a 90’s inspired A-line skirt and short-sleeved denim top to emulate Rachel’s years as a waitress. I’m a barista myself, but don’t think I’ve ever managed to wear an ensemble as trendy as any of Rachel’s to work. I knotted the shirt to amp up the 90’s vibes, and completed the look with a claw clip my fifth-grade self would have coveted to complete all those Lizzie McGuire-esque hairstyles. Black tights and booties are quintessentially first-and-second-season Rachel. These are staples in my day-to-day wardrobe anyway, so I didn’t have to look far.

For Levi’s look, we decided to go with an oversized white sweater (very Ross), a polo underneath, and some denim. While the look definitely matched several of Ross’s ensembles throughout the show, we still didn’t feel like it really captured the character. Luckily, we had a stuffed monkey on hand to serve as a pseudo-Marcel and add the final touch to the costume! We safety pinned this one onto the shoulder of Levi’s sweater, added a yellow mug and a coffee pot for me, and were ready for an afternoon at Central Perk. The only things missing are a Chandler, Joey, Monica and Phoebe to complete our group!

Despite being past an acceptable age to go trick-or-treating, Halloween is still such a fun holiday to celebrate. Whether you’re going out with friends, carving pumpkins, or kicking back with your favorite Halloween film, it’s sure to be a festive evening!






Halloween is hands down one of the best times of year. During this time of year, it’s midway through pumpkin spice latte season, aka fall, and now you get to dress up as absolutely anyone you want to? Sign me up. There hasn’t been a year I haven’t dressed up for Halloween and I honestly don’t think there will be a year where I don’t. Halloween brings out the kid in all of us and that’s one of the best parts about it. As I’ve grown older I have had to begin paying for my own costumes like most every other young adult. So each year I get creative by spending the least amount of money. Working on a college student budget okay? Give me a break here.

This year I decided to go as Minnie Mouse. I adore Minnie Mouse and so why wouldn’t I dress up as her for Halloween? This year I tried my hardest to pull from the clothing I already had and only ended up having to purchase my skirt. For this costume I wore a black leotard as well as my red high waisted skirt that I got from Forever 21. For the accessories I wore a pearl necklace to represent Minnie’s signature polka dots and of course I had my pair of sequin Minnie ears from Disneyland. For my shoes I wore simple black heels that will be comfortable enough to wear as I go out on Halloweekend. Even though this costume was uber simple, it was still just enough for an adorable Halloween costume! So even if you only pull from the items you already have, you can still make a trendy, affordable and adorable costume!



Michelle & Aline


Aline: Growing up I always utilized Halloween as a way to show people who I really wanted to be. I was never the little girl who dressed up as a princess or a fairy godmother. Instead, year after year, I would costume myself as out of the ordinary characters with the same overarching theme. A couple stand-outs were an elf warrior, a lion, the corpse bride, Hit Girl and a cat (twice). The reason for these choices? I wanted to be a badass. At the time I didn’t know how to articulate this since I didn’t start using the word “badass” until I was 16 (late bloomer). Not that princesses and fairy godmothers can’t be badass, they totally can be, I was simply the definition of a tomboy growing up and to this day still hate wearing the color pink because I think it makes me look like a giant baby. Instead I gravitate towards the color green, which leads me to SHREK.

Let me make one thing clear, Shrek is my hero and basically the most badass you can get. He is tough, he is heroic, he knows how to love a lady and let’s just face it Shrek is a frickin’ baller. In short, this costume has been a long time coming and I put a lot of effort into recreating his iconic look. My beige sweater dress from H&M worked as the perfect ogre base and paired with my small brown belt from target was an important detail I wasn’t gonna forget. The faux leather vest also from H&M was obviously essential and I was thrilled to find it in this exact shade of brown. My brown tights from God knows where (they are ancient) and my TJ Maxx brown boots finished off the outfit, while my make shift pipe-cleaner ogre ears cemented the character. I was Shrek for a day. And it was the best day of my life.



Michelle: If you’re confused by my DIY Eggo Waffle purse, you clearly haven’t watched Shrek enough times. You know what, actually maybe you’ve watched Shrek the appropriate amount of times for a regular human being, and Aline and I are the ones taking it too far. What inspired this accessory? One iconic phrase: “And in the mornin’, I’m making waffles!” That line was enough for children and adults alike to erupt in laughter in movie theaters across the globe in 2001. Ahhh 2001, what I time to be alive!

I’m a firm believer that DIY costumes are the best costumes. And I’m proud to say, that the only thing I purchased for my Donkey costume were the ears ($6 at Target btw.) Okay, I guess I bought the waffles too, but there can never be enough waffles in the world so I was definitely not upset about that. The base of my ensemble is a gray turtleneck sweater and a pair of basic black leggings from Forever21. When Aline and I planned this costume idea, I knew right away that I had to wear my fur vest from Bohme. It’s the exact shade of Donkey’s fur and really ties the entire look together.  For some extra Donkey flair, I added some bunny ears and my most hoof-like black booties by Steve Madden.

So there ya have it! If you’re creative enough, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on a Halloween costume. And with Pinterest around, there is an infinite amount of inspiration available to us. If you find that you really need to spend some money in order to truly pull off your costume idea, my trick is to purchase things you will wear again and again. That way, it’s not a waste. And with that, Shrek’s noble steed is signing off with another iconic quote: “Shrek and Donkey on another whirlwind adventure! Ain’t no stoppin’ us now!”





img_4679 As the leaves dance in the air and the ghouls come out to play, I can’t help but think about a galaxy far, far away. My costume is inspired by Luke Skywalker’s outfit as he crosses the desert sands of his home planet, Tatooine. I found a wonderful sleeved poncho at TJ Maxx, which became the centerpiece of my outfit. I loved the interplay between the geometric design and the beige, and the sleeves help to keep my forearms warm as the temperature drops.

Next, I picked out my footwear: a pair of rose suede heeled boots, perfect for crossing sandy deserts and traversing rainy sidewalks. The color of the boots draws the eye, and they match perfectly with my light brown joggers, which I got from a little hole in the wall called Walmart. The whole color combo of rose and beige and brown made me think of watching the sun set over the dunes, and I dress like Luke Skywalker if I ignored the beautiful sunset vistas of his home planet.

My final touch was an accessory: a pair of dark black aviator sunglasses. Though they aren’t goggles and they certainly won’t keep sand out of my eyes, they do a perfect job of giving my face structure and allowing me to see.

My favorite thing about Halloween and fashion in general is being allowed to express yourself however you want. I don’t care if someone tells me not to wear something: I’m going to wear whatever I feel most comfortable in, no matter what it is. I translate what I see in the world into what I wear, and this costume embodies the sandstorm of emotions and feelings that moving to college has brought to me, and I embrace that. I can’t wait to see wait Missoula, UM, and the Trendsetters has in store for me! Happy Halloween!







Who doesn’t love Halloween? Although it’s not my absolute favorite holiday, I do love dressing up in costume.For this costume I was inspired by Sandy from Grease (pre-Danny), and general 1950’s school girl vibe.

I put this costume together just using things I already had in my wardrobe. The sweater and the white button up are both from H&M, and the black tights are as well. I got the skirt years ago, and luckily it still fit!For small added details, I wore white ruffle socks and pearl earrings.Then I just did my hair simply flipped and a red lip. This costume was great because it didn’t take much effort, and was comfortable and warm (both things needed on a cold Montana Halloween). I felt pretty 50’s. Happy Halloween Everyone!







Halloween…sounds scary to me. Halloween is full of spooky things.

Everybody has prepared their own costume, even parties with some of their friends. Some people dress up like ghosts, however, some people choose to dress up in a cute way. During Halloween week we can see the decorations everywhere, with spooky things too. Halloween is “the nightmare before Christmas.”

“Boys and girls of every age wouldn’t you like to see something strange? Come with us and you will see this is our town of Halloween. This is Halloween, This Halloween. This is Halloween everybody make a scene…”

“This is Halloween” is my favorite song. I heard this song when I was in college in my home country (Indonesia). It’s because of this song that I knew about Halloween, not much, just a little bit. However, I am so happy that I got a chance this year to celebrate Halloween in the USA. This is my first time that I can learn and know more about Halloween. I am so excited when I heard about Halloween is coming. I really wanted to see how people in USA dress up on Halloween, and now I can choose my own costume for Halloween. Watched horror movie and carving pumpkin with my friends is my favorite thing to do to celebrate Halloween together.

For my first experience with Halloween in USA, I  dressed up as a Vampire. I really love the costume that I chose,  it’s full of dark colors and is my first Halloween costume ever. It’s time to pick your costumes for Halloween now, everyone!





Thomas & breana

img_4446It’s the most wonderful time of the year!! Yep, that’s right…. HALLOWEEN! By far my favorite holiday, like who wouldn’t love this holiday?! You get to be a completely different person for a day, or a completely different species! You’d think that since it is my favorite holiday, i’d put in more effort, but that’s where you’re wrong. Of course I wait for last minute with my costume. I’m proud of what I pulled together this year though, and luckily I had my best friend here to complete the story! Breana and I are the perfect duo, spooky and crazy. I’m the demon who stole her soul, and without a soul, it made her go crazy and she became a psycho murderer… such a lovely story, am I right ladies?!

This outfit was pretty basic, because what better for a demon to wear than basic black! And of course, I stuck with a pretty edgy look and threw on my leather jacket. For makeup, I mixed some white cream makeup with my foundation to give me a paler look. Then, I just kind of winged it with my eyes and threw in my black scleras(trust me, it wasn’t that easy) and added some dramatic details with black eyeshadow.

Breana just went pretty basic as well and stuck with a white dress she thrifted from Goodwill and splattered blood all over to give that extra psycho-murderer-feel. For makeup, she wanted to go with a dramatic look so she went with a deep smokey eye and a bold red lip. And since she wanted to go with a creepier-doll effect, she threw on a light brown long wig, because we figured her usual bright blue hair wouldn’t send the right message.

Now go out and have fun this Halloween and be safe, but more importantly, BE SPOOKY!





A very happy and safe Halloween from everyone at Trendsetters at the U!

Photography by McKenna Munden | @kennaphotography

Fall 2015

Halloween Costume Inspiration

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Halloween is quickly approaching and it’s time to really start thinking about your costume. Whether you want to be scary, funny or creative, Halloween is a chance to have fun being someone else. If you still don’t have a costume idea, never fear! The Trendsetters are here to provide some Halloween costume inspiration.


 evil captain

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I’m the captain now. Part Captain Philips, part I-don’t-know-what-to-be, I’ve opted for an “evil captain” costume for this Halloween. Super easy and super DIY, I just wanted a costume that came effortlessly…and without the need to buy a ton of things.

 I had this captain’s hat from when I was a captain of my drill team in high school, so I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to put it into use again. My hat is the statement piece of my costume; I love it. To keep the rest of my look dark, I opted for black and white stripes versus the usual red, white and blue. Chunky heel booties are comfortable, but add an extra sinister effect to my look.

To finish off my Halloween look, I went with bright red, Stila liquid lipstick. This stuff is the real deal and will last all night. I also added a simple black cat eye, too. Overall, I have a costume that was easy to put together and will be easy to move around in.


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morgan & Hannah-Laura

 Hercules & megara

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I’m obsessed with all things Halloween. I love pumpkin patches, jack-o-lanterns and pumpkin pies. I can’t get over the crisp air, the colorful leaves and cuddly sweaters. But most of all, I love having an excuse to dress up in costume. My boyfriend, Morgan, and I decided to be Hercules and Megara from the Disney movie Hercules. We had so much fun as Kronk and Yzma from the Emperor’s New Groove last year, and we wanted to continue the Disney character trend going.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetMorgan’s Hercules costume had a lot of DIY components. He began with a simple shirt and skirt from Goodwill. He cut out pieces of orange felt, from Joanne Fabrics, into ‘L’ shapes and hot-glued them onto the shirt to create the breastplate Hercules wears. He then created a belt from brown ribbon and orange felt that he drew a lightning bolt detail onto. He cut a cape from blue fabric, attached two gold buttons, and fastened it to his shirt. Morgan finished his Hercules look off with a red headband, ribbon anklets and sandals. He went from zero to hero just like that!

My Megara look was so much fun to create. I centered my look around a purple maxi infinity dress from Dress Long Bridal, which I found on Etsy. This dress is incredibly versatile and can be styled in many different ways. I chose to knot the straps near my collarbones, wrap the straps around my waist, and then tie them in the back to mimic Meg’s dress style. This dress is really long, so I created a makeshift hem with several safety pins. I then draped a light purple fabric around my arms for color contrast. I finished my look off with a dark purple eyeshadow, dark lashes and brows, and Meg’s signature curls, big ponytail and loose bangs. At least out loud, I won’t say I’m in love in love with this look, but I totally am.

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There is no better holiday than Halloween!! This is my favorite holiday because the goal is to scare as many people as you can. Instead of being Minnie Mouse this year, I decided to be something haunted and menacing.

There is no better holiday than Halloween!! This is my favorite holiday because the goal is to scare as many people as you can. Instead of being Minnie Mouse this year, I decided to be something haunted and menacing.

Marionettes in movies are there to educate children or are the possessed dolls of a dark sinister power. I chose the latter and decided to wear a simple costume with my little black dress, from Forever 21, and my white knee-high socks. To accessorize, I chose basic black Airwalks and a black athletic headband.

For my makeup, I only used red, white and black to transform my face to a marionette. I had so much fun using straight lines and black to create a gaping mouth with red lips. I used white to lengthen my eyes and gave myself larger freckles with black eyeliner as well as exaggerated eyelashes. This Halloween, scare your friends with just how creative you are with your makeup and fashion!

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Jazz & Dalton

 Vampire couple

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Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. It’s the day to dress up and be whoever or whatever you want, no matter how old you are. As a college student, buying a full on costume from a costume shop may get a little spendy. So for my and Dalton’s costume, all we needed was some clothing already in our closet and a little extra makeup.

This year we decided to be a couple of vampires inspired by one of my favorite shows, The Vampire Diaries. For my outfit, I am wearing a striped top I got from H&M with high-waisted black pants with pleather patches that add a little edge to my vampire look. To finish off my look, I am wearing my black Merona booties to add a little length to my short legs. For Dalton’s outfit, he is wearing a white button up dress shirt, from H&M, with gray dress pants and some brown shoes and bow tie to dress it up Salvatore-style.

And of course, to transition our normal outfits to modern day vamps, I applied black eye pencil below our eyes along with black and red eyeshadow to recreate that veiny look the vampires from The Vampire Diaries get when they are thirsty for blood. That’s our simple Halloween look for this year and we hope you have a safe and fabulous Halloween!


Carrie bradshaw

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I absolutely love Halloween. Candy? Spookiness? Dressing up? I’m down. I like looking to movies and TV shows for costume inspiration because I feel like you can get really creative while at the same time expressing your appreciation for a specific character.

To say I am a fan of Sex and the City, Carrie Bradshaw, or SJP for that matter, would be an understatement. As a city girl who loves fashion and the written word, with a 7 1/2 shoe size, a big nose and even bigger dreams, you could say I can relate to this character just a tad.

For this costume I am mimicking her iconic look from the opening sequence of the show. If you are unfamiliar with this ensemble, I will link it here.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetThe white tutu skirt was essential for this costume so I purchased one from Jo-Ann Fabrics and trimmed it (with generous assistance from my sister) until it was a similar length to Carrie’s.

Next I needed a pink tank top. I had unfortunately donated my only pink tank to Goodwill a while ago, so this blush top from Bohme had to do. I feel like this top gave the look a classier and more on trend spin. It was cool to put together my own interpretation of the look, updating an outfit I was already so familiar with.

Super curly locks are another key element in looking like Carrie. I curled, I teased and I hairsprayed, but  alas, my volume did not last too long. This hair is still bigger than what I usually do though so I was pretty happy with it. In the intro sequence Carrie is sporting a full face of makeup, including red lipstick. So I went all out with makeup for this costume, making sure to use lots of blush and, of course, to rock a red lip.

Lastly, everyone who knows SATC knows that Carrie is all about the shoes. She is rarely not in heels, and prefers it that way. I went with my Nine West pointed nude high heels because I loved how they went with the color palette of this costume. As long as you’ve got some hight in your step, you’ll be just fabulous!

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Danh & Raneem

superwoman & batgirl

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BOO!!! Halloween is coming up, so get ready to scare people or dress up as your favorite characters. Halloween is my family’s favorite, and we are ready to scare some people. For this Halloween photoshoot, I decided to dress up as Batgirl, and my sister decided to go as Superwoman, because we wanted to be superheroes.

IMG_9499For my outfit, I decided to dress up as Batgirl, so all you have to find is a black shirt and black pants and shoes. My long black sleeved shirt is from Wet Seal, my black pants are from Forever 21 and my leather platform shoes are from Forever 21.

I got my accessories from Spirit Halloween. I wore a yellow Batgirl belt, a long black cape that is almost shaped like a bat, and to finish look, I decided to wear the black Batgirl gauntlets.

Danh decided to dress up as Superwoman. All you need to find is a blue and red shirt to get this look. The long blue sleeved shirt is from Forever 21, the tights are from Forever 21 and the tutu she decided to wear for her Superwoman outfit is from Claire’s. The short red and blue cape was also from Claire’s. To finish her look, she wore brown boots that are from Dillard’s. Happy Halloween!!



galaxy gypsy

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Halloweentown and Hocus Pocus are the top contenders that can describe this holiday season. Both are nostalgic movies fighting the October 31st evils that control their lives.  Luckily for us, it’s a little less dramatic as we battle a candy coma and the what-to-wear mind block. My inspiration for my costume was a mishap of ideas converging into one.

I am someone who has a big wonder for the universe and a grand love of the stars to the point where I am taking an astronomy class to learn more. So, it is not out of the ordinary for me to own a few item pieces that resemble the galaxy.  I chose a nebula baby doll dress and was going to dress like the moon or the stars.

To convey that concept, I was planning to do elaborate star-themed silver metallic tattoos on my face (the ones that were all the craze in the summer). Unfortunately they had not all arrived in the mail, so I improvised with small moon phases in the middle of my forehead. For a little more pizazz, I added a bejeweled head crown with a gold septum piercing. My hair and makeup was done to match.

At this point I am just a walking mishap of sparkly objects that I claim as my Halloween costume, which is what usually happens in my world of being last minute. Surprisingly, it all came together and my outfit can be coined as a Galaxy Gypsy through the help of a fellow Trendsetter. To further add to this ensemble, I would in the future add more effort in the makeup and for warmth use tights, boots and a leather jacket.  All in all Halloween is a time to let your inner kid be happy, so be creative and be a little quirky.

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tate from ahs

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It’s finally that time of the year again. Not only is it fall, which calls for layering, nice colors, and warm drinks, but it’s also getting close to one of my favorite holidays: Halloween. The perfect time for you to put on whatever you want, no matter how odd, and still be taken completely seriously. Although it is time to dress up, I wanted to go as something that allows me to add my own twist easily. So what better than to pick a character from one of my favorite shows? That character is skeleton Tate from American Horror Story: Murder House.

Now my “costume” isn’t complete because I decided to hold off on the full skeleton makeup until Halloween. For my outfit, I decided to pull out a new pair of dark gray distressed/ripped skinny jeans from H&M. I originally just started off with a dark gray flannel I got from Goodwill but since it is fall, I took the opportunity to finally layer my clothes and threw a light gray heavy-knit sweater from the new Brooklyn Calling collection at Aeropostale that has a low neck to show the flannel underneath and nice accent of zippers on the bottom of hems of either sides.

To finish this outfit off, I chose a pair of basic black combat boots that I also got from Goodwill and topped it all off with a black wide-brimmed fedora from H&M. I’ve been looking for the perfect accessory to add to any fall outfit and this fedora is definitely it. I took the inspiration of the all black outfit from the show itself and decided to make it my own. My style is very black-based already so it was easy to adjust to pull this look together.

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Happy Halloween from the Trendsetters!

Photography by McKenna Munden | @kennaphotography