Bitten By The Love Bug

  • January 31, 2014
  • Jenna Maxwell

ANNOUNCING OUR 2014
VALENTINE'S DAY CONTEST

As soon as the calendar turns over to February, it becomes rather obvious that love is in the air.   In spite of the cold of winter’s chill, wherever you may be, hearts are beating the warm rhythm of romance.  What would you do in the name of love? Well here at Halloween Express, we have a few ideas of our own.  Apparently Cupid has already gotten a hold of us, because we’ve been bitten by the love bug and we’ve got a case of lovesickness that’s really, really bad.  In fact, we’ve got it so bad that in order to express our deep love for all our fans and loyal customers, each day for the first two weeks in February, we’re going to give away $100 in store credit--just in time for Valentine’s Day! CLICK FOR DETAILS

14 Days of Love Contest


What Makes a Great President

  • January 28, 2014
  • Jenna Maxwell

Presidents Day Costume IdeaSorry folks, if you came here hoping I would be spewing my political views all over the page, you might be disappointed.  This is, after all, a costume blog.  Today, however, with President's Day coming up in February and in the spirit of all things “presidential,” I am going to give you some great tips on how to put together an amazing presidential costume look just in time to celebrate President’s Day, a school history dress up day, or any other occasion that might require you to put together one of these classic costume looks.

You might remember this commercial from last year: 

Now, I don’t know how things work at your house, but this seamless, last minute (and admittedly quite amazing) costume would not have been possible for me to put together (in minutes no less), even with the magic of Google.  If you want to be a costume hero this year when it comes to putting some life into your child’s history lesson, there are far easier and less stressful ways to go about it!

More and more schools are holding special dress up days in order to honor the forty-four men that have led our country.  George Washington and Abraham Lincoln are usually the quintessential favorites when it comes to presidential costumes, but certainly if you want to create a different look, there are plenty of ways to become your favorite commander in chief.

Wigs and Facial Hair:  Wigs and facial hair are some of the easiest and most important tools you can use to recreate some of the distinctive features of your chosen president.   Look at photographs of your character and note the distinguishing parts of your president that seem the most unique to his persona.  Costume implements such as a white colonial wig, an Abraham Lincoln-style beard, or some tacked on Martin Van Buren mutton chop sideburns can transform your child into character quickly and with little effort involved.

Costumes:  When it comes to presidential costumes, you have lots of choices.  The easiest thing to do obviously is to buy a ready-made costume that has all the essential costume pieces already in it; that makes putting together your kid’s costume a real no-brainer!  Sometimes, buying a readymade costume isn’t practical. If you are looking for some D.I.Y. options, then with a little effort you can probably put together a really great look yourself that works equally as well.  For example, any plain black suit and bow tie can work as the base for an Abe Lincoln costume.  The important part of this look is to get the Abe beard and top hat just right!  For a simple George Washington costume, you can use an old pair of baseball pants worn with white knee socks and a woman’s front ruffled or bow blouse with a vest over the top.  If you are creating your own costume, keep the costume part fairly simple and focus your biggest effort on a couple of key accessories that will really set your look apart.

Hats and Accessories:  When all else fails, getting the right hat and accessories can be all you really need in a pinch to pull one of these presidential looks together.  A colonial tricorne hat, for example, can instantly give your child a legitimate George Washington look; add a white ponytail style wig and suddenly you have that perfect “Father of the Country” look!!  The important thing to remember is to put your focus on the most unique parts of the character look, emphasize those and keep the rest of the costume fairly simple.

Bringing history to life with a costume is a fantastic way for your child to learn about important people and events from the past.  Don’t miss out on this wonderful opportunity to recreate one of these amazing historical figures for your self! 


I Have A Dream: Fun Facts About Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • January 20, 2014
  • Jenna Maxwell

Everyone knows that Martin Luther King was a pivotal and powerful voice during the civil rights movement--his inspiring legend lives on today in full force. With the celebration of Martin Luther King’s birthday now at hand, we thought you might enjoy knowing some of the lesser-known and interesting facts about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and celebrate with us what would have been Martin Luther King’s 85th birthday!

  • Martin Luther King was actually born Michael King, Jr. on January 15, 1929, being named after his father who also bore the same name, Michael King, Sr. MLK’s father became so inspired by a reformation leader named Martin Luther, that he decided later to change both of their names also to Martin Luther.  MLK was five years old at this time.
  • In 1948, Martin Luther King, Jr. was only one of eleven African-American students in attendance at Crozer Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania.  After only one year, Martin Luther King, Jr. was so popular and well though of, that he was elected to be the class president.
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. was arrested and went to jail 29 times, sometimes on completely ridiculous and trumped up charges.  Some of the arrests included offenses such as civil disobedience, but once Dr. King was arrested for driving 30 mph in a 25 mph zone!
  • In 1963. Martin Luther King, Jr. was chosen to be Time magazine’s “Man of the Year.”  He was the very first African-American to hold this honor.
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. was the youngest man to ever receive the Nobel Peace Prize, receiving this honor at the ripe old age of 35.  Dr. King was said to have donated the over $50,000 in prize money to causes benefitting the civil rights movement.
  • In the one year time period between 1967 and 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke at over 2500 events and logged in over 6 million traveled miles.
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. was so smart that he was able to begin college at the age of fifteen.
  • In the United States alone, there are more than 900 streets named after Martin Luther King, Jr.  This number continues to rise!
  • Legislation was created in 1968 making Martin Luther King Day a national holiday.  Martin Luther King, Jr. is the only non-president that has a memorial in the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

 

Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day from your friends at Halloween Express! 


Twenty Reasons to Love Winter

  • January 13, 2014
  • Jenna Maxwell

It’s been rough out there.  As I am typing this, at least half the country is currently getting pummeled with snow, blasted with bitter winter winds or is just being hit with beyond frigid temperatures.  With the holiday fun all past history and the weather acting downright atrocious, it may be hard to see the positive side of winter.  In fact, scientifically speaking, the most depressing day of the year is nearly upon us, falling this year on Monday, January the 20th - just one week from today!  In an effort to buoy us all up and get us all happily through the rest of the colder months, here is our list of the 20 best things about winter that you can enjoy right now!

20 Reasons to Love Winter

  • No Bugs.  Annoying bugs that can’t stop biting and making you miserable during the summer months are basically pretty inactive during the winter months.
  • No Yard Work.  In many parts of the country during the winter months, grass and other plants sort of hibernate during the winter, meaning no maintenance is necessary.  Of course, yard chores are sort of replaced by snow removal, so perhaps it’s just an even trade off.
  • Hot Drinks.  Coffee, Tea, Hot Chocolate--they taste about ten billion times better during the cold winter months. Soothing and delicious!
  • Snow Sports.  Snowboarding, snowmobiling, ice-skating, skiing--if you are a lover of any winter sports, this time of the year can be your personal nirvana.
  • Leave your groceries in the car.  Try doing this is the summer--not! Sometimes it’s just convenient to run into the dry cleaners with your car filled with groceries and not have to worry about them melting completely to smithereens.
  • Warm Clothes.  Sweaters…Warm Coats…Scarves…even those silly hats.  Winter clothes are fun to bundle up in and to wear.  They are kinda great for concealing a few of those extra holiday pounds, too.
  • Fireplaces.  A crackling fire is warm, comforting, romantic and sexy.  A fire in the fireplace is a simple winter pleasure to be treasured if you ask me!
  • Cuddling.  See above, grab a blanket and do whatever it takes to stay warm!
  • Feel Tough.  If you live in one of those really epic cold winter climates, there is plenty to brag about just by getting through the day.  Post the temperature or pics of the recent snowfall for your friends to see because you are a true winter warrior!
  • Bubble Baths. Bubble baths feel simply a-m-a-z-i-n-g in the winter and are so soothing after being out in the cold!
  • Boots. My personal favorite part of winter.  If you are a boot aficionado this is definitely one of winter’s best perks.
  • A Fresh Slate. For many, January is a time to resolve and start anew with a fresh set of goals.
  • Naps. Short daylight hours and freezing cold weather create the perfect set of reasons to take a long winter’s nap!
  • Indoor Hobbies. Wintertime can be a great time to pick up or indulge in an indoor hobby that you’ve been dying to try or have temporarily abandoned.
  • Snow Days!  This might only apply to the younger set, but many of us have fond memories from childhood of unexpected days off school with huge snowdrifts just waiting to be played in.
  • Winter Smells.   Pine.  Firewood burning.  Hot Cider. Candles.  Some of the very best smells out there go hand in hand with wintertime.
  • Curling up with a good book.  You know that reading list that you’ve wanted to finally tackle?  Wintertime is a great time to wrap up in a blanket and curl up with a really good book.
  • No more holiday hassles!  We all love the holidays, but let’s face it; there is also a huge hassle factor that goes along with it.  Perhaps having all the holiday stuff behind us is another reason to celebrate!
  • January Holidays.  January has it’s own holidays to celebrate.  January 21st is Martin Luther King Day, and there is also a wildly eclectic assortment of other semi-crazy holidays or events in January that you probably didn’t even know existed.  Special days to check out: 
    • January 8-Bubble Bath Day
    • January 14-Dress Up Your Pet Day
    • January 15-National Hat Day
    • January 17-Ditch Your New Year’s Resolutions Day
    • January 18-Winnie The Pooh Day
    • January 20-Blue Monday AND Penguin Awareness Day
    • January 24-Beer Can Appreciation Day
  • Still not convinced winter is wonderful?  Perhaps the very best thing about winter is the fact that it is always followed by…Spring. 

Best Costume Characters of 2013

  • January 06, 2014
  • Jenna Maxwell

Popular Costumes of 2013It’s that time of the year again.  2013 is history and we welcome in a new year. It’s now fun to reflect back on the interesting things that have happened in the world of costumes in the past 365 days. 2013 was filled with all sorts of interesting and fun characters; but there were a few that stood heads and shoulders above the rest; truly leaving their mark on 2013 history.  Some of these looks are destined to become legendary--others have burned hot only to rapidly run cold in 2014.  No matter what you may think of them, here is our list of the best costume characters of 2013!

The Zombie:  The zombie of 2013 came in all shapes and sizes (not to mention levels of decay and utter grossness) via popular shows such as “The Walking Dead” and “World War Z”.  Definitely the monster du jour, the zombie shuffled and hissed his way into Halloween infamy in the year 2013 and we’re guessing will remain a popular costume pick for 2014 as well.

Duck Dynasty:  These often outspoken crazy bayou dwellers from A&E’s hit show “Duck Dynasty” have their own take on life that has quickly captured the hearts of America, while giving many the sudden weird desire to try their own hand at an overgrown beard and some camouflage duds.  Probably one of the most recognizable costume looks of 2013, as long as there are ducks, there will also be duck costumes to go with them.

Minions:  The minions of the hit animated movie, “Despicable Me 2,” simply ran amok this Halloween season.  If you were out and about anytime around Halloween, you likely saw big minions, little minions, fat minions, skinny minions, old minions, young minions--well, you get the idea as they were absolutely everywhere! For a time, the world was temporarily taken over by these yellow, goggly-eyed fellas; thankfully it appears that the world is back to normal once again.

Hannah Montana No More:  Miley, Miley, Miley.  This scandalous, barely-dressed diva was probably seen twerking at a Halloween party near you--hardly a semblance of the fresh-faced Disney version of the Hannah Montana that we used to know and love.  The twerkin’ teddy look, however, is now yesterday’s news and hopefully will stay that way for good.

The Great Gatsby:  2013 was the year to reignite the Roarin’ Twenties and the spiffy fashion looks that went with this fabulous decade. If you were into the whole retro costume thing, The Great Gatsby characters of Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan were simply the big cheese when it came to getting into 1920’s ultra glam and putting on some serious twenties-style glitz.

Walter White (Breaking Bad):  A simple yellow hazmat suit, rubber gloves and safety goggles became the signature look that paid much due homage to the season finale of AMC’s Breaking Bad and it’s most notorious character, Walter White.

Siyonara, 2013 and a big costume welcome to the year 2014.  We can’t wait to see what crazy things we are going to be dressing up as next year!