More customers seek Halloween costumes at thrift stores

Does your inner child want to rock out this Halloween in a great costume, but your budget says no? More people are turning to thrift stores for their outfits.

Sheryl Salvadore, a south Summerlin resident, was at Goodwill, 9385 W. Flamingo Road, in mid-September. She had her 1-year-old boy with her and has two other children, ages 10 and 13. She said she planned to buy costumes at the thrift store as the holiday got closer.

“I think it’s stupid to buy new costumes,” Salvadore said. “They’re just going to wear them for a couple hours and then they grow out of it by next year. … You have to keep in mind that it’s random, what (thrift stores) will have. It’s not like you’re going to come in and find what (you’d planned).”

Fellow shopper Jan Johnson, of Southern Highlands, said she dresses up every Halloween to pass out candy. Past years have seen her as the Cat in the Hat, a witch and a clown, the costumes all pulled together at a thrift store.

“If you look hard enough, you can find fairly new merchandise for a fraction of what you’d pay in a store,” Johnson said. “Plus, here there’s no sales tax.”

According to a poll by the National Retail Federation, money spent on Halloween will reach roughly $9.1 billion in the United States this year. Of that, the federation said, $3.4 billion will go toward a costume. Two-thirds of Americans plan to maximize their Halloween budgets by shopping at thrift stores, the federation added.

Sean Corbett, vice president of marketing for Goodwill Southern Nevada, said most of the store’s shoppers want to build do-it-yourself costumes.

“They will typically either have a costume in mind … or they look for (what’s on hand) for inspiration,” he said. “For example, a used prom dress could be turned into a zombie prom queen.”

Millennials were seen as the most likely to go the DIY route at a thrift store, the poll found. Social media has been a driving factor in the growth of DIY Halloween costumes. People share outfits on sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

“It is kind of like a silent competition among friends to outdo one another,” Corbett said.

Jackie Reed, manager Goodwill’s store at 9385 W. Flamingo Road, showed off costumes made from assembling various items off the racks. One featured a leopard-print top with cat whiskers. Another was a sparkling dress with a mask attached.

As for its supply of ready-made costumes, a rack held ones that had been donated. Reed found one, a railroad engineer outfit for a toddler, in its original packaging.

“I just ordered this exact same thing for my grandson on Amazon: $25,” Reed said. “Here, it’s $7.99. Can you believe that? It’s for his birthday party. He wanted it to be a conductor for a Thomas the Train Engine (theme).”

Ed Berkle is the manager of the Savers store on the fringe of Sun City Summerlin. A company called Alter-Ego provides Savers with new costumes, but a good many shoppers, he said, opt for making their own.

“We get regular things all year long that people make costumes from, like wedding dresses,” Berkle said. “They’ll put fake blood on it or tear it up, drive over it with their car to make it look beat-up for a zombie thing.”

Graduation caps and gowns were another favorite, as were uniform-type clothes or anything distinctive.

Not sure how to pull together a DIY Halloween outfit? Savers has two custom consultants to help.

“They actually approach customers and say, ‘Hey, can I help you figure out what you’re going to be this year for Halloween?’” Berkle said. “Or somebody will have a picture and we can say, ‘Yes, we can help you work through this.’”

Savers employees put on a costume runway show at 3 p.m. Thursdays during the Halloween season — another way to spark customizing ideas.

Be prepared to open your door to trick-or-treaters claiming, “Winter is coming,” as 41 percent of respondents to the National Retail Federation poll said “Game of Thrones” likely will inspire outfit choices. For the younger crowd, movies such as “Wonder Woman,” “Star Wars” and “Despicable Me 3” were cited as constume influences. More than 50 percent predicted President Donald Trump will dominate as the most-seen theme.

Contact Jan Hogan at or 702-387-2949.

Metro Asst. Sheriff Brett Zimmerman on Aug. 8 officer-involved shooting
Metropolitan Police Department Assistant Sheriff Brett Zimmerman met with media Monday to discuss the details of the 14th officer-involved shooting of the year. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Matt Kelly Elementary School hosted its third annual Back-to-School Red Carpet Program
Matt Kelly Elementary School hosted its third annual Back-to-School Red Carpet Program where community and business leaders joined to welcome students back with an inspirational welcome. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Star Trek fans on show’s enduring popularity
Star Trek fans at the Star Trek Convention 2018 talk about why they think the show has stayed popular across the years Thursday, August 2, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Nonprofit provides clothing for homeless
Sydney Grover of Can You Spare A Story?, talks about how she founded the non-profit organization. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Family remembers deceased mother
Family members of Adriann Gallegos remember her. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Camp Broadway teaches kids how to sing and dance
The Smith Center's seventh annual Camp Broadway musical theater program gives 150 kids ages 6-17 an opportunity to learn musical theater skills from industry professionals over a five-day period. Marcus Villagran/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @brokejournalist
Restoring classic Corvettes to perfection
Members of the National Corvette Restorers Society Convention talk about what it takes to earn the NCRS Top Flight Award for a restored Corvette at South Point in Las Vegas on Tuesday July 17, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Watch Ruthless! at Las Vegas Little Theatre
The musical Ruthless! will be playing at Las Vegas Little Theatre from July 13-29. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Cadaver art and sword swallowing at The Dark Arts Market
Curator Erin Emrie talks about her inspiration for The Dark Arts Market at Cornish Pasty Co. in Las Vegas Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
What to expect at Station Casinos' Fourth of July celebration
Station Casinos' is hosting its annual 4th of July celebration with Fireworks by Grucci. Fireworks scheduled to go off on Wednesday, July 4 around 9 p.m. at Green Valley Ranch Resort, Red Rock Resort, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Tourists and locals enjoy Independence Day fireworks at Caesars Palace
Hundreds of tourists and locals gaze at the Independence Day fireworks show at Caesars Palace on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Clark County recount votes in commission’s District E primary
Clark County staff begin the recount requested by candidate Marco Hernandez in the democratic primary for the County Commission's District E seat on Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Long-running local hip hop producer wants Vegas rappers to shine
Las Vegas Hip Hop producer and co-owner of Digital Insight Recording Studios Tiger Stylz reflects on 30 years of music production in the city. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
"Pawn Stars" fans visit Richard Harrison's memorial at Gold & Silver Pawn
"Pawn Stars" fans from around the world visit the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas following the passing of Richard "Old Man" Harrison on Monday, June 25, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Construction for new 51s ballpark underway
New home of the Las Vegas 51s is planned to be finished by March 2019 in Summerlin according to team president Don Logan. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like