This year, Target has chosen to poo-poo the homemade costume, with a commercial apparently aimed to A.) Convince children that homemade costumes are inferior to store-bought costumes or B.) Take a jab at insecure parents who fear that their homemade creations will not endure as family memories, but instead as traumatizing childhood events. I'm not sure which one is worse.
In this commercial, a homemade Iron Man costume is revealed (complete with a tap-light in the middle, which I thought was genius), then swiftly compared to the corporation's idea of a superior store-bought costume. The same store-bought Iron Man costume that five other kids will be wearing to the Halloween party. The same costume that grown-ups handing out candy have already seen three other neighborhood kids wear. So much for your Tootsie-Roll intake.
Indeed the Target tagline 'Expect More...Pay Less' seems to be shooting right out of the television screens at kids. Expect More! You shouldn't have to make an Iron Man helmet out of a cardboard box! Why aren't your parents treating you better? Expect More!
Incidentally, I turned this query over to Iron Man himself, (we weld together on Tuesdays) and he replied, 'Well... I made MY own Iron Man costume'. I then asked my son, who is a 12 year veteran of trick-or-treating. His professional opinion was: 'Whatever brings in the most candy.'
Visit any costume contest this year, and I guarantee that the clever, unique handmade costumes will catch the eye of the judges while the shiny, store-bought get-ups will simply parade on by. In addition, the people with the candy bowls (yes, and therefore all of the trick-or-treat power) are going to save that extra Milky Way for the kid coming up the walk in a 'dirty laundry' costume. If kids are really going to 'Expect More', then a cookie-cutter factory made costume just isn't going to deliver.
As you can probably tell, I'm a fan of homemade costumes. Trust me, there were a few homemade costumes that my mom put on me which still haunt me today. The itchy black yarn geisha wig and caked-on face paint comes to mind. But she stitched the Japanese kimono and obi herself (and forced my sister to wear it too, so that was a plus). One year, I was a gypsy and got to wear armfuls of my mothers bracelets and wispy scarves that were normally off-limits. But no matter what we wore, my sisters and I spent time with our mom cobbling costumes and memories that we can now smile and laugh about together.
Hey Timmy, remember when we went to Target that one year and you said 'I want this one.', and I said, 'Put it in the cart.'? What a riot. Good times.
What do you think?
- Kids Costumes You Can Make
- Cardboard Box Costumes
- Sweatsuit Costumes
- Thrift Store or Recycled Costumes
- Last Minute Costumes
- Homemade Halloween Costume Photos