The head is a four square ball painted white. I drew the mouth with a sharpee. The eyes are black mesh I found at my parent’s house. The suit I bought at a thrift store for $4 and used the same white paint to add the stripes.
As for the collar of the costume I just used an old black shirt which I covered in hair gel and hair spray to make it stand up. Funny thing is that I needed the collar to dry faster so I put it in the oven and accidentally caught it on fire!! The result was awesome crisp and straight (slightly browned) spiky collar.
Total Spent: $20
Melissa V., Hernando, MS
My son wanted to be Jack Skellington from Nightmare before Christmas this Halloween. I started searching on the internet and found the idea for his Jack Skellington costume on the coolest-homemade-costumes.com site. It cost hardly anything to make because I bought almost the whole outfit from a thrift store. I got a black jacket and pants.
To make the jacket look like a tuxedo I cut it in the front and sewed it at an angle. I took all of the buttons off except for the top one. I got the back and cut it up in strips to look like the tattered tails that Jack has on his tuxedo.
For the bow tie I got some black Crayola modeling dough and made a bat. I put white dough on the bat for the eyes and fangs. I then stuck wire on each side and glued black felt around it to make the tie stick out. I used chalk and made faint lines all over the top pants and bow tie. The idea I saw said to use tailor’s chalk but that didn’t work on the material I bought. Regular board chalk worked great!
Also it’s much easier to make a coat into a tuxedo top then to try and find a tuxedo with tails for a child. I started looking for a tux first with no success and finally I came up with the idea to make a jacket into the tux.
I also made Zero the dog as an accessory. I got a foam ball and stuck a wire in one end. I cut off the corner of a white pillowcase and sewed it on to make the head. I drew the eyes and mouth on with a black pen. For the body I cut the end off of the pillowcase and sewed it to the head. Zero has a pumpkin nose which I made out of orange dough and stuck it on the end of the wire. I put a red ribbon around his neck and tied a black string to it for a handle.
This Jack Skellington costume turned out great and my son loved it!
Total Spent: $20
Kirsten J., Albuquerque, NM
My 3 year old son’s (now 4) favorite movie since last Halloween is Tim Burton’s "The Nightmare Before Christmas." His birthday is Nov 1st, so this year we had a Halloween Birthday party with the whole Nightmare theme.
He wanted to be Jack so thought I could make him a costume. He had some black pants with pin stripes on them already so I bought some black fabric with stripes on it.
I used a pajama top pattern to make the shirt and added a collar that I zigzagged points and put pipe cleaners inside to give them some stiffness. I made the back of the shirt extra long and jagged cut and zigzagged the edges of that.
It was fairly simple, I, being a sewing novice. We painted his face white and black around the eyes and painted a skeleton mouth. He looked great and had so much fun being "Jack." This is a fairly cheap Halloween costume.
Molly W., Santa Barbara, CA
My 3 (now 4) year old son LOVES Tim Burton. In fact, he loves anything to do with monsters or scary ghosts, zombies, etc. He did NOT get that from me ;). He decided that he’d like to wear a Jack Skellington costume, the Bone Daddy Pumpkin King from the Nightmare Before Christmas for Halloween. I don’t do a lot of sewing so when I make a costume, I buy things and alter them to fit.
Jack wears a pinstriped tux, so I went on ebay and found a brand new black tux with tails for only $30! I bought it and drew pinstripes on with tailors chalk so they could be removed afterwards and the tux could be used for a wedding he’ll be in later this month and resold after.
Jack also wears Italian boots so I found a pair of black cowboy boots that I knew he could use for more than just Halloween.
All that was left was to make the tails on the coat ragged and to make Jack’s ragged bat bow tied. I bought some black felt and loosely stitched it onto the ends of the tails and drew the pin striping on it too.
To make the Jack Skellington costume bowtie, I got some Crayola modeling dough that dries when left out and is very lightweight. I molded a bat head out of black and added red eyes and fangs. Then I cut up some wire and stuck it in the side. I cut pieces of felt to look like the ragged ends of the bow tie and glued it to the wires to make it stay sticking out.
I used white face paint and then just drew black around the eyes and a big skeleton smile! He looked GREAT in his Jack Skellington costume! He even won a free ice cream cake from our local ice cream parlor for his Jack Skellington costume. He loved it too! (Although, I’ll warn anyone that a 3 or 4 year old and full face make up can be a bit messy after awhile). To go with his Jack Skellington costume, I made a custom-made treat bag shaped like Jack’s ghost dog, Zero. I bought two cheap pillowcases (since our fabric store is really far away and Kmart is closer!) and a large foam ball. I took some wire and stuck one end into the foam ball and then covered it with some fabric, which I stitched together to make a cone shape.
For the body, I cut the end of the pillowcase off and then cut a hole in the middle. I cut another corner of a pillowcase and made it into a smaller bag, which I then stitched inside the bigger pillowcase so that the hole opened into the smaller bag.
I attached the head and body with a few good stitches and then wrapped the neck with some red fleece strips I had left over (ribbon or something would work fine too) to make the collar. I also used that to make handles, which I attached to the collar and to the back of the body. I drew the eye and smile on with a black permanent marker.
Zero’s nose is a pumpkin so I used more of the Crayola modeling dough to make a pumpkin and used some black to put a jack-o-lantern face on him. He looked great and my son loved him!
Total Spent: $75
More Jack Skellington Costumes