posted by Matt W on October 30th, 2013

My wife has made hundreds of Halloween costumes; it’s her thing. My children have been characters ranging from Batman and Robin, pirates, and revolutionary war heroes to pigs, sheep and penguins. They are all amazing (I say “are” because most are in a costume box in the basement)! I have for the most part stayed out of the costume making business, with the notable exception of structural guidance on some of the more difficult costumes. It’s really my wife’s thing, and she’s really good at it. With that said, my favorite kids costume was the one I made for my son years ago.

“So what do you want to be for Halloween this year?” was the constant question my wife asked my son for the first couple of weeks of October that year.

This was followed with his now familiar quiet response of, “I don’t know.”

Finally one day, my son came into the room and told his mom he would really like to be a house.

“A house?”

“Yes, a house.”

This was where I got involved. “Matt W., You need to make a house costume for our son… this week… and it better be awesome!”

No pressure… thanks honey.

My initial design ideas with wood proved to be a bit heavy for my 4-year old son. My “100 years ago he would have been working 16 hours a day in a factory for bread scraps and yet he can’t buck up and cart around 25 lbs. of wood for a night?” joke didn’t play so well with my wife. Tough crowd. Next.

Corrugated plastic; now there’s the ticket. I made the roof out of black Coroplast and the shell out of white Coroplast. I fashioned nice shoulders straps out of duct tape, with his arms coming out of the roof line. I glued doors and windows on it to make it look housier, and in a moment of brilliance, I added a mini-mag-lite flashlight under the roof-line as his porch light to help with walking around the neighborhood. “Trick or Treat, I’m a house. Do you want to see my porch light?” he would say while walking up to every house,  He would then lean back and illuminate his new candy benefactors. Every house. He was very proud (truth be told he was the second proudest person on the street), and it was awesome.

Every year except one, my wife came up with a new amazing costume for our children, and here in a few years will get to start again on grandkids. While she is probably already planning Halloween costumes for 2020, I’m retired. I made the perfect costume and have moved on.

(Well, at least until some little sweetie head asks Grandpa for some help. Then I’m sunk.)

File Under Jack of all Trades