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Thrifty Homemade Jelly Fish Costume

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Do you have an invitation to a fab Halloween party this year? Is your wallet telling you not to go because you don't want to shell out $50 for a costume? Don't lame out -- make one!

Head out to the nearest thrift shop and sift through the umbrella bin. You can pick one up for a dollar, seriously. This umbrella will be your starting point for, you guessed it, a thrifty jelly fish costume.

Simple instructions on crafting your own jelly fish umbrella costume are after the jump ...

Materials:
- One used umbrella (pink in this case but go with whatever you find)
- One hot glue gun and a few hot glue sticks
- Bubble wrap (used if you have some)
- Fabric (broad cloth is very inexpensive)
- Scissors
- Craft Felt (in assorted colors)

Method:
1. Open the umbrella and lay it out on a large working surface.
2. Lay out a large sheet of bubble wrap. Cut the length 3 feet long; the width can vary depending on the piece you have on hand. Cut as many 1-inch-by-3-foot strips, as the width will allow. Set aside.

3. Lay out a piece of pink fabric. Broad cloth is very inexpensive, at around $1.99 per yard. Buy or grab from your stash, around one yard. Cut this into the same size strips as the bubble wrap. 1-inch-by-3-feet. Set aside.

4. Grab craft felt in two different shades (one must be white). Freehand cut eyeball shapes out of the different shades. Stack them on top of one another smallest on top to largest on bottom.

5. Grab your glue gun and glue sticks. Plug the gun in and allow it to heat up fully.
6. Lift the layers of felt eyeball parts and hot glue each one together.

7. Now hot glue the eyes to the outer edge of the umbrella.

8. Grab your bubble wrap strips. Decide where you want to place them along the inside of the outer edge of the umbrella making sure to evenly space them.
9. Run a bead of hot glue one spot at a time for the bubble wrap strips.

10. Press the strips down with your fingers so they secure to the umbrella fabric. Do this carefully to ensure that you do not burn your fingers.

11. Repeat this same thing towards the inside of the umbrella shaft to attach the pink fabric.
12. That's it! You've created a cool costume that you can carry out, tuck into the back of your shirt, and it ride high all night long.

Other Umbrella Costume Ideas:

Make a spider with a black umbrella, a mushroom with a red umbrella, an octopus with a blue umbrella, or a portable tiki hut with a brown umbrella. If you happen upon a yellow umbrella, just add in a yellow wig, yellow dress and yellow shoes and you can be the Morton Salt Girl.

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Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.