How to make a cheap superhero costume

Updated April 17, 2017

From comics to movies to television shows, the popularity of superheroes is undeniable. Adults and kids alike can have a blast acting out their heroic, super-powered dreams by dressing up as superheroes for Halloween. To keep a superhero costume inexpensive, focus on creating a basic superhero look, instead of trying to emulate a specific character like Batman or Spiderman. By adding a homemade cape, mask, and letter emblazoned on your chest to clothes you already have in your closet, you can create a personalised superhero costume on the cheap.

Decide on the colour scheme you would like for your superhero. For a traditional Superman look, choose fabric for your cape and mask in bright red and a shirt and trousers in royal blue. For a darker Batman style, choose a shiny black fabric for your cape and mask and keep your clothing all black as well. Make sure to check the bargain bin area of the fabric store to keep the price low.

Cut your fabric into a basic trapezoid shape for the cape -- the narrow end of the trapezoid will be the neck of the cape. Place the fabric over your back to see how big you should make the trapezoid, keeping in mind that the longer and wider your cape is, the more dramatic your superhero look will be. There will be fabric leftover to use for your mask.

Cut 1-1/2 inch vertical slits along the narrow end of the trapezoid shape. Start the slits 2 inches from the top of the fabric and space them 1-1/2 inches apart.

Thread the ribbon through the slits to create the tie for the neck of your cape.

Cut a 36X3-inch rectangle from the leftover cape fabric to create your mask. Cut two eye holes out in the centre and a small triangle between them at the bottom of the rectangle to create a notch for your nose.

Cut a large "S" from the yellow felt and attach it to your shirt with safety pins. For a more finished look, place heat bond fabric tape between the letter and your shirt and hold a hot iron on top of the letter for two minutes to bond it to your shirt. Instead of an "S," you can cut out the bat shape of the batman logo, or choose your own letter or symbol to create a unique superhero character of your own.

Put on your shirt, trousers, cape and mask and the outfit is complete. Add any accessories you can find cheaply at a thrift store or toy store like a utility belt, toy gun or lasso.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 yards of inexpensive fabric (in colour of choice)
  • 5ft of coordinating 1-inch wide ribbon
  • One 5X7-inch piece of yellow felt
  • Scissors
  • Safety pins or heat bond fabric tape
  • Long-sleeved shirt or sweatshirt
  • Sweatpants or leggings
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Betsy Morgan has been writing and editing professionally since 1995. She has written for publications like "Wired" magazine, "Paper" magazine and She has a Bachelor of Arts in history from Columbia University.