We are getting ready for Halloween over at our house, and when I asked my four year old what he would like to be for Halloween this year, he immediately replied, “A Skeleton!!” I was happy to oblige! I just love a classic Halloween Costume!



I’m the type of mom that loves a good DIY project, and while I know you can purchase a skeleton costume, a handmade touch to my kids’ costumes is always SO much fun for me! I love that you can add a little bit of a unique touch with a few modern looking skeleton bones, and my kids get so excited to help with the project! It only took me about an hour or so start to finish to get a cute homemade skeleton costume!


For a Skeleton Costume, you will need:


  • Black Pants
  • Black Long Sleeved Shirt or Sweatshirt. (I found mine at Wal-mart for less than $4 each)
  • Fabric Paint in White (I also bought glow in the dark)
  • Paint Brush
  • Paint Holder
  • Cardboard

Step One

Be sure to wash and dry your shirt and pants before painting on them. Try the pants and shirt on your child and note how they fit. Take some tape and mark where you want the bones to start or stop so that you will be able to see them when the outfit is on their body. For example, you don’t want to paint the bones too far back on the sleeves that you can’t see them from the front when they are wearing it.

Place some cardboard, or thick paper inside the clothing under the areas you will be painting.


Step Two

Mix half and half white and glow in the dark paint. You can also just stick with white fabric paint if you don’t care about it glowing in the dark.


Step Three

Map out where you’d like to paint on the rib cage and bones with the help of the tape that you marked when they tried on the clothing. Use the skeleton bones and ribcage template, print it out and blow it up or down depending on the size you need to use as a guide. I was able to just free hand it. The fun thing about DIY is that it doesn’t have to look perfect, it can have a handmade look to it! If you are worry you will mess up, you can always buy a bottle of black fabric paint and go over any areas you may have gone a little too heavy on the white.

Step Four

Start to paint the first coat onto the shirt and bottoms.

diy skeleton costume

Step Five

After you have roughly painted on the first coat of paint and painted all the bones and rib cage, then go back and add a second coat of paint to make it nice and bright white.


Step Six

After you are finished with the second coat of paint allow the costume to dry flat overnight or for at least four hours.  Or, if you are really ambitious, you can turn it over and do the backside as well starting from step one so you can also see bones from the back.


Step Seven

Try it on your little Skeleton Man or Little Lady!



Be sure to let them see it in the dark if you did the glow in the dark paint mix!  They will be thrilled!



My little guy couldn’t be more excited for Halloween! He thinks his costume is just the coolest, and he has told me so several times. That made it all worth it!

I added a black beanie and skeleton gloves (You could totally DIY black gloves with the fabric paint) that I found in a set at Walmart, and his classic Chuck Taylor Converse shoes! You can also paint their face to look like a fun skeleton!


Happy Haunting!  And, Happy DIY Halloween!

By Caroline of Armelle Blog