The circus is back in town. So come one, come all to the greatest show on earth, or rather to the ghoulest season this year. It’s Halloween! And it’s time to get creative and craft ourselves some DIY circus costumes.

Lion Tamer

A lion tamer outfit is a great Halloween costume to create, especially if you have a hairy pet. Imagine getting dressed as a lion tamer with your pet cat or dog tagging along as your lion (remember the lion cut for pets?).

You’ll need a red jacket, a pair of white pants, some cardboard, and a few other craft materials to put together this look. Just add tassels and a tail to the jacket, add a strip of tape along the length of the pants on both sides, and create a hat using the cardboard and viola! You can also create a “ring of fire” to use as a prop using this tutorial.

If you’re a mom, you can have fun with the kids this Halloween by dressing up as a lion tamer while they pretend to be the lions (with their permission, of course). Otherwise, this look is also great on its own.

Tightrope Walker

This Halloween costume idea from Amanda White needs only a bodysuit, bubble wrap, colorful tapes, and a dowel. Create a skirt using bubble wrap and some colorful tapes. Then make a balancing umbrella using a piece of dowel, bubble wrap, and tapes to accessorize the look.


For the acrobat costumes, you’ll need a bodysuit or a tank top and skirt. You’ll also need feathers, sequins, gems, ribbons, or other fancy embellishments. Sew or glue on the adornments to your body suit and create or buy an inexpensive feather fascinator or top hat. That’s it!

The Strong Man

To be the strong man of the circus, you’ll need a striped tank top, red shorts, and a barbell. If you don’t have a striped top, simply take a white tank top and put stripes across it using black tape. For the shorts, you only need to add vertical stripes at both sides using tape. You can use foam balls and a dowel to make the barbel.

Oh and you’ll also need a mustache, chest hairs, and muscles, of course. You only need a marker to do the first two. As for the muscles, you can make use of two balls taped to your biceps and worn under a long-sleeved top. But if you already have the biceps, then no need of the balls.

Alternatively, you can also wear an animal print leotard like the picture above. Faux animal fur could work, too.


To make a clown costume this Halloween, let’s take inspiration from probably the scariest clown ever – Twisty the Clown of American Horror Story.

To recreate his look, you’ll need a white long-sleeved top and white pants, cardboard, black pompoms, a white drawstring bag, and juggling pins. Attach the pompoms to the center of the white top and at the cuffs as well as at both sides of the bottom of the pants.

Create a clown hat from the piece of cardboard by shaping it into a cone. Then attach the pompoms at the top of the hat and down the center.

Before going out for trick or treat – I mean partying – make sure to add red food coloring and some mud for that dirty, bloody look. Put on some totally freaky clown makeup and a pair of dirty Chuck Taylor’s and you’re set to go.

The Ring Master

What’s a circus without the ring master?

One way to create this look is with a red jacket, black pants or leggings, black boots, a white tee, and a couple of colors of duct tape. Similar to the lion tamer, you’ll need to attach tails to the jacket for this circus costume. You can also add frills and a button to the jacket and accessorize with a top hat.

Alternatively, you can channel your inner Elsa Mars of American Horror Story with either a red-and-white striped gown and top hat ensemble or a blue suit. Both outfits can be paired with 40s or 50s pumps.

That’s the end of our list of Halloween costume ideas. You can add blood stains, bite marks, and other gory details to take your circus costumes to the next level.


Which circus character will you be this Halloween?




Juvy Garcia
Juvy Garcia
Juvy is a freelance proofreader, copy editor and writer. A nice little nook with a good book would be ideal. But concocting plans for her next drawing or DIY project will suffice while she's still busy babysitting two daughters. Follow her on Twitter or connect with her on Google+.