It’s that time of the year again, and as the leaves are changing and the cold starts to set in, most of us are still scrambling to come up with a last minute Halloween costume. Costumes inspired by Stranger Things, Orange is the New Black, and the usual array of superheroes will likely be present at every party, but rather than just being another member of the crowd, try something a bit more creative. With The Walking Dead kicking off Season 7 this week, the zombie craze is now back in fashion. Not only will fans finally find out who gets a beat down from Negan and whether or not any of the favorite characters will get killed off the show, but many of us will also decide whether this will finally be the year we’ll go all out and find a Halloween costume inspired by the epic AMC zombie drama. Rather than opting for some store bought sheriff’s costume that supposedly resembles Rick or that adorably creepy underage walker in pajamas and bunny slippers, this year go with something a tad more original.
Don’t waste your money on one of those bagged costumes at a pop-up costume shop, and instead, head to the thrift store instead. You’d be surprised what you can find in those places! Understandably not everyone has a creative enough mind to throw together a recognizable costume, so these ideas will help you get started. Get creative this year with these totally possible last minute DIY costumes inspired by The Walking Dead, and show off your creativity skills this Halloween.
15. Member Of The Wolf Crew
Since they first attacked Alexandria, The Walking Dead fans have been waiting to learn more about the cult-like wolf crew aside from their brutal killing style and obvious desire to rid the world of conformity. While we might have to wait a while before we find out if anyone from the Wolves is still lurking in the shadows, their look is certainly distinctive and would make a great Halloween costume. Different from other savage groups Rick’s people have stumbled upon through the series, the Wolves don’t reside in some abandoned village or hospital. They are rough, crazy-eyed, unpredictable, and in serious need of a bath. Some ratty old clothes won’t produce the desired wolf effect until they’ve skipped half a dozen washes and are accidentally left outside for a month. You can create this effect for your costume with some water and a bunch of tea bags (usually 6-12 per clothing item). It’s better to use clothes you’ve had a while or take a trip to a thrift store to find something used. Fill a bucket with hot water and throw the tea bags in along with your clothes. It’ll take at least an hour for the fabric to absorb the tea, and then hang them dry and let the wrinkles set in. You can then distress the clothes with a pair of scissors, a razor, and some sandpaper. Accessorize your costume with a machete or blunt object, and of course, the distinctive W on your forehead. If you come off like that crazy old man on the subway that no one wants to sit next to, then congratulations, you’ve accomplished the look!
14. Riot Gear Walker
In Season 3, we watched the peaceful life Rick created for our favorite characters slowly crumble as zombies in riot gear invaded the prison. Our hearts raced in anticipation as they struggled to figure out how to kill this seemingly unstoppable army of walkers. Zombie costumes are in, but it’s the kind of zombie you are that will make your costume stand out. The Riot Gear Zombie isn’t a cheap look to accomplish. Unless you have your own riot gear laying around the house, this costume will require an intense purchase from amazon or some minor creativity. If you’re on a budget, some black spray paint and old sports pads will do the trick. Top that off with combat boots, a plastic costume police helmet, and some zombie makeup and you’ll be the most original zombie anywhere you go. If you’re not very skilled at the zombie makeup application, buy a plastic handgun and go as Glenn or Maggie instead.
13. Sweet Carol
Carol’s embellished sweet persona is one that amused fans throughout the gang’s stay in Alexandria. She was quite different from the Carol we’ve all come to know who spent most of her time slaughtering walkers, teaching classes to children on weaponry and self-defense, and of course, famously taking out a few sickly members of Rick’s crew. In Alexandria, Carol spent most of her time in the kitchen wearing an apron or offering baking tips to the women in town, coming a long way since being banished in Season 4. While as viewers we knew this was all an act, it was quite enjoyable to watch the other characters interact with sweet Carol without ever suspecting she had a dark side behind that motherly facade. This costume is simple, but throwing on a pastel cardigan and some khaki pants won’t project the Carol traits we’ve all grown to love. Be sure to head to the party with a casserole and a batch of her famous cookies, because as we all know, Carol makes the best cookies in Alexandria! To make it even more authentic, the recipe has been posted online for all to enjoy.
12. Bloated Well Zombie
This is a throwback to Season 2, which featured everyone’s favorite wet walker. Shirtless, and bloated from well water, Rick’s crew feared this floating zombie would contaminate their drinking water and destroy their dreams of riding out the apocalypse within the confines of Hershel’s cozy farm. In an attempt to pull the heavy walker out of the well, using only a rope, human bait, and their determined efforts, the zombie’s skin tore off under the pressure. Its innards were spilled into the well with grotesque realism, creating one of the most memorable scenes of The Walking Dead series to date. To pull off this costume, you’ll need a fat suit or a natural big belly, the willingness to go shirtless, and a pair of old jeans. Costume makeup can be used to create the uneven, bruised appearance on the walker’s face and chest. Top it off with some fake blood, and a few drooping imitation or homemade intestines and fans will be sure to recognize you!
11. Wolf Imitator Carol
As we learned more about the Wolves and how brutal they could be during their attack on Alexandria, we also learned how sly Carol could be. She’s not just great at baking cookies and casseroles from the scraps brought back from the crew’s supply runs. Apparently Carol is also great at defending an entire camp of untrained apocalypse survivors, practically on her own! The Carol we’ve grown to love was back, and she certainly showed no mercy toward these vicious outlaws who call themselves, Wolves. The look is similar to how the Wolf costume is created since it includes the same aging tea bag process for your clothes. Throw on a dark hooded sweatshirt, cover your face with an old bandana, draw a W on your forehead, and your costume will have everyone talking this year. Take this costume even further with a dirty face, bloody hands, and a plastic rifle. If we’ve learned anything from watching The Walking Dead, it’s not to mess with Carol!
10. Nurse Beth
We all miss sweet Beth, especially when we remember how badass she was throughout her last season alive as she tried to escape from under Dawn’s authority. She matured considerably from her days in bed on the farm and picked up the courage and survival skills she needed somewhere along the way (perhaps learned from her time alone with her partner in crime and off-set boyfriend, Daryl). Held prisoner in a hospital in Season 5, we learned how twisted some of the apocalypse survivors had truly become. Beth seemed to wear the same thing throughout her final season. Adorable in blue scrubs, this Halloween costume is perfect for those who believe in comfort over beauty when heading out to a party or the bars. Wrap up your right arm in gauze, add some faux blood on your left cheek and the Beth costume is all set. Add points by having your significant other dress as Daryl, and it will make this one of the best TWD couple costumes at the soiree.
9. Headless Hershel
We all shed a tear when Hershel lost his head in Season 4, leaving fans heartbroken alongside Maggie, Beth, and the rest of Rick’s followers. It wasn’t his first close call since the zombie bite at the prison called for an impromptu amputation, which marked the start of his downhill plight on the show. Yet, no one could have guessed his end would come at the hand of the Governor. Since Hershel ends up headless, there are so many exciting possibilities for this costume. Slit-Throat Hershel is a bloody illustration of him losing his head, Zombie Headless Hershel displays what happens to him after his death, and of course, there’s always the option of dressing as the Governor holding Hershel’s decapitated head. The possibilities are endless! Hershel typically wore brown overalls, and a rust-colored shirt, rocking the farmer look until the day he died. Don’t forget, when he was killed he was walking on crutches and only had one foot, so if you’re walking with a limp this Halloween season, this costume is certainly the way to go.
8. Neck-Biting Rick
Throughout the seasons of The Walking Dead, we’ve all seen Rick go through some intense highs and lows (even going slightly insane after Lori died), but his impulsive move in Season 4 seemingly tops them all. Defending his son, Carl, from those nasty hillbilly bikers, Rick takes a huge chunk out of Joe’s neck, the leader of Daryl’s former and temporary gang who seemed to enjoy killing each other more than killing walkers. Slaughtering Joe and the rest of his crew, Rick’s appetite for flesh created another legendary scene in The Walking Dead history. At that point in the series, Rick is wearing a sort-of brown bomber jacket over a dirty white tee and dark jeans. They’ve been on the move so his beard is overgrown and his hair a greasy mess. The signature feature of this costume is, of course, crazy eyes and a bloody mouth. Maybe add some flesh prosthetics on your chin and chew on some red gummy bears to give off the ideal flesh-eating effect.
7. Cannibal Gareth
Terminus was thought to be a safe haven, a sort of post-apocalyptic paradise, and at the head of this paradise was Gareth. Either he went out of his way to hit up an H&M on a supply run after the world ended or he had access to the closet of every deceased hipster in the area. His most noteworthy scene, of course, was when Bob was kidnapped, tied to a tree, and partially mutilated in order to supply Gareth’s cannibalistic crew with a hearty meal. It’s remarkably simple to pull off a costume as Cannibal Gareth. Most often he was shown wearing a light fall jacket or long-sleeved chambray shirt. The most essential part of this costume is the hair. If you don’t have the old-school Justin Bieber style, this is going to be a little tricky to pull off. Top this costume off with a t-shirt warning against tainted meat and an edible limb replicating Bob’s sawed off leg and you’re ready to head to the party!
6. Zombie-Bitten Father Gabriel
Why a zombie-bitten Father Gabriel? Because we all know he isn’t going to survive much longer now that he has betrayed Rick’s crew and broken his bond with God (which was clearly indicated in Season 5 by him viciously tearing up his Bible). Even though Father Gabriel seems to have mended his relationship with Rick, he’s become more of a babysitter than an essential character in the show, and between that and all the close calls he’s had with walkers in the past, death by zombie seems inevitable. This priest’s getup is perfect for those who can’t seem to figure out how to make a costume without stopping at Party City or hitting up Amazon. Any store-bought priest getup will do, making this the perfect option for those looking to recycle an old costume. Carry around an old, torn Bible and add some bite marks to your face and neck if you agree that the priest needs to go! Perhaps he will turn into a zombie, so feel free to add some zombie makeup to further protest Father Gabriel’s character on The Walking Dead.
5. One-Eyed Carl
Last season, Carl’s new look was revealed during the mid-season premier and he’s looking more and more like The Governor these days. If you can’t remember what happened, Ron, the jealous teen who seemed to be fighting Carl for Enid’s attention ever since the crew showed up in Alexandria, shot him in the face. Luckily, Ron wasn’t the best shot and Carl survived the incident. This costume could be seriously fun to make since Carl was wearing a handmade poncho designed to blend in with the dozens of walkers that had invaded Alexandria. So if you have an old poncho (preferably a dark color), have fun going full Lady Gaga on it. If you prefer not to use real meat, some extra fabric, crazy glue, and spray paint should do the trick. Throw on the infamous sheriff’s hat once worn by Rick and now Carl, and go all out on your one-eye project and you’re all set! If you’re feeling lazy, rock a later look where Carl wears white bandages over the wound.
Fans were introduced to Negan last season, who is undoubtedly the most forward thinking survivor Rick’s group has come across so far. He designed a trade system with nearby communities, which is the closest thing to any sort of governing force anyone has created to sustain life in the new world. If Negan was slightly less pigheaded, the system would actually work to everyone’s benefit rather than just his, but then everyone would stop watching the show. The season ended with Negan swinging a bat wrapped in barbed wire promising to kill off one of Rick’s crew members before making the rest of them slaves. Creating a Negan Halloween costume will likely be as easy as opening your closet. He’s seen wearing grey or black jeans, a zipped and fitted leather jacket, and a surprisingly feminine red scarf around his neck. Negan also wears a black leather glove on his left hand, perhaps to have a better grip on his lovely bat. Slick back your hair and you’re all set. If you’re heading to a bar it would be best to leave the bat at home, but this accessory truly does make or break the costume.
3. Pizza Delivery Boy Glenn
Before Glenn was an expectant father or taking shelter beneath dumpsters, and even before he was nicknamed Zombie-Bait, he was just another pizza boy in his early twenties trying to earn an honest living. It seems that pizza delivery and possibly video games taught him some stealthy skills that kept him alive long before he ran into Rick’s crew. It might feel like centuries have passed since Season 1 of The Walking Dead aired, but likely you remember how different Glenn looked in his baseball cap and oversized shirts. To achieve this look you’ll need a red cap, a pair of jeans, a gray or black t-shirt, and something resembling any of the many shirts he wore over the t-shirts. They often resembled a baseball jersey but as the season continued he also wore open flannels. The most essential part of this costume is a pizza pie. You’ll be the hit at any party walking in with everyone’s favorite food.
2. Zombie Judith
If you’re ever looking for an excuse to throw on a onesie and dress like a baby, there’s no better time than Halloween. If you’re going to do it, then you have to do it big! Similar to Father Gabriel, baby Judith’s character is basically useless and it amazes fans that she has been able to stay alive for this long. It’s only a matter of time before baby Judith becomes a baby walker, so get ahead of the show and rock this costume before everyone else does. If you can’t find an adult-sized onesie, anything resampling baby clothing will do. Write “Little Asskicker” on your shirt so people know that you’re an adult-sized Judith and throw a binky around your neck (which the child still uses since she has hardly aged since she was born). Depending on how you feel about Judith as a character, you can either zombie it up or keep it clean. It works either way! Even more adorable, this could be a great couples or group costume next to someone dressed as Daryl.
1. The Governor’s Daughter
Season 3 of The Walking Dead was all about revealing the mysteries by The Governor, and one of his biggest secrets was the fact that he kept his zombie daughter locked up in his closet. Penny Blake stands out as one of the creepier walkers on the show, and she appeared to be deteriorating (perhaps due to a diet lacking human flesh). She was also pretty young (around the age of 11-years-old), adding to her creepiness factor. The Governor would often let his daughter out of her chains to brush her hair, and even accidentally ripped off part of her scalp in a particularly revealing scene. To pull off this look, you’ll need a simple blue dress and a white sweater buttoned at the top. You might want to hit up a thrift shop for these items as Penny’s clothes were dirty and tattered. You’ll need some serious zombie makeup to get this look, as her skin often appeared to be falling off. Top it off with a blood soaked face, a hair brush seemingly covered in hair and flesh, and a chain restraint around the neck. You’ll take your zombie costume to a whole new level with this TWD-inspired getup.