Last-Minute Costume Idea: Become An Instagram for Halloween


Confession: I’m 25 years old and I still love Halloween as much as I did when I was 5. What’s not to love about a day where you get to dress up as anything you want and eat as much candy as you want without a sideways glance from anyone?

This year, though, I faced a little bit bigger of a challenge than usual. I recently moved to Madrid, Spain, to teach English and, surprisingly, Halloween isn’t as much of a “thing” here as it is at home. That’s not to say that people don’t celebrate the holiday; they just don’t do it quite like we do.

Personally, I’m a sucker for pop culture-related costumes. Last year, I went as Honey Boo Boo, and, the year before that, I went as the ever-present Unicorn. In Spain, most people err on the side of scary. In a quick poll I took amongst my students, the top three costumes were skeleton, vampire, and witch. I lauded the only student brave enough to dress up as Spiderman, and, in that moment, realized I didn’t have to follow all of Spain’s traditions, as much as I want to immerse myself in the culture while I’m here.

Did I mention that this realization happened Monday, October 28? I came home from work and started to scramble, thinking about what I could be for Halloween this year that would be fun and different. And then I remembered it: a picture posted by one of my favorite celebrities, Beyoncé. In it, she was costumed as herself… an Instagram of herself, that is.


So, this year, I’m going as an Instagram of myself; a “selfie,” if you will. Not only am I almost guaranteed to be the only Instagram in Madrid on Halloween, but I only spent about 6 euros on the entire thing. Here’s how I made it in an afternoon:

What you’ll need:

  • Foam board or poster board (It’s been a struggle to find foam board in this country, so I settled for a white poster board—it should be easier to obtain, and would make a much sturdier base for your project)
  • Construction paper in at least blue, gray, and white; I also needed pink and yellow
  • Black marker or printed text to serve as Instagram comments

Let’s get crafting, shall we? 

1. Cut a square hole into your poster or foamboard. Leave a frame around it that’s larger at the top and bottom.

2. Cut a strip of blue paper that matches the width of the top of your poster or foamboard. Attach it to the top with tape or glue.

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3. If you want to add comments or likes at the bottom of your “photo,” cut out a gray heart and/or quote bubble out of gray paper. Tape or glue them in the space beneath your photo.

4. Next to the heart, write how many likes your “photo” has; write any comments next to and beneath the thought bubble. If your handwriting isn’t up to par, it would be even quicker to type up your text, print it, cut it, and paste it.

5. If you’d like to spruce up your comments section even more, add a few emoticons. I went for one of my favorites, the sparkle heart. Six of them, to be exact!

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6. I didn’t do this, but, if you’d like to add a username, location, and profile photo at the top left of your image—like a real Instagram has—you could also do that.

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7. Finally, write “Instagram” in cursive using white paint, or cut it out of white paper. You could also find the logo online and print it. I didn’t have this option, as I don’t have a printer here in Madrid, so I just freehanded some cursive.

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8. Optional: Add string to the top so you can wear your frame around your neck for easy transport and quick access for photos.

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And that’s it!

What do you think? Let us know in the comments section, especially if you tried to replicate this look on your own! And don’t forget to print out snaps of your snap-inspired costume with the Kicksend app, which prints Instagram shots just as handily as traditionally-shaped photos!

Andrea graduated from the University of North Carolina, where she studied journalism and once saw Michael Jordan at a bar. She's currently teaching English in Spain, writing about her experiences, and snapping as many photos of her travels as she possibly can.

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