DIY Construction Costumes


If you read my previous post on encouraging interests, then you won’t be surprised to hear what my son wanted to be for Halloween….an excavator. A construction worker wouldn’t be sufficient – he needed to be the actual machinery. 

The Bulldozer

Last year for Halloween, H asked to be a construction vehicle. I did some research and found out a bulldozer was pretty easy to make using a diaper box, a hot glue gun, some paint and some time, and I put it together. 

He loved it, and was a definite hit as he trick-or-treated. The bulldozer was made from a diaper box. I cut an opening in the top and then used the opening to make the front blades. The CAT label I easily printed from Google Images. The costume came together quickly and he was so excited. Overall, I was very pleased and proud to help fulfill his costume wish.

The Excavator…

So, fast-forward to early September. My little H noticed some Halloween costumes in Target and asked what he would be for Halloween. I told him it was up to him. Shockingly (no, not at all shockingly), he asked if he could be an excavator. I told him I didn’t think I could make that, to which he replied “Why? You made a bulldozer. An excavator can’t be that much harder.” Touche, kiddo! I knew I could do it.

There were just two problems. First, there isn’t a lot out there on how to make a Excavator costume. I found a handful of Google Images, but no directions….rather, just dead-ends via Pinterest. Second, the time component. I knew it was going to be harder to make this costume while chasing two toddlers around. So, I tried to get him to change his mind. We talked about being just a construction worker, but as he said “who wants to be the worker when you can be the machine?” I tried to persuade him to be a farmer like his dad, but he wasn’t interested. I even made a push for a Word Party character, but to no avail. He has his heart set on construction, again. So, I told him I would give it a try. 

It’s easy to put off a project that you aren’t sure how to proceed. But, the gorgeous weather this week (and more realistically, the impending deadline of New Zoo Boo) kicked me into high gear. I brought home a paper box, headed to the hardware store and bought yellow, black, and white duct tape, and proceeded with my plan, or rather, lack-thereof. The project evolved as I went through it, and in the end, I am super pleased with the result. 

A Picture Guide

The best way to explain how to build a construction costume is to show you via a photo log. So, please scroll through the photos below and read the descriptions for more info. 

The Box
Bottom of Arm
Arm Base
Remove the top
Time to start Taping
Lots of Tape
The More Tape, The better
Arm complete


Cab Windows
The Scoop
Final Product

If you have questions about how to make a construction costume, let me know. And if you happen to spot a boy dressed as an excavator at New Zoo Boo, feel free to say hello. It may not look perfect, and it was time-consuming, but I know the smile on his face when he wears his excavator costume will be worth it!