Pun-Loving Costumes

Stretch your linguistic muscles and don’t be afraid to look like an idiom this Halloween — all you need is some craftiness, and you’ll be sew ready to show off your threads (and leave your friends in stitches).

For those of you who have yet to find your alter ego this Halloween, I have offered up a handful of unique and out-of-the-box costume ideas for the pun lover in all of us.

On the continuum of clever to cringe-worthy puns, these costumes range from funny and lighthearted to particularly groan-worthy, but the key is to wear them with confidence, regardless. 

Loan Shark

This costume, while it may look innocent and amusing, is actually the scariest of the bunch. Instead of going for blood and gore, you’re going for real life financial horror stories — loans — something that many college students can relate to.

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For those unfamiliar with the phrase, a loan shark refers to someone who lends money at exorbitant (and sometimes life-threatening) interest rates, usually targeting the most economically vulnerable individuals. This practice is illegal, not only in the U.S., but around the world — though that doesn’t prevent it from occurring under the rug.

According to LoanSharks.com, loan sharks are often mobsters, organized criminals or gangsters who lend money and stop at nothing to get their money back — whether it involves inflicting personal harm or racking up interest rates of nearly 3000 percent annually (as was the case for one New York loan shark).

Thus, the phrase’s violent background illustrates a dark juxtaposition with the adorable cartoon shark. Like I said, this costume is pretty frightening if you look past the cuddly outer layer.

Social Butterfly

On a lighter note, this outfit allows you to show your love of all things social, paying homage to your beloved smartphone. Fluttery wings and some simple, homemade apps will enable you to break out of your cocoon and be a social butterfly.

This costume gives you bonus points in that it allows for some wiggle room. If you change your mind, you have the choice to ditch the wings and just be a smartphone or leave out the apps and simply let your butterfly spirit soar.

Plus, you can easily put it together as a last-minute idea. The only thing you would need to buy, if you do not already have it, is a pair of costume wings. Find a black dress or outfit from a local boo-tique, and voila, you’re set.

If you have a buddy and are willing to go the extra mile, there is true potential for a combo pun: a social butterfly and a bookworm. The latter would require some antennae, a book, a bow tie and a long dress or pair of leggings in purple or green.

Julius Caesar Salad

Do you have lettuce, parmesan cheese or tomatoes lying around? Do you own a bed sheet? Then you already have all the materials you need to make this simple costume (croutons are optional).

For this version, since it is salad-themed, I went with a green toga — though you always have the option of going with classic white as the Romans did.

Like the loan shark costume, this one has some interesting history. While Julius Caesar was a notable general from ancient Rome, Caesar Salad came from early 20th century Italian roots.

As the story goes, Caesar Salad was actually invented by a man named Caesar Cardini, who emigrated from Italy to the U.S. with his brother Alex after the World War I, according to KitchenProject.com. Cardini then worked at a restaurant in Tijuana and created a new dish which featured lettuce, croutons and parmesan cheese as the main ingredients.

There are many benefits to this costume. First, it is breezy and does not require pants, which is especially convenient. Second, if you get hungry during your Halloween festivities, simply pluck a tomato or some lettuce from your headpiece and have a healthy treat.

Other Punny Costumes

There are endless possibilities in the department of costume puns, taking inspiration from everything around you. For example, repurpose those cat ears and tail from past Halloweens and be “Cleocatra,” with a bit of colorful makeup. Or, go the lazy route and be “the cat’s pajamas,” and wear some cozy flannel.

If you have an oversized white sweater, you can be “cloud nine,” with a paper “9” attached to your front. Alternatively, cover a baseball cap in cotton balls, wear regular clothes and have your “head in the clouds” all weekend.

Throughout our childhood, parents and teachers tell us that we can be anything we want if we work hard for it. Each Halloween, with a creative mind and a crafty heart, we can all follow these dreams to great heights.

This Halloween, create an entirely new and clever outfit from everyday phrases or names. These are just a handful of options, but if you look hard enough, you can find your pun-in-a-million costume.

Reema is a senior in FAA. She can be reached at [email protected].