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6 Simple Halloween Costumes (Plus One Bonus!) That Only Need a Shirt

Kyle Greco

March 29, 2021

Halloween might look a little different in 2020, with Coronavirus limiting parties and putting trick-or-treating in doubt. Yet there are still opportunities to dress up and make the most of the holiday!

And who would miss a chance to freak someone out or make them laugh?

Whether you’re having a socially-distanced get together with family and friends, or simply dressing up to watch movies with your housemate, finding a great outfit is key. 

Before you start banging your head against the wall trying to think of a half-decent idea that doesn’t require you going out to the store, we have good news.

All you need is a shirt.

It’s so simple it almost sounds stupid, but it’s not. Going this route might not ever win you a Tony for costume design but it will get the people around you to:

A) Laugh

B) Think you are clever

C) Laugh and think you are clever

Which, let’s face it, we all need in 2020!

We’ve hand-picked a few easy Halloween costume ideas that you can complete with just the right shirt. 

1. Vote for ‘Pablo’


His name is definitely Pablo, right?


Sure, October means Halloween but it’s also the thick of the election season!

And that’s a rich vein to mine for Halloween costume ideas. There’s no shortage of pop culture references and movie characters you can take inspiration from– and they need not be overtly for any specific “party.” 

Whether your preferred candidate is a preppy girl on a power trip, or a soft-spoken yet courageous Mexican transfer student running for the illustrious office of class president, maybe this should be the year you wear a costume that throws your support behind one of them– or y’know, screams “Tina, come get some ham!” 

Go all out with this: start with a white ringer T-shirt. Then, add “VOTE FOR [YOUR CANDIDATE]” in a classic font- something bold like Cooper Black in red. 

Combine that with your oldest pair of high-waisted jeans a pair of boots and voila! The easiest Halloween costume ever.

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

2. Ceiling Fan


Remember the classic fight movie “Ceiling II?”


 Are you a ceiling fan or a huge fan of ceilings? They’ll never know with this one!

Dad joke enthusiasts of all ages will obsess over this classic Halloween gag. When it comes to Halloween tees, nothing beats a pun.

Start with a shirt color that’s easy on the eyes, like Carolina Blue, and contrast it with text in a bolder, harsher color, like red. You want to really express your love for fans here.

What that text says is up to you. “YOU CAN DO IT CEILING” is a good option, as is “HERE WE GO CEILING” in a curvy, retro font. 

The one we suggest, however, pays tribute to a Philly legend and his fight against one Apollo Creed. While we can’t promise that putting “WIN ‘CEILING’ WIN” will give you the eye of the tiger, we do think it will make you 75% more likely to scream “Adriaaannnnn” until your friends call you a cab.

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

3. Grateful Dead


Don’t Fear The Reaper. Wait, wrong band.


While the previous dad joke is certainly a classic, this one can help you achieve a new dimension of paternal understanding. This DIY costume is sure to open the fatherly third eye of everyone who comes into contact with you, because it’s both a dad joke and an homage to every dad’s favorite jam band. 

The first step is to figure out how you’re going to give thanks. A phrase on a sign or shirt will get the point across. The wording could be something like “I Appreciate You,” “Thanks for Everything,” or “Please accept my vehement protestations of gratitude.”  If you’re looking for a more distinctly millennial (and extremely online) approach, just go with #blessed. 

Which font you use doesn’t matter as much as making sure it’s readable. You want the dads to see it, after all.

The next step is to make your head look literally dead. You’ll need a Touch of Grey for this, so start by not sleeping or washing for a day. Play the 35-minute version of “Fire on the Mountain” on repeat to really get in character. 

If that doesn’t make you look like enough of a zombie, or if you just aren’t that dedicated to the craft of being a saucebox, borrow some costume makeup from Karen, who’s going as Mr. Mistoffelees for the 13th year in a row. She has more than enough black and white face paint to make you look like a Friend of the Devil!

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

4. Pumpkin Pi


This will make you look like a QT3.14.


Let’s be real: nothing feels real in 2020.

But you can show some love for the constants in the world by representing everyone’s favorite irrational number, Pi. Here’s a number we can really rely on– and a witty idea for a T-Shirt too.

Match pumpkin orange with the Pi symbol and watch people try to figure out what it means for around 10 minutes, before smiling and pointing at you like “heyyy.” 

Go long-sleeved so that you truly blend in with the décor of the season!

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

5. Fork in the Road


Hope you have a spare tire.


If you’re still totally lost on what T-Shirt to choose this Halloween, how could you resist this awesome visual pun?

Fork in the road… FORK in the road… Get it? 

Go check out the range of forks graphics that our design studio offers. Alternatively, if you’re a great punster yourself, check out our other graphics or upload your own creations and get punny! 

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

6. Green with Envy


Your friends are going to be, like, so jealous.

 A truly simple yet highly admirable Halloween outfit idea. Your friends are going to be, like, so jealous. Plus it’s 2020, the year we had to worry about toilet paper, along with about a million other things. Sometimes simpler is better, and this is one of those times.

This T-shirt design is a timeless classic. Whether you pick a wacky font or a really bright shade of green, you’ll certainly turn heads. 

What’s more, this makes an awesome couple’s costume idea. One of you will be wearing green, and the other will have the word envy written on their T-Shirt. Green WITH envy, hey? 

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

7. The Perfect Disguise… 


Your friends think you look like a pigeon. You’ll have the last laugh.

A self-referential joke to the act of dressing up for Halloween? How meta!

Okay, maybe it’s just funny because your friends have always said you kind of look like a pigeon. Either way, this T-Shirt is sure to go down well with all audiences.

If self-deprecation is really your thing, feel free to replace “pigeon” with any other sad and kind of pitiable animal– “rat” and “turkey” are other great examples. 

To use this design as a template, click the image or get started here.

There you have it, folks: seven creative costume ideas simply centered around a cleverly designed shirt. Whoever said Halloween 2020 was ruined was wrong.

Kyle Greco

About the Author

Kyle Greco is the resident writer at RushOrderTees, where he blends word nerdery with his love for T-shirts. A graduate of The College of New Jersey, he is interested in exploring the intersection of clothing and culture. In his spare time, he makes music, builds guitars, and cooks with his wife. He enjoys hot dogs, sports, and collecting too many hats.