California Raisins: Fun, Inexpensive Throwback Halloween Costume for Adult or Children
Lafayette, LA (KPEL News) - From adults to children, people are scrambling to figure out what they will be for Halloween. The reasons for the costume dilemma are as varied as the characters, but cost and family-friendliness likely top the list. If you want to save money, not be too scary, and are nostalgic, consider dressing up as a California Raisin!
A friend and I were attending a Halloween party in the late 80s, at about the time the advertising campaign started for, well, California Raisins. Gen Xers and others of a certain age will remember the commercial featuring dancing raisins belting out Marvin Gaye's version of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine." Check out the video at the end of this story.
The California Raisins popularity sparked miniature figures, plush toys, and even a Potato Head or, more appropriately, a Raisin Head.
So how did two young, broke teenage girls pull off what is one of my most memorable costumes? Creativity and lots of items you likely have around your house.
Black Tights or Leggings and a Long-sleeved Black Shirt
Black tights or leggings and a long-sleeved black shirt will serve as the base for your costume. You may opt for a short-sleeved black shirt, given that the weather may be warm in October in south Louisiana. Long sleeves play better, but you know what's most comfortable.
Black Trash Bag
The bigger the person, the bigger the bag needs to be. If you have a little person, no problem! Cut it to the preferred length, but leave enough that it covers your neck with some extra. Make holes about 4 to 6 inches from the top, about 8 or so inches apart. I'll explain why in a bit. Next, snip two holes in the bottom of the bag for your legs.
Wide Ribbon or Any Long Scarf or Piece of Fabric
Use this item to place through the holes you made at the top of the bag that will go around the neck. You'll lace it through, similar to the way you do with curtain grommets, in an out until you can gather it. The ends should be in the front. You'll tie a bow at the throat.
Pillow Stuffing or Newspaper
Basically, you'll need something to put into the bag after you slip your legs into the holes at the bottom. We used the cotton-like stuff you put into pillows. You can also use newspaper or anything light enough that it won't tear the bag and that isn't too heavy or restrictive.
If you don't have any lying around, they are usually inexpensive. Use whatever you can find in your house, at the store, or even some white latex gloves.
We finished off the look with sunglasses and newsboy hats, just because we liked them and we weren't sure what to do with our big 80s hair. You may opt for a fedora!
Put it all together and you're a California Raisin! It's a fun idea as a family, too, especially if you practice and perform the song with appropriate dance moves.