Oct 27, 2023 - Culture

Last-minute costume ideas for Chicagoans

Illustration of the Chicago star carved into a pumpkin.

Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

We've all been there. You had big Halloween costume ideas back in June, but now it's Oct. 27, there's a party tomorrow and Goodwill is all picked over.

  • Don't worry. We've got ideas for some easy, but very Chicago costumes for all you procrastinators.

Why it matters: Our city is rich in history, tradition, folklore, and humor — show it off!

Marshall Field's bag

Cut two pieces of cardboard, paint them forest green, attach some brown twine, and paste on the iconic logo.

A green paper bag that reads Marshall Fields in brown.
A classic Marshall Field's bag that's probably currently storing Christmas decorations. Photo: Carrie Shepherd/Axios

Bears lost

Grab a friend, put on bear costumes, carry a compass, and look confused.

A man dressed in a bear costume, wearing a Bears jersey with orange and blue paint on his face.
This is giving a little of "mean bear" but with a confused look on your face, it quickly becomes "Bears lost." Photo: Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Classic Sears portrait

Wear your favorite '80s sweater, poof up those bangs, and make a crappy frame with a dark, unattractive background to put around your face.

Lincoln Park Pirate

Dress like the most terrifying person you can imagine and carry a huge metal chain to hook cars to your tow truck.

JB (Pritzker) skating

Wear a suit like the governor but add rollerskates as a nod to the Chicago-born art of JB Skating.

A photo of Illinois Governor JB Pritzker next to a photo of black roller skates.
There wasn't a photo of Gov. JB Pritzker wearing rollerskates. Photos: Christopher Dilts/Bloomberg via Getty Images and Jacoby Cochran.


Paint an old circular sledding saucer green. Go meta by talking like the guys who first discovered Chonk.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Chicago.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Chicago stories


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Chicago.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more