Going to a dress up party and realised at the last minute that you will look like the idiot if you're the only one not in costume? Just plain forgot and don't have heaps of dough? Here are some ideas that will not only save your bacon but might make you the life of the party or winner of the coveted 'best dressed.'
Got a garden or a park? Get some leaves, branches, vines whatever greenery you can get your hands on. Armed with this you can make an Adam or Eve costume, Oberon or Titainia with some stockings and flowers or for ladies there's always Poison Ivy from Batman.
In a relationship? Get into a little cross-dressing and go as each other! You will know their mannerisms well enough to entertain the hell out of anyone else who knows you both.
How about hitting up the kitchen for some flour? Toss it through your hair, walk with a hunch and go as yourself as an old man/woman. You can stop off at the service station for some reading glasses. Servo glasses are actually last minute gold as ladies can pick a pair of fake reading glasses, put their hair in bun, whack on something conservative and go as a Librarian. If you don't usually wear glasses, watch out because guys think it's super sexy.
Hats, hats, hats. Got a fedora? Boom, you're a gangster all you need is a suit and tie. A Stetson, some jeans and a scarf and you're a cowboy, a bowler hat and some eye-liner and you're the lead from Clockwork Orange, sombrero and a drawn on moustache and suddenly you're a Mexican. Most hats have a point of origin or era that they are widely associated with so any hat and a little ingenuity and you've got a costume.
Raid the bathroom for bandages or rip up an old sheet. Wrap yourself up and go as a mummy. Or wear a suit and wrap the parts that stick out and you're the Invisible Man.
Take a quick trip to your parent's house. I bet you any amount of money that they have some gems from the 70's and 80's hiding in the back of the wardrobe from their glory days that they just couldn't bear to part with. You will look totally authentic and possibly be channelling some of mum or dads old school party mojo.
Get into the shed for some gear; camping, snow, snorkelling, in fact any sports gear as well. You may think it's a little obvious at first but one of the main things you want from a costume is that people can tell what you are, (well and that it embarrasses you a little) there's nothing worse than spending the night answering, 'so, what are you supposed to be?'
And finally the last and obvious one – old sheets as togas. Accessories for this are sandals, or strappy heels and a head wreath for the guys whereas ladies can turn any necklace into an effective tiara/headband.