As Halloween creeps closer, the days get shorter, and Oxford prepares for another set of spooktacular parties and events. This is a special time; people dress up in masks and costumes, but it’s worth remembering where Halloween comes from: Samhain, the Celtic festival when spirits and ghosts are abroad. All Hallow’s Eve, or All Saints’ Eve, is also commonly celebrated in Oxford. At least, you will find plenty of Oxford Haloween parties to attend. So how can you find the perfect costume? We’re here to help.
Oxford Halloween 2023: When, Where, What
Halloween is celebrated all around the world, and Oxford is no exception. There are plenty of Oxford Halloween parties to choose from, but if you are undecided, we recommend you take a look at these Oxfordshire Halloween events and celebrations:
- There are currently no events planned for the year, but I’ll add them as soon as they are announced!
How to Plan an Oxford Halloween Costume
The first thing to consider when finding your perfect Halloween costume for an Oxford party is to decide which style better fits your personality. Do not fear, there are plenty of ways to pick a creative costume and stay within budget. These are our recommended steps:
- Decide on a look: What is your preferred style for a costume? Scary, sexy, funny, cute? Picking one can be a great excuse to express your personality – or a side of you you don’t normally express. Think what you wear normally, and decide what’s comfortable. Can you pair those clothes (or similar ones) with others to create an Oxfordian costume?
- Decide on a colour: If you always wear black, chances are you’re not going to pick a Halloween costume that represents a fairy (that is, unless you want a dark fairy!). If you like bright colours, think of elves, rainbows, etc. If you like dark, then goth, vampires, dark wizards, etc.
- Think about your previous costumes: There’s no reason why you can’t repeat an old costume or build on it for your next Oxford Halloween party. Maybe you can make some changes and improve it? Think of it as a chance to re-evaluate your last choice. Maybe you don’t know what you want to wear for a Halloween party yet, but you know what you don’t!
- Think about your interests: Make a list of things you like and use it as an inspiration for your Oxford Halloween costume. Do you like animals? Maybe you can dress up as a met. Do you enjoy football? Then why not a football player, perhaps an Euro cup winner?
- Set a budget and look for sales: Halloween costumes can be cheap or very expensive, so it’s always a good idea to know roughly how much you want to spend on yours. Many stores in Oxford have sales, so if you don’t want to create a costume from scratch, hit the shops and see if you can find something you like.
- Other factors: Check the weather and consider group costumes. Browse the web and social media and see what other costumes people have done. You will surely find inspiration and some unexpected surprises.
Oxford Halloween Costumes: What NOT to Do
Okay, let’s start by stating a very simple rule: The only thing you should NOT do for a Halloween in Oxford is to pick a costume that makes you or others uncomfortable. That’s it; that’s the rule. You’re supposed to have fun at Halloween, so we’re not going to costume-shame.
Only you know what you like, and what works for you. And, as a simple gesture of goodwill, you should also never wear something offensive. This is a time to dress up, not to be offensive to cultural groups by picking an inappropriate costume. If you think your choice of attire will hurt someone else, don’t wear it.
That’s it. Oh, and don’t give chocolate to your dog! Never ever!
Oxford Halloween Costume Shops
Oxford has many places where you can find the perfect Halloween costume. Below you will find some of our favourites. These are not in any particular order; they all have great finds if you take the time to explore what they offer. One thing, though: Not all of these are in Oxford city.
Reflections Fancy Dress
Where: Langford Village. Bicester, Oxfordshire, OX26 6YF
Why pick it for your Halloween costume: Reflections sells and rents fancy dress costumes ideal for an Oxford Halloween party. They also have wigs, face paint, beards, makeup, and dress accessories. The shop is located in Bicester; a 10-minute train ride from Oxford.
Oxfordshire Drama Wardrove
Where: Rebellion Film Studios Old, Milton Rd, Didcot OX11 7HH
Why pick it for your Halloween costume: The Oxfordshire Drama Wardrove operates only on an appointment basis. They have over 5,000 costumes and accessories you can hire, and cover all eras from Ancient Rome to the 1980s. The costumes are £45 per costume for private hire.
Wacky Wardrove Costumes
Where: Swan Cl Rd, Banbury OX16 5AQ
Why pick it for your Halloween costume: Wacky Wardrove is a theatrical costume supplier and fancy dress hire shop based on Banbury (just a bus ride from Oxford). They also have a wide range of accessories and props ideal for an Oxford Halloween party. At the time, they only open by appointment, so make sure you check their website.
Where: 5-6 The Plain, Oxford OX4 1AS.
Why pick it for your Halloween costume: Ballroom Emporium is not precisely a costume shop, but more of a vintage evening war and party clothes locale. They also have party clothes and formalwear. But then, not all of Oxford’s Halloween parties are costume parties, right?
Frog Orange Balloons
Where: 4 The Parade. Windmill Road, Headington, Oxford. OX3 7BL
Why pick it for your Halloween costume: This shop doesn’t actually sell costumes; it sells balloons! But if you’re planning a Halloween party in Oxford, you might want to get some, too. They also have party accessories, fireworks, and offer same-day delivery.
Great Oxford Halloween Costume Ideas
If you want to buy a costume online, below you will also find our curated selection of costumes for Oxford Halloween parties.