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Where to Shop for Your Last-Minute Adult Halloween Costume

Whether you’re in the market for a Bowie robe or a taxidermied bird, these local shops have you covered.

Comet Vintage, 1320 W. 18th.   Photo: Courtesy of Comet Vintage

As an adult, there’s not nearly as much pressure to craft an impressive Halloween costume as there was for, say, the kindergarten parade. You can paint your nose black and tell people you’re a cat. You can slap on a hat and tell people you’re a Kentucky Derby attendee. You can even forgo a Halloween costume entirely.

But if your laissez-faire Halloween attitude is suddenly confronted with a party invitation, you’re going to need to whip up something fast. Whether you want to throw on a creepy necklace and call it a day or channel an era when people wore frillier clothing, here are the local boutiques that stock Halloween goods for adults—the spooky, the sequined, and the more or less proper.

Most Likely to Make You Believe in Time Travel: Silver Moon Vintage

Whether you want to be a flapper or an Edwardian princess, Silver Moon’s selection of vintage dresses will half-convince you that you’ve entered another era. And if you have trouble making decisions, the Silver Moon girls promise to personally style your Halloween look so nobody at the party is dressed quite as well as you. 1721 W. North, silvermoonvintage.com

Best Place to Find Voodoo-Chic Jewels: Wolfbait & B-girls

“Our unique selection includes an eclectic mix of jewelry with a taxidermy flare,” says co-owner Shirley Kienitz. “You can express your witchy side with an encased tarantula leg necklace or terrarium-style wasp nest ring. Style yourself like a sorcerer with crystal baubles, or channel your inner huntress with any of our antler adornments.” 3131 W. Logan, wolfbaitchicago.com

Best Selection of Riff Raff-Inspired Accessories: Kokorokoko

This boutique, which specializes in the wild styles of the ’80s and ’90s, has already had a number of people come in for “sunglasses, chains, and silky bombers” to mimic Houston rapper Riff Raff. If you’re looking to shuck off the chains of your 9-5 on Halloween, this is the place to be. 1323 N. Milwaukee, kokorokokovintage.com

Best Place to Find Out-of-This-World Jewelry: Milk Handmade

“We have a bunch of very cool intergalactic-themed pieces in right now,” says owner Hallie Borden, “and they could be cute for a very stylish alien or universe-themed costume.” Feeling low-key? Paint a few extra eyes on your forehead and call it a day. 5137 N. Clark, milkhandmade.com

Most Likely to Wear it Again in Real Life: Comet Vintage

If you want to invest in something that you’ll wear again—say, in November—Comet’s jump suits, maxi dresses, and nipped-waist Mad Men-era cocktail frocks blur the line between costume and street clothes. “We love thinking about costume ideas with shoppers,” says co-owner Jamie Roelofs. The store frequently posts costume ideas on their Facebook page, too. 1320 W. 18th, cometvintagechicago.com

Weirdest Shoe Selection for Your Manic Pixie Hipster Hybrid Costume: Fluevog Shoes

Sure, this boutique stocks a great selection of straightforward shoes, but they pale in comparison with Fluevog’s freakish selection of clogs, oddly-shaped heels, weird florals, metallics, and slouchy silhouettes that’ll add the finishing touch to whatever bizarre social trend you’ve decided to emulate. 1539 N. Milwaukee, fluevog.com

Best Selection of Taxidermy: Woolly Mammoth

If your last-minute costume is feeling a little tame, maybe you need a stuffed fox under your arm or a dead bird perched on your hat. Embrace your inner creeper at Woolly Mammoth, where you’ll find plenty of stuffed critters and things floating nebulously in jars. 1513 W. Foster, woollymammothchicago.com

Most Likely to Stock Your David Bowie Costume for Cheap: Ragstock

You’ll have to elbow your way past gaggles of teenagers, but this is where you’ll find all the body suits, long coats, flowing white pirate shirts, and face paint you need. Some will be vintage. Some will be vintage knock-offs. Some will not last the night. All will be affordable. 1459 N. Milwaukee, ragstock.com

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