Entertaining & Celebrating

DIY Ghostbusters Family Costume & ECTO Car

authentically amber diy halloween family costumes toddler parent ghostbusters

A year after Deuce’s first Halloween and our Chariot creation, I found myself pregnant again, expecting our second November baby. I was 11 months pregnant, and Deuce was almost 2 in October 2018, but that wasn’t going to stop me from having another fun Halloween and participating in my company’s Pumpkin Parade for employee children. 

The difference with this particular Halloween was that I needed to find a theme that would work well with my pregnancy, an active toddler, and my husband. He was more than willing to participate this year after seeing how fun things turned out the year prior, which made me even more excited. 

After doing a ton of Pinterest searching, I wanted to do something to pay homage to me and Demetrius’s childhood. I landed on a Ghostbusters theme because we could both remember it from the ’80s, and I thought it would be fun to introduce Deuce to this classic and create a Ghostbusters ECTO car that we could use to push him around.

Being pregnant, I was unable to assist with any of the car’s spray painting, but I did help with creating the plans while my sweet husband grumbled but did all of the execution! Deuce had a fantastic Halloween with friends and family, and it was so much fun to see him dancing around to the original Ghostbusters theme song.

The Costumes

Stay Puft Marshmallow Man

One of the things that attracted me about this theme was that I could be the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man as a pregnant mama! This was a super easy and fun costume to execute!

  • I purchased a pair of white scrub pants
  • A simple white long-sleeved maternity top
  • My mom came to the rescue again and made me this adorable Stay Puft marshmallow man hat complete with sailors dickie. 
    • She didn’t use a pattern. She just got a white chef’s hat and blue fabric to embellish it with Stay Puft fabric letters, and blue fabric to create the dickie with a white ribbon, and red fabric to create the tie.

Ghostbuster Adult Male

  • For my husband’s costume, I purchased inexpensive men’s coveralls

(I would recommend even seeing if you can find a pair from the second-hand store.)

  • I ordered custom iron-on patches from Etsy with his name, including the traditional ghostbusters patch.
  • I found black knee pads and elbow pads for my husband at Dollar Tree.
  • I got toy proton packs from online with adjustable straps that my husband could comfortably fit on his back. 

Ghostbuster Toddler

  • I couldn’t find coveralls small enough to fit my son, so I bought a 4T Ghostbusters costume and then cut it down to fit him. 

(I used Stitch Witchery™ to iron the hems down of both the sleeves and legs.) 

  • I added the same iron-on custom name and Ghostbuster patches I had gotten from Etsy on his as well, covering up the generic Ghostbusters symbol that was on the store-bought costume.
  • I couldn’t find knee and elbow pads that would fit him at Dollar Tree, so I ordered a toddler skate pair that I figured he could use and grow into once he started riding a bike and scooter. 
  • I got the same toy proton pack that I ordered for my husband for Deuce with the adjustable straps and adjusted them down so that Deuce could fit the backpack. 

Ghostbusters ECTO

As I mentioned, with me 11 months pregnant, my poor husband was on his own with a lot of this project; however, as his “assistant,” I did all of the material sourcing and design inspiration!

I found a ton of Little Tikes Cozy Coupe converted ECTO’s on Pinterest. The only problem was that we didn’t have one, and I didn’t want to buy one brand new to repaint it. The other challenge was that I would need one that had a handle to push the car through the parade or build a type of grip onto the car.

Luckily, I found this very perfect used one on a resell site for $18! This baby was meant to be with the handle and all! 

Here is what we used to create our ECTO car:

Step by Step Instructions on creating your ECTO:

  1. First, cover the wheels and steering wheel with towels and painters tape to not get them covered in paint.  
  2. Spray paint the entire car white.
  3. Allow to completely dry (at least 24 hours).
  4. Take painters tape and run a thin line across the doors’ top and the car’s back. Hand paint this portion red.
  5. Add the decals to each side of the door.
  6. Paint the two water bottles with yellow spray paint and the tops with black spray paint.
  7. Paint the rubber funnel with the red spray paint.
  8. Spray paint the plumbing pieces black.
  9. Take the self-adhesive velcro and add one side to each of the yellow bottles, the blue light, and the funnel.
  10. Adhere the other sides of the self-adhesive velcro to the top of the car, positioning each piece to match up with how you will place the bottles, blue light, and funnel. 

*Use the back cubby/trunk of your car to blast your ghostbuster’s music! We used the same beats pill that we had the year prior for the Chariot to play the Ghostbusters theme song as my husband pushed Deuce.

Important Tips

Give yourself plenty of time to make the car! This is one of those projects that could be done in a weekend. Still, we all get busy, so I’d recommend starting at the beginning of October at the latest so that you have plenty of time to troubleshoot in case you need to reconfigure anything for your particular car.

Introduce the car to your child before a Halloween outing so that they have time to play and get comfortable with it.

This was such a fun experience. Although my husband had to do most of the work, I’m thankful for both he and my mom coming through to make this vision a reality. 

I will never forget Deuce dancing around to Ghostbusters in the atrium of my job after the parade. He had such a fun time, and although he may not remember this Halloween, I look forward to sharing the photos and videos with him as he gets older. 

If you plan on recreating this project, I would love to hear about it! Feel free to drop me a line in the comments or tag me in your Instagram post!

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  • Reply
    October 15, 2020 at 4:30 pm

    Another excellent idea! Thank you for sharing!

  • Reply
    Bennett Flaherty
    October 20, 2020 at 7:28 pm

    Oh my goodness! This is one of the most creative/cutest costume ideas I’ve seen!

    • Reply
      Amber Elizabeth Anderson
      October 20, 2020 at 7:34 pm

      Thank you! We had so much fun putting it together! I truly felt like we were a family of 4 already! Lol

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