Halloween spending up, but customers more thrifty - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Halloween spending up, but customers more thrifty

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) -

From buying costumes to Halloween home décor and candy, the cost of All Hallow's Eve can be down right frightening. 

But is the tough economy affecting how much people are spending for the holiday this year?  It appears the answer is now.

Despite the economic downturn, people are spending more than ever to have a happy Halloween.  Still, local retailers say consumers have been more careful in order to scare up great looks for less cash.

Goodwill is probably best known as an outlet for finding everyday fashions at a low price.  But with a sluggish national economy, the store's seeing more folks come in to find affordable Halloween attire.

"Halloween is probably our busiest time of the year.  People get really creative when it comes to costumes.  They'll find something we might not of thought of as a costume item, and they'll make a costume out of it.  I see a lot of overalls for things like country girls and country boys, stuff like that," said Richard Carter, manager of the Cedar Falls Goodwill store.

Many customers also opt to pay it forward by bringing their low-cost looks back to Goodwill once Halloween is over.

"And we appreciate all those donations we get in.  Without the customers and donations we get, we wouldn't be able to have the thriving store we have," Carter said.

Shoppers have also found other ways to make the price tag for this Halloween a bit less frightening at stores like Mohair Pear in Cedar Falls.

"It's kind of weird that like suspenders were huge.  I had a wall full of suspenders and most of those are gone.  Nerds were big this year.  So these things have kind of come out of left field.  I'm not sure.  Those are standards, but more people are doing it.  I think it's the theme of people working with some of what they already had and trying to accessorize it and make it new for this year," said Dave Deibler, co-owner of Mohair Pear.

Stocking up on accessories like wigs and jewelry also gives customers the chance to recycle looks for not just this Halloween, but to mix and match new costumes for several years to come. 

Even with more people stretching their Halloween dollars, the National Retail Federation estimates the average person will end up spending more than $72 for the holiday.  Nationwide, that adds up to almost $7 billion, an 18 percent increase from last Halloween.

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