Toronto Trash Panda Raccoon Costume: Halloween 2019

Toronto Trash Panda Raccoon Costume: Halloween 2019

I love Halloween dearly. I don’t remember it always being this way but somewhere along the way, the holiday turned into something delightful and magical for me. Maybe it was that when I was a kid, I was at the mercy of my mother’s costuming abilities (which were actually pretty great…) and as an adult, I can do whatever I may want. Even do more than one costume in the season if I choose to.

This year I had the idea to dress up as Toronto’s unofficial mascot – an idea brought on by my personal adventures with the adorable trash fiends. Over the last two summers, young raccoons have gotten stuck in the bottom of my trash bins when they’re empty post-garbage day. I’ve been late to work a couple times trying to help my trash babies out of the bins and get them on their way back to their mommas.

If you’ll indulge me for a moment more, I thought I’d talk about the making of my costume since a few people have asked, in the wake of BlogTO, CTV, and other places posting up my photo.

A few weeks ago when the idea came to me, I set out and bought a garbage bin from Home Depot. I don’t know what I was thinking when I bought an extra durable Rubbermaid one (it was very hard to cut), but after a couple weeks of trying to cut through the bottom so that I could stand in it, I was finally able to. A combo of scissors and a sharp exacto knife got the job done.

From there, I measured and made four holes in the top part of the bin to create suspenders to hold it up on my shoulders. I used garbage bags to create the suspenders – it seemed apt. I put two holes in the lid of the bin as well at the sides and then strung a garbage bag across that too to turn it into a sort of hat.

And then from there, I made a stencil of the City of Toronto logo that’s on the official garbage bins, and I painted it on the front of my bin. I used cheap Dollarama paint so it bled a little bit but once it dried, I cleaned it up with a Sharpie.

I wish I could claim that I made the mask and gloves but in reality, I got the mask from an art store (Midoco), and I bought the faux fur gloves from Spirit Halloween (they’re technically “wolf paws”). Then I just wore a grey sweater to tie it all together.

Thanks again to BlogTO, and CTV who featured my costume after I wore it out to the ROM on Friday night for their Wicked event. You can check out the BlogTO pieces here and here. You can see screencaps of the CTV feature here or watch this video at the 39 min mark.