The other day I was perusing a clothing Web site looking for ideas for Halloween. I immediately thought about that hilarious line from Mean Girls where Lindsay Lohan’s character explains that Oct. 31 is pretty much the only day of the year where girls can dress slutty and not get crap from other girls. Funny. As much as I hate to say it, it’s true.

Halloween, particularly in Los Angeles, is full of theater, flash and butt cheeks. But where does one go to procure the perfect costume? Whether body-conscious styles or something more paint-by-numbers is wanted, there are plenty of places to find inexpensive ways to express one’s creativity on a budget.

One company I can always count on for cool ideas is American Apparel ( This clothing powerhouse has more locations than Starbucks and even better bang for your buck. Looking to dress up as a 1980s roller skater or a crazy pimp? Well, truck on over to any of this store’s locations and get your shop on.

Supporting American Apparel also means supporting the local economy; all their clothes are made here in Los Angeles. Not only that, but they fit like a glove and are usually reasonably priced. For good ideas on ways you can incorporate your shopping spree into your Halloween costume, just visit A.A.’s Web site.

For all those girls with killer bodies who are gearing up to let it all hang out, there are multiple choices. Fredericks of Hollywood ( has a to-die-for selection of trampy duds that will have onlookers screaming, “Ooh-la-la!” If a naughty nurse or sultry sailor is your thing, you can grab both looks here for just $49. What’s even better is that Fredericks carries plenty of matching undergarments and accessories to make your look absolute perfection.

Another great place to pick up erotic clothing is Romantix (3147 N. San Fernando Rd., Los Angeles; With several locations in the area (open late), last-minute shoppers will be able to find great ideas for the sexy kitten, zebra or vampire lurking within.

A good friend of mine is attending an “adults only” masquerade ball. I know she’ll probably end up checking out Secret Desires (2414 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica; 310-255-0506). This west side playground for sensual adults is a virtual toy chest of everything any would-be dominatrix could dream of owning.

Want something a little more traditional? No problem. Party America (2011 N. Hollywood Way, Burbank; has a great selection of masks, wigs, makeup and costumes to propel you to a first-place win at any Halloween party.

The great thing about shopping in the valley is that many stores cater to the studios and therefore, offer items much cheaper than in touristy areas. However, if you’re a Hollywood dweller seeking something special on a budget and a short timeline, your best bet will be Hollywood Toys & Costumes (6600 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; They have an insane selection of ... well ... everything.

Trekkies can live long and prosper here as Spock, Uhura or Picard. Like Star Wars instead? Well, you can be the best wookie in the world just by heading to this location. They’ve also got a fine selection of grills, gold chains and afro wigs to make you the flyest soul brotha on the block!

Still, one must not discount Vine American Party Store (5969 Melrose Ave.; You’ll find tons of sunglasses, hats, beads and capes here. You can also stock up on items such as cups, streamers and balloons to throw your very own wild and crazy party that your friends will be talking about through the new year.

Finally, if this year’s recession has hit you where it hurts, hit back. Out of the Closet ( is a great store with multiple locations that sell all kinds of nifty second-hand clothes and accessories. What I like most about them though is that their proceeds go toward charitable work, including AIDS research.

And, one must not forget about clothing staple, Goodwill ( The G has been going strong for decades as a kick-ass shop with all kinds of quirky ball gowns, suits, platforms and Cosby sweaters to make you the belle or beau of the ball.