So I've known for a while that I wanted to go as 'The Dark Knight Rises' version of Bane for Halloween, but quickly realized that it was super expensive to buy everything for a legit costume. So I decided to the DIY route and saved about $400 bucks - here's how I did it.

There are about 6 key items you need to really pull off the Bane costume -- the mask, the coat, the vest, the wrist guard, the cargo pants and combat boots. All of those (minus the boots and the coat) come with the deluxe licensed costume, but that thing looks fairly cheap and the mask sucks! So here's how I assembled a pretty rad Bane costume for around $100.

  • Bane Mask

    Unfortunately, this is the one item you can't easily fabricate and you don't want to skimp on. I ordered mine from Xcoser via Amazon for $55. It was worth every penny. Also, man up and shave your head. Bald caps suck! Total Cost: $55

    Xcoser via Amazon / Warner Bros.
  • Combat Vest

    There are some pretty good looking vest replicas available online, unfortunately they range from $100-$330! F--- that. I found a duck hunting vest at a thrift store for $3.50 that was good enough (a molle vest will also work). It's beige and brown, but that works because it's really hard to tell what color his vest is in the movie. In some scenes it looks like a dirty beige, in others it looks olive drab. I turned it inside out to hide all the pockets and then cut pieces of cardboard into the shapes of the five armor pieces on the front. I then wrapped them in a fake leather looking material (about $7/yd which I purchased to make a Han Solo holster last year) and duct taped them shut. Then I used some velcro to attach them to the vest. I also wanted the straps that go over the vest (which are known as alice pack straps or military combat load bearing suspenders) so I went to the military supply store and picked some up for around $6. I also picked up the belt that they attached to for $13. Total cost: Around $25

  • Leather Coat

    These also can be purchased online for anywhere from $100 - $350. Again, f--- that! I found a pretty comparable leather coat at the thrift store for $9. It was lacking the wool lining and the big collar though. So I went to JoAnn Fabrics and bought 2 yards of this stuff they called "sherpa" for $15. I also bought about $2 worth of lightweight leather looking fabric to extend the collar and some Liquid Nails. I cut the sherpa accordingly and lined the jacket by attaching it with Liquid Nails. I had my mom stitch the collar extension to the jacket (I can't sew) and attach the piece of sherpa that I cut to match it only at the top. We left the bottom open so I could put something in the collar to make it stand up like it's supposed to. I used cardboard for that and then sealed it up with the liquid nails. It was a lot of work, but I ended up with a pretty badass Bane coat for way less than I could've bought one. Total Cost: About $28

  • Wrist Guard

    I didn't really care if this thing wasn't exact since it would be tough to see and hardly anyone (who hasn't been obsessively planning how to fabricate his outfit for months) knows he wears it. I just used some more of the leather like fabric I used on the vest and had my mom help me stitch it together. The straps aren't functional, they're just for looks. This didn't cost me anything but time since I already had the material. It looks pretty good too. Total Cost: $0

    Tree Riddle, Banana 101.5
  • Combat Boots

    Luckily, my step-dad had a pair of hunting boots he was about to put out to pasture, so I "inherited" them and colored them black with a big ass Sharpie. Total Cost: $0

    Tree Riddle, Banana 101.5
  • Cargo Pants

    The pants that Bane wears in the movie have oddly placed cargo pockets and built-in knee pads. I found the exact pants online (although they didn't come in the right color) for over $300. I found this pair that I figured were close enough at Forman Mills for $5. Plus, I'll actually wear these after Halloween. Total Cost: $5

    Tree Riddle, Banana 101.5
  • The Voice

    You can't be Bane without doing a pretty decent imitation of his ridiculous voice. I actually made the decision to be Bane just so I could talk to people in that voice all night. Just think Sean Connery's accent with Bill Clinton's rasp, then muffle the sound with your hands and BOOM! Bane voice! Luckily, the mask does all the muffling so I can do the voice hands free. Total Cost: Minutes of Practice. Literally, Minutes

    Banana 101.5