Sometimes your best bet for Halloween is to stick to classic costumes. You can take inspiration from your favorite stories, urban legends or fairy tales. Vampires, witches, and pirates make good costumes because they’re easily recognizable but you still have the freedom to be creative when putting together your costume.
What’s more Halloween than a vampire? There are so many directions to go in. You could be a modern vampire like the ones from Twilight in your favorite outfit and glitter. You could be a sexy Anne Rice vampire in a poet shirt and leather pants. Or you could be a scary vampire like Nosferatu in prosthetics. Whatever you decide make sure to have a good pair of contacts and fangs to really sell the vampire aesthetic. The rest is up to you and your imagination.
Okay so if anything is more Halloween than a vampire, it’s a witch. Your gut instinct might be to just wear a black dress with a witch hat but if you want to stand out there’s so much more you can do. Something as simple as adding a pair of black and white stockings and red shoes will take you from generic witch to the Wicked Witch of the East (you know, the one who got the house dropped on her). Or you could make a steampunk witch by adding a corset, goggles and some Victorian boots. Be a sexy witch in fishnets and high heels. Whatever you decide, a witch costume is a good start.
Yarr avast. Do you want to spend the night drinking and talking like a pirate? Of course you do. Then it’s time to invest in a good pirate costume. A lace up poet shirt is an excellent place to start. You’ll also need an eye patch and a tricorn and voila you’re a pirate ready to sail the seven seas. But what if you don’t want to be a traditional pirate. Then we suggest you try being a space pirate. Replace that poet shirt with a sparkly skinny tee and add a ray gun. Now you’re ready to misbehave in space.
Listen, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel with your Halloween costume. Classic costumes are classic for a reason. Add your own flare and elevate something people have seen a million times to a brand new standard. If you want more costume suggestions, be sure to follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
Countdown to Halloween. You have three more weeks to perfect your costume ensemble. This week we’re focusing on our most popular costume request: Steampunk. Grab your pocket watch and start up your airship, it’s time to get your steampunk on.
What is Steampunk?
Steampunk is a specific sub genre of science fiction. Imagine the future in the past, that’s basically steampunk. It draws heavy inspiration from the Victorian era and the industrial revolution but in a more fantastical universe. Picture pirates on air ships, tinkers making clockwork men, and lots of steam. Stempunk fashion draws on those same inspirations so corsets, goggles, waistcoats and pocket watches.
How do I put together a Steampunk Costume?
Steampunk can be a lot of different things. We suggest starting with a character. Are you going to be a high society lady/ gentleman or a clockmaker or an adventurer? As all those characters would wear different things, it will give you a good starting point. If your stuck creatively, try making a steampunk version of your favorite character from a book or movie. For example, steampunk Tinkerbell, steampunk Batman or steampunk Santa Claus. The only limit is your imagination. Pinterest and Instagram are also great for inspiration.
What makes it Steampunk?
There’s lots of ways to steampunkify your costume. Top hats, goggles, corsets and waistcoats are a good start. A lot of people think of browns, coppers and bronzes as the main steampunk colours, however, steampunk can be colour you want as long as you’re picking Victorianish pieces. If you want to mix in pieces from different time periods, just make your steampunk character a time traveler.
Steampunk gives you lots of room for creativity with your costume. So have fun putting together your steampunk look! If you want more steampunk outfit ideas or costume suggestions, be sure to follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
What is Cosplay?
Fan Expo is three sleeps away! I’m so excited to see all the amazing and creative cosplay. In honour of Fan Expo, I thought I’d re-post I blog I wrote explaining what cosplay is for those who are not initiated! Enjoy and don’t forget to drop by and say hello to us this weekend!
Cosplay is actually a portmanteau of two words: costume and play. Originally, I think that the word specifically applied to anime culture where people would dress up as their favourite anime characters. As time has gone by, it has expanded to include pretty much any pop culture icon. Some people are purists and get every detail perfect right down to the colour of the thread on the switching. Some people mash up differently cultural elements to create a new version of a character like making a steampunk sailor moon or a little mermaid princess Leia. Lots of people make gender bending version of their favourite characters like a male Harley Quinn or a female Captain America. The options are limitless and the community is super accepting.
If you are still not sure you understand, fear not! I have some examples of awesome Venus & Mars versions of some of our most favourite fictional badass ladies.
Wonder Woman is one of my personal favourite super heroes so naturally we had to include her. It’s so empowering to have a strong, fearless female hero kicking ass and taking names. Who wouldn’t want to dress up like that? For Wonder Woman we combined the iconic Linda Carter look with some of the badassery of the new Gal Gadot look. We put together a gold Venus & Mars bandeau with a red reversible VM waist cincher some blue booty shorts, a black velvet cloak and gold pointe glovettes. Suffering Sappho, I have never seen a cooler Wonder Woman!
If you have ever been to a convention you know that if we had to include anything it was Harley Quinn. There has been so many Harley looks over years and we couldn’t pick just one. We used her original black and red for inspiration but gave the overall outfit more of a roller derby feel. For this outfit, we combined a sleeveless red skinny tee, the reverse side of the reversible red waist cincher, black and red tap shorts and mix and matched a pair of red and black fishnet glovettes. We also added a pair of black goggles as a nod to the original Harley Quinn’s black eye mask. Trust me, puddin’, everyone will love this Harley look.
We love Carrie Fisher. Her real life sassy no bullshit approach to Hollywood is something we can all aspire to. We absolutely had to pay homage to her with a Princess Leia inspired look. I know slave Leia is super popular but we wanted to show off the all white princess outfit instead. We put together a white under blouse, white reversible waist cincher and cream panne cloak. And we used a white pinstripe tube top as the skirt. To really sell the look we put Ivette’s hair into buns. I sense great awesome in this outfit. (PS. I love this picture so much. I think it’s one of my favourites ever.)
So what did you think of my definition of cosplay? did I get it right? Would you explain it differently? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
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How to Steampunk at Any Price Point
In a previous blog I mentioned that I love steampunk costumes because you can do it at any price point. I thought that I’d expand on that a little bit and give you some most excellent examples. Grab your goggles and make sure to wind your pocket watch because it’s time to get steampunked.
Cheap and Easy Steampunk
If you want an absolute bare bones steampunk costume, you can grab a white button up shirt, some plain brown pants and a pair of goggles. To step it up a little bit you add some suspenders and paint up a toy gun from the dollar store in bronze, browns, and copper colours. If you have a bowtie or vest lying around that house those would both add to the steampunkness of the costume. You could also swap out the pants for a skirt just keep in mind that the steampunk aesthetic draws heavily from the Victorian era so longer or high low skirts would probably work better than a modern looking skirt. Assuming that you have some of the pieces for this costume already, you could probably put together the look for less than $60.
Mid range Steampunk
If you want to step your steampunk up and you have a bit of a bigger budget, you can use the cheap and easy steampunk costume as a base but swap out some items and add some more accessories. You could add a waistcoat, top hat, and pocket watch to your base if you want an aristocrat steampunk costume. Add an underbust holster vest and pocket belt if you want a more adventurous steampunk costume. Corsets or waist cinchers are also a welcome addition to a steampunk costume. You can also consider adding some jewelry like a choker or a necklace.
Bonus: What is Steampunk?
Do you want to go all out and you have an unlimited budget? Then the sky’s the limit. Start with some Victorian boots, rail pull skirt, pocket belt, corset, waistcoat, goggles and a pocket watch. If you have the money to spend and a good imagination then you can put together an amazing steampunk costume. Maybe start by crafting your steampunk character? Are you a handsome watch maker? Or are you a sassy resistance fighting former fancy lady? Let your accessories and choice of costume reflect your most excellent character.
No matter what your budget, you can put together a really cool steampunk costume. Whether you’re putting something together from your closet or you have an unlimited budget, steampunk is a great choice for you Halloween costume this year.
Halloween Costume Ideas for People Who Don’t Dress Up
Halloween is my favorite time of year. I love pumpkins, candy and most of all dressing up! There’s nothing better than putting together a costume and wearing crazy makeup and wigs. But I know that not everyone feels this way. Halloween can be a stressful time of year for people who aren’t into costume. Don’t worry. I’m here to help if you have a costume party to go and you hate dressing up.
Keep it Simple
Listen, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to come up with a costume. In fact, you probably have something in your wardrobe that you can at least use as a base for your costume. Do you have a jeans and a plaid shirt? Then you have the base of a lumberjack or hipster costume. Add some suspenders and a toy axe, voila you’re a lumberjack. Swap the axe for glasses without lenses and you’re a hipster. Got a black dress? You’ve got the base for a witch costume. Add a black witch hat and maybe some striped socks, voila witch.
Be a Time Traveler
Time Traveler is my favorite easy costume. Can you borrow items from your parents or grandparents? Great! You’ve got the base for your time traveler costume. The best part about being a time traveler is that you don’t really need a cohesive costume. You can wear your everyday jeans with an 80s shirt and some 70s glasses and it works because you’re a time traveler. In fact, the more disjointed your items are the better it works! If you really want to sell if you can add a bunch of watches. If you want to be a little more creative take a steampunk angle by adding goggles and a pocket belt.
Bonus: More Steampunk Ideas
When in Doubt, Get a Cloak
Okay, so you have nothing in your wardrobe and you hate the idea of being a time traveler. Don’t worry, I have a solution for you. Just get a cloak. I’m serious. A cloak is the easiest way to look like you’re in costume without having to dress up. You’ll be able to get into any party. You’ll be the requirement of dressing up for your office.
I hope this helps you warm up to the idea of dressing up for Halloween and takes the pressure of coming up with a costume. At the end of the day, it’s about having fun. Give costumes a try, you never know, you might like it.