Friday, 31 October 2014



We hope you have lots of fun and exciting plans for your Halloween weekend because Halloween doesn't just end once November hits!

Today I'm going to show my Halloween costume and how you can make a unique but recognizable character and not have to give in to the basic mass-produced costumes (but, if you want to, go right on ahead!)

For Halloween this year, I am... Jack Skellington from The Nightmare Before Christmas~!

Now I don't have any full body shots yet of me in costume yet. 
First off, my Halloween costume cost about $40 USD (including the makeup but not including the wig which I already had). 
Materials I used:
  • woman's black dress blazer (thrift store)
  • woman's black dress pants (thrift store)
  • woman's white dress shirt (thrift store)
  • scrap black fabric (JoAnn's Fabrics & Crafts)
  • scrap thick interfacing (JoAnn's Fabrics & Crafts)
  • 2 bottles of white Tulip fabric paint (JoAnn's Fabrics & Crafts)
  • 1 compact of Tulip white face paint (JoAnn's Fabrics & Crafts)
  • 1 compact of generic white face powder (Halloween store)
  • black pencil and creme eyeliner
  • grey eyeshadow

The Jacket

The dress shirt itself had very little modifying done to it - all I had to do was cut the sleeve cuffs off since it made it a bit too long.

The blazer was the hardest part. It had to be re-sized in the waist and a little in the sleeves for a thinner look. It helped that I had my room-mate there to pin where necessary as I wore it. The basic idea is to make it dramatically more triangular. Jack's body is thicker in the rib cage with a tiny waist and hips- ridiculously proportioned, yes, but you can give the illusion by wearing a waist cincher (as I did).
I also made sure to bind my chest down for a more masculine figure and didn't tighten the cincher too much near the under-bust- so I didn't get the true under-bust effect.

The bottom section was cut off, leaving only 1 button to fasten. My room-mate helped again to sketch out the tattered tails on the back of the jacket which the leftovers were cut off and the edges sewn over to prevent fraying.
And then LINES. SO many lines - this was nerve-wrecking in the sense it took forever and I was getting anxious. Luckily, this blazer already had faint lines in the fabric so I just followed them, covering them with the white fabric paint. I had to go against the lines in the collar since Jack's collar-lines go horizontally instead of vertically like the rest of the jacket.

The Bow-Tie

Behold what can happen with scrap fabric~
I pretty much took the scrap that was cut off of the jacket along with some scrap black I had from previous costumes and made this.
Using a reference, I sketched out the design on the scrap jacket fabric and cut it out. Then I pinned it to the scrap other black fabric as well as some thick interfacing to give it stiffness. I couldn't sew it and flip it inside out for a cleaner seam... and I found I really didn't have to. So I just straight stitched all around the edges- yes, ALL the edges. Including up and down the spikes on the outer edge.
I then sewed the wings to the head and proceeded to use the fabric paint for the detailing.
It's kept on with 2 huge giant safety pins since I didn't have time nor did I really plan out any other attaching mechanism.

The Pants & Gloves

These are super self-explanatory. I didn't do any modifications to the pants and the gloves were bought from a Halloween Store (Spirit). All of the time here was spent on doing the stripes - which the front half were fine; the back half gave some slight problems due to following the curvature.
Something I contemplated on doing was making the legs skinnier- taking them in similar to how I did the sleeves. However, these pants have an entirely separate lining layer in them and I didn't want to bother with that (I already had to in the jacket). I also liked how it flowed when I wore these heeled witch-like shoes that made my feet appear smaller- much like his!

So there you have it! Thrift stores can prove to provide the materials for some pretty fabulous costumes. Particularly, the one in my area decided to make a "Halloween Section" by putting all these unique and interesting pieces all together- from lab coats to Victorian styled shirts; from homecoming dresses to legitimate old-school Halloween costumes. 

Let's end this with none other than the Halloween Junky Orchestra!
Be sure to follow VAMPS on Facebook if you want to see some of the Halloween costumes the collaboration of amazing musicians are wearing this year.
They're pretty awesome if I do say so myself~

~Taka (a.k.a. Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King)