Halloween 2014 (the details post)

Originally I planned on being my favorite villain for Halloween but budget concerns (we have given the vet all our monies) and time concerns (I am at the vet all the time or taking care of the new pup) derailed that plan so a little over a week before Halloween I was scrambling for something low cost but still cool. I had three choices I could do somewhat easily, very cheaply and with some excitement. The winner of the three

Effie Trinket and Seneca Crane

The whole combination of our costumes came in around $45-47 dollars but that is counting a $20 button down shirt that Willy can clearly wear to work, so I hardly think that counts. Breakdown of bought items:
Marilyn Monroe wig: $14.99
Pink hair chalk: $4.99 (+5% off at Target on my Target red card)
Red button down: $40.00 marked down to $19.99
Black sweater vest: $5:41 (should have been $6+ but she charged me as if it was a woman’s sweater vest instead of a man’s) from Goodwill
Ankle socks: $2.00 on clearance (+5% off at Target on my Target red card)

I also bought some makeup but I needed blush anyway so I’m not listing it out.

My outfit came from my closet: fuchsia ruffle dress from Old Navy, maroon velvet coat from some now closed shop in the mall, black booties from Target.
Willy’s outfit pieces from his closet: tan jeans from Target, black Clark’s dress shoes, black jacket from Target. The red chest stripe is the sash from an old robe I have kept around in my fabric stash just in case.


The flower hair piece I made myself out of an old shirt

it’s a closed piece that I then sewed directly to the wig so I can remove it and use it for something later if I want. I can also use the wig for another costume later if I want as well.

The neck piece is made of more flowers I made from old shirts (the hydrangea flowers are t-shirts, the rose is chiffon, the peony is liner fabric and the spikey flowers are chiffon)

which I sewed to a strip of fabric that came from Sprog’s ninja costume when he was four (I AM A HOARDER, but I kind like that I have incorporated something from when he was a wee Sproglet)

I struggled the most with the wig. I just could not find anything that was the right color and I new that those color sprays for hair would make it too pink. I also couldn’t find anything with the right shape so I bought the closest thing and decided to try and doctor it.
This Marilyn Monroe wig was pale enough that I could color it, was curly in the back but the front was too swoopy and floppy so I rag rolled it like I did for my Mrs Lovett hair last year (you have to use scalding hot water and then let it air dry) then pin curl on top of that to get it to pull up enough, it still hung down too much in some spots but it was much better.
For the color, I used pink hair chalk and that turned out to give me EXACTLY the color I wanted.
I did multiple makeup tests, mainly because I have darker eyebrows but on the night of I just went with tinging them pink and that worked out for the best. I used a mix of a stick concealer and NYX milk to get my skin as pale as needed and cover the edges of my lips for the lip shape she has in the movie. I also went over my bottom lashes with the same colors. To be truest to the makeup I should’ve had pink lashes but I don’t want to mess with any lash glue that might irritate my eyes. Willy handled his beard trimming and additional make-up (for the pointy swoopy shapes) and he did a really great job.

Ren Fest, All Hallows’ Eve Weekend

On Sunday, Willy and I attended Ren Fest for a few short hours. We had planned to be there all day but since it was pouring down rain in the morning, I thought we weren’t getting to go at all. Fortunately, it let up about noon and we headed out to the festival.

This year I decided I really wanted to attend on All Hallows’ as a way to sneak a second Halloween costume in for the year. I always go to Fest in costume but I really wanted to do something outside of my norm: The Raven.

I have had the nickname of Raven for so many years but I have never dressed as one, until now.
to incorporate my husband in the costuming, we decided he’d go as Edgar Allan Poe. (the other option, a Khaki Scout ala Moonrise Kingdom, wasn’t very appealing to him)

This costume was definitely a labor of love. I made my tutu by following a tutorial for a very full tutu. The tutorial is for toddler sizes so I didn’t really do the math about how much tulle I would need to make one for myself, in total around 200 yards. A shopkeep at festival didn’t believe me when I told him it was that much but each strip is anywhere from 3-4 feet long and there are two strips in each little hole, stacked three deep, all the way around my waist.
I really didn’t want any “wardrobe malfunctions” so my hindparts were VERY covered. The only other drawback to this plan? Bathroom breaks were a total pain! The tulle grabbed my tights and it was A LOT of fluff to try and wrangle into a stall.

My make-up is from another tutorial. I modified it to fit the products (mostly) I had on hand, didn’t need a beak because I already had one and also, I didn’t want to change my eyebrows so I just darkened them.
I did a make-up test and then decided I needed to add some more product. On my face I’m wearing Colorstay foundation, NYX black gel smudger, NYX milk eye pencil, Eyeco fat eyestick in Old Gold, Almay Intense Eyes for green eyes, Hard Candy eyeshadow in Space Cadet, NYX Glam Liner in Glam Platnum, Almay black liquid liner, Almay black kohl liner and Physician’s Formula green gel liner.

It was hard to capture the detail of the mask and my make-up at the same time
because I’m so pale and it’s so intensely dark.

The mask was originally supposed to be an entire cowl piece but it was WAY TOO HOT HERE (stupid Texas) so I adapted and created a head piece instead.
(it’s currently sitting on this skull because I don’t have a mannequin head and want to keep the shape)

The back of the mask is a sleep mask from United Airlines First Class.
It worked perfectly.

I layered several different types and shapes of feathers over the mask and added some buttons for the eyes. The beak I cut off a Venetian style plaster mask that came white but I painted it black by hand and then spray painted a clear coat on top to give it the glossy effect.

Willy’s Poe costume was very easy to put together with a vest we purchased (this will work for our actual Halloween costumes as well) some smudged eye shadow around his eyes, a normal button down shirt, a strip of black fabric for his ascot and a feather as his quill pen.

This is probably my most favorite costume to date and we had a lovely afternoon at Fest.

Normally I would wear something else our second trip to Fest,next month,
Untitledbut this year I might just go as Raven again. I loved it that much.

Other costume notes: my little shawl thing reminded me of wings and is actually a faux fur wrap that attaches to my leather jacket, I just tied it on with some ribbon. the waist cincher is by Renaissance Leather. the black belt, mug holder and pouch I used for my phone are from Ravenswood, my boots are old Airwalk from Payless, tights are Vera Wang from Kohl’s and my mug is from Wondrous Works in Wood (it’s a purple heart wood)

the costume closet

I’ve had a BFF in Arizona since the third grade, her name is Jamie and since we are both turning (I already turned) 38 this year that means we have known each other 28 years. TWENTY EIGHT YEARS. There are a lot of awesome things I love about her and our life together over the years (because seriously, we have lived A LIFE by now) but one of the things that has always stuck with me is her mom’s closet. Renee, oh Renee, lover of all accessories and always completely accessorized with matching (clip) earrings, necklace and bracelet sets had a closet of wonder. My senior year of high school I got a wild hair that I wanted to go to school in costume for Halloween. You are all shocked. Anyway, I didn’t have access to anything or the funds to buy anything, living on my own at the time, so I went to Jamie’s house and asked for help.

It was FANTASTIC! Renee starting pulling option upon option from her closet and piling them on the bed. It was like the Rachel Zoe of costume moments! I could be Pebbles! I could be a Fighter Pilot! I could be a Hula Girl (complete with coconut bra)! I could be a Clown! I could be a Flapper! I could be Pocahontas!

Ultimately I went with the last option which included wearing Jamie’s fringed white boots from middle school (our feet are vastly different sizes even though we look enough alike that people mistake us for sisters on the regular) and that day I SWORE that I would be just like that someday. I would be able to slap costumes together from the depths of my closet at any given time. It has always been my dream and so far, I have been living it. One year for Halloween I was able to make Sprog a fairly passable Slash from GnR in under ten minutes just from stuff in my closet and one of the guitars in the house. He even wore a pair of my platform stompy boots, a wig I had and a top hat we had from another costume.

This past weekend we attended a Dazed and Confused Quote Along at Alamo Drafthouse.
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Perfect opportunity for a last minute costuming.
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My initial plan for my outfit included a Jordache shirt, but in reality it was too short for my low-slung flares so I had to swap it for an equally 70’s esque shirt instead.

Final outfit
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How can you go wrong with colored eyeshadow, turquoise, braids, a flow-y eyelet embellished top, flares, fringed leather bag (that i am still carrying btw) and platforms? NAILED IT.

Let’s talk about the shoes for a hot second longer okay?
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Because, right? They are EVERYTHING. You will be seeing them a crap ton this summer. BANK ON IT.

As much as we are scaling down, de-cluttering and purging, I will ALWAYS have my costume closet. I ALWAYS aspire to be Renee in this small way.