Friday, October 28, 2011

Handmade Halloween: A Retrospective

Ever since my first Halloween, I've had a long-standing tradition of wearing handmade costumes.  This tradition was started by my very talented mother, who made all the costumes from my early years:
Me as a witch in 1984. 

Me as She-Ra in 1986.  One of my absolute favorite costumes ever.

Sometimes I'd make costumes completely on my own, with no intervention from my mother:

This is what happens when you leave a not-quite-8-year-old to her own devices. In case you couldn't guess, I was a Martian in 1990.

And sometimes, your Catholic school decides that the only way students are allowed to wear costumes for Halloween is if they dress up as saints:

Here I am as Kateri Tekakwitha in 1993. 
I designed this costume based on illustrations from a biography of her, and my mom sewed it.

Fast-forward to fall of 2003, my junior year of college, and the She-Ra costume returned, this time made 100% by me.

That's my good friend Jency as Harry Potter on the left. 
And that is definitely not an alcoholic beverage in my hand 1 month before my 21st birthday.

I kind of cheated in 2007.  I didn't actually MAKE my costume so much as cobble it together from things I found in Halloween stores and things I already owned.  The skirt and boots were already in my wardrobe.  I bought the wig, pitchfork red fishnets and t-shirt.

You can't see it in this picture, but my t-shirt says "I feel a sin coming on."  Classy, I know. ;-)

This year I've returned to the grand tradition of a proper handmade costume.  The only element I purchased from a Halloween store was the hat, which was still modified.  Everything else was thrifted, already in my closet, or made from scratch.  Also, I returned to the grand tradition of asking my mom for help.  Here's a little sneak preview:

Doctor Who fans will probably guess that my costume is Amelia Pond.  My husband already dresses like The Doctor most of the time, so his costume mostly involved updating his sonic screwdriver to the 11th Doctor's, since until this week he only had the 10th Doctor's.  We'll be attending a Halloween party this weekend, so expect pictures before Sunday's over. :-)

Are you going to any Halloween parties?  What are you going as?


  1. Cute! And my costume this year is "She" (Michelle Rodriquez) from Machete. I'm excited. I will be very cold though.

  2. Oh my god! I love all of them. Especially She-Ra and even your adorable martian. Love your costume this year. I would totally be Amy Pond too if I could pull off uber short skirts!

    Can't wait for pictures.

    My son has a friend who is as Who obsessed as our family (his birthday is on Halloween) but for his birthday he got River Song's sonic screwdriver. It's so awesome.

  3. Oh those pictures are just adorable!! You look so cute and I hope you all have a great time at the party!!

  4. Oh man I totally forgot about She-Ra. Gosh the 80s had the best cartoons. These pics are great. Have a great weekend!

  5. very impressive,that's why I love Halloween so much,,to get inspired and entertained through look gorgeous,some are my favorites now
    romwe streetfashion blog, pay a visit? kisses

  6. Aw-w-w-w, thanks for the compliment. But it was always fun making your costumes. Had a great time with you making your most recent on. Brought back a lot of good memories. Mom


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