DIY Beauty and the Beast costumes

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Well, there’s only a few days left to get your costume situated, you guys! Might I recommend trying out a classic?

A couple years ago, I conned Brian into Beauty and the Beast costumes. He has costume restrictions:

  • No glitter
  • Lots of accessories (as evident by Captain Mal — guns! — and Jack Skellington — Zero!)
  • The opportunity to get creative with his look (When he was Ra’s Al Ghul)
  • No masks that cover his mouth (This was the biggest problem with Jack Skellington)

And a Beast costume didn’t necessarily break any of his restrictions, so I got to be a Disney princess!

Beauty and the Beast Halloween costumes

Beast costume pieces and tips

We weren’t going for full-on Disney style, but a mash-up of the different versions of this tale as old as time. So we went looking for ways to create a regal beast.

He started with finding the right headpiece. He ended up with this goat head quasi-mask from Amazon (one-day shipping anyone?), and it actually was perfect for what he needed.

Then, he picked up wolf feet from Amazon and wolf arms from Walmart (you can pick-up in store to avoid a shipping delay). We created his chest with a thrift-store jacket, lined with faux brown fur ($7). He cut the sleeves and bottom of the coat off, turned it inside out and backward, and essentially wore it as a dickey.

beast costume head and upper body From there, he needed the right ensemble. For his outfit, we found a thrift-store tuxedo shirt ($3) to make him look fancy. He used the cape he bought for his Ra’s Al Ghul and a pair of dress pants and a belt.

For his makeup, he just grew his beard a little scruffy and used brown make-up to give a furrier appearance than his light red-gray beard.

Ta-Da! A magnificent Beast to complement my Belle.

Belle costume pieces and tips

My costume was a million times cheaper and easier than Brian’s. And I like accessories too. I was just able to pull a lot of them from my closet.

First I needed a dress. I searched on Amazon for the perfect dress, and when that didn’t work, I bought a cute 1950’s style polka dot number that will totally also work if I ever want to be Alice for Halloween, am I right? I had to safety pin the halter straps to the back of the dress to make them regular straps because I’m not so much a fan of halters most of the time. Of course, if they had this pretty blue dress then, I totally would have gone for it instead.

I got the white top to wear underneath the dress at a thrift store, but you may even have one in your closet! The apron came from my closet. Sure, it may say Betty Crocker on the front, but all I had to do was turn it around and kablam! Plain white apron. I finished the look by adding a plus-size white petticoat under the dress for a little poof.

I accessorized with the Chip cup I’ve had since I was a child at Beauty and the Beast on Ice (you can find a similar Chip cup on Amazon) and the biggest, coolest book I could find (my Norton Anthology of English Literature).

For my hair, I did a simple topsytail (Put your hair in a ponytail. Split the top section in half and loop the tail through the hole) and tied it off with a Christmas ribbon. Don’t you judge me. It was available and it worked. And no one else noticed the snowflakes.

topsytail for Belle's hair Beauty and the Beast costume

So there you have it. A relatively easy to put together Beauty and the Beast costume for your next cosplay, whether it’s Halloween or just for funsies.

Beauty and the Beast halloween costumes

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Bachelorettes and all that jazz

You already know my wedding had a bomb-ass cheese theme. But did you know I also had a kickin’ bachelorette party theme?

At 29+, I wasn’t entirely sure I wanted the whole bachelorette thing. All my college friends did the party in Peoria, where we went to college, and we traipsed the sentimental bar tour we took the last week of school before graduation. Unfortunately for me, by the time I opted in to the marriage achievement, most of those bars had closed.

20s themed bachelorette party

So I debated whether to have a party at all. Ultimately,  as many of my friend groups’ token extrovert and party girl, they all kind of expected something epic from me. Not one to leave my friends disappointed, I told Katie that I wanted a theme. And costumes.

Tuxedo oreos for a 20s themed bachelorette party

We settled on the 1920s and all things flapper and gangster. The party would start with a small shower of my friends at my house and conclude with a party bus to the city and stops at a few speakeasies in Chicago. Costumes not required, but highly encouraged.

Photo booth station with costume add-ons for a 20s themed bachelorette party

Yes, that is a photo booth in my stairwell.

My bridesmaids made fancy crafty things (some of which are still decorating my home today), set up tasty snacks, baked pretty desserts, and planned games and activities for guests to enjoy. I provided the booze because we always have plenty of liquor and bubbles for thirsty guests (I really like to throw parties).

20s themes bachelorette party - homemade decor- signs and boas and pearls everywhere

Ally was basically Pinteresting the shit out of this thing…you know, something I refused to do for my wedding. I expect that when she gets married, I’m going to have my work cut out for me.

Bead and martini glass waterfall for a 20s themed bachelorette party

My friends are incredible. Several of them flew or drove in from out of town and even out of state for this shindiggity. How lucky am I?

20s themed bachelorette party 20s themed bachelorette party

To start my look, I had the hair trial scheduled, because what better day to test out your wedding hair than the ultimate girls night out?

I had my wedding hair trial the day of my bachelorette party

My friend Laura, who also did all my wedding flowers, is super crafty and provided upcycled dresses from Savers for costumes. She added beads and feathers and much to Brian’s dismay, glitter to the dresses and brought them over for me to try on. Katie made me a selection of mix and match headpieces for the ultimate bridal set.

Bride costume for a 20s themed bachelorette party

My pal, the Banosnapper, doing what she does: Bano snapping.

I think the ensemble turned out pretty awesome.

As the day went on, I drank A LOT of champagne. When we finally hopped aboard the party bus, I was flying high.

20s themed bachelorette party

We made our first stop at a speakeasy that inspired the whole plan. One of my city-dwelling friends, wearing her sassy dress and headband, had already been to the venue to scope it out since we couldn’t make reservations. She came out to greet us but to our dismay, the bouncers informed us that we could not proceed. He said that costumes were not allowed. Now,  we may have had flapper style dresses, but no one was wearing anything that you wouldn’t find in a store save a few added embellishments.

As my friends tried to explain, the bouncers got even more defensive.  “This is a speakeasy. Not a club. And you can’t wear headgear.” We were wearing headbands. No one asked us to remove them before entering; they just told us point blank we were in violation of their dress code, and we could not enter. We also tried explaining what a speakeasy is, and the premise of the 1920s to no avail. They must not have paid attention in history class.

Some of my friends went to the speakeasy’s website and looked up the dress code. Nothing about costumes or headbands being banned. It definitely felt like we were being discriminated against due to the appearance and size of the bride and some of the guests (it’s an unconfirmed suspicion, because how do you even confirm that?).

After I found out what was happening,  I may have gone to yell at the bouncers. I was pissed off that they were ruining my plans, and I don’t like when my plans fall through. It’s part of my Clark Griswold complex.

20s themed bachelorette party

This is our motley crew at Black Finn. That’s me in the back hugging the manager.

Luckily, my friends were quick to recover, dragged me from the bouncers before I punched one of them, and pointed us in the direction of Black Finn, where the manager bought us a round of shots and things got way better. I also got way drunker, but that’s expected at this sort of party.

Drumk girl selfie at a 20s themed bachelorette party

Things got a little fuzzy after that…

We made our way to a third bar, where I started doing shots with strangers at the bar and wandering around a bit more than one should. It was time to go home.

We called the party bus for our pickup and started winding down. In the bus, I called Brian, who had spent the afternoon out of the house but came home shortly after we left. I told him we (me and the 8 other people who’d be spending the night at our house) were on our way. And we really NEEDED tacos.

He said he’d pick up tacos and we texted him an order. My sister-in-law was also texting him with apologies for getting me so drunk and warning him of my impending arrival.

We came home to tacos and beds everywhere. Brian had set up air mattresses and put sheets and blankets on all the couches, so there’d be room for everyone to sleep. The dining room table was overflowing with tacos and burritos and horchata. If he hadn’t already proven he was going to be the best husband ever, this definitely solidified it.

Did you have a bachelorette party? Have you been to any crazy or themed bachelorette parties? Tell me your stories!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

7 Easy DIY Halloween Costume Ideas for Women and Couples

Halloween is definitely the holiday of all holidays around here.  My family and friends totally jump into Halloween head first. It’s the fourth family holiday. It’s the ONLY holiday my aunt flies in from out of state to celebrate with us. It’s kind of a big deal around here.

I figured you may be looking for some Halloween costume ideas – I know I still am…so I thought I would help you out and share some of the best costumes my people have put together in years past. You’ve already seen my bouquet toss winner Halloween costume…and my Sally costume…but I’m not the only one with the ideas. Several of my friends have given me permission to share their photos and costume ideas with you, so you can see what excellent company I keep over here in the real world.

Fast(ish), Easy DIY Halloween Costumes

My pal, Brookie Banosnapper showed up at my RIDICULOUSLY EARLY (First week of October early) Halloween party last year in this ensemble. Best. Idea. Ever.

Grumpy Cat Halloween Costume

One of my friends from college, Shelli was unrecognizable by many of her friends when she showed up in this costume! I was a big NCIS fan a few years back (which was when Sheli threw down this costume. I wish I could have seen it in person, but she lives a few (hundred) miles away from me.

DIY ABBY NCIS Costume

Deb, one of my favorite English teachers, rocked it in her garden ho costume. Her English/theater background worked well with this punny costume.

DIY Garden Ho Costume

Valerie showed up to one of our Halloween parties in this creative garb a few years back, before everyone was doing it. She already had dark hair and a good chunk of the wardrobe requirements, so this costume was a breeze for her. No one noticed that she had black chucks on (shhhh).

Flo Progressive Halloween Costume DIY

Dynamic Duos: Couples/Pairs Halloween Costumes

Ron and his best friend decided they would be the ultimate best friends for Halloween. Not that I’m a fan of these two dumb dudes, but I hear they’re pretty popular with the ladies.

Lloyd & Harry Dumb and Dumber Costumes

Our friends Ava and Mike are super awesome, and they came to our Halloween party at the apartment last year as Hawkeye and Hawkeye, which I thought was a totally fantastic couples’ costume. Right?

Hawkeye and Hawkeye
And then there was the costume set that Brian and I opted for last year. Captain Mal and Kaylee from Firefly. It wasn’t my favorite (partially because I ordered the coveralls from eBay and they did not fit the way I wanted them to…)

Captain MaL & Kaylee (3)Friends, what should Brian and I do for Halloween this year? It appears we’re going to be moving right around Halloween, so we’re strapped for time. Any suggestions? What are you going to be for Halloween?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

DIY Halloween Costume: The Bouquet Toss Winner

Happy October, Blog Friends! It is now officially acceptable for me to get excited about Halloween and BOY OH BOY am I excited for Halloween.  Of course, we won’t be throwing a Halloween party this year. And we don’t (yet) have a house to decorate for one of my favorite holidays, but big things are happening this month. Big things.

I figured I’d kick the season off this year with a little Halloween costume love.

A few years ago, whilst I was dating the bartender, I came up with the most brilliant Halloween costume, if I do say so myself. Mom and I were sitting in her room, brainstorming ideas. My mom is a BRILLIANT costume creator, so it only seemed right to run ideas back and forth with her. I was broke, out of work, and in college, so I knew I wanted to keep it cheap. I figured I had a couple of bridesmaid dresses hanging around my closet to use, so we started thinking about ideas…

The next thing I knew, I was plotting the ultimate bouquet toss winner Halloween costume. I started with the dress, which I ripped to absolute shreds. Then I bought fake nails, which I glued into the shredded dress. I saved a few of the nails, which I left to put in my hair.

On the Saturday before Halloween that year, my mom and I got to work for all the parties I was headed to. We started with my hair, spending an hour creating one of those bridesmaid-esque updos. As soon as it was finished, I pulled and tugged and messed it up. It was important work. I then stuck fake nails into the knotted mess and even a few flower petals.

I put on the dress, so Mom and I knew what skin space we were working with. We started with bruising, using a plethora of eyeshadows to create blue-gray-green bruising all over my body, including one black eye. We moved on to scratches (with all those broken nails, scratches were a must). This was accomplished with real scratches (light ones) that Mom traced with dark red lip liner to maintain them all day long.

Bouquet toss

I needed to add a smidge of fake blood, so I put one earring in, and blood coming down the other ear. I also figured a bloody nose would look pretty convincing. I finished the look with a single high heel, crutches and an ankle brace because I’m hardcore.

My then-boyfriend picked me up for our Halloween festivities in a hoodie and camo pants with a mask in his backpack. A mask that he may have put on twice throughout the entire day.

We started at a Halloween wine-tasting event at my local liquor store, where I was competing in a costume contest to win a wine refrigerator. I walked around the place, petitioning my cause and making sure that EVERYONE voted for me. If ever I had to explain what I was, I had a whole speech prepared.

“I caught the bouquet. You should see the other girls. I mean, it’s not what catching the bouquet MEANS…it’s about taking out the competition.”

I went home with a wine refrigerator that day.

Last year, at work, I thought I would revive my favorite Halloween costume of all time. I took it to a more gruesome level, and was pretty pleased with the results.

If you're looking for a creative, unique Halloween costume with an old bridesmaid dress, consider the bouquet toss winner.

I may have looked more like a zombie than a live person, but I couldn’t stop adding gore. I especially liked the knee cut. I won a contest there, too…but never received my prize…grumble grumble grumble.

Of course, the best part about this was taking the train home in costume. I looked fucking spectacular, and it wasn’t Halloween proper, so no one else on the commute was dressed up. It was kind of magical.

If you're looking for a creative, unique Halloween costume with an old bridesmaid dress, consider the bouquet toss winner.

I still don’t know what Brian and I are going to be for Halloween this year, but it’s sure to be a scream.

Blog friends, what’s the most creative costume you’ve ever come up with? Would you rip a dress to shreds to have fun with Halloween? Are you down with the gory costumes? What are you going to be for Halloween this year?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

I Did My Civic Duty and I Ate All of Your Candy

Dear DuPage County,

Thank you SO much for inviting me to participate in the judicial system this past Halloween. You’re right. I DID feel like I was a part of something important. I know that just because the two cases that could have potentially become jury trials didn’t actually require the juror pool doesn’t mean that my day was wasted. I mean…

Red Riding Hood at Jury Duty

Hanging out at Jury Duty…

I got to wear a cape. To the courthouse.

That’s important shit right there.

Yes. I know, you were surprised to see me there with my sweet red hooded cape, especially with all that rain and nastiness that ensued, but I was there. Bright and early. And I thank you for not mentioning my sweet disguise. It was really appreciated that you didn’t note that I made an effort to really bring the holiday spirit to the courthouse. Thanks for that.

I’m also aware that your X-ray machine broke my laptop temporarily so that I could avoid work, losing an entire day unable to get the shit I need to get done, done…and enjoy the benefits of the jury lounge, mainly the giant bowl of Halloween candy, which I made sure to empty before the day was out (even if I had to grab some for the road when you released us), and of course the endless loop of HGTV, which I clearly could NOT get enough of. I really appreciate that one.

(<rant>By the way, if you watch HGTV with any regularity…PLEASE for the love of cheese explain to me how. Those people are the most obnoxious people I’ve ever seen. “I don’t like the paint on that half a million dollar house, so no…I don’t think I’ll buy it.” Screw you and your $500,000 house budget. Go spend $50, buy a can of paint and change it. </rant>)

I also want to thank you, because I found myself wishing (out of sheer boredom) that I was put on a trial. Or at least picked to be a potential juror, where I could entertain them with my hooded cloak. Or get in trouble. One of those.

Stripey socks at jury duty

Also thanks for allowing me to make myself at home. My stripey socks looked awesome with the cape.

So, DuPage county, if after a year (because you’ll unfortunately be keeping my name out of the jury box for 1 whole year), you feel that I should be so lucky as to need to do my civic duty again…I’ve decided.

You can’t change my mind.

The cape is coming with me. Halloween or not. Henceforth, jury duty will be known as Halloween II. And I shall always wear a cape.

Get excited. I’ll be waiting.

Sincerely,

Me.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Steampunk Sunday: Change it up with a Steampunk Halloween

This post is part of a sponsored post series about the steampunk lifestyle. This campaign is sponsored by Steampunk Goggles. All opinions are totally my own. 

Do you know what Steampunk is? Thanks to my partnership with SteampunkGoggles.com, you’re going to be treated to a series of delicious posts this month about Steampunk. And if I have my way…a guest post from my boyfriend. (No promises, there, kiddos. I don’t always get my way. This isn’t Burger King.)

So I’ll ask again. Do you know what Steampunk is?

I didn’t. Well…until I met my boyfriend.

Steampunk Renaissance FaireSo, I’ve always had an obsession with the Victorian era. And apparently, so has Brian. What made the two of us slightly different was that while I was reading Jane Austen and dreaming of Fitzwilliam Darcy, Brian was rocking with cool Steampunk goggles, gear and dreaming of vintage sci-fi magic. Brian was down with Steampunk. And so I learned a bit about it. And we see it in some of our annual adventures. Steampunk costumes show up during cosplay at Gen Con and Comic Cons. We even went to Steampunk Day at the Bristol Renaissance Faire! As you can see, I’ve taken it to heart.

The short form of Steampunk is this: Victorian science fiction. Or technology as imagined during the Victorian age. But the beauty of Steampunk is that unlike most genres, there isn’t a set “This. Is. Steampunk.” You’ll find thousands of variations and twists and spins. You can look to Jules Verne and H.G. Wells for inspiration, as they were front-runners in Turn of the Century science fiction.

So you’ve probably noticed that this is something of a geeky nerd culture. But it’s totally geek chic. Obviously. If I’m involved.

Kaylee Frye CostumeThe thing I love about Steampunk is the DIY/anything can be Steampunk aspect. Take my Kaylee Frye Halloween costume (Check out that Teddy Bear patch that I MADE BY. MYSELF. I’ll write about how easy that was on another day.) While Firefly isn’t truly in the realm of Steampunk, it definitely falls into the unique category (for those of you who don’t know, it’s basically Space Cowboys. Old West Meets Sci Fi.) I could quite easily make this costume unique by adding a few accessories and accents.

  • I’d start by adding some boots with buckles and other embellishments, tucking my pants into the tops of the boots to show them off. KayLee Frye and Malcolm Reynolds Costumes
  • Then, I’d need a necklace. As Kaylee is a Firefly mechanic, adding gears and other doodads wouldn’t be completely out of the question. I might even make a gear patch to add to the patches on her coveralls (which I found relatively cheap on eBay).
  • Kaylee’s a real sweetheart, so I don’t think I’d want to give her a gun, but her costume counterpart in our universe is Malcolm Reynolds, and I’d DEFINITELY give him a gun. He’s already got a sweet holster. You can find lots of DIY Steampunk guns on Pinterest.
  • Steampunk goggles would be a perfect add on for this costume, to really pull the Steampunk genre into the mix and complete the ensemble.
Steampunk-GOGGLES-STUDDED

Original art by the very talented John Garret of hypertransitory.com

Now, because I’m working with Steampunk Goggles on the kickoff of this Sunday series, I’ve got some exciting news for you. You can get your own sweet pair of goggles with a special discount (What what!) of $5 off $30 or more PLUS free shipping with the code: TRIBERR1.

Steampunk Goggles is hosting a Pinterest contest to win a sweet pair of your very own goggles! Three lucky winners  will get a pair of awesome goggles, so go enter this Pinteresting Goggles Contest!

Blog Friends, are you into Steampunk? Is this all news to you? What do you think of it? Are you down with a bit of Steampunk Sunday every now and then?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

This is Halloween: DIY Sally Skellington Costume

Halloween Costumes 2017
Every time I post a Halloween picture, thought, or idea…my mom asks, “Why aren’t you showing off your costume?!?” It’s really adorable actually. First, it’s adorable because my mom is one of my most dedicated readers. Second, it’s adorable because she’s super proud of her work. Her work, you ask? Yep. So here’s how this went down:

For Halloween, Brian and I were going to go as an old time villain and damsel in distress. But when we planned our Disneycation, it was decided that we needed costumes a little bit earlier than normal… Like September 14 early. And the costumes in question-we weren’t totally in love with. So, we started perusing the idea list. Brian had left open some tabs with Jack Skellington and Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas… (Oh right, one of my typical requirements is a ginger costume so that I have an excuse to re-dye my hair right before Halloween). It was the perfect idea. Now…to find the costume.

When I couldn't find a costume I liked, I made my own DIY Sally Skellington Costume and my boyfriend made part of his Jack Skellington Costume

I pinned a few ideas to my Sally Pinterest board…but I was unimpressed with the quality of costumes available. I wanted authenticity. So I decided that I would make my own costume. I would get a base dress, some fabric to match the patches, and sew the patches to the base dress with black yarn. Easy peasy, right? Not right. I got the dress and vintage clothes with the fabric I wanted from garage-sailing one Saturday afternoon during the summer, stopped off at my parents’ house, and got started.

15% Off Easy Costume Kits via TrendyHalloween.com

Obviously, after the needle bit my hand 3 times, and it was evident that I was doing a piss-poor job of sewing this thing…it was not going to go very far. Luckily…Mom was sitting right there…telling me, “You’re doing it all wrong. Give it to me!” I handed it off to her…and all of a sudden my project became her project. Plan successful. Mom took over. Now, my mom is hand-sew, knit, crafty, crafty genius…and despite her arthritic hands, took it upon herself to spend about 30 hours working on this masterpiece.

When I was looking for the perfect Sally Halloween costume, I couldn't find what I wanted. So my mom and I worked together to create this DIY Sally Skellington costume.

The base dress with the Sally sleeves

Every so often, I would head over to the house for a fitting…and Mom’s work of art was beginning to take shape.

When I was looking for the perfect Sally Halloween costume, I couldn't find what I wanted. So my mom and I worked together to create this DIY Sally Skellington costume.

Looking good, right?

So I was getting pretty stoked about this costume…and Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. Mom stopped using the black yarn as thread and switched to multiple strands of black thread. You can sort of tell the difference, but they both look awesome, and it’s not supposed to be uniform, so it worked out REALLY well. (The regular thread made it way easier to sew.)

Finally, it was less than a week before we left for Disney…and my costume was DONE! I was ridiculously excited, even after we got skunked while packing for the trip.

halloween at Disney Sally and Jack costumes

Brian’s costume still needed a little work done before Halloween, but it worked while we were in Disney.

Brian eventually finished his costume by wearing a suit (it was FAR too warm in Florida to wear a suit jacket and pants to wander the Magic Kingdom), making a bow tie out of a bat and a wire hanger, and getting skeleton hands.

 

Disney magic in my DIY Sally Costume

Disney Magic. *sigh*

Note, while at Disney, we invested in a Zero! So I still needed a few things too… the boots and the stripey socks. It took me until the day of the big Halloween party (this past Saturday) to find exactly what I was looking for. But I found them. And the end result was pretty fantastic.

Jack Skellington and Sally DIY Costumes

Jack & Sally (My mom’s awesome, right?)

Have you ever conned one of your parents into doing something you knew they would do better than you? Have you ever made your own Halloween costume because the store-bought ones just weren’t cutting it? What are you going to be for Halloween this year?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

The Joy of Haunted Houses and Halloween

I love love love Halloween. It’s THE ultimate holiday. It’s the fourth family holiday, you know. Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, Halloween. My aunt in North Carolina actually flies into Chicago for this, above all other holidays. It’s the best. I’ve had my fair share of Halloween costumes, many of which were homemade or half homemade.

Haunted House Costumes Galore

This is the first in a series of photo posts in honor of my favorite holiday.

Crazy Haunted House Costume Numbers Clown

I used to volunteer at a haunted house…

In fact, this is how I managed to survive student teaching. I’ve said it was the hardest thing I ever did in my life, but it got a little crazy, considering I was president of my local Jaycee chapter, who ran a haunted house. One of the most hectic times of my life–I escaped into the costumed crazy of Suzzee, my haunted house character with character.

She started out because I love acting the crazy part.

 

Crazy Haunted House Costume 2

This is Suzzee at the very early stages

Crazy Haunted House Costume with Teased Hair

Check out that hair!

As I’ve had some experience in the world of haunted houses, I’ve decided to share with you the secrets to haunted houses. This is what to prepare for.

The Five Types of Haunted House Scares

The Standard Scare

This scare revolves around the things that typically scare…Spooky atmosphere. Scary music. Dark hallways. Traditional monsters. Dead people.This is the easy scare. Mostly scares little ones…

Redneck Monster Haunted House Costume

My redneck monster

Dead Haunted House Character

Dead

Haunted House Costume

My audition photo for The Walking Dead. What do you think?

The Boo! Scare

This scare is the most common. The jump-out-of-a-hidey-spot scare. The rah! scare. The scare they’re expecting, but not expecting…If you’re going through a haunted house, expect this when you least expect it. And when you most expect it. Just be ready for it everywhere.

Haunted House Creepy Little Girl

Suzzee started taking shape. She was a little girl who got into mommy’s makeup, but she was crazy. She was sweet, but mean. Friendly, but nasty. Quiet, but loud…When you least expected it, she was there–screaming in your face…

The Grotesque Scare

As you can see in the photo above, I wasn’t opposed to covering myself in fake blood. (corn syrup and food coloring) The grotesque scare feeds on the fear factor of humans. I’ll bet you never thought about how gross watching someone masticate is… I took every opportunity to chew in people’s faces.

Haunted House Crazy Girl

That red candy was a gummy heart with red liquid candy…it was like eating a heart covered in blood…and I was absolutely disgusting while I did it… I also used gummy finger fries in bloody ketchup…

Haunted House Characters

Suzzee was caught by the popo and stuck behind bars for a while…That pink bunny had a squeaker in it…and was stuffed with cotton candy…which I pulled out and ate in front of people. They really thought I was eating the cotton…

Haunted House Costume Fun

Told you.

The Personal Space Scare

This scare is easy. Walk up to someone who looks scared…stand close enough that you’re just barely touching them (without touching them). Get your face in their face. Sniff them. Smile at them. Scowl at them. Or even better…Scream in their face when they start laughing at you. All of these things are allowed in a haunted house!

Crazy Haunted House Halloween Costume

Suzzee had no problem walking up to people and crowding their personal space. Often.

The Mind-Fuck Scare

There really was no other way to describe this type of scare. It’s the scare that leaves you with nightmares. It’s the scare that makes you unforgettable to teeny bopper radio DJ’s (Yes, that’s right…I ran into them at the car show 5 months later looking normal…Guess what? They still remembered me. They told me they were still having nightmares about my character. It was the greatest compliment. Ever.) I’ve got a super creepy monotonous singing voice that I bust out for haunted housing… I can stare at the same spot for 5 minutes straight…It’s pretty fun.

Haunted House Creepy Character

Creepy right? MIND-FUCK

So Suzzee was the best…Because she encompassed ALL of the scares. An all-around mind-fuck who did and said whatever she wanted.It was great, because I had to be in character at all times. So instead of being the responsible president or the responsible student. Or the responsible teacher… I could just be Suzzee. And life was fun.

When I grow up, I want to be an actress.

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

I Was on Pinterest Before it Was Cool

No seriously. I was.

I’ll bet you joined Pinterest just before Christmas…Maybe you joined in January, after the holiday excitement settled down. Or maybe you just started pinning about 3-4 months ago. But not me.

I joined when the only friend I had on there was the friend that recommended I check it out. (Thanks, Molly!) Then I made Penny get on it. But there we were on it before it was big. Before it was crazy. Before it was cool.

This is my Pinniversary, so I thought that I would share my favorite things that came from Pinterest. I used Pinterest for Halloween last year. It was perfect!

In order to find the perfect Halloween costume, I pinned everything I could. I’m of the making-your-own-costume-is-better school of thought, but my version of making is scissors and hot glue. I don’t sew. Not my style. So Poison Ivy was my plan…

This is what I came up with:

Poison Ivy Makeup

OK, so the makeup was professionally done by an amazing costume company in Batavia, IL called All Dressed Up (I’m not that much of a genius…the chick literally GLUED glitter to my lips. It was awesome.) She painted the ivy on my face using face paint, glitter and glue (including my glitter glued eyelids). She then glued the ivy to my face with the glue as well.

More makeup

After I decided that I was going to be Poison Ivy, I told Brian that he could be any Batman Bad Guy that he wanted. He opted for Ras Al Ghul. He got a green cloak, added gold accents and shaved his beard all funny. It was awesome.

Poison Ivy and Ras Al Ghul

For the Poison Ivy costume, I took a velvet dress I found at a thrift store and cut the neck down to something borderline inappropriate and trimmed the sleeves (which I used as leg warmers). Then I individually glued fake ivy leaves (also acquired at thrift stores) all along the edges of the dress and spiraled them up and around the back.

For my accessories, I glued sprigs of ivy to a headband so I would have ivy in my hair, I glued a piece of ivy to a cheap necklace, and then I individually glued ivy leaves all around a pair of pointy toed pumps. I bought the plus size green tights and almost called it a day…when I realized I had a green purse that would be perfect with ivy glued all around it as well. To this day, this was one of my favorite costumes.

Poison Ivy and Satan

With Cletus. Check out my shoes!

The poison ivy costume maybe cost me $15… and about 20 hours of manual labor. Yes, I individually glued on all of those leaves. On the dress, on the shoes (those shoes were BLUE), even on a purse. The shoes and purse were my pride and joy–I still have the whole thing.  I was pretty impressed with myself. (OK, I’m usually pretty impressed with myself…but other people were impressed too!)

So there you have it, my Pincreations from the days before Pinning was a thing. From the days when I actually had to Google shit to put it ON Pinterest. (Yes, most of my original pins were pinned from Google images. You’re welcome.) So thanks to me, Poison Ivy Costume Hunters can have a great Halloween.

What are your favorite things to pin on Pinterest?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!