Our resident Halloween obsessive Lauren tells us how to dress-up for an ethical Halloween!
One of the best parts about Halloween is the chance to put on a costume, stuff your face with sweets and watch Hocus Pocus! But how can you find the perfect costume while sticking to your sustainable fashion principles?
As we all know, buying a cheap, tacky and quite probably flammable outfit for the celebrations is not in any way sustainable, especially if it’s something which will only be worn once before ending up in landfill. There’s also a good chance you’ll see someone in the same mass-produced outfit!
Personally, I think that home-made costumes are always better than shop bought ones, as you can be much more creative and end up with something far more interesting.
But where to start? I’ve been making my own costumes for years and usually create a moodboard on pinterest of my chosen character, collecting colours, make-up ideas and inspiration. I then work out what I already own and how this could fit with a particular character and go from there. This sounds complicated, but its helpful to simplify what your character needs to complete the look – Pro tip: If you want to dress as Elphaba, use green tights to cover your arms, your furniture will thank you! Make-up is also your friend! A basic outfit with the right make-up can instantly make a character. You can create realistic bruises with eyeshadow, and weird and wonderful lipstick shades are really easy to pick up. Talc also makes great ‘dirt’ if you’re going as the undead, just sprinkle some on your hair and clothes. The rise in popularity of cosplay & Disneybounding has helped with this, and there are some wonderful examples out there of creative costumes which you can use as a starting point.
Last halloween fell during my year of no clothes shopping, so required me to be even more creative than usual in putting a costume together. I also needed 4 dressing up outfits for the occasion (did I mention I love Halloween!)
So to inspire you for this years spooky spectacular, here are some of my favourite looks from the last few years, made entirely from sustainable & second-hand fashion!
When I spotted this bright orange dress at LCCE I knew it would make the perfect pumpkin! I stitched black felt shapes onto the front to create a pumpkin face, inspired by Oogie Boogie from The Nightmare Before Christmas. The witches hat & tights I already owned and the orange necklace also came from LCCE. I wore this costume twice, once with full facepaint and once with standard make-up.
Lumpy Space Princess (Adventure Time)
This was a more casual cosplay look for the Thought Bubble Comic Convention, so needed to be practical for moving around. The purple dress (Dorothy Perkins), cardigan (Banned Apparel) & belt (ASOS) all came from LCCE, with tights & Converse I already owned. I made the star headband by gluing a pre-cut craft foam shape to a piece of elastic and tying it to size.
Magenta (Rocky Horror)
This look was mostly about the hair & make-up (a little backcombing goes a long way!). I teamed a 90s vintage velvet dress from LCCE with a handmade collar and fishnets from my wardrobe. Simple but effective!
Furiosa (Mad Max Fury Road)
This one required slightly more planning and a bit of make-and-do to put together but nothing too complicated! The vests, belts & goggles all came from LCCE with black jeans I already owned. The belt buckle was made from papermache and an old necklace, and ‘robot hand’ from an old football glove sprayed silver.
Hunter S Thompson (Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas)
This one works best for a house party, as you dont really want to be walking around with a toy gun and a typewriter all night! Hawaiian shirt from LCCE, sunglasses and a hat, with cigarette holder made from an old biro. Copious amounts of drugs optional!
Have a spooky Halloween!