The Occasional Woman: Plan Now For Next Halloween

| Nov 2, 2015
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Dear Readers,
I hope you had a fab Halloween! Several of our local ladies went to a huge party, known as Henri David’s Halloween Ball. I’ve been going since around 1982, and it is really a raucous & fun night. People think up group costumes, such as four friends going as the seasons — with Winter having a small cloud of “snow” overhead and Spring being orbited by butterflies. Partygoers work all year on costumes, and it shows.

You don't bang out this costume in a day. (TGF Contributor Christine Zee @ Henri David's Ball.)

You don’t bang out this costume in a day. (TGF Contributor Christine Zee @ Henri David’s Ball.)

Did I do that? Hell, no. I was walking near a Halloween shop on Friday, and I had no costume OR inspiration, so I figured  I’d amble on in and see if anything looked exciting — and it did! I got myself a plastic Viking helmet and sword, and thought “Viking Warrior Princess”! Then I drove to the fabric store and got some weird stuff that kinda looks like armor, 3 yards of teal linen (cuz linen has been used for cloth all over the world since clothing was invented) and I snagged a crappy long blonde wig.

The next morning, I washed and dried the linen so it wouldn’t shrink in the future. Then I located a pencil and made some quick sketches, looked up “Viking Women” online and began to dream up what I would make. I found several costume patterns and mixed up their pieces to fit my idea of a general look, laid out the fabrics and went to work.

By seven thirty at night I was finished! A long, teal linen peasant-blouse dress with flaring sleeves and gold trim was done. It was topped off with a front-lacing fake armor vest, complete with steel boning and corset lacing. I then added a chunky leather belt to hold the sword, a black velvet bag attached to the belt (as pockets were not in use at that time), the blonde wig and the helmet, which has wings on it. Black leather boots and some mascara finished off the Viking, and I went out and had a great time.

Why am I telling you all this? Well, I made some mistakes, and also some triumphs. First off, I waited until A DAY BEFORE HALLOWEEN to even think about my costume and had to knock it out super quickly; this led to a less than perfect fit, as the neck of the dress came up to my chin, the sleeves were too long and the fun vest too big. In spite of this, I looked pretty great and had a good time!

This is important, as from everything I hear, Halloween will happen again in another 363 days! I am finally going to learn a lesson from this experience:

1. Plan your next costume starting on November 1st.
2. Draw it and begin to investigate what you will need for the costume by January.
3. Figure out if YOU can construct/build/buy it yourself — and if you can, well, good on you! If you can’t, figure out who can, and FIND the necessary personnel and make a plan with a deadline for their services by March.
4. April — GET STARTED! First fitting — MAY. Second fitting — June.
5. Schedule a final fitting in August, and remember to wear any potential underthings and shoes you will need.
6. GET EXCITED! You will have a one of a kind outfit, and not have any stress about last-minute “ohmahgawd, I got nothing” attacks.

I have already thought up next year’s Halloween costume, and each month I will buy more of the pieces needed, follow my suggested schedule, and have a worry-free BALL!

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Category: Style, Transgender Fashion, Transgender How To

The Occasional Woman

About the Author ()

I am a native Californian who has been based in the Philadelphia area since 1984. My first CD fashion creation was a gold lamé dress for the now esteemed editor of this publication. Since then I have made tons of fabulous frocks and other fashion apparel for the crossdressing and transgender community. Contact me for custom clothing or alterations via email: [email protected]

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