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2016 Costume Contest Winners – Adult Couples Category

The 2016 Halloween Express DIY Costume Contest winners in the Adult Couples category displayed some impressive historical DIY costumes. We’re pretty sure you will agree that these very detailed duos are not only creative, but simply paired to perfection!

FIRST PLACE: Kim Oliva – Los Angeles, CA

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HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA FOR THIS COSTUME?

Naturally I am addicted to Halloween… I always enjoy basically walking art installations as a costume, the bigger the better, more is so not less when it comes to me. I am consumed with adding details galore! Creativity is my drug. So this year I had been fixated on frozen images, I always wanted to somehow do one, so that lead me to Titanic. And also I am a Titanic fan, the real Titanic not the movie. I have read countless trivia on the ill-fated line, and also I think Capt Edward Smith is one of the biggest heroes to exist in time. So in a sense… a tribute, Halloween tribute. We were so caught up in getting ready we never got a chance to take our pics! So all these pics are from publications, Instagram accounts, etc. Strangers wanted to share their pics with us via the inter web. And then friends saw our pics in LA Weekly the next day.

WHAT ITEMS DID YOU USE TO MAKE THIS COSTUME AND HOW?

Entire costume is handmade by me, even the snow! Turns out you can not buy snow, ice decorative items till after Halloween. SO, that led me to go into creative overdrive. I hand painted all the Icebergs. Which were made of shipping brown paper, I shaped them into boulders and icebergs and stapled and glue all seams, use cardboard for our water surface in a blue hue covered in wax paper I crinkled to look like ice. That is giant icebergs attached to our backs. I painted shading, fake snow, ice and even added lights under the water to give an ocean, frozen effect. I made all icicles by dripping, one by one, glue sticks on wax paper (that WAS tedious, but so fun, burns to prove it :). I even made my boyfriend’s Captain details; hat, jacket into uniform, made my hat, clothes came from my closet. I made the snow with baby powder, white paint, and clear spray. Use waxed paper above water to give ice water effect. You can’t see, but I had champagne glasses, jewels, and china floating on top of it, including a frozen hand out of the water. I glued my glue gun ice to our faces, hair, costume. I made the life rings, out of styrofoam, iced them, roped them, detailed them up all on my own. The ‘Icing’ (pun intended) was, we stayed in character all night, completely frozen looks, glazed over stares. Yikes, that was hard as well. I made this all only 3 days before Halloween… ahhh.

WHAT REACTION DID YOU GET WHEN WEARING THIS COSTUME?

The reactions were beyond surreal. We live in Los Angeles, and went to West Hollywood Halloween Carnival, with 500,000 people in attendance. It literally took us 2 hours to walk 5 blocks. At any given moment we were surrounded by 50 people shooting pics. It got to be so much we had to hide in an alley to catch our breath. We now can empathize what Justin Bieber or any other heart throb goes through with people chasing you and paparazzi cornering you, I kid you not, it was like that. Everyone had to touch us and stop us, the reaction was mind blowing and I did not expect it. Everyone loved it so much, they even wanted us to hold their babies like politicians so they can take pics!! Say what??~~!! It was crazy fun.

ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE TO TELL US ABOUT THIS COSTUME OR YOUR EXPERIENCE?

We had a ball doing this and the reactions of the public made all the hard work all so worth it! It turns out I could not stop working on it, it was that much fun! Always my drug of choice… creativity! It is my macabre way of paying tribute to the ill fated, but magically majestic White Star line Titanic come to life.

 


SECOND PLACE: Brooke Griffiths – Cumming, GA

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HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA FOR THIS COSTUME?

My husband and I are wearing costumes inspired by King Louis XVI and his Queen Marie Antoinette after they were executed at the guillotine during the French Revolution in 1793. I love history and do a historical theme every year.

WHAT ITEMS DID YOU USE TO MAKE THIS COSTUME AND HOW?

For Louis XVI, I started with a men’s suit jacket, khaki pants and a white dress shirt. I cut the pants at the knee and elasticized them to wear over light-weight white knee socks. On the jacket, I cut off the collar, added large cuffs made from embroidered gold silk shantung (from a jacket I purchased at the Goodwill), gold braid trim, and gold appliques that I embellished with Swarovski crystals. I made his royal sash from bright blue satin and decorated with crystal broaches. I hung another broach around his neck on a black satin ribbon. I attached lace at the neckline and the cuffs of his dress shirt. For his wig, I purchased a silver “witches” wig, cut hair from it to wrap around sponge hair curlers, then attached those at the sides to create an 18th century side-roll wig. The rest of the wig I tied back with another black satin ribbon. I sprayed the whole thing with white temporary hair spray to create the “powdered” effect of the time.

For my costume, the only piece bought “as is” is the corset. A bridesmaid dress from the Goodwill provided much of the other materials, with 2 yards of gold lame and a 1/2 yard of lace added. I designed and sewed the petit jacket from the lame, used the lining of the bridesmaid dress for the pink sleeve bows and cape (not seen in the pic), with tea-stained lace for the ruffled sleeves. A typical 18th century dress would have a VERY wide silhouette with pannier hoops, which I recreated using pillows on each hip held together by a ribbon belt under my skirt. The skirt is sewn from coral beaded satin of the bridesmaid dress. I cut the bodice off the dress, opened the skirt at the center to make a much wider circumference, added gold fringe at the front edging and overlaid that on the gold lame underskirt. My headpiece is a full-length curly dance wig. I cut down a 2-liter soda bottle, put it upside down at the crown of the wig, and then rearranged the curls upward to cover the bottle, held in place with hot glue and bobby pins. Wig decorations include butterflies and orchids from the Dollar Store and an ostrich feather. Again, I used white temporary hair spray for a powdered look. We both used white powder and gray contouring to create a deadlike skin color, and for the fatal neck injuries, we used liquid latex and tissue paper to create the wounds. Then used fake blood and dark makeup to emphasize the bleeding. After all that, we splashed the whole thing with fake blood!

WHAT REACTION DID YOU GET WHEN WEARING THIS COSTUME?

We got lots of amazed reactions – especially that I made such an elaborate couples costume myself. And we won best costume at the huge Halloween Party “Hardin Howl” we attend each year.

ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE TO TELL US ABOUT THIS COSTUME OR YOUR EXPERIENCE?

I would say we spent about $80 for materials for both costumes.

 


THIRD PLACE: Kelly Breton – Springfield, MA

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HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA FOR THIS COSTUME?

I went to New Orleans back in 2012 during Halloween time and was inspired by all the voodoo.

WHAT ITEMS DID YOU USE TO MAKE THIS COSTUME AND HOW?

We used mostly burlap, jute and twine/yarn to build our costume. We are very new to sewing, so the shirt, dress and pants were trial & error. We have regular clothes that we bought from Goodwill underneath the costume to help with the itching. The head pieces were made from a cheap plastic skull mask we got from the local Halloween store. We proceeded to hot glue the stitched burlap on top of the mask to create the molded feeling, cut open the mouth, and added the twine to make it look like the dolls face was stitched up. We tied the rest of the material from the mask around our necks so it looks like one cohesive piece. The pins were made out of grilling skewers and ping pong balls. We spray-painted them to give it the needle look.

WHAT REACTION DID YOU GET WHEN WEARING THIS COSTUME?

It was paparazzi city! lots of people took pictures everywhere we went. A lot of people were scared of us saying we looked “too creepy”. One of my friends said he was going to “un-invite” us from his Halloween party this year because we freaked him out too much. To me, that’s confirmation we did a great job.

ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE TO TELL US ABOUT THIS COSTUME OR YOUR EXPERIENCE?

No, I think that pretty much covers it!

 


THIRD PLACE (a): Megan Caruso – Fort Worth, TX

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HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA FOR THIS COSTUME?

As 80s and 90s babies, we grew up listening to our parents jam out to Prince. The individual dressed as Prince in the costume has vivid memories of his mom playing Prince and Michael Jackson on Saturdays growing up when they would all clean the house. To this day, when we clean our house, we have a mix of Prince, Michael Jackson and a few others playing to help us get through cleaning!

Prince is a legend. This seemed like the perfect costume to help celebrate such a unique, creative and inspiring musician, whose music transcends time. To this day, Purple Rain is well known and associated with the legend himself, Prince.

WHAT ITEMS DID YOU USE TO MAKE THIS COSTUME AND HOW?

We made over 85-90% of our costume. We were able to utilize a thrift store, party and craft store , plus shoes we had at home. The Purple Rain is made from purple fabric that we shredded and sprayed with purple glitter spray. The cloud started as a cheap party hat, spray glue used as adhesive for the white stuffing/cloud plus silver glitter to give it a shiny and cloud effect. I used purple party beads and purple felt for the rain.

Prince’s outfit is sewn together from different pieces from a thrift store. He made the ruffles out of 3 or 4 different shirts and jackets, added the ruffles, plus the white ruffle collar/choker. He found 8 different purple and white articles of clothing at the thrift store for a total of $4.66. His guitar/Prince symbol is cardboard, violet duct tape and a leopard duct tape strap. He spray painted old black dress shoes using purple spray paint.

Together, our 2 costumes cost under $50 total to put together and create.

WHAT REACTION DID YOU GET WHEN WEARING THIS COSTUME?

Everyone LOVED our costumes. We went to a friend’s Halloween party to start the night off and everyone’s kept talking about how great we looked. Prince stayed in character the whole time and really channeled his inner diva to provide a real “Prince” experience.

We attended a costume party at a bar in Fort Worth, Texas (Capital Bar) and won the Halloween costume contest there! We were in line to get drinks when my significant other (Prince) ran to get in the line for the costumes on a whim. He made it to the next round and came to find me so we could both be on stage. We were the winners by a landslide, the next best costume to the crowd got less than 1/2 the cheers/applause we received. After we won the contest, the crowd began to chant “Prince” and asked him to sing! Lucky for him, there was a band already scheduled to sing, ha!

Winning Saturday night and the reactions I received from my co-workers this morning is what prompted me to look into other Halloween costume contests. I knew we had great costumes, but everyone’s love for our costumes made me find this contest! I posted the pictures on Facebook and Instagram (my profiles are public if you want to check out all the great comments!) and our family and friends went nuts! Comments ranged from “This is AWESOME!”, “This is gold!” “You guys won Halloween on my newsfeed!”, to “#goals”.

ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE TO TELL US ABOUT THIS COSTUME OR YOUR EXPERIENCE?

We genuinely had FUN as this costume this year. Each year we try to kick it up a notch and this Halloween will definitely be hard to top.