Haute Topic: Last minute Halloween costumes inspired by fashion

By: Esra Erdogan/Columnist

There is nothing as frightening as a visit to a costume shop looking for a Halloween costume with no idea what you are looking for. Instead of shelling out $60 on a promiscuous-looking sailor outfit that you will probably never wear again, try something a little more fashion inspired. Here are a few ideas for costumes that you can put together the days before Halloween weekend.

Black Swan

The costumes and makeup in the film “Black Swan” are undeniably perfect for Halloween. For the ballerina outfit, find a tight black strapless tube dress and tutu-like skirt. American Apparel has both these items, but you can find them at other fast fashion chains. It will not be Rodarte, but it will do. The most important part of this costume is the makeup.

All you will need is a deep-red lipstick, black eyeliner and sparkly-white eye shadow. I suggest watching the “Black Swan Makeup” tutorial by Michelle Phan on YouTube. Top it off with a rhinestone-encrusted tiara from Claire’s and you are set to pirouette the night away.

Roy Lichtenstein painting

For this one, I was inspired by the pop art romance cartoons depicted in Lichtenstein’s works. This costume could also work well for couples. First, buy a yellow—not blonde—wig if you are a gal or a black “greaser” wig if you are a guy.

Both can be found at Party City, thanks to the surplus of Lady Gaga costumes this year. Paint your face white with face paint.

Then, evenly paint red dots all over your face with face paint. Outline your lips, jaw line, nose and brow bone with black eyeliner to look even more like a drawing.

Ladies, do not forget to draw the tears running from your eyes or the bold red lipstick.

For the outfits, I suggest tight-fitting suits for the men and simple shift dresses for the women; you will not want to distract from the dramatic makeup.

  Andy Warhol

This easy costume that works for boys or girls requires one main accessory: the glasses. Please do not buy a pair of cheap plastic frames from a party store. A lot of women’s accessory stores sell prescription-free glasses that actually look like real glasses, not just a party favor.

Do not forget the hair: part a short blond wig to the side and set with hair spray. For the outfit, a button-down shirt with a yellow cashmere sweater and a pair of black trousers to complete the look.

Donatella Versace

I have always wanted to do this costume myself because I am sort of obsessed with the lady. The most important part of this costume is the blonde wig. The blonder, the better—and it must be long and luscious.

Versace would never be caught without her fake tan, so buy bronzer and apply as much as you possibly can. She is also fond of shiny pink lips and heavy black eyeliner.

For the outfit, find a bold colored minidress in any color with sequins. Top it all off with some sky-high pumps.

Rosie the Riveter

I already own everything there is to put this iconic and comfortable costume together. You can easily find a denim button-down almost anywhere this season if you do not own one already. A pair of weathered boyfriend jeans would go perfectly with the top, paired with a thick brown belt.

For the scarf, head to any craft store and buy a handkerchiefs’ worth of red and white polka-dotted material. Fold the square in half, corner to corner, and then again until it is in a long rectangular shape.

Then, fit the center of the cloth at the bottom of your head while your hair is in a bun and knot it at the top of your head.

If none of these costume ideas appeal to you, think of a fashion icon, film character, work of art or musician that you can recreate with things that are cheap and easily accessible.

Remember, makeup and accessories can usually make a costume a thousand times better, so do not be afraid to experiment with things you usually abstain from, like colorful eye shadow or clip-in extensions.

After all, Halloween is the only day of the year that you can wear fake gold eyelashes or black lipstick and get away with it.

Haute Topic is a weekly fashion column. Look for it every Wednesday this fall. 

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