Friday, October 22, 2010

Literary Halloween Costumes: Couples Edition

Let's face it; Halloween, with its perfect storm of strange behavior and slutty costumes, seems to be the ultimate single person's holiday. Unlike Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Year's/Valentine's Day, Halloween is a haven for single people looking to act out, dress inappropriately, and hook up. However, if you are in a couple, fear not! Halloween also gives couples the excuse to act dysfunctional or to find a pretty easy compromise when it comes to costumes (he wants something scary, she wants something elegant). To go along with my earlier posts on literary costumes from last year and this year, here are some costume ideas to help you celebrate Halloween with your other half:
  • Heathcliff & Catherine from Wuthering Heights: If you find yourself in a rather unhealthy (but passionate) relationship, dressing as Heathcliff and Catherine gives you and your significant other the perfect excuse to scream at each other (or, conversely, to ignore each other and try to make each other jealous) in public all in the name of "being in character." For Heathcliff, he will need black slacks, black boots, and a black, button-down shirt. Wild hair and crazy (but mesmerizing) eyes are huge bonuses. Her costume is a little more difficult, since a period gown would be nice. However, a gown with a voluminous skirt, a shawl, and an elaborate updo would definitely work in a pinch.
  • The Phantom & Christine from The Phantom of the Opera: Since the musical has become entrenched in people's minds as what the Phantom and Christine should look like, these costumes are not that difficult. The Phantom could definitely get away with dark slacks, a vest, and a white shirt as long as he had the iconic mask (easily found in most costume shops). If he could get a tux or black tie and tails, so much the better. Christine is pretty easy, since a white gown and long hair (dark or otherwise) would work. To be cute (or annoying, you decide), carry around a small boom box or ipod with speakers playing "Music of the Night" constantly.
  • Dr. Frankenstein & his Monster from Frankenstein: If both partners want to wear something creepy, Dr. Frankenstein and his Monster (who is not named Frankenstein) would be easy to put together. Dr. Frankenstein just needs a suit or a lab coat. Even though most people think of something that looks like Lurch when they think of the Monster, he/she could just wear ragged clothing and hideous makeup (think pale skin, scars, etc.) to signify that he/she is the reanimated dead.
  • Lenny & George from Of Mice and Men: This is perfect for two guys or any couple with disparate heights/body types. Overalls or jeans and dark shirts would work for both guys. Get Lenny a stuffed rabbit to pet.
  • Robin Hood and Maid Marian from The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood: Although a green tunic, tights, and hat is the traditional look for Robin (thanks Errol Flynn/Disney), he can also wear darker, less monochromatic clothing. Boots, dark slacks, and a dark shirt would suffice as long as he has a bow and quiver of arrows. Maid Marian needs a gown and headpiece/hat. A corset-style top on the dress is a plus.
Couple/Duo Costumes from Children's Books:
  • Pooh and Piglet from Winnie-the-Pooh: Like Lenny and George, Pooh and Piglet would benefit from a couple with different heights and body types, but this would be cute worn by anyone. For Pooh, you could go to the trouble of renting or making a costume, but a red shirt, some ears, a large pot (with "Hunny" written on it), and some yellow face makeup (with a black nose) would work too. Piglet just needs pink tights and a leotard/shirt/shorts and pink ears and makeup. If being Piglet doesn't appeal, the other person could easily dress up like Christopher Robin by wearing a polo shirt, shorts, socks, and shoes (British accent optional)
  • Curious George & the Man in the Yellow Hat: Too easy - George needs a tail and ears (or a monkey headpiece or hat), and he can get away with wearing brown sweats or a brown shirt and pants. The Man in the Yellow Hat needs to wear yellow, but the most important piece of this costume is the yellow hat. You can buy one online or make it yourself.
  • Dorothy & the Scarecrow/Lion/Tin Man/Toto/Wicked Witch/Glinda from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: Dorothy's costume is simple but iconic; besides the blue-and-white checked dress and basket, she will need ruby slippers or silver shoes (depending on if you want to pay homage to the Judy Garland movie or the original books). Depending on what you have available (and who Dorothy's partner will be), Dorothy's partner could be a good witch (poufy pastel dress, wand, tiara) or a bad witch (black dress, green face, pointy hat, broomstick). He/she could also go as one or Dorothy's friends. The Scarecrow is probably the easiest costume to come up with on short notice. Besides some makeup and hay, all you need are some ragged clothes and a willingness to stumble around all night.