This only a few short months until Halloween arrives, and various gothic masquerades as well as theatrical events and gatherings calling for costumes await the fan of vampire (as well as their kith and kin)! So the time to start planning your vampire costumes is really right now (although, to be honest, when isn’t it time?) Some vampire costume ideas to consider…
1. To start with, almost any outfit can become that with of a blood sucking fiend from the bits of hell by the simple addition of fangs! You can get these in a variety of styles, often at science fiction/fantasy conventions, and while not cheap neither are they more expensive than renting a fine tuxedo. You might want to invest in the appropriate make-up as well!
2. Or slavishly copy some favorite vampire look then seek to match attitude as well as general appearance. This can turn out as simple as a black corset and black leather pants (it helps if you have a suitably punctured and attired victim as your date).
3. Capes remain favorite method of suggesting a state of living death, ever since Bela Lugosi donned one for the classic film version of Dracula! Sadly, cheap capes and cloaks remain all too common. On the other hand, a cape also can be made with a minimum of effort–so much so that many a costume shop or vintage clothing store might well have one! Especially this far from Halloween itself!
4. A liberal helping of stage blood can usually add wonders to the final effect! One can buy the stuff to be sure from all kinds of make-up and costume shops (especially if you live in a city with lots of live theater) but make-it-yourself isn’t difficult. You’ll need karo syrup and plenty of red food dye. If you want to experiment, you can get a near perfect color by blending red with blue, green and yellow. The result will not only be the correct color but have the viscosity of the real thing! It will even dry on your lips!
5. Undead versions of fairy tale characters have a lot of potential. This does take some extra effort, since you need to create an iconic image–Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, Snow White, etc.–then add the vampire element. But when it works, the effects fascinate and shock! Extra points if you manage to start with a Disney version!
6. Full on HORROR should not be ignored! In this case you need a flare for the dramatic and some skill with makeup as well as quite possibly hair. The costume can be almost anything, preferably disturbing in some way like a Nazi uniform (be careful where you get that from lest you end up on an unpleasant list) or a schoolgirl’s outfit.
7. Then there’s the age-old trick of Sacrilege, vampires in a form considered sacred. Nuns, priests, beloved characters from fiction (Harry Potter, Little Orphan Annie, Santa Claus) or history (Pope John Paul, the Virgin Mary, Abraham Lincoln). If someone becomes genuinely upset, then you’ve achieved your goal!
8. A long white nightgown coupled with just the right make-up creates one of the most simple and iconic ‘looks’ for any vampire–the undead Bride of the Vampire! In these days of course one can gender switch with ever-increasing acceptance! Why not put a man in diaphanous white after all? Cannot a woman carry off a dark cape as well as any male member of the species?
9. Contact lenses might be going too far, or might make the perfect accessory to wander in the shadows of nosferatu all year ’round! But they certainly aren’t that expensive any more. Varieties can be found, including cat-slit eyes, solid black, weird gold and the true classic–blood red!
10. Finally, anything period will work with the appropriate additions. Ancient Rome, the Renaissance, Medieval Europe, the Victorian Era, etc. all might well suffering the haunting of vampires. This recycles any other year’s costume, or turns a rented one into something more undead. Fangs and red eyes, a little bit of blood on the lips, some foundation to give pallor, maybe contact lenses and your Ninja costume or Queen Cleopatra outfit takes on a whole new aspect!