When I was a kid, Halloween costumes were pretty much a cobbled together affair for most of us. Some kids got those flimsy printed jumpsuit things that they wore over their clothes, or maybe we scored one of those plastic face masks with elastic around the back of your head and cut out holes for your eyes and nose.
Here are some photos I found on the web. These are Ben Cooper costumes. Ben Cooper manufactured costumes from the 1950's into 1990's.
|From The Bat-Blog|
|Oh-h-h, an I Dream of Jeannie costume, from the Go Retro Blog|
These costumes were packed in boxes and would be stacked seemingly to the ceiling. There were four kids in my family, my dad was in grad school, and mom supported us working at the library. The hope of ever actually getting one of these was a slim hope indeed.
I did a little Internet research and found some of those costumes selling for upwards of $100.
|Casper, Wyoming circa 1962|
We generally had three standard costumes at our house: gypsy, ghost, panda bear. The panda bear costume had been made by my aunt for her kids and passed down to us. Pandas were popular in the 60's because China had sent a couple to the National Zoo and they were all the rage. Once my brother was old enough to go with us, we had a cowboy in the contingency. A hobo was also a safe go-to costume. We decorated brown paper lunch bags for treats and away we went, out into the night. Way back then kids could still trick-or-treat after dark. In fact, it went on most of the night.
We sure were cute. I'm the gypsy on the left.
Next came Dorothy, because she liked that movie and thought the Wicked Witch of the West was the most terrifying thing ever. But there was no way she was going to dress as the witch so Dorothy it was, especially after we found an authentic pattern. And red sparkle shoes? This was her fourth pair.
Last year, my good-versus-evil kid made her appearance as an X-wing fighter pilot. Again, no pictures because I was working and no one else thinks of taking pictures. You'd think it would rub off. Anyway, she was adamant that there would be no homemade costumes. My visions of lovingly sewing a beautiful wedding gown someday are beginning to fade just a bit- unless it has a sword or light saber.
We've already begun the wrestling match that makes up our coming to an agreement about what to be for Halloween. There's simply no chance of sewing a princess gown, not even Princess Leia. Maybe Chewbacca.
What wonderful costumes have you been sewing?