I wanted to be a Peacock for Halloween for several years, so this year I went all out for it and made a Homemade Halloween Peacock Costume!
I covered the body of the costume with cut peacock feathers that I cut further down (to get as many of those beautiful eyes of the feathers as possible); these were hot glued onto a black corset (great in this situation because of its boning), and a pair of high-waisted black undies. Wearing these two pieces together covered in feathers made it look like it was one seamless piece (not like two separate pieces).
I cut peacock swords (long blue-green feathers), and hot-glued two to each side of the corset (front left/right, back right/left) to create a fanning motion of color.
I used uncut, three-foot peacock feathers to create the tail (the crowning glory of the costume!). I glued three uncut feathers vertically on top of each other to simulate the spray of a real peacock’s tail. I then glued two of those sets back-to-back so that it would look the same from the front as well as the back. I glued these feather bunches into a fan shape onto thin black poster board, then cut the poster board into a “V” shape; I used peacock herl (long, thick, blue-green strands of feathers) to cover any poster board.
This fan of feathers was then able to be slid in and out of the inside of the top back of my corset (so that I could get in and out of a car!), and stand straight up in a perfect fan the entire night!
I styled my hair in a Mohawk, twirling small sections into rolled knots down the center of my head, and finishing with a pompadour at the front. I shaded my eyelids with dark blue, electric blue, green, purple, and gold, and topped them with two-inch dramatic blue false eyelashes. I used black face paint to swirl two loops next to my eyes and down the sides of my face, and filled in the swirls with my eyeshadow colors.
This was my favorite costume I’ve ever made, and I’m glad I get to share it with you!
Note from Elad: We want to thank Linda for her dedication in answering all of your questions below. We’ve summarized all of Linda’s answers to make it easier for everyone else who drops by and doesn’t want to go through all the many comments below (although the discussion is very lively and fun to read). Thanks Linda!
You can never buy too many feathers! haha, It’s better to have too many than too little.
I ordered the peacock feathers from continentalfeathers.com.
This is a direct copy of my order:
1 x Peacock Swords, Cut 12-14″ – per 50
1 x Strung Peacock Herl – per foot
Size & Amount 5″ – 7″ – Per Oz.
1 x Natural Eyed Peacock Sticks 30-35″ – per 50
1 x Natural Eyed Peacock Sticks, Cut 12-14″ – per 100
1 x Natural Eyed Peacock Sticks 30-35″ – per 100
My feather order ended up being pretty exact. I could ALWAYS have used more feathers though. If anything, I’d say order a little more, NOT a little less (always better to be over-prepared than under-prepared!).
I just glued a few of the peacock “swords” in a fanning motion on the corset (you can’t really see it in the picture). They are thin strips of a blue peacock feather, so you can glue them wherever you’d like to break up the monotony of standard peacock feathers. I started my corset feathers from the top, down. Once you start gluing the feathers together you’ll see how it works, and it will all make sense!
As for the peacock swords: You can’t really see them in the pictures too well. I just made a decorative choice and put then in a diagonal swoop across the front (left & right sides). You can use them to make any little decorative choices you want, though!
The peacock herl was used to cover up the base of the tail feathers. When I glued them onto the cardboard, you could still see this cluster of tail-ends, so I glued the herl over it so it just looked like the feathers were spraying out of this gorgeous green/blue grass. The herl kind of looks like hula skirt grass, so you’ll understand when you see it! I hot-glued the peacock feathers ALL over the costume (front & back). I hate when things only have design on the front! I put the hot glue directly on the feathers. You’ll use a TON of glue, but they WILL stay on! I did not lose a single feather, and everything on my costume was hot-glued.
There are a lot of questions pertaining to how the tail slid into the corset. It’s SUPER easy. As you can see in one of the pictures under my main pic, I glued the feathers in a v-fan shape onto a thin piece of posterboard. After that picture was taken, I then cut off that one long piece of that one feather stick in the middle so that everything would be even. I then cut the sides of the posterboard off so that there was no posterboard without a feather glued to it (make sense?). So now the feathers are glued in a v-fan shape to posterboard, and the posterboard is trimmed to be in a v-fan shape so that there’s no extra. Since the bottom of the tail is now in a pointed v-shape, it is very easy to just slide into the inside/back of your corset. So the tail will be touching the skin of your back.
The tail feathers actually just slide right into the back of your corset! Put the corset on, then slide the tail feathers in (so the tail feathers will be touching your skin, the corset will be outside of the tail feathers).
Don’t spend hundreds of dollars on the corset! That’s one of the least expensive parts! Mine was a simple Dream Corset from Fredericks, they’re usually about $60, but they’re on sale for $39. Mine was black.
I did NOT attach the undies to the corset (I just pulled them on). There are so many feathers on both the corset and undies that when they’re on you, no one will be able to tell that they’re two separate pieces.
And the time it will take to complete the costume will vary. I just worked on it for a little bit each day (you can watch TV while you do it, it passes the time). I started weeks before Halloween, though, so I could try it on and make any needed changes beforehand.
It actually wasn’t hard to navigate with the tail at all! Since it’s detachable, I just took it off (slid it out of the corset) when I would get in or out of a car. When you’re walking around, people are so fascinated with the costume that no one’s bumping into you or anything! Haha
I also went to a house party later in the evening (we were at the West Hollywood Costume Parade earlier), and it wasn’t even an issue in a house/cramped quarters with a bunch of people passing you in hallways. It wasn’t uncomfortable at all! You feel so sexy in it, and everyone’s complimenting you – it’s a lot of fun to wear this costume!
I thought about selling my costume, but I just can’t bring myself to do it. Thanks for the offer, though, it’s a great compliment!
You guys are awesome, thanks for all the compliments! I really wish I had photos of the back to show those of you who asked, but I actually don’t have any pictures from the back. I know, I know, how did I NOT get pictures from the back?! But it looks exactly like the front. The directions I gave, and the few pictures I put up should be helpful, though. I’m excited to see you guys’ versions this year!
You guys are so sweet, you’re totally blowing up my ego, haha. Meg, you have my permission to use my info/pictures on your blog!