My costume is my interpretation of Cleopatra, the epitome of Egyptian royalty! I’ve always wanted to be Cleopatra for Halloween since I was a kid and when I finally got old enough to properly wear the costume, everthing I saw in the costume shops were a bit “cheesy”. Therefore, I decided to create something that was a bit more realistic while maintaining those certain attributes that are classic Cleopatra (the golds, the blue eyeshadow and of course the hair).
It took about 5 yards of a one way stretch knit fabric to make my dress and cape, and about 3/4 of a yard for my headband and matching shoulder pieces that attaches my cape to my shoulders. I used gold duct tape to craft the snake portion on my headband and ran a small piece of jewllery wire down the middle of the snake to give it that classic bend. I thought it would be cool to add some shimmer to my hair so with gold jewellery space beads, I strung about 5 or so on 10 pieces of black thread and hung them from my headband to create the look of floating jewels in my hair. With the extra wire I had left, I crafted gold bangle bracelets and a cool finger/arm wrap around decoration.
I originally purchased a wig at a local store however when I took it out of the packaging it was matted that I decided to straighten it and unfortunately I burned the hair because it was purely plastic! Therefore, I purchased a couple of packs of a human/synthetic blend hair from my local beauty supply store and with my sewing machine sewed it to a wig cap that I also made from black tulle and elastic.
This look wouldn’t be complete without the traditional crook and flail which defined Egyptian royalty! I couldn’t find one in the store so I decided to look for some youtube videos on how to do one myself. I strayed from the original directions just a bit; I purchased a giant plastic candy cane from the store for about 98 cents (so lucky it is also Christmas season!), snapped it in half, wrapped it in gold duck tape with strips of blue painters tape and topped my flail with with gold strand beads from one of those plastic beaded necklaces from any party store. All in all I did the entire look for under $50!
The reactions that I got wearing it were amazing! I felt like a disney princess because everyone wanted pictures taken with me! Driving to work in this costume was a bit interesting, people would pull up beside me and not realize the light had turned green because they were busy trying to figure out why I had a gold snake on my head.
The best part for me in creating this costume is that I’ve never done anything on this grand a scale before so I enjoyed the challenge of creating a gown. I’m a self taught seamstress so every project is an adventure! I used no pre-made patterns so I just let my imagination go to work for me! The hardest part could perhaps be the texture of fabric that I worked with (knit fabric can be as tricky as silk), fraychek was definitely my friend during this process!