Jareth, a creative 13-year-old, transformed himself into a terrifying medieval exorcist for Halloween. His costume was the culmination of two months of careful planning and meticulous craftsmanship.
The Concept and Its Execution
Jareth’s idea for the costume was to create a character that was both scary and visually striking. He wanted his face to be completely covered, representing the demonic souls he had exorcised from others.
To bring his vision to life, Jareth purchased six latex masks, a priest’s robe, collar, rope belt, cross, pointed hood, brass thurible, black pullover rayon head covering, green hands, and seven sets of lights. The total cost of the materials was around $150.
The Robe and Masks
Jareth sewed black material onto the back of the robe at the shoulders and side seams to create the illusion that the demonic heads were ripping through the fabric. The masks, representing the exorcised souls, were filled with stuffing and sewn into place using heavy fishing line, a stout needle, and pliers. Red lighted eyes were added to six of the masks, while the seventh mask, perched on Jareth’s shoulder, had mesmerizing blue eyes created from a white light strip.
The Cross and Collar
The original brown cross was enhanced by painting the relief of Jesus to make it stand out. The priest collar, initially too small and hard, was modified using a blow dryer, “bloody” gauze, and paint to cover Jareth’s neck realistically.
The Thurible and Staff
Jareth’s thurible, a ceremonial incense burner, was fitted with four battery-operated tea lights. The lid of the thurible was tied shut with fishing line to prevent the lights from spilling out. Jareth used a cedar limb, coated in urethane, as a staff to support the weight of the costume.
The Head Covering and Eyes
Jareth’s head was covered with a stretchy rayon hood, underneath which he wore a custom-made elastic headband with two white strip lights attached to represent his own eyes, symbolizing the remaining good within him despite the evil he carried.
The Candy Bucket and Handle
The candy bucket was a unique creation, resembling the head of a fallen nun. It consisted of a braided cloth basket and a plastic bucket, inverted to form the top with an opening for candy. The nun’s mask was attached to the bucket, and her red eyes and battery pack were secured in place. A braided handle made of paper-coated wires was attached to the bucket, and the nun’s cross was inverted to represent her severance from grace.
The Footwear and Overall Effect
Jareth wore a pair of plain sandals wrapped with black material, complemented by black socks. His moans from the weight of the costume added to the overall eerie atmosphere. Despite the discomfort, Jareth enjoyed the attention and scares his costume elicited during the three Halloween events they attended. He even used his exorcist persona to subdue a demon that jumped out at him.
The Finishing Touch
The hard, plastic green hands, grappling to escape the back of Jareth’s robe, created a final chilling touch, scraping against the pavement as Jareth walked away.
Jareth’s medieval exorcist costume was a testament to his creativity and dedication, leaving a lasting impression on those who witnessed it.