A few weeks ago I hopped on a train to New Jersey with visions of spine-tingling zombies and the popular form of masochism that is a high altitude/high speed roller coaster, via Six Flags Frightfest. And because, what is life without dressing as a [lifeless] character from my curiously morbid sartorial inspirations? I dressed thematically, in an Elena Dawson spiderweb knit sweater, a self-coined Comme des Garcons “Frankenskirt,” and hybrid CdG outerwear, doubling as both a lace vest and twisted asymmetrical jacket. I thought little of the look- when your wardrobe leans more towards “freak of the week” than the more trendy “minimal girl next door,” then everyday is one for a serial killing school girl, minus the Type O. As such, I inadvertently terrified litters of suburban children- children who mistook me for the paid amusement park actors, because, “isn’t she one of the vampires or zombies or somethin’?” [Actual quote, before two preteens ran in opposite directions next to the bloody fountain.] I was, naturally, ecstatic, and took to my new duties by celebrating my horror-themed look, flaunting my monstrous qualities and intentionally petrifying unchaperoned middle schoolers, as well as the occasional jumpy co-ed. And seeing as it’s nearing Halloween, and should you, contrary to me, be lacking in the creep category, I present: a guide, to help you in your dreams of dressing like [ahhhh!] real monsters, from a woman who dresses like it’s Halloween, 365 days of the year.
For those following the traditional, read: Party America-approved, route: Witches and vampires and pirates are cute, and even occasionally sexy- see, the basis for my entire nightlife wardrobe- but I am no sorority alum, and we’re not at the Spirit megastore, so witch takes on a distinctively pagan tone (Zana Bayne harnesses, lanky black Ann Demeulemeester, preferably with bustles and/or pleats).
Vampires forget Kristen Stewart and revert back to Brad Pitt, care of Ann Rice (see: seasons-old Roman Catholic-inspired shirts and capes via Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy, Haider Ackermann metallics, Guidi leather over-the-knee boots), and pirate skeletons wash up dead on the seashore in torn rags (tulle Elena Dawson, tattered Yohji Yamamoto, lace-up Ann Demeulemeester boots, Miu Miu lingerie). Does your mere presence inspire neighbors to shut the blinds and lock the doors? #GOALS
For those nostalgic for hunting down poisoned candy in their pillowcase while face paint crackled on their cheeks, and/or the goosebumps that gathered on their forearms when they watched “Are You Afraid of the Dark?”: Might I suggest the lead ghost in a haunted doll house, or perhaps a costume befitting the Pumpkinheads of Pete and Pete’s “Halloweentown” special?
If Billy Butcherson was your elementary school Hocus Pocus crush of choice (he’s mine, bitches), then how’s Revolutionary zombie for you? To achieve a nightmarish look, I choose old-school Comme des Garcons “basics”- washed out, unfinished, raw and- dare I say it- boiled. Forgo eye cream and keep your hair long and loose and of its natural texture, because you were just dug out of a 300-year-old grave and baby that shit was no Spa Castle.
For those who relish their status as an “outsider,” of both the Francis Ford Coppola and earthling varieties: So you want to be a clown bride? Congratulations, we should be friends. Also due for congratulations: you, in your asymmetrical lace and floral garland headgear. Do you need a uniform? See: the entire backlog of Comme des Garcons, including Junya Watanabe and Tao, see also: full collection of Yohji Yamamoto, select Prada pieces. If it doesn’t make your block’s resident panhandler laugh and point in your direction, note, you are not doing it right. The only question: will you be an alien cyborg, diaper-crotched mega-punk, self-caged asylum runaway, 1/2 of a Siamese twin, or lumpy picnic table? That’s right, kids, taste the rainbow.
For when you consider that you might actually be possessed and nothing but the unusually macabre will suit you before you quench your blood lust: Because in your dreams you are A) a demented orphan school girl, B) a morbid Civil War nurse, C) a disturbed Frankenstein-level lab rat experiment, D) a bipolar biker ballerina who fetishizes leather sporting equipment, or E) a mute paper doll cut-out come to life to terrorize small middle-American towns circa 1994, a necessary rotation of knee-high socks, suspenders, aprons, tutus, and two-dimensional outerwear will keep the REM alive. Might I recommend see-through knits and cut-out sweaters, for shocking passersby, as well as skirts taken apart before being stitched back together with opposing fabrics, in a most twisted fashion? Can you hear me or are your opinions on lustmord clouding your hearing abilities? Get back to me, and put down the kitchen knife.