Tuesday, October 25, 2011

THE CORPSE BRIDE {Halloween Costume Tutorial}

You might think we're a little twisted, but I assure you we're not! We just really enjoy some of the Tim Burton movies, including The Corpse Bride. I remember the first time I saw this movie in the theaters, it was a school night, I was a teacher and had to be to school by 7:30am the next day, but Troy (my husband) wanted to see the movie so bad at the midnight showing, so we went. And it was awesome. If you haven't seen it, you probably think it is spooky and twisted, and while there is an element related to the underworld, it is also very sweet and magical and witty. Emily, who is the corpse bride, is a very giving, unselfish character, and is a delight once you get to know her. Which is why we were totally okay letting our 5 year old choose to be The Corpse Bride for Halloween. She plays the part perfectly....

 Since most of these pictures are her solemnly "in character," I've added a picture of her smiling... she had so much fun wearing this costume, and was dancing all over the living room while she watched the movie. She LOVED wearing this costume, and is excited to wear it again on Halloween!
How to make a Corpse Bride Costume
We started with finding a white dress. I bought this at Once Upon a Child for $13, which was our biggest expense. It was a few sizes too big for my daughter- perfect. I wanted the length.
I had to take in the dress on the sides, about half an inch. Since this is a Halloween costume, I knew it didn't have to be perfect. All I did was cinch in the sides, tucking a layer of lace across the front bodice. My daughter helped me sew it all together.

After the lace, I got crazy with a pair of scissors, and cut a small slit in the front and tattered up the bottom of the dress. Then I took it outside and carefully spray painted it blue and black.

Here's the spool of lace I had on hand to work with. I used it for the lace on the bodice, the arm cuff, and the veil. A spool of lace costs around $4 at a craft store.

I cut a small piece and sewed this elastic to the top and bottom. While sewing the elastic, I stretched it, to help it gather.
From here, I sewed the sides without elastic together, and the cuff was the perfect size for my daughter's arm. Then I spray painted it blue, followed by a very light mist of black.

I made a similar cuff to wrap around the flowers. These are cheap yellow carnations (all we could find), which I spray painted blue and black, and called it "good enough!"

I twisted pipe cleaners together to create the circle. Then I hot glued 7 cheap white artificial daisies to it. Next, I tied 2 very long strands of lace to the back, creating 4 trails of lace. I could have added a bit more, but I didn't want to use up all my lace on one Halloween costume, cuz I'm frugal like that! Last, I spray painted it all blue, then black.

We were lucky to find this amazing blue wig at the grocery store for $6. It was my daughter who spotted it, and knew it would be perfect for her costume! I spray painted bits and pieces of it black so she didn't look like a pop star. Thankfully, I'm still able to brush through it even with spray paint in it.

I'm not sure if you can tell what the black thing on the bodice is, but its supposed to be the bride's ribcage showing through the dress. We did our best to create this look, using baby brother's too-small skeleton shirt from last Halloween. (which I had bought at the thrift store for $1). It's not exactly perfect, but honestly I had to call it... good enough!

We sewed the 2 sleeves together to use as the other arm cuff, where the bride is just showing bones.

Face Paint:
This was the fun part! I used a mixture of face paint from Wal-Mart, and my Mac makeup to create the face. I started with a white base, then covered her eyes in smoky gray and blue makeup. Then I drew the eyebrows, eyelashes, and filled them in. We finished it off with blush and lipstick. It really added to the drama and overall effect of the costume.

So, what do you think, for roughly $20, how did we do?

Pin It


Mallory said...

I loved her costume! I am so happy you posted the how to. You are a genious.

Justine said...

Love this!!! It is totally Fabulous! Found your blog through the Letter 4 halloween linky party. What a great halloween costume idea...thanks for the tute!

Jesse said...

Seriously?!? This is incredible!!! I honestly can't recognize the girl in the picture.

Kim @ The Sasse Life said...

Looks great!! I love it. Handmade costumes always look 10000 times better than store bought. Seem to be a lot easier on the wallet too!

Ashley J @ MommyByDayCrafterByNight said...

I did not recognize her AT ALL!! Seriously! ha ha This turned out awesome! Love it!

Tashabobasha said...

WHAT?!!! Ummmm... this is seriously amazing. I'm BLOWN away. I cannot believe that is my little niece. This is so creative and interesting. Ha, I love that it was her idea! Not your typical 5-year-old costume - which is exactly why I love it! You seriously did an incredible job. Holy smokes.

Lindsay said...

You are amazing, my friend. How in the world did you figure this out?? I am impressed to say the least. You are putting my store bought costumes to shame. :)

Katie said...

This is awesome!!!

Mommyof2girlz/StephD said...

Fabulous! Wow, fantastic job she looks amazing!

Kari said...

This in INCREDIBLE! Love it and thanks so much for sharing!!

@lliE said...

Turned out Great. Very original.

Amberlee said...

Wow! Super impressive! Cute little Reese looks AWESOME! love it!

Erika@Oops! I Craft My Pants said...

Wow, Rach! That is such an awesome costume. I'm seriously in awe over here! What a cute girl, too!

Thanks for linking up!

Claire Cooper said...

Awesome costume

Kerstie said...

AWSOME!!! Love this oh, if only I had a little girl.
Might have to borrow a friends so I can do this next year. ;)

Lo said...

I love it!! Totally going to do this costume for myself since I just got engaged and my fiance loves to paint himself as a skeleton! Perfect!! And your daughter is quite the character, she is so cute!

Jessica @ My World - Made By Hand said...

Amazing. It would make my day if you shared this in my brand new linky party.


Cinthya - Eye Heart said...

She has got to be the cutest Corpse Bride EVER!! You did such a great job on the costume and her makeup was perfect.

the cape on the corner said...

oh my god, that is fabulous! the faces she's making are priceless.

Kim @ seven thirty three said...

I think this is an awesome and UNIQUE costume. It is Halloween after all! Thanks for linking with Sugar & Spice.

Claudia said...

My favorite movie. You did an awesome job!!


MJ said...

This looks great!!! I made a grownup version of it some years back, but yours looks much more 'back from the dead' :)

The Virtuous Wife said...

This is absolutely adorable! I love the picture of her smiling. Too cute!! Great job!

Julianne said...

Oh my goodness that is so cute great job!


Marilyn said...

Awww, so creative, fun and lovely..You did an amazing bob on her costume..I love it...:)) Officially following ya..Great blog :)) Would LOVE for you to share this at my Pin'Inspirational Thursday linky party if you dont mind pweeease :))-- TY,, http://theartsygirlconnection.blogspot.com/2011/10/pininspirational-thursdays-linky-party_26.html
Ps: hope u can join in Project Pink This weekend - blogs going pink for cure..(breast cancer awareness/hope for cure, over 50+ blogspots are in, hope u can join in, more info on my blog..TY)

Ginny said...

You did an amazing! Can't believe the cost either, great job. Love anything by Tim Burton! Again, fantastic job, the skeleton details are awesome & so thrifty!

House Revivals said...

This is an awesome costume! Too fun! Thanks for the tute :)

Connie @ Measured by the Heart said...

You were featured on Fun Feature Fridays @ Measured by the Heart. Thanks for linking up!! http://measuredbytheheart.com/2011/10/fun-feature-fridays-1027.html

Heather said...

This turned out so cute! I actually just posted to my blog the homemade Corpse Bride costume I made for myself...although I had to stick with a black and white theme. I was definitely not as cute as your little sweetie!

Sew Country Chick said...

OMG this is incredible! Im your newest follower. Thanks for visiting sew country chick!

Sarah Grace said...

Great costume!!

WhyCuzICan said...

Very clever costume for such a cute little girl. She shines right thru any "death"...LOL

Visiting from Tatertots & Jello party tonight,
Suzanne in NW IL

ilene @ muchloveilly said...

i am in LOVE with this costume!!!!! you did a stellar job. might have to make an adult version of this - seriously, love it!

Amanda @ The Little Giggler said...

She's so adorable!! I love the costume!! Great job!

weissbunt said...

Wow, I'm sure she's going to have a lot of fun on Halloween. Cool costume and great make-up!

Laura@Corner House said...

AWESOME! i am so pinning this right now.

Sassy Sites! said...

GREAT job on the costume! I featured it today over at Sassy Sites! Come by and check it out! :) Thanks for linking up to Sassy Sites FFA party! Have a wonderful Halloween weekend! XOXO!!

Marni @ Sassy Sites!

TidyMom said...

I LOVE this!!

Thanks for linking up this week! I featured your post in my wrap up http://tidymom.net/2011/10-last-minute-halloween-ideas/

Happy Halloween!

Emilee said...

Oh WOW this is amazing! We all have our costumes for this year but i am so pinning this for myself for next year! I love it thanks for sharing!


Jamie said...

AWESOME costume!! and your daughter is quite the little model!
(visiting from the simple things)

Crafty Mischief said...

WOW! This is pretty much the coolest costume ever! I'm blown away!

The Dolls Are Alright said...

Amazing ~ not just the creativity you have, but the joy your daughter has in wearing like the coolest costume ever!

Kelli @ The Turquoise Piano said...

This is an amazing costume! Thanks for the tutorial! I bet she got tons of candy. ;)

Katie said...

AwesOme!im 13 and didn't know where to find the dress or veil but now I know how to make it!!! Thanks

Brandi said...

this has got to be the most adorable costume! she looks perfect. So glad I was surfing through blog hop to discover your blog!


Jess @ Spool and Spoon said...

Best costume ever! I wish some of the parents in our neighborhood had even an ounce of your creativity with their children's costumes. Love this!

Emily said...

oh wow, she doesn't even look real in some of the photos :o) I just linked up to Project Run and Play and saw your link... love it!

You're Lucky I Don't Have a Gun... said...

Pinned it- thanks!

Peter said...

This is such an amazing costume - I love the Corpse Bride and I love your creativity!

I thought I'd mention that there is a Creative Costume Contest at http://www.halloweenhero.com/costume-contest-2013.html and the grand prize is $250. Just in case you or any of your readers are interested in entering.

Thanks again for sharing this tutorial.


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eng sara said...


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masque visage maison said...

Looks great!! I love it. Handmade costumes always look 10000 times better than store bought. Seem to be a lot easier on the wallet too!

TOP | 99999 Wonderful Quotes said...

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Elizabeth J. Neal said...

I remember the first time I saw this movie in the theaters, it was a school night, I was a teacher and had to be to school by 7:30am the next day, but Troy (my husband) wanted to see the movie so bad at the midnight showing, so we went. And it was awesome. Halloween costumes

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