Purim costume ideas for adults

Written by bryan cohen
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Purim costume ideas for adults
Extravagant costumes are part of the Purim tradition. (Getty creative)

Purim is a Jewish holiday typically celebrated in the late winter or early spring that commemorates the delivery of the Jewish people from a wicked plot for extermination during the ancient Persian Empire. The holiday is celebrated with a reading of the story, giving of gifts to the poor, and a large amount of food and wine. Another typical holiday tradition is dressing up like the characters from the story or as anything you please. While the kids enjoy this thoroughly, adults can have just as enjoyable a time wearing Purim costumes during the celebration.

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The evil Haman of the Purim story is remembered in the three-cornered pastry the hamantaschen. Dressing up as a hamantaschen can be an amusing adult costume. Materials like pillows or papier mâché can be used for the triangle of beige pastry dough and the fruit or chocolate-filled centre. Have people at the party attempt to guess your flavour and have a few hamantaschens stashed to give to those who get it correct. A simpler variation on the costume is to wear a smaller version on your head, such as a three-cornered hamantaschen hat.

The high priest

During the Purim holiday, children will often dress up as important figures from the Torah, like the Kohen Gadol, also known as the high priest. Dress up like a normal Jewish high priest with a long flowing robe, beard and yarmulke. To expand on the joke, add a pair of stilts to make the Kohen Gadol literally the "high" priest.

The characters

There are many characters from the Purim story that you can dress up as, either with a mask or a full costume. Vashti, the scorned woman of the king can be an entertaining choice, with running mascara and perhaps a shirt that says "the other woman." Haman, with his three-cornered hat and evil-looking beard can be complimented with a snide personality to round out the costume. The other characters of Queen Esther, Mordechai and King Ahashverosh can be given the adult treatment as well.


One of the tenets of the holiday Purim is that you are supposed to drink so much alcohol that you cannot tell the difference between the good guy (Morechai) and the bad guy (Haman). Play on this interesting rule by dressing up as a combination of the two. You can split half of your costume with the right side as Haman and the left side as Mordechai. There can be a split beard, hat, or shirt, along with two different shoes to fully round out the split. Printing a shirt that says "HayMordechai" or "Mordechaiman" might help guests to fully understand the costume that you're going for.

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