Roman costume ideas

Written by donny quinn
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Roman costume ideas
The toga is a traditional Roman costume. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Whether for a toga party, Halloween or just for a fun night out, a Roman costume can spice things up. As a complex civilisation covering hundreds of years and spanning continents, the Roman people provide many sources of inspiration. Everyone knows the traditional Roman costumes, but you can spice up your party with interesting and new takes on the classics.

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Roman Numerals

Because the Roman Empire did not have mathematics as a subject, according to modern standards, Roman numerals were originally used only for administrative and business purposes.

For a nontraditional Roman costume, dress yourself as Roman numeral X. Buy a white body suit, and paint a thick black stripe starting from the middle of the stomach going down the front of the legs and ending at the feet. From the intersection point on the stomach, move up toward the collar bones. Attach two black foam pieces that extend the top arms of the "X" up past the top of the head.

If you don't want to commit to one number, you can paint the whole body suit with various Roman numerals.

Roman Chariot

If you want to dress in Roman style with two of your friends, create a Roman chariot. First, buy or make a two-person horse costume. Attach a wagon painted with metallic Roman symbols, carrying a third person dressed as a warrior.

For one person, buy a single-person horse costume, attach the wagon and put a mannequin, dressed in warrior clothes, in the back.

Modern Roman Gods

The Romans borrowed many of their gods from Greek culture. And although Roman gods are common costume ideas, you can modernise the gods, imagining them in other settings. For example, your Mercury, the winged messenger, costume could incorporate mechanical wings. Construct a Mars (god of war) costume out of camouflage and modern warfare items.

You can also take Roman gods into other settings as well, re-imagining them in outer space, as Western-movie characters or in the Victorian era.

Pompeii Red

Lava from Mt. Vesuvius buried the city of Pompeii in 79AD, which preserved much of the city for modern archaeologists. One of the interesting discoveries of Pompeii was the colour Pompeii red. For a costume idea, turn yourself into a piece of Roman art by painting yourself with images from Pompeii, decorating the majority of your body in red-orange paint.

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