Whether you're attending a random costume party or getting ready for Halloween, choosing a royalty-themed costume is a way to dress elaborately as well as engage in the festivities. Royal attire has changed dramatically over generations, so there are plenty of ensembles to choose from for both men and women.
When thinking about wealthy fashion in ancient Egypt, you may conjure up images of pharaohs and Cleopatra. Putting together a Cleopatra ensemble is as simple as wearing a long black wig and integrating beads or an elaborate headpiece into the mix. Wear naturally dark hair braided with beads intertwined. Keep make-up to a minimum, except for the eyeliner which consists of a cat eye look. Bronzer creates a sun-kissed look. Accessories such as gold hair pieces, gold belts, gold cuffs or a snake cuff wrapped around the arm adorn the body. A white sheet worn as a dress, draped around the body will finish off the look, along with a pair of natural-coloured sandals.
For men, a pharaoh costume is quite simple to create. Shirtless with a white skirt-like ensemble is the typical wear for an Egyptian pharaoh. Often, the skirts are belted at the waist. An elaborate headdress, perhaps one similar to that of King Tut, will add to the outfit and a shiny gold collar is worn around the neck. Sandals on the feet finish off the look.
King and Queen
If you prefer a costume a little more upscale and elegant than Cleopatra or a pharaoh's ensemble, go as a queen from the past. Lighten your face with a translucent, white powder and paint your lips red. Dress in a corset dress with a high ruffled collar and hoop skirt. Complete the look with a heavily powdered Marie Antoinette-style wig or a high teased do adorned with a crown. Carry a paper hand fan if you desire.
Men looking to dress as royalty may opt for a king ensemble, complete with an oversized red or dark purple robe. Velvet and silk are ideal fabrics for a man of royalty. A large king's crown placed atop the head will signify the look of a king and may or may not be adorned with precious stones. A gold tipped staff is optional.
Princess and Prince
Younger generations may opt to go as a prince or a princess. Instead of opting for the traditional look of royalty, choose to go as a famous person of status, such as Princess Diana. With a short, feathered wig, elegant jewellery, a tiara and an evening gown with elbow-length gloves, the look is easy to pull off. However, if you still wish to go as a traditional princess, wear puffed sleeves, ruffles and lots of lace.
Men may dress as the famed Prince Charles, complete with a fancy tuxedo and hair neatly slicked back. Because prince costumes are generally formal without much else, wear a small crown to further indicate your royal status.
During the Renaissance era, clothing itself was considered a status symbol. Peasants did not dress in the same fashions as those who were wealthy or of high social status. Darker colours were often worn by the well-off, as dyes were generally expensive. Attend your costume party as Renaissance royalty with a fierce, yet modest, five piece bodice complete with a skirt, underskirt, bodice, over-bodice, hoop and collar. Hair is worn down and flowing or up and adorned with jewels.
For men, royal Renaissance attire consists of rich fabrics such as velvet, brocade or silk. Shoulder pads were prominent during the Renaissance era, as were wide vests or coats. Although considered feminine in today's day and age, hosiery was worn among men of the Renaissance era and shoes were square-toed. Collars were heavily ruffled, which, too, is often considered feminine today.