Halloween and costumes go together. In fact, dressing in costume is one of the things most people enjoy about Halloween. Still, showing up at a party in a nurse costume only to find five other similarly costumed guests takes some of the fun away. Creating unusual costumes can help to avoid some of that disappointment. Some unusual costumes work equally well for men or women, while others are best suited for one gender over the other.
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Extreme Gender Swap
Gender swap costumes seem perpetually popular. By raising the stakes to the extreme gender swap position, though, the costume can become more unusual. Petite women can pull this off best, but any woman can make it work. Expand the range of the gender change, from a petite woman to a husky pro-football player. Pick an extremely masculine character or celebrity and create a costume based on that person. Choose someone from history who is regarded as particularly masculine like Genghis Khan or Al Capone.
Ad or Commercial Person
People in ads tend to become familiar faces. Whether it's the guy from the cell phone ad, the lady from the iced tea company in the 1980s or the insurance sales lady, they seem almost like acquaintances. If there is a resemblance to one of those people, it can make for a great costume choice. Record one of the commercials so you can freeze it and look over the outfit, hair style and make-up so you can duplicate it.
Poster or Photo
Turning your face into the face in a poster or photo creates an unusual Halloween costume. Dress in black to make you arms and legs seem to disappear. Create a cardboard piece to strap around the body. Then an actual poster glued to the cardboard creates one option. Build an FBI most wanted poster by painting the cardboard. Create a portrait of a famous person or even a painting. Either use a print or paint the design onto the cardboard and cut a hole for the face where your head will fit.
Word Based Costumes
Although word-based costumes are likely to generate frequent questions of "What are you?," they have a number of advantages. They tend to be unique and can also be tailored to fit phrases common to specific areas or groups. All it takes is some imagination to design the costume. For instance, by dressing all in red and wearing cardboard or fabric flames, you become the phrase "I'm hot." If specific catchphrases are common in a group of people, they make great costumes.