View Full Version : Scary Pied Piper

08-30-2010, 02:24 AM
Me and a few friends have decided to go in a congression as something of a traveling circus group, stemming from my announcement that I decided to go around dressed as a demented pied piper and playing crazy music on my viola on Halloween.

I've been sketching, researching, and designing the costume since then, looking up patterns and looking for concepts/inspiration to come up with a sufficiently unique and creepy costume.

The base concept to this costume is as such: This costume must be easy enough to move around in. I'm going to be walking around at night, playing viola, and doing butoh dance moves (will explain later in this post) at night. The purpose is to be unnerving at the least, absolutely frightening if possible. I don't want to be easily seen, and when I am seen, I want my image to creep out people as well as anything.

Here's what I've come up with so far:

I want lots of angles and points in my silhouette: a pied-piperish hat with bigger, more sharp brim (big feather is a must), wide and pointed collar, Mongolian/goblin shoes (these shoes will be spats/covers over walking shoes), and my right shoulder/sleeve a peaked leg-o-mutton similar to the nurse's dress from Return to Oz (http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kRuD6zV4Fqs/S50i9x-v6qI/AAAAAAAAChw/EbPa1BR1I7w/s400/ishot-351.jpg). It'd be silly for the left shoulder to also be peaked when a viola's going to be sitting on it.

My make-up is already pretty much decided: Pale->White with sealant (as to not get it all over my viola) and green lips that make a fish/beak-like frown. Shadow made where necessary (under cheek-bones and such).

Cloth should definitely be dark. Motley green and black if possible. Most of the cloth should be high absorption, and perhaps there could be high reflection cloth on my shoulder, collar, and hat. I would also like to take advantage of some dark transmission fabrics to make a smoky effect, but I don't know if this'd turn too ambitious.

I've played with the idea of getting yellow UV contacts, but that means someone would have to carry around a blacklight. Though I'm debating bringing a strobe, so this might not be too much of a stretch.

Outside of showing cleavage and wearing something around the neck, anything from torso to ankle hasn't really been decided. I've played with the idea of having coat-tails, a jester skirt, and even a bustle/train without a skirt in front. Whatever's on my legs should be skin-tight, but I'm at a loss what'd be good.

I also need to put in mind how to bring attention to the butoh. It's pretty hard to explain it, easier to show it with a video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AnR1FJ6yQq4). How do I bring these movements to attention with the costume? Should my sleeves and leggings have a sheen or be light? Maybe take advantage of the motley/pied look and have alternating dark/light patterns to gain attention?

Should I pale my hands and chest? The makeup on the chest might stay fine, I suppose, but my hands will be working and gloves are not an option (at least, with my left hand).

Hair has not been even touched in concept, yet. My natural hair is long and brown.

And do I try to dress to match my viola itself? It's shiny, lots of texture in its shine, and has a rather rich orange color. I refuse to dress it up any more than putting ribbons on my pegs and scroll as it's my baby.

Any thoughts or advice?

09-01-2010, 03:02 PM
The best known story, if I did my research correctly, happened around 1284, so I would use German clothing from that time period as inspiration and perhaps add the jester theme, as I really like that idea.

If you're going to have one shoulder really poofed and the other not I would consider having asymmetry as a theme to the entire outfit, or else it would look kind of odd.

09-02-2010, 07:21 PM
German 13th century clothes isn't terribly angled, but some of it does go towards the jesterish piper garb. They do seem to have hose and such.

I've already planned on asymmetry, since it kind of creeps people out on a subtle level, but other than the shoulder, I don't know where else to put it.

09-03-2010, 12:13 AM
Well, if you're going with the typical jester diamond thing you could always do that off center. Like, instead of having the diamonds meet in the middle having them meet off to one side. The neck line and hems of your outfit could be at an angle, instead of perfectly straight. Hmmmmm, fingerless glove on one hand, pull glove on the other? And maybe use a smaller hat and tip it to one side. Your make up can also be asymmetrical with different colors or different painted expressions though that could get weird.

09-03-2010, 10:13 AM
You could have the coat longer on the side opposite of the poofy sleeve, have a bustle and some pants where one leg is shorter than the other.

09-15-2010, 08:20 PM
I've made a quick concept drawing (http://i54.tinypic.com/11azaxg.jpg) with color to test out possibilities. In sketching, the viola ended up really balancing out the shoulder, so the costume ended up more symmetrically than perhaps intended in this.