Halloween Costumes: A Personal Retrospective Part 2

As the 90s broke, it seems we stopped going for the store-bought costumes, and I personally started wearing costumes my mom made.

While the idea of “homemade” costumes makes a lot of people think they’d be lesser quality than the store-bought stuff, I think the pictures below prove otherwise.

With a great combination of love for Halloween and masterful sewing skill, my mom provided me with the best costumes of my childhood.  Always perfectly complimenting whatever I was into at the time and giving me something wholly unique from all the other kids stalking the streets for candy.  Again I THINK they are mostly in order…

Circa 1990. Michelangelo. Like most boys my age, I friggin’ LOVED Ninja Turtles. In fact, I still love Ninja Turtles. My mom made this one from a pattern I think she got at Hancock Fabrics where she worked. The “muscles” were all filled with poly-fill, as was the shell, so it was all plush. I played with the foam-covered plastic nunchucks for YEARS after this… This might be my favorite childhood costume. Ninja Turtles really impacted me, and this was the closest I got to being one. And look at how cool it is!
Circa 1992. Grim Reaper. This character must be a theme in my life! I don’t recall how I decided on this one, but my mom liked it because it was just a big robe. It did look pretty cool though. Again, it was also HOT and required several breaks during trick-or-treating. Halloweens in Tennessee might be cool or might be as hot as August. I think this was one of those warmer years…
Circa 1993. Batman Returns Batman. I distinctly remember this as being the Batman Returns costume because of the way the abs section was styled. This is the only picture I could come across of this costume, but it was by far the most awesome Batman costume ever. My mom sewed the whole thing out of vinyl pleather, which in addition to being a pain to sew also weighed a ton. The cape, mask, torso, all pleather. The additional side-effect was that it was like a sauna-suit, and I had to take breaks to air my head out periodically. Still, I remember hearing several times that year that it was by far the best Batman people had seen. And as usual…people saw a LOT of Batmen…
Circa 1990. Ares. My Costumes weren’t JUST for Halloween. I was only going to include Halloween, but this was too cool not to put in. I went as Ares to Greek and Roman Day (at a Catholic School…which is weird now that I think of it). Again my mom made this and I put the shield together. The helmet looks way cooler than I remember.

Having my mom make costumes had a lasting impact.  Just going and buying a “vampire” costume was never good enough.  To me, anyone could do that.  I had more fun finding weird stuff to put together a unique kind of costume.  It might still be a vampire, but it would be MY vampire, not Rubie’s Costume Company’s.  The lasting impact of this would come back in my future costumes and will be seen in my next post!

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