Halloween Costume Inspiration: Robotica

So, what did everyone dress up as for Halloween? I’m actually celebrating it next weekend, so I think I still have a bit of mileage for thinking about costume ideas (and buying all the spooky tat I can get my hands on).

I’ve dressed up as a robot before. It mostly involved cardboard and a lot of tin-foil. However the look can be done much better, going for more of a bionic look, half-human half-robot, or something of a futuristic cyborg. Or saving that, just taking a bit of inspiration from Barbarella to create a shiny silver space-age outfit. Here are a few of my picks for tough and shiny things.

The 54th Annual GRAMMY Awards - Red Carpet

I had no idea who this woman was (apparently she is a Russian singer), but this terminator-style arm piece kicks so much ass. Designed by Leonid Gurevich and created by avant garde jewellers Gilding Primal Instinct, it’s made out of replica guns.

Girl Armour specialise in these one-off, amazing breastplate outfits. I’ve never seen anything quite like them, they’re crafted to such fine detail. They look pretty sturdy too, don’t imagine they’re all that comfortable to wear.


The Lascivious SS13 collection features this great metallic two-piece that seems a bit too special to hide under clothing.

Closet Skeletons – Halloween Inspiration

Photo by Pauline Darley. 

It’s less than a month until the dress-up event of the year (Purim excluded), it’s the Goth Xmas, it’s Halloween! And I have already begun scheming about outfits Some of the best/funniest costumes I see each year are based on recent cultural references (who’s going as one of the Avengers, Effie Trinket or Christian Grey this time?) or an extremely poor taste zombie version of a recently dead celebrity. Or this could be a chance to, Mean Girls-style, wear your most revealing costume under the guise of fancy-dress (teenage sex-worker seems to be a popular choice year on year). What are you planning on wearing? (What do you mean you’d not thought about it yet?!)

Personally, I think I’ll be going for something a bit more elegant. At the moment I’m drawing on my love of things anatomical and considering going for something with a skeletal-theme (though not day-of-the-dead sugar skulls, they’ve been done rather to…death).

 I’ve completely fallen in love with this embroidered body-suit from Marchesa. The detail is beautiful and I like how the sheer fabric shows off the body, whilst juxtaposing the bones on the outside, a gilded exo-skeleton. I’d like to wear this under a low cut dress, so the golden ribs would show across the chest (or wear it on it’s own to a rather wilder party!). Kirsten Stewart wore a dress from this collection to the Snow White and the Huntsman premier.

Other beautiful examples of the skeleton in fashion are this amazing leather harness from Zana Bayne (this too would look good over or under something more floaty and feminine. NSFW image here. I’m particularly taken with the detachable arms (complete with ulna and radius) and finger-harnesses.

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Ziad Ghanem

When I think of innovative, jaw-dropping London haute-couture, I instantly think of Ziad Ghanem. The Lebanese fashion designer who set himself up in the UK 10 years ago makes some of the most incredible, beautiful and distinctive clothing I’ve ever seen. I could write a few clichés here about how he pushes the frontiers of fashion, takes new materials to extremes etc etc but it’s probably best expressed by showing you the very clothes he makes. No piece on Ghanem is without a mention of his models. His runway show is one of the few I actually have any interest in watching, involving a circus of unique characters who don his garments. In interviews he has said himself that he could make his life much easier by working to a set fashion sample size, but instead he chooses to make his outfits to fit particular people. Stars of his recent shows have included make-up artist and plus-size model Bea Sweet, voluptuous burlesque beauty Immodesty Blaize, fetish performer Marnie Scarlet and ballet dancer Helen Crawford. Far from the blank-canvas clothes-hanger models of many a catwalk show, Ghanem’s models come in all shapes and sizes. Some are heavily tattooed and pierced, some have a very distinctive look, some with an androgynous, gender-bending alien quality to them and the garments accentuate their figures and personal styles. The show has touches of the theatrical but isn’t a freak-show. Ghanem doesn’t choose his models to shock the audience or make a point about fashion, the models are his favourite people, people who love fashion and act as muses for him to build his creations around.

The S/S 2012 collection is inspired by polish film ‘Matka Joanna od aniolow’, a tale of a nun possessed by evil spirits. The collection is filled with images of virginal purity (Ghanem even uses his cherubic young niece as a model) and sexy, black wickedness.



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