A Little Celebrity Inspiration: Zoe Saldana

With Halloween fast approaching, virtually everyone is either getting their costumes together, or at least thinking about what they want to do. Everybody finds their inspiration in different ways, and the best part about it is that there are no wrong ways to approach it. Arguably, the most popular venue for inspiration is the movies- and there has been no shortage of great characters to emulate in the past few years.


There is one particular actress who I believe has made quite an entrance into the movies and made her mark on our hearts as some very iconic characters. Zoe Saldana has starred in some amazing movies that have blown all of our minds, and played characters that have supplied the nation with inspiration for some not only awesome costumes, but very recognizable ones as well. I think the fact that the great ones are science fiction makes her and her characters even better.

Neytiri – Avatar


Left: http://crazy-frankenstein.com/avatar-wallpapers.html
Right: http://avatarcostume.com/

In 2009, Saldana starred as Neytiri in the movie Avatar, and like, love, or hate the movie, everyone knows the look of the aliens that took that 3D screen by storm.  With the right wig and makeup, this is a really hands on and fun costume idea. Though the movie isn’t incredibly recent, Zoe’s performance brought this character to life, and that image will be recognized for a long time to come.  The best part about it though: it’s blue!

Lieutenant Uhura – Star Trek Into Darkness


Left: http://geekgirlreview.com/tag/star-trek/
Right: http://wholesalehalloweencostumes.com

In the same year, Zoe costarred in the new Star Trek movie, and followed it up in the sequel Star Trek Into Darkness as Lieutenant Uhura in 2013. Another visually stunning movie in outer space, Zoe graced the USS Enterprise with her beauty and charisma. This costume idea has significantly less makeup involved and even though people will instantly understand the Star Trek reference they may not get Uhura right away, but if you can figure out her ear piece, you would nail it!

Gamora – Guardians of the Galaxy


Left: Heyuguys.com
Right: moviepiolot.com


The last on my list (but most certainly not the least, by any means) is Zoe’s most recent adventure in the 2014 Marvel movie Guardians of the Galaxy as the beautiful and deadly Gamora. Yet another outer space action thriller (I’m starting to pick up on a theme here), this is another costume idea that would greatly benefit from accessories, like boots, gloves, and even that awesome sword. Personally, I do think that if you are going to go for a costume like this, commit to it and do the full face paint. Think about it, how often do you get to make green look sexy?

Zoe Saldana has brought so much to the big screen, and because of the great work that she does she has inspired some fantastic costumes. The diversity between every one of her characters is perfect as well. Even though the persona work she does with every one of them is so unique, it can be boiled down to a more basic level: each one is a different color!

There are so many cool ideas out there and these are only 3 of a single actress’ roles that we took a look at. Remember, Halloween is about creativity, individuality, and just having fun. It doesn’t matter where you are getting your ideas from, because if you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong. If you want to be one of your favorite super heroes, go for it. If you want to be a potato, knock yourself out. Even if you just want to be a specific character because you love the actress that played her, do it. After all, like they say, impersonation is the greatest form of flattery.

Bat-Universe Costumes for Women

The comic verse has hundreds upon hundreds of female super heroines and supervillains. How many can you name? Really, if you’re not a super comic geek, really take a moment to think. As you begin running through the list, you may find that it is shorter than you might think. Catwoman, Storm, Jean Grey, Rogue, Super Girl, Wonder Woman, Black Widow.

The problem is that the majority of women get the bulk of their DC and Marvel knowledge from television and film. And unfortunately, comics adapted into a film medium tend to focus on the same male heroes over and over again. (Iron Man, Spider-Man, Batman, sheesh!)

It begs the question. What do you do when you need to find the right superhero costume for a party? You have two options.

Option one is to go with what you know. While this method is certainly valid, it does tend to result in the party being full of women dressed as Catwoman. Good if you want to get away with cat burglary. Not too cool if you want to flaunt a badass costume.

For those of you hoping to dress in a unique costume, go with option two: the lesser known heroines and villainesses. Here are a few badass comic women to kick start your imagination.

Poison Ivy

poison ivy

Poison Ivy is a criminal in the batman universe. She’s an eco-terrorist who isn’t afraid to get her hands a little dirty in her quest to save the environment. Her primary weapons are toxins she derives from the plants she loves, often administered via kiss.

Due to her appearance in the original Batman movies, she is one lesser known supervillain who has premade costumes available. For those peeps who want to skip the pre-made costume, you can transform yourself into Poison Ivy with:

  • a red wig
  • a green dress
  • green tights
  • leaf appliques.

poison ivy




Batwoman has been a part of the super hero universe since the 1950’s. Her back story was fairly pedantic.  A wealthy heiress who used to be a circus performer decided that fighting crime was the thing to do with her never ending supply of money. In 2006, the DC universe revamped the Batwoman character. The newest version Kate Kane is an ex-military officer turned vigilante.

Regardless of her origins story, it can’t be denied, her crime fighting get-up is bad ass. As a very obscure superhero, you will have a very hard time locating a pre-made costume. You’ll have to create this costume from scratch. To become Batwoman you need:

  • a red wig
  • black leather pants
  • a black long sleeve shirt with the red bat sewn onto the chest
  • red boots
  • red elbow length gloves
  • a red and black cape
  • a black mask





In some iterations, Huntress is the child of Batman and Catwoman. In others, she is their contemporary, mob princess Helena Bertinelli. In 2002 Huntress appeared in the 2002 television series “Birds of Prey,” par for the course dressed head-to-toe in black leather. (Unfortunately the show did not make it past the first season.)

With Huntress, you have two different costume options: the comic or television crime fighting get-up. In the comics, Huntress wears a traditional Bat costume. In the television series, Huntress attempts to deny all connection to batman, so the costume is more unique. The comic costume consists of:

  • a black shirt and pants
  • a purple belt
  • purple boots
  • a purple cape
  • a purple mask.

The television costume consists of:

  • a black trench coat
  • black boots
  • leather pants
  • a leather shirt



Poison Ivy, Batwoman, and Huntress are only three more villains in the pantheon of DC super heroes and villains. Still that’s four more costumes that may prevent you from becoming a super hero doppelganger. If none of the heroines seem to be your style, don’t fear- there a hundreds more to choose from.

My Friend that Doesn’t Like Halloween

A girlfriend and I were out for lunch, and I was (like I always am) talking about upcoming costume ideas, specifically for Comic Book Day, where each of the comic book stores gives out a free comic book for dressing up. She didn’t really say anything and then she said… and I quote “I don’t really like dressing up, I don’t understand the obsession,”




After the initial shock- I began to listen to her point of view. Sure, I still don’t understand how she could feel that way, but at the same time, I think that it may be a common feeling among ‘those that do not dress up.’

She explained that it seemed like a lot of work to be someone other than herself.“It’s expensive, time consuming, and I really just don’t understand the point of trying to be someone other than myself. The media constantly tells women to look, sound, and act differently, – I think that Halloween promotes that same attitude. I like myself; I don’t need to dress up as someone else. Also: I don’t like candy.”



You don’t like candy?

How is that possible?

She continued: “Also, anytime I go to the store to look for a Halloween costume, I come back disappointed. I can either be a witch, or some random animal or object made sexy.”

Well, she just said a mouthful there.

For the first time in my life… I didn’t really know what to say.

I wonder how many people feel this way. How many potential Halloween party goers are missing out? I am now on a mission to find her an easy, inexpensive, non-baring costume. AND provide a party with healthy foods instead of candy!!!!

Some healthy treats are:

Now for the hard part…

White T Shirt

Two T Shirts

Hat and Apron


Although my friend doesn’t like Halloween, or candy… she and I have been friends forever! Which means, she is generally open minded to my geekiness, and she was more than willing to try out the skeleton shirt idea, and enjoy some healthy snacks on a random Tuesday night. At the end of the night she did not say “Oh my god!!! Let’s do this every night forever, for the rest of our lives!” However, she did say she would do it again.


Lady Villains Get a Revamp

Disney has a way of casting good and evil in such a way that that a small child you genuine hated the evil villain and you really loved the pretty princess. However, recently there has been a revamp of the lady villains in some of these Disney princess movies, telling a whole new story to the previously told tale.


“There was a legend of a dark and powerful fairy and her curse on a sleeping beauty”  and the story line goes into depth about Maleficent and her elegant, and powerful character.


Not only was the story-line of the female villain revamped, but so was the look! The clothing got a little tighter (it’s Angelina Jolie, they couldn’t not) and she was given large, feathery, evil looking wings! Pretty awesome!

Ravenna- The Queen

Snow White and the Seven Dwarves differ from Snow White and the Huntsman not only in the action, but also in the dynamics of the queen’s role. The Charlize queen sucks the souls out of young girls to stay young, The Queen, in the new version is overarching more beautiful than the new Snow White.

The Queen

My favorite wardrobe alteration is changing the crown and headpiece. Allowing the face, and neck to be shown better emphasizes the beauty, and her thick golden braids appear crown like.

The Queen of Hearts

The Queen of Hearts is known for her awful temper. “Off with their heads!” In the new version, the temperament is the same; however, the wardrobe is wonky and different on all of the characters. The makeup is drastic, the weird shape of her head compared to body is different, and overall is more gothic than the cartoon version (no surprise, what with the new movie being a Burton film).


Although, I am not a fan of the makeup, or alteration of body I do love the costum revamp. What beautiful beading!!!!

The lady villains have definitely been revamped in the newer premiers, some for the better, and some for the worse- either way the beautiful costumes, and intricacy of makeup and detail are costume worthy!

Gender Roles: The Premiere


The season 7 premiere of Mad Men is upon us, and just thinking about the chauvinism, sexism, and gender stereotypes I am squirming. It’s a love hate relationship really. On one hand I love the beautiful costumes the ladies wear, accentuating every curve and every feminine characteristic is wonderful. On the other hand- quotes such as, “it looks really complicated, but a man made this simple enough for a woman to use” (in regards to the typewriter) I find rather disgusting…yet… also very funny. Like I said, it’s a love hate relationship, don’t judge!

If you haven’t gotten to enjoy a season, or seven, of Man Men you should know that it takes place in the late 50’s, early 60’s in uptown New York. This show is a must see drama that highlights a past culture of excessive drinking, smoking, adultery, anti-Antisemitism, racism and homophobia. And the best part, as you can probably guess, are the curve enhancing feminine costumes from the 50’s and 60’s. So today I am going to show you what it is about those costumes that highlight the stated gender roles in Mad Men, and often times in society.mad-men-woman

The upper echelon society in the early 60’s was all about status. What you drank, what you smoked, and certainly what you wore all were symbols of your status.images

 “Men like scarves, and it wouldn’t hurt to show your ankles”- Jone Holloway-Harris 

This fashion advice is stated time and again throughout the show. What it really means is that the fashions of these days were very gender specific. Women wore things that were feminine and that men liked. If the man you work for liked legs, show your ankles (remember, class was key) and show off your feminine figure whenever possible. These include belts to cinch the waist, a strategically placed brooch to draw attention to your best assets, a tea length dress, and always, a pair of heels. Accessories were also important to each outfit, always over accentuating the femininity of an outfit. This includes neck scarves, pearls, and other statement jewelry.

Hair and MakeupMad-Men-assistants

Hair, much like a good housewife was always neat, tidy, and tame. Hair scarves, bows, and waves were more than acceptable. Evidently sleeping in hot-rolls is the go to for this look. The makeup was a little less tame. Although the eye makeup is rather limited, mainly eyeliner, a hot lip was a must. Red, pink, and nude are all acceptable, but always in matte. Make sure to also focus on bolder eye brows a bit of mascara for that doe eye look.

We live in such a wonderful time, most often free from gender roles and oppressions but I do love the outfits from the late fifties. So, any chances I get I dress up like Betty Draper! Enjoy the season premiere on April 13th, and don’t forget to have an old fashioned with me!

Costumes for Chicks in upcoming Flix

With spring in the air, that means that summer is just around the corner. Soon hoards of movie goers will be lining up, popcorn and drink in hand, to watch this year’s summer blockbusters! To get people excited for the upcoming festivities (and because it’s fun), I wanted to do my 5 most anticipated movie costumes of 2014.
I am ordering this list based on the current order of release date. So let’s get started:
1. The Warrior Woman, Artemisia (300: Rise of an Empire)

The best way to kick off the summer movie extravaganza is with an armor clad female war lord. Artemisia has Xerxes’ armies at her command, but is not afraid to get down in the dirt with the rest of the men. Trailers have shown her in both “casual” clothes and completely decked out in all her battle armor that actually covers her entire body. Crazy, right?

Both costumes are a good representation of the two sides of her personality, but the armor is the real showstopper. The armor is full-body chainmail with leather overlapping the chest, stomach, and arms. This allows for quick movement with both bow and twin swords. To top it all off she has a dinosaur like spine that just further emphasizes her animalistic nature on the battle field.


See her in her brutal glory March 7th.

2. The Amazing Gwen Stacy (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Emma Stone has done a wonderful job at portraying the sassy and confident, Gwen Stacy. A picture from the upcoming film was recently leaked, showing Gwen in the infamous outfit she wore at the time of her death in the Amazing Spider-Man comic #121. I really hope she is able to avoid the reaper in this next installment; we will just have to see.
On a more positive note, Gwen has never looked better. Her iconic outfit consists of a long coat, a mini skirt, tights, and knee high boots. We will most likely not be able to get a good glimpse of this outfit until towards the end, but just like the movie, I am very much looking forward to seeing it on the big screen.



Watch for Gwen’s fate with baited breath on May 2nd.

3. Mystique (X-Men: Days of Future Past)

It’s Mystique. Enough said.


Catch Jennifer Lawrence as the shape shifting minx in theatres on May 23rd.

4. Maleficent

Maleficent, played by Angelina Jolie, is my most anticipated character to see this year in theaters. I have seen a lot of opposition to Angelina portraying Maleficent in the upcoming movie, but I personally feel that she has the perfect bone structure, elegance, and the on screen personality to make any naysayer change their minds by the end of the film. Those horns!


May 30th is when you can see this beautifully evil film

5. April O’Neil (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, 2014)

I am not the biggest fan of Megan Fox, but I can still appreciate the amazing detail that went into this 90s kid crush or idol.

This 2014 version no longer covers the news in her all yellow jumpsuit, but rather in a yellow jacket, jeans, and boots. Still recognizable, but I am hoping that they will give some kind of nod to the original costume. Get ready for a huge influx of April cosplayers at many a con and Halloween this year.


April showers the big screen August 8th.

This year will be fantastic for any movie goer out there to see some of these amazing costumes on the big screen. I may have to write a few tutorials as these movies are released…

Find the Perfect Look for a Downton Abbey Themed Party

The season four finale of Downton Abbey is almost upon us! A close friend of mine is planning an extravagant dinner party to mark the occasion, and I if I don’t blow everyone away with my outfit, then I’m just not doing my job.

In reality, the costumes are 80% of the reason why I watch Downton Abbey. Don’t get me wrong, I love the show to pieces, but there’s just something about all that silk and beadwork that makes me swoon. The same sentiment applies for Boardwalk Empire, although their costumes are slightly less upper crust and a little more…gritty.

If you’re planning on attending a Downton (or 20s) themed party, I’ve put together a little guide for pulling off the perfect ensemble.

The Dress

Downton Abbey Season 4 Fashion

Much to the relief of all women, the 20’s brought an end to the corset. Tubular (shift) dresses that flattened the bust line – rather than accentuating it – became all the rage. Low-waisted dresses were also popular, as the fullness at the hemline allowed women to dance freely, without getting tripped up in yards of fabric.

Attire was also worn according to the time of day and activities. According to the academic publication Pop Culture Universe: Icons, Idols, Ideas:

“Afternoon or ‘tea gowns’ were less form-fitting than evening gowns, featured long, flowing sleeves, and were adorned with sashes, bows, or artificial flowers at the waist. Evening gowns were typically slightly longer than tea gowns, in satin or velvet, and embellished with beads, rhinestones, or fringe”

If you’re looking to go for the more elegant Downton Abbey fare, consider an evening gown like “The Princess and the Beads” from Modcloth – or, if you’re really crafty, you could sew your own!

The Princess & The Beads Dress

However, as Lady Rose showed us last season, Downton Abbey isn’t all about straight laced styles. If you don’t want to drop a wad of cash on an evening gown, a fringed flapper dress is a cheaper option, but certainly no less fun.

Lady Rose Flapper DressThe Hair

The bob was huge in America, with many women chopping their locks in an effort to give a more boyish look to their feminine figure. It was a different story overseas, where Queen Mary preferred that ladies wear their hair long. If they did happen to break with tradition, she required they conceal their bobs at court functions or royal ceremonies.

Lady Edith Season 4No matter what length your hair is, you can find a tutorial to give it the perfect 20s flair.

If you have long hair and want to do a faux bob, this fabulous tutorial from Toni & Guy will show you how.

If you want to rock some awesome finger waves (like Lady Edith) but don’t have the experience to pull of the retro style, check out Hayley’s tutorial for an easy alternative.

And for you ladies with longer hair, this wonderful tutorial from Candice at Birchbox illustrates how to perfect a Lady Mary inspired updo.

Lady Rose HeadpieceOf course no Downton Abbey hairstyle would be complete without a fabulous decorative comb or headpiece.  Unfortunately these custom-made headpieces can cost an absolute fortune, and seeing as I blew most of my budget on the dress, it’s DIY to the rescue.

DIY 20s Headpiece

Ren, from Shine Trim Blog has a simple tutorial for creating a stunning headpiece on the cheap. Check it out here.

Your Downton Abbey inspired get up doesn’t have to be perfectly period correct, just elegant and fun. Remember, as the Dowager Countess herself said:

“The truth is neither here nor there. It’s the look of the thing that matters.”

If you have any tips, tutorials, or fabulous photos, share them with me in the comments below!

The Super Women Of Halloween

Sexy Super Woman

I was daydreaming about superpowers the other day… or more precisely, the superpower I’d want the most. My hands down first pick would of course be flying, and I think most people would appreciate that ability.

But, my second choice may surprise you. No, it’s not time travel, web slinging, or mutton busting. I woudn’t want anything too powerful, like LOTR’s “one ring to rule them all”. I’d be in risk of going all Galadriel over the potential power and yelling out all shall love me and despair and no one wants that. No, if it were up to me, it would be to have the power of Wonder Woman’s golden lasso. When Queen Hippolyte gave it to Wonder Woman she said,  “This is the Golden Lasso. Besides being made from an indestructible material, it also carries with it the power to compel people to tell the truth. Use it well, and with compassion.”

I can think of a few million uses for that superpower! I’d be able to get answers to all of my burning questions, like, “Hey Jimmy Kimmel! Who ate all of the Halloween candy?!” or, “Who approved the ‘Honey Boo Boo’ television program?” Yes, it really would be a pretty fantastic power  to have. Since we’re talking about super powers, I’ve noticed a trend that I am fond of, namely the offerings in women’s Halloween section aren’t just bar wench and French maid anymore.


Saving humanity (well, at least for Halloween) just got a little sexier, and an additional boost of female power because this year’s line up of women’s superhero costumes is something to take to the streets about. I’ve kind of looked down my nose at superhero costumes on occasion, I’ll admit it. (Sorry about that every actor and kid who wore the Robin outfit.)

There’s Harley Quinn, Hit Girl, Super Woman, Wonder Woman, She-Ra, Cat Woman, Spider-Girl, and several dozen more warriors, crime fighters, and assorted other bad-guy catcher getup’s.

These costumes can be toned down for conservative events, vamped up for a girl’s night out, or used to get you the first place prize at the costume contest. Ladies, as girl power gets recognized, the costumes behind the trend will get you recognized, too.

Harley Quinn

There’s something to be said for running around pretending to be a little more powerful than you are, I think. For you moms out there, it’s good for your daughters to see you as strong and powerful, and its good for them to view themselves that way, too. So, keep that in mind when shopping around during Halloween. As far as I’m concerned the only costume missing from the women superhero line up is Fried Green Tomatoes’ Mrs. Threadgood and Evelyn.



What Should I Dress Up As For Halloween? Head To The Movies!

Sometimes there are so many options for costumes at Halloween, that it can be hard to narrow it down to just pick one or two ideas. When that happens to me, I usually try to narrow down the field a bit…I’ll pick a favorite singer, or actor, or classic evil character.

If you happen to be a movie buff,  it’s even easier to decide on a costume since there are dozens of movie-based costumes out there to choose from. For you women, I’ve selected a few of my favorite ideas from around the web. Check them out below.

Princess Leia

If you’ve got the bod, then this might be the year you head out dressed as the one and only darling from Star Wars, Princess Leia. Forever hailed by young geeky teens from the late 70s and 80s as a first onscreen crush, a Leia costume us sure to draw attention your way.  If you remember the 90s sitcom “Friends” the episode that features Rachel dressing up as Princess Leia is still pretty funny and is evidence of the effect the character had on hormone-filled teens of the time. Plus, it’s completely hot. (Why am I so old!? *Pouting.)

Alice In Wonderland

The latest film version of the story “Alice In Wonderland” from my personal favorites, Tim Burton and Johnny Depp had me at hello. (Hard to believe it was even a product of milquetoast-girl-heroes-movie-maker, Disney.) If ever there were a film that got the idea of a heroine right, this is it. And, it makes the idea of going out in a baby blue tea party gown dressed in an Alice In Wonderland costume very appealing. This one is good because you can either go as cute, sexy or like the classic character.

 Edward ScissorHands For Her

Another nod to Johnny Depp for this outfit, because it’s based on the film, “Edward ScissorHands”. I remember watching the ice dance scene with Winona Ryder and wishing I were that girl dancing in the snow.

But, this year, with the new female-friendly Edward costume, I think it would be more fun to run around with scissors on my hands. Who wants to be sweet little Kim when you could be interesting and troubled Edward? As Jim said in the film, “Sweetheart, you can’t buy the necessities of life with cookies.”


Pregnant? Great Costumes For The Mom-To-Be

So, how do you get a costume around this? Photo via blog.sfgate.com

I know so many women who absolutely thrive on dressing up for Halloween, but some of them really struggle if the Halloween holiday falls during a pregnancy. It’s true, finding a maternity costume can really be difficult… you feel fat, you don’t want to look silly, and no one really likes that whole “pregnant nun” costume your hilarious husband thinks you should wear.

I know plenty of women who love Halloween, love dressing up, but when it comes to being preggo during the holiday, they are at a loss. Who can blame them? Trying to find a costume that is flattering and comfortable can be very tricky. Thankfully, all of those creative costume folks have listened to what the mommy bloggers have to say, and they have responded by coming up with lots of great ideas.

If you are a lil’ momma-to-be, don’t sit it out this Halloween because you didn’t find a costume! If you read on the internet much,  I bet you’ve guessed by now that I have some TIPS for you! (I don’t know why that is, but every blogger with access to a keypad has to write at least 30 obligatory posts on their top 10 tips! Haha.) Nonetheless, if you are in need of a pregnant belly Halloween idea, I’ve got some ideas for you.

 Grin & Bare It

If you are comfortable in your own skin, and don’t mind a little body paint, there are no limits to what you can create with a pregnant bod. Fish bowls, Jack-o-lanterns, cookie jars, and football helmets are just a few of the ideas you can draw from if you want to turn your bulging belly into a Halloween work of art.

Let Your Inner Demon Take Over

Devil Lady Maternity Adult Costume

Inner demon? You see what I did there? No, your baby-to-be may not be naughty yet, but I assure you, the day will come when you wonder what possessed your sweet little bundle. Halloween is a great time to celebrate the spirit of the wicked kid in all of us. And, besides that, we both know you’re gonna have a hard time staying away from the trick-or-treat candy, so why not go as your favorite Halloween evil-doer? Witches, devils and vampires (You can thank Bella Swan for that) are easy to adapt to a mommy body.

Take Advantage of That Pregnant Glow

Fairy Maternity Adult Costume

Conversely, if the thought of bringing new life into the world has you a bit sentimental, maybe you’ll want to stick to a more ethereal costume… angels, fairies…pretty much any  of the women-wearing-glitter costumes would be suitable.

The best part is that if you go with a costume that has some kind of hand-held accessory, say a wand, pitchfork or broom, these can double as a hand-smacking weapon should any of the holiday crazies want to go in for an unwanted pregnant lady belly-rub. Hiiii-yaaaa! 


But what if you are close to your due date and don’t want to hassle with a full night of wearing heels or itchy fabric? No worries! If you just aren’t up to going all-out, you can do some really incredible Halloween make-up and hair, and wear a clever Halloween t-shirt in lieu of a full costume.

The idea is to have a great time on Halloween, even if that means you lie back with your feet up, and much on Halloween goodies.

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.