Halloween in My Closet: Part 3: The Ringleader

Step right up! Ladies and Gentlemen! Kids of aaaalllll ages! It’s the one… the only….

Ringleader in my closet.

I’m not sure why, but with all the circus jobs you can have, I’ve always been most fascinated by the Ringleader… He’s always trying to look classy, but never quite makes it, a showman without a real show, a fraud, a loner. Maybe I just like the tophat and the whip. Who knows?

This is Part 3 in my Halloween series, of costumes found in my closet. So far, I’ve been a sailor, a can-can girl, and today a circus ringleader all with little or no additional cost. Every day I’ll post a costume made mostly of the the clothes I already own. Of course I’ll need accessories, but while we still have time (8 days) I’ll only post accessories you’ll actually be able to acquire before Halloween. Towards the big day, I’ll work entirely with my own pre-existing wardrobe.

Ringleader Essentials

Below are the base essentials of any ringleader attire… most of which many are basics we all have in our wardrobe. Knee high riding boots… I have a pair of vertical stripe trousers, a button up shirt (I borrowed one from rocky) a blazer… bonus points if you have a tailcoat…. which I don’t have (and am sad about this hole in my wardrobe). In the picture, I have a tie, but in research I found a BOW tie works better for this costume, so I borrowed one from Alex, Rocky’s brother. And of course, white gloves are essential… because as a ringleader, you’ll be using your hands a lot. Since I don’t own a whip… I used this leather strap, a dog leash or leather belt might work fine. I just rolled it so it looks like a whip. Remember with costumes, gestures and imagination can go a long way.

The Result

About that Tophat…

Apologies for the Lee Harvey Oswald-eque cut and paste tophat. I don’t own one myself, and it’s essential to any ringleader costume. Tophats can be found anywhere, joke shops, magician shops, costume shops, party supply stores, Amazon, so you can get yours in time for Halloween if you start now. Or you can find out about those Samantha Cole top hats, as they are darling.

The Mustache… I just drew it on using a black eyeliner. it’s a little more difficult than I thought it would be, and the eyeliner tends to smudge which is good for smokey eyes… bad for mustaches… so if you own the Handle Bar Mustache Tatty Devine necklace .. you may be off the hook… or you can get a temporary tattoo for $3.50 on Etsy. Just hope it doesn’t have staying power… not something you’d want to keep unless you’re going to participate in mo’vember. Or now that I think of it… a pen might last through the night. If you’re going to do that, i would suggest practicing, because my first ‘stache was really crooked.

I have a lot of ideas of what I can do for Halloween, and I can only post a few of them, and please let me know if there is any one you might want to see, or if you have any suggestions… please leave a comment:

Halloween in My Closet:

  1. Circus Ringleader (second by Nikki)
  2. Sailor (done! click here to see!)
  3. Natasha from Bullwinkle & Friends (second by Anna, and Cammila)
  4. Can-Can Girl DONE! (second by Kate and UND)
  5. Pirate or …
  6. a Founding Father… same base costume as Pirate.
  7. The Mad Plaider
  8. Beetle Juice
  9. The See’s Candies Girl (only makes sense in California… but Jeanne would like to see it!)
  10. Evil Babydoll (second by Mette)
  11. 60’s Housewife (second by Aidan)
  12. An East German DDR protester (may be offensive… but Tres Plus Cool would like to see it)
  13. A superhero
  14. Dawn Davenport (suggested by Imelda Matt)
  15. Cat Lady (suggested by shopfair second by Casey)
  16. ?????
jennineHalloween in My Closet: Part 3: The Ringleader

Comments 29

  1. Retro Chick

    That’s brilliant! I didn’t think it would look right when I saw all the clothes laid out, but all put together it looks fantastic!

    You could try layering the eyeliner with pressed powder, going over it several times to give it a bit more staying power. Or maybe a liquid eyeliner might work better?

  2. EJ

    I love the tash, I’ve already drawn them on myself on random nights in. I found liquid eyeliner worked really well.

    Love this series, it’s really got me thinking about my wardrobe in a whole different way…

  3. Post

    @missmilki… oh cool! i’m so glad… it’s fun doing it!
    @ej… ha! that’s awesome… i was thinking liquid eyeliner too, i’m sure that works better, next time!
    @nicki! thank you… i was my favorite so far.

  4. Heather

    How about a retro flight attendant? That’s what I am going as, but I’d really like to see your interpretation as well for further inspiration.

  5. Post

    @Casey… well… i think the costumes rely heavily on the gestures… it helps the imagination.

    @heather! ooh a retro flight attendant! you’re going to do that! sweet… well I think i can put something together!

  6. meli

    oh so cute!!!!!
    the show pushing daisies recently had a circus episode. Ive been getting lots of wardrobe inspiration from there. so adorable!

  7. susie_bubble

    I’ve been enjoying your Halloween series IMMENSELY! I haven’t even given the holiday a thought….

  8. violetville

    i want to see beetlejuice!!!
    60′s housewife is like everyday for me :)
    but you should totally do betty draper!

  9. Cecile

    you have it girl! this photos are delightful, great combination of your clothes!

    like violetville, i want to see beetlejuice costume! what´s next J?

  10. Post

    ooh wow! Thanks so much for all your lovely commnets!

    @violetville and cecile… all you have to say is beetlejuice one more time *doh* i just said it, it’s going to happen!

    agent 99, flight attendant, 60′s houswife… oh the 60′s are poppin!

    well, i’m going to continue all this tomorrow, so hang in there!

  11. Imelda Matt

    J I should have know that you’d be the only one to pick up on ‘you made my mum eat poo’…Mike and I laughed all Sunday and we’re stilling laughing today.

  12. bena

    oh my! so far from the three halloween costumes you had this(ringleader) is my fave! the tophat and the mustache thingy is just sooo cute! hihihi..

  13. Tara

    This is my favorite so far. I have a thing for mustaches. you have so many great accessories in your arsenal to play with!

  14. Ashe Mischief

    Hahaha, I totally hadn’t realized that you photoshopped that top hat in! :X

    You look fantastic, and I love that this is your Facebook photo right now.

  15. Thom

    Moustaches and gloves oh my. A wardrobe should allow you to take on many guises - you are ready for international espionage.

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