Last minute Halloween advice. With a twist!
October 27, 2006 1:23 AM   Subscribe

Last minute costume advice for an extremely short person.

I've been avoiding the Halloween costume issue for most of October, and was planning to either throw something together on the day of or to skip this whole Halloween business entirely. However, I've been invited to a few parties in the past week and am considering seeking out a more interesting costume and going out this weekend.

Here's the fun part: I am a 26 year old male and am approximately 4 feet tall. There are a few comorbid issues that go along with this but they shouldn't be an issue here. I have a pretty low budget and I can't sew. Anything that doesn't fit me (specifically, pants) will be altered by me with scissors. No hobbits, please, and bonus points for costumes that will help protect me from getting stepped on while on the dance floor.
posted by shaun to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (27 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Go as a surf buoy. Dress in white and stick a flag to a helmet on your head. People will see you.
posted by cholly at 1:36 AM on October 27, 2006

Mini-Gallagher or the midget necklace from Mind of Mencia.

Ludacris you say your necklace feels like a midget, well my necklace really is a midget!
posted by Sufi at 2:44 AM on October 27, 2006

Dredge up a wheelchair, a top hat, and the top half of a too-large tuxedo and go as the fearsome Arliss Loveless, whom you must of course remember as Kenneth Branagh's villainous character from the genre-defining film Wild Wild West.

Constantly quote the film and react with with sharply disgusted confusion at people who don't recognize the references. Bonus points for pointing at the non-recognizers with your thumb and locking your "do you BELIEVE this guy?" eyes with passersby who try desperately to ignore you.

Don't try to duplicate the infamous "insult fight" scene between Arliss Loveless and Jim West, however. It might become too awesome and people could either die or explode from laughter.


More seriously, you might wish to consider going as:
A magical talking skateboard (some cardboard and wheels from a hardware store)
• Yosemite Sam (big orange mustache and ten gallon hat, plus other Western accouterments)
• Lakitu (cotton cloudy stuff, some orange, and a Koopa shell of some sort)
• Napoleon (tricky, but fun - pirate's hat with an N on it and a great coat you can stick your hand into)
• Personally, I find those animal costumes where your head comes out the mouth of the animal to be really hilarious and awesome. They tend to only be sold in children's sizes...with probably not too much alteration you might be able to fit into one and it could be pretty sweet. Especially if you go as a really grizzled costume animal, with five o'clock shadow, a beer can, and a smoke. Wear maybe a shirt and loosened tie, so it looks like you just go laid off or something. Act really exhausted and belligerent. Bonus points for bags under your eyes. Then you can be "Sick And Fucking Tired Cartoon Animal Who Just Wants Some Old Crow And Maybe Five Minutes Of Fucking Peace And Quiet."

Best of luck! Please tell us what you wind up with.

Also, the buoy idea is fun.
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:48 AM on October 27, 2006

Whatever you choose, accentuate the positive and be comfortable. You aren't a little kid trying to be scary. It's a party. If you have a nice face, don't hide it under a mask and makeup. If you have great hair, show it off. If you have facial hair, plan around it (pirate, etc.).

Don't pick anything that will be too hot, too heavy, too tight, too itchy or sticky or nasty, too awkward to sit down or lie down in, too hard to open up for a pee, etc. Rubber or furry masks generally suck. Don't go as the Man in the Iron Mask.

Beware the high-concept costumes that require the wearer to stand still and act like a large piece of furniture. You want to dance, move around, run to the kitchen, run to the bathroom, step outside for air, go upstairs, go downstairs, hop in a car, get drunk, and fall down. You are going to "a few parties" so you need to be easy to move. If you need props, make them lightweight and easy to deal with.

To be seen, wear bright colors, light colors, even lights. Because you're little, go for lightweight bright stuff that rises up above and about you, maybe wings if you can make them light and comfortable enough, big white wings. Which would make you an angel or bird or insect or something. But you want wings you can fold out of the way for a dance. Helium balloons would be easy to see and nothing to carry, but they could be a bit unwieldy -- you could be the little boy in the Red Balloon if you can manage to be entirely black and white and carry one large red helium balloon. But someone will pop it or steal it to make Mickey Mouse voices, so if you take a balloon, take extras and a canister of helium you can hide somewhere. Or have a backup plan: if you lose your balloon, you'll have to become some other black and white kid, maybe Chaplin's The Kid. Or the kid in the Red Balloon after the bad kids have popped his balloon, of course, but you'd have some splainin to do.

You don't have stilts, do you? That would flip out people used to seeing you below eye level.
posted by pracowity at 3:36 AM on October 27, 2006

Abraham Lincoln.

Black/brown marker (makeup?) on your face in a beard-like pattern as a beard if you can't grow your own in a weekend (NB: perhaps a good idea to rock some dark hair dye if you're uber-blonde), top hat (DIY tips here, black suit jacket with tails, pants of some variety, bowtie - all thrift store-able (and therefore no biggie if you've gotta alter the sizes).

Cheap, comfy (you can make the top-hat out of construction paper or felt or playing cards and office supplies) and best of all, instantly recognizable, especially when people get the, ahem, vertically aspirational ambitions of your costume.

Whimsical touches: Maybe pennies with Abe's face facing out glued to cufflinks or buttons for the full effect. And a ticket to Ford's Theater box seats in your vest pocket. And maybe a huge bullet hole on the back left side of your skull (or maybe just a paper target).
posted by mdonley at 4:06 AM on October 27, 2006

"DIY tips here" should read "top hats are also called stovepipe hats". D'oh.

PS - Maybe a Gettysburg Address/Emancipation Proclamation in your pocket instead of the Ford's Theater tickets if you're not into the morbid side.
posted by mdonley at 4:09 AM on October 27, 2006

Dressing as a leprechaun would give you an excuse to get thoroughly drunk, as would dressing as Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. If these ideas don't appeal, I understand the ladies are all up ons Cousin Itt. R2-D2 would also be a big hit, but I don't think I can recommend, in good conscience, that you dress up as an Ewok.

For further inspiration, just peruse the filmographies of Billy Barty, Warwick Davis and Phil Fondacaro, among others. I'm sure you'll find lots of great ideas.
posted by Faint of Butt at 5:13 AM on October 27, 2006

Find a tall friend and some bad '70 suits and go as Paul Williams and Pat McCormick.
For added fun, you should go as McCormick and your pal should go as Williams.

I've actually always wanted to do this as a costume, but I'm neither short nor tall enough to pull it off.
posted by Dr. Wu at 5:33 AM on October 27, 2006

Red t-shirt, blue shorts and a skate board and you could go as Bart Simpson...

White t-shirt, Orange longshorts and go as Millhouse.

Should be easy enough to pick up a mask for the face part.
posted by MarvinJ at 6:12 AM on October 27, 2006

Captain Underpants! (although I love the buoy idea too.)
posted by AlisonM at 6:15 AM on October 27, 2006

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. You should be able to pick up almost everything you need in a thrift shop for under $10 to $15, except the hat. Plus, you'll have all the Parisian courtesans fawning at your feet, and you'll get to drink. A LOT.
posted by ScottUltra at 6:29 AM on October 27, 2006

I have to second the Yosemite Sam
posted by thewittyname at 6:44 AM on October 27, 2006

I'll second Toulouse-Lautrec. And suggest a MeTa thread after you're done. With pictures.
posted by ObscureReferenceMan at 7:00 AM on October 27, 2006

Demon? Average off-the-shelf costume, and your height will make it "impish"
posted by dagnyscott at 7:45 AM on October 27, 2006

Tree stump.
posted by DoctorFedora at 7:52 AM on October 27, 2006

Robert Pollard
posted by Flashman at 8:05 AM on October 27, 2006

Bright pink hoodie with a shoe affixed to your head (You would be gum).
posted by travis vocino at 8:08 AM on October 27, 2006

Matt Roloff? A nice sweater and some crutches is all you'd need (you could also use the crutches to beat people should they step on you on the dance floor).

An Ewok?
posted by Sassyfras at 8:10 AM on October 27, 2006

A member of the lollipop guild? Gel up your hair to make those wacky curls, buy or make a huge lollipop, and sing out of the side of your mouth.
posted by printchick at 9:50 AM on October 27, 2006

The idea of dressing up as an insect makes me want to recommend you go as Arthur. With luck, you could find a taller, broader person to be The Tick.
posted by parilous at 10:03 AM on October 27, 2006

A slightly tall Oompa-Loompa

Oompa-Loompa, doobity-do
I've got a halloween costume for you
Oompa-Loompa, doobity-doopid
Everything else is totally stupid
posted by catkins at 10:32 AM on October 27, 2006

I find that chicks like big hats. How about the pope? I've made a fake pope hat from a couple pieces of cardboard in short order.

If you can find a red hat and shirt, and blue overalls, you can be Mario.
posted by RobotHero at 10:54 AM on October 27, 2006 [1 favorite]

Sticherbeast: You do remember the original series' Dr. Loveless as played by Michael Dunn? He would require fewer props, at the very least.
posted by RobotHero at 11:05 AM on October 27, 2006

Add a moustache to the Mario idea, which I also fully endorse.
posted by catkins at 11:10 AM on October 27, 2006

A couple years ago my best friend went as a garden gnome (incidentally, I was a (lawn) flamingo that year- maybe you have a friend who looks good in pink?). Part of what made it so cool for him was the unexpectedness of it- my friend is six foot five and the pointy hat added another foot, but it would work for you as well. If you want to use your height as part of the costume while adding more height for visibility, garden gnome suits your criteria.

Alternatively, you could take another facet of my friend's idea and dress up as something tall. How about the Space Needle? It's got that stick sticking up out of the top, and the "skybeam." No one steps on something that has a light flashing at their face-height. A monument costume has the added advantage of being made of cardboard or felt, so you can make (glue/staples/duct tape) it from scratch to fit you.
posted by hyperfascinated at 3:54 PM on October 27, 2006

Hey, I just clicked your userinfo and saw you are in Seattle! Haha! even better!
posted by hyperfascinated at 3:57 PM on October 27, 2006

Mickey mouse.
posted by Iron Rat at 10:46 PM on October 27, 2006

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