I am acutely aware that there are many chubby women out there who have no fear of creating a costume to wear to work for Halloween. Sadly, I am not one of them! And yes – pooh-pooh my thinking all you want! – I think being chubby makes the situation more challenging.
There are so many reasons this is true, from the fact that I have foolishly high standards for good costuming thanks to having an artist mother who helped me create the most amazing Halloween costumes for the first 18 years of my life, to the sad fact that when I try to dream up a costume out of thin air what comes into my head are costumes that are over-the-top and impossible to whip up for a few dollars.
Now I may be using this as an excuse, but if I were thinner (!!!) I believe the whole thing would be a lot easier. If I were a size 8 or 10 I could easily go into a vintage clothing store and find all manner of wonderful things to create a costume. Not only that, but I could even get away with buying one of those silly sexy pirate costumes from Pierre Silber that look so great in the pictures but that when they arrive in the plus-size version are completely awful and totally unflattering.
Now, I will admit, I did have great success with a white vinyl sexy nurse costume a few years ago – it fit and actually looked surprisingly great on my chubby body! But even if I thought I could get away with wearing such a thing to work (it is actually fairly modest, not too short, just very tight) I couldn’t possibly wear the 4″ spike heals that made the outfit a complete success. I’d have those puppies off in about 20 minutes! And somehow, a sexy nurse costume with sore bare feet just doesn’t make it.
There is another challenging aspect of wearing a costume to work, however. Even if you find a costume that is appropriate, that fits and flatters, there is the issue of the work itself. My work is very physical. Some days find me crawling around on the floor under the desk trying to get the phone or the computer to work. Other days find me crawling around in the dirty storeroom looking for racks or fixtures or paper towels. And then there are the days that, in addition to hefting arm-loads of clothing around all day, find me on the floor fixing a pant leg or helping someone on with their clothing. It’s all in a day’s work – and that work doesn’t need to be hindered by a leather steampunk corset or impeded by long, flowing, diaphanous undead-zombie-witch rags. And there hasn’t been a shoe made that combines genuine working comfort with costume-coolness!
So, to participate in the Halloween spirit at work, I have (for many years) relied on simply wearing black and orange and then putting on an adorable purple headband with orange devil horns that I found somewhere many years ago. Last year, I even found a great pair of orange/black/white tiger-stripped palazzo pants that worked just fine with my comfy black work shoes and a simple black tee. Topped off with my handy orange devil horns, I felt reasonable dressed for the festivities but still able to really work.
This year, I’ve actually got something else up my sleeve. If you want to find out what it is, keep an eye out for the next blog post.
In the meantime, tell us what you think about dressing for Halloween at work…
Here’s my sexy Nurse costume…on someone much taller and smaller! And I always zipped it up!
And here are some of the things I would someday like to wear: