Tim Burton is the undisputed master of creating eerie but fantastically brilliant movies such as Edward Scissorhands, Nightmare Before Christmas, Sleepy Hollow and the one we’ll be basing this article off of.
It not everyday you get to dress up as someone or something scary, many people miss out the opportunity to do just that on a day that’s specifically designed for it…Halloween!
So with that in mind today we’ll be recreating Emily Corpse Bride costume from Tim Burton’s movie of the same name, believe it or not you don’t need a premade outfit to pull this off well in fact many of the items discussed below will come straight from local thrift or charity stores.
Corpse Bride Dress
Most people wouldn’t be seen dead in this dress, but I guess that’s the point. This is where thrift stores come in handy as it doesn’t require a spanking brand new gown on the contrary any will do the worse condition the better.
Once you’ve find an suitable dress rip it up in several places paying close attention to the bottom but keep the majority of the gown still in shape.
To be a bride you’ll need a veil, no two ways about it. Fortunately these are also easy to find at local thrift stores, you may want to rip this up a little too to keep consistent with your dress. Otherwise keep it as it is, add a touch of color with a blue flower headband.
Rather than having a bunch of dying flowers at your head cut blue card into the shape of each individual flower using a pencil to add in details. Attach these paper flowers to a dollar store headband you can hide discreetly in your wig.
Corpse Bride Wig
Hair is third on our list, Emily has electric blue hair to match her skin or should I say bones, a welcome contrast from her greying husband Victor Van Dort. There are multiple ways to go about creating this hairstyle without buying a wig.
One such way is to use a mixture of gray and blue hair spray on a blond wig. Alternatively use different coloured yarn, this will achieve a lovely ‘dead’ look, perfect considering you’re meant to be a corpse anyway.
A final addition to this character’s costume is a dead bouquets of flowers, totally appropriate. Any local florists will have dead flowers to spare or even your own back garden.
Emily Corpse Bride Makeup Tutorial
Makeup is crucial to this character’s look, you’ll want to recreate her blue ghostly skin, large eyes and rotting cheek. The thumbnail from this video really caught my attention, the artist has captured the character perfectly.
- Start with pros-aide on your eyebrows, push them up and into the skin until they’ve partially disappeared. Now take something to use as a circle stencil (spray paint cap) and trace around the eyes then fill in with white pencil smoothing the edges with a cotton bud. Set the whole area with translucent powder, including eyebrows. Also whiten the eyelashes with a white pencil, doing the same again with white pigment paint. Using the same creme paint fill in the whole area.
- Now for color! Mix together blue and white paint and apply on your face and neck, around the eyes. To contour mix black and brown, apply this on your neck. Taking the same color create shadowing around your eyes and forehead. Contour your nose in a similar way.
- Work on your eyebrows with blue eyeshadow, contour again on the nose and chin areas using blue and then go in with a brush to blend.
- Trace out her rotting cheek with black paint. Make this stand out with an addition of black gel eye-liner for depth and white paint for highlights.
- Take a black gel eyeliner to sketch out her eyebrows, keeping the edges smooth or removing any mistakes with a cotton bud. With the same gel outline your eyes once more. Sketch in each individual lash around the perimeter of your eyes.
- Trace her pink lips now, extending past your natural lips to create volume. Then fill them in. Finally create eyeballs with black gel and use white for highlights.
I’m looking forward to taking about other Tim Burton inspired costumes but for now have fun creating this character’s outfit for cosplay and Halloween!