Posts Tagged ‘halloween’

For Hallowe’en this year, BMad suggested that he and reprise I the costume M and I wore  many years ago to the infamous (and yet-to-be-topped) “I See Dead People” party hosted by J and LHR when they lived here in T.O.

Is it a totally appropriate costume for our workplace? Maybe not…. On the other hand, sometimes people are drug addict/punk rock stars who do murder their drug addict girlfriends and then do o.d. in jail and who would we be if we were not raising these important issues for discussion with the young minds of today?
(Also, no one except [some of] the adults in the building knew who we were supposed to be*.)

I look like an idiot in these, as I was trying to look sulky and bratty, but had a bad case of the giggles, brought on by BMad’s gleeful joy at wearing eyeliner…

Just so you can see that our shoes are in character, too.

*My favourite overheard comment of the day was from a conversation between two grade 9 girls:
“Oh! Did you see? It’s so cute! Mr. P and Ms. O came dressed as grunge rockers!”
Jesus wept, people. Jesus wept.

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YYZ: Ministry

Ministry Inspection Day.
The Inspector had to reschedule– she was supposed to be here in mid-February and we were all ready for her then. She got sick.
She came back today.
With a friend. Yep, that’s right.
What’s worse than one Ministry Inspector? TWO Ministry Inspectors! 🙂

Much to my relief and to my students’ everlasting disappointment (I have been drilling them for weeks to make sure they have the Ministry Expectations memorized!), she did not visit my classes. Yay!

Still, I dressed to impress in my suit. I even wore my glasses (not in these photos, though).

Asymmetrical Suit: Femme de Carriere
Blouse: Jacob
Shoes: Dollhouse

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On Friday M forwarded me an email invitation to a Hallowe’en party on Saturday night.
That’s right, kids– the DAY BEFORE. An invitation to a THEME party!
I suspect he delayed  as long as he could so that he would be spared elaborate costume-planning on my part:  M hates costumes, dressing up, Hallowe’en, etc. Once I actually used packing tape to attach one of those cardboard skeleton cut-outs to him; as we were running out the door, I was wrapping him, mummy-style, so that he had the arms, legs and torso of the cut-out taped to his own, over his jeans and t-shirt.  It boggles the mind that the two of us ended up together, as I love to dress up in every sense of the phrase and M is happy in the same Old Navy t-shirts and jeans he’s had for years. 🙂
Which is a darn shame, as he is athletic and looks GREAT in clothes.

I digress.

So, there I was, not too keen on the thought of having to come up with VEGAS-themed costumes in under 24 hours, particularly since one of those costumes was going to have to be something that M would deign to don
= nothing complicated, no props, etc.

I was whinging about it to LHR on the phone and she talked me into going, even if all I did was throw on a feather boa.  That approach is not my style, however; Daph can attest that a stint in historic interpretation makes a person a stickler for details and accuracy, so if I am going to go in for a theme, I need to go all the way.

Surprisingly, it was M who came up with the idea, as he listened to me moan about not being too keen to bare it all as a showgirl (ew– wobbly bits!).
He suddenly muttered something about him going as Sammy Davis Jr or my own Vegas hero, Dean Martin!
The plan was born and, tossing my responsibilities aside for the day, I made it my mission to concoct
Vegas Rat Pack-era
costumes for us.

Picture 1

In a stroke of extreme good fortune and wildly-ego-boosting serendipity,
The Dress fit me yesterday!
I also have this, which, worn by M, made the perfect Vegas crooner get-up.
I accessorized  my own look with elaborate late-50s, early-60s makeup, including false eyelashes and red lipstick, a beehive hair-do and a martini glass. M refused to carry the flask I gave him (we don’t own rocks glasses), so I had to be content with having gotten him dressed at all. Finally, I have my divine silk-taffeta opera coat, circa late 50s, which looked and felt great — swishy and swingy!–over The Dress and caused a bit of a stir at the party.

So, here we are, in some very bad photos (particularly the ones at the end of the night, in which my poor beehive has suffered some wind damage and the shine on my nose has bested my face powder!):
Rat Pack-era Vegas, baby!

Perhaps Dino and date?


When my mum sees this, she will faint: I look like her CLONE!

On me:
Shoes: 9 West
The Dress: Gift
Silk-Taffeta Opera Coat: Courage My Love ($20!!!!!!)
Earrings: mine, from the 80s– I guess these days, that makes them “vintage!”
Cocktail Ring: Some little store on College

On M:
Trousers and T-shirt: his own
Smoking Jacket: Cabaret


The spots are on the antique mirror, not on me! Hairdo a bit the worse for wear...



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As YYZ mentioned in her Halloween post, our most favourite holiday of the year is Halloween. I have a few theories:

  1. Both our birthdays are days away from Halloween. That meant Halloween was always associated with presents. I’m sure that must have had some effect.
  2. Both YYZ and I were drama geeks and thus enjoyed the dressing up part of theatre. As neither of us are involved in theatre anymore, Halloween gives us that excuse to dig in to the Tickle Trunk
  3. Anything that involves clothing is usually a preferred activity for both of us

Since we moved to the UK I have not had the opportunity to go to a Halloween party. That is a bit sad as J and I used to host some pretty stellar ones on Mitchell. The first one was themed I SEE DEAD PEOPLE.


This was our invite for one of our Halloween parties back in T.O,

I came as Lucille Ball. YYZ (of course) supplied the dress and my hairstyle and make-up. I wish I had a photo of that one, but I don’t. The second party we hosted was themed The Good. The Bad and The Ugly. I came as the Bride of Frankenstein and J was some vampire Cub Scout (don’t ask). Again no photos (fewer people had digital cameras then).

So, you can imagine how disappointed I’ve been the last few years without a Halloween party to attend. That’s why when Tamsin from work suggested that  I might like to go to the White Mischief event, I jumped on the opportunity. I bought 2 tickets at the beginning of September and knew I had to begin to plan my costume early as fancy dress in the UK is taken seriously. The theme was Blue Beard’s Chateau. Here is what White Mischief suggested for costume inspiration.

As you can imagine, I waited and waited and waited so long I was in a real pickle. That’s where Tamsin comes in. She found out about my dilemma and offered a dress she MADE for last year’s event (she also made her dress pictured below).  I knew the dress would be amazing but was a bit concerned as Tamsin has a much smaller waist than me.  So, I worried I wouldn’t be able to fit in to her dress. That’s where pins come in. As you will see, it was perfect.

Here is my costume complete with roses in my hair (thanks to Tamsin), vintage earrings (I bought in NY last year), a new necklace from Peacocks, some gloves I picked up at a rummage sale a month or two back and finally and most importantly my silver ballet FLATS. (I was thankful at 4.30am as I walked along Oxford Street)


Impressive Bustle, don't you agree?


Doesn't my hair look like my 80s hairdo?


My new purchase from Peacocks.


The Barber cut my neck shaving.

If you were wondering about the actual party. It was amazing. The costumes were over the top. I took a few photos and posted them on Flickr. I also tried to find some other shots that give you an idea of the locale (old 17th century mansion house in central London) and the theatrics of other party goers. So, I’ve pulled together a gallery which will give you a glimpse in to Blue Beard’s Castle.

A few highlights from the evening included:

  • a silent disco (everyone wears wireless headphones – very surreal)
  • a hot tub (I didn’t strip down but many others did)
  • theatrical performance (it was rather scary especially as you wore the wireless headphones again)
  • decor to DIE for (literally)
  • and more (but you’ll have to come with me to the next event – up for it?)

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Okay, so she’s not 16, but I could only think of this song title, so we’re stuck with it.
Really, though, with a campy vintage performance like the one below, who can complain?
I don’t even mind that the sound and Neil’s lips aren’t in synch…

Today, of course, we had to wear our Hallowe’en costumes to school.  If handing back papers is the number one drawback of my job, today is the number one perk, as far as I’m concerned. Hallowe’en is one of the biggest events of the year where I work: of the nearly 900 students and 80 or so staff at the school, a mere handful do not dress up.
It is COOL to dress up.
Even those who are too-cool-for-school dress up.
EVERYONE dresses up.
Most of us admit to starting to think about our costumes for the next year as soon as school is over each Hallowe’en day.

LHR would love it; like me, Hallowe’en is her favourite holiday. Is anyone surprised that two grown women who post daily photos about their outfits love a holiday that involves dressing up?!

My brilliant and clever hairstylist, M, gave me the idea for this year’s costume.

Everyone knew who I was as soon as they saw me. Well, okay, all the students, women staff members and gay men on staff knew who I was– straight men thought I was a devil… I am sure the copy of Vogue and my oversized sunnies had them mystified…

I faked a copy of "The Book" with last year's September issue. Sadly, I did not get my copy this year-- sob!

I faked a copy of "The Book" with last year's September issue. Sadly, I did not get my copy this year-- sob!

The grads even nominated me to get in the costume competition during morning assembly. I didn’t win, but you know, it’s true what they say: It’s an honour just to be nominated!

Taken before my hair got exposed to downpour.

Shot taken before my 'do was exposed to downpour...


I even had a tail.


Anna sans devilish accoutrements. 'Do post-downpour exposure.

Anna never has a hair out of place, so I’m glad I got soaked AFTER school!

Dress: Club Monaco
Belt: H&M
Earrings: Gift from LHR
Fishnet Stay-ups: Secret
Shoes: Pour la Victoire
(Alas, no Prada…)

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LHR: Ready for Halloween

On Friday afternoon, I had a meeting at the private member’s bar/restaurant:  SOHO House located in the Meatpacking district. If you’ve never been there before, there is only one word to describe it – TRENDY. It was uber cool or as the kids say – Sick (is it spelled that way?).

At any rate, you can imagine how embarrassing it was when I turned up for my meeting in a heavily branded Tee. So, when I had a chance to go back to my hotel and change before coming back for drinks and dinner, I jumped at the opportunity. I’m glad I did as we had a star siting as soon as I re-entered the building – Vanessa Williams (in case you are wondering I didn’t recognize her).

Here’s some shots of the venue:

Picture 8

Picture 9

The Bar at SOHO House

Picture 10

The Service was SLOW so this was what our table looked like most of the evening.

As mentioned, I ran home between my meeting and dinner to try to make my outfit more appropriate for the venue. I ended up in Halloween colours but I’m sure I looked much more at home than the branded TEE. As warned before my photos are dark and murky but you get the idea:


Nothing NEW Here; All Separates Worn Before


Out with Boys After SOHO House - You can see my built in corsage.


My Raincoat WAS essential!

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