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05 January 2013 @ 12:18 am
Seven Pillars of Costuming  
Having decided to pick a new element for this year's DragonCon parade, I then had to choose my new chemical identity. I'd gone for carbon and aluminum before, figuring they were recognizable and fairly easy to costume for. But after seeing all the wonderful puns people came up with (barium in a bear suit, iron in an Iron Man mask, Hafnium dressed in half black and half white--with face and arms painted to match!) I knew I wanted something I could play for laughs.

I eventually settled on Lawrencium, so I could costume as Lawrence of Arabia. This seemed pretty straightforward, until I started researching it and realized that what I'd been thinking of as a costume is actually not much different from current Middle Eastern clothing in many countries. Since I don't want anyone thinking I'm costuming as an "Arab," like those tacky "Indian chief" Halloween costumes with all the feathers, I'm making an effort to push the movie identity as much as possible. I am considering bucking both historical and cinematic accuracy by putting a military-style name patch right on the outer robe. It might look a bit silly, besides being inaccurate, but it might be handy to have the character labeled.

lawrence of arabia
(Click for a few more pictures.)

Most of this is thrift store finds, modified to differing degrees. The under robe (thobe) is actually a white bath robe; I just sewed up the front so it would stay closed. The outer robe (bisht) is made of a set of semi-sheer curtains. The head scarf (keffiya) I already had in the costume closet as a shawl. The gold bit that holds it on (agal) is made of--get this--four bendy hair rollers, painted gold and with knots wrapped around them. I should really make a second one; in the pictures, T.E. Lawrence is always wearing a four-layer agal.
Karl Gallagher: evolutionselenite on January 5th, 2013 07:29 am (UTC)
Name tag is a bit out of character. Having an Arab servant boy following you with a sign would be in character. But it's a bit of a long walk for Z at this age I fear.
Richild la Gauchererlg on January 6th, 2013 03:33 am (UTC)
what a job for Aaron then, unless he's Z-herding.
Karl Gallagher: Kermitselenite on January 6th, 2013 04:37 am (UTC)

I think he could pull it off.
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on January 6th, 2013 04:43 am (UTC)
Yeah, cuz that would definitely help with the cultural stereotype problem, thanks. :P
wabbit (the jack is silent): Kirk-Happy Captainjackwabbit on January 7th, 2013 04:25 pm (UTC)
I <3 this so much.