Retro & Vintage in Buffalo NY
Retro & Vintage in Buffalo NY
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Only 133 days till Halloween - time to start planning!

Posted Julie Ann Davis Halloween Lifestyle

I love to dress in theme, which may be why my favorite holiday is Halloween. This is the time of year I start planning my costume (only 133 daysuntil Halloween)... yes I plan this early! Most of my friends love Halloween too, so there's lots of costume parties and dances to attend. The past few years Andrew and I have been putting together couples' costumes, and every other year we switch who gets to choose the theme. Let me share with you some past costumes....


Our "big" costume was a couple's costume if there ever was one! We did the show Supernatural. I was Dean and Andrew was Baby his car. Lol. I pulled everything from my closet and just broowed Andrew's watch. Andrew built the car frame with working headlights!


For the shop Halloween weekend, I was Barbie (that blonde wig gets a workout), and Andrew reprised G.I. Joe

To give out candy, how could I not be Cruella?

For Andrew's work party he was Arnold, ready to PUMP YOU UP!


Since Pinups at the Zoo was canceled last year and it got moved from summer to fall this year I was able to start costuming early! Just pulled a dress from the closet and added accessories! RAWR! (This was part of my cave woman costume from 2015.)

We sort of did a couple's costume, I was a scarecrow and Andrew was THE Crow. For those of you that don't know, I collect vintage weird scarecrows. This dress is a vintage square dancing dress, and Andrew just pulled most of it from his closet...except the crow.

For work we gave out candy and had an in-store event and I was Minnie Mouse and used the ears from my mouseketeer costume.

On Halloween to give out candy, I revealed my dirty little secret... I love Holly Hobbie!


This was a little bit of an unusual year so we didn't know how Halloween was going to go. We didn't want to miss out on giving out candy or seeing friends, but also weren't sure of costumes, so we just pulled what we had from our closets. 

We converted our front porch into a traveling circus car and I was a tea leaf reader and Andrew dressed the part as my helper. I actually did read tea leaves for friends on my porch, they had scheduled appointments and everything! And Andrew gave out candy to the neighborhood kiddos. We ran out of candy. I was in shock so many kids were outside taking strangers candy despite the pandemic. We frantically looked through our cabinets for things to give out, so to those kids that got random little bags of chips, and a sleeves of PEZ candy, I apologize. Lol.

(Side note I've been reading fortunes since 1984.)


For Andrew's choice this year he picked the Karate Kid and of course I was Cobra Kai. He only needed the headband and black belt since he already had the gi, my costume was store bought with the She Ra wig from a few years ago. Villains have more fun! I'm glad it was a comfy costume. Lol.

For an easy Halloween day at Cats Like Us, and to give out candy, I was a Hogwarts student and part of the Gryffindor house.

For a friends party Andrew reprised his roll as the webslinger, but on vacation, and I opted for Deadpool.


For our friends Halloween party we were He-Man and She-Ra. The costumes were all store bought, but really funny.

Being the over the top person that I am. I wanted to be Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors and Andrew made my head out of paper mache, I made the rest and he was Seymour. (I guess he plays a good Rick Moranis). I even swing danced with this giant head! 

To give out candy I played it simple and just pulled things from my closet. I was a Cat Burgler.


For some reason this was the year I wasn't feeling very Halloweenie. We ended up doing a Rocky Horror Picture Show group costume. I was Columbia and Andrew was Dr. Frankenfurter. They were both modified store bought costumes. I glittered my old tap shoes. They were pretty awesome.

For a our friend's Halloween party we were tennis players and just pulled from our wardrobe. In real life we used to take tennis lessons, so we really had all of these things already!

We had another Halloween party to attend and Andrew really wanted to wear his vintage Shriner uniform. To make it a couples costume, I was a Ringmaster. I used a dress I already had and decorated a thrifted jacket.

The Atomic Barbershop down the street from us had a Halloween party and we went as G.I Joe and I was a doll. Both of us just pulled from our closet.


This year was Andrew's choice and he loves Ghostbusters, so he was Louis Tully and I was Dana Barrett. My dress is vintage and Andrew made his colander hat.

And to give out candy I was a Pumpkin because at the time I had orange hair and Andrew was Steve Zissou.


This was my pick because I love being a villian, so I picked Doc Ock and Andrew was Spiderman. Yes, I love over-the-top costumes. Can you tell?


To give out candy I choose a tiger print dress that I already had and added some bones to be a Cavewoman!


Logan 5 and Jessica 6 from Logan's Run, a classic 1970s sci-fi movie, that came out the same year as Star Wars-which you would never know from the bad special effects.  This was Andrew's pick, a couple people knew who we were. I thought the dress made me look like I was wearing a green garbage bag, but it was comfortable. Andrew's dad made the perfect replica gun from his 3-D printer.

Logan's Run Halloween Costume Logan 5 and Jessica 6

For working at Cats Like Us I did something easy: Snow White. It doesn't scare the kiddos that come trick-or-treating and she is my favorite princess. I met her in Disney World a few years ago and in my mind, she was the real thing.

Snow White costume


Of course I choose Father Karras and Regan from the Exorcist. Did I mention I love horror movies? This was the most comfortable costume I have ever worn! I had a nightgown on and slippers and everyone was afraid to talk to me. We even did a mock exorcism. Someone asked me how I got my hair to look so greasy and I told them the truth: I didn't wash it for a week! My friend Lauren did my makeup and I even had green teeth! Fun times....

The Exorcist Halloween Costume The Exorcist Halloween Costume

My costume for the shop and to hand out candy to the kiddos was Hello Kitty! Did I mention I love cats, too? It was pretty easy, I just made the headband and had a striped shirt already. I grew up with Hello Kitty, and I will always remember her in her red, white and blue outfit. I don't know why they keep making everything pink. They even turn the superheros outfits pink for girls! Grrrr, that's a rant for a different day....

Hello Kitty Halloween Costume


So in 2012 we were invited to a Halloween costume wedding and we had our costumes picked out already (uh-oh!) Andrew's choice was Labyrinth – he as the Goblin King and I was going to go as Sarah in the big white dress. Um yeah, we had to rethink that one... I can't be wearing a white dress if the bride is wearing a white dress! That's a no-no, so we made two versions.

Labyrinth (Version 1) was easy, I basically dressed in bad 1980's, and carried a baby doll everywhere, and Andrew got the fun wig and makeup. Let me remind you, this was his choice. (I think he secretly just wants to be David Bowie.)

Labyrinth Halloween Costume

Labyrinth (Version 2) I got help from a seamstress friend Lori, to convert a size 14 1980's high beaded collar wedding dress to a size 4, open neck, even fuller than it already is dress from the dance dream scene in the movie. She also added iridescent fabric to the skirt and shoulders. I added vintage rhinestone jewelry I already had to give it some bling, and the hair barrettes had silver ribbon and beads from the part of the dress we cut up. This is probably the most uncomfortable costume I've ever had (and I grew up having a dance recital every year!). It's very full and heavy. Needless to say I kept it. It's packed in it's own rubbermaid tote.... it takes up a WHOLE tote.

Labyrinth Halloween Costume Labyrinth Halloween Costume

This year we were also invited to a Funeral themed party. I just raided my closet for black. A long lacey black dress with a vintage 1940s jacket did the trick. I had a headband with a flower and I added a sheer scarf for drama.

I was also Cat Woman this year. I didn't eat for two days beforehand. My cat Vicktor liked this costume the best. I always wanted to be Cat Woman, I'm a crazy cat lady anyhow so it makes sense.
All I had to do was buy the jumpsuit, I had all the other pieces (yes including the whip.)

Cat Woman Halloween Costume


This was the beginning of our couples costume craze and it's totally my fault. I wanted to be Mouseketeers. Pretty easy, but we had to experiment with iron-ons so we didn't flub our names and the letters didn't peel off. I even wore my Minnie Mouse watch.

Disney Mouseketeers Halloween Costume

This year I also picked some easy costumes. I had a Halloween party at my house and I was a devil. I wore a vintage 1950s strapless fit and flare dress. Just grabbed some things from my closet.


We were invited to a friends birthday costume party the week of Halloween and we dressed up as scouts. Andrew and I are wearing our actual pins and my sash is real. I was the top cookie seller in my troop three years in a row. It makes sense I own a store and still sell things.

Boy Scouts Girl Scouts Halloween costume

Finally, for Halloween night and Cats Like Us I was a witch. I pulled a dress out of my closet for this one. Yes I'm an ex-goth. I bought this dress in Toronto from a shop called Siren back in the 1990s. It was the most expensive thing I owned at $95 in 1994, aside from my Doc Martens



This was the year I was determined to make my own costume, and I did. Carmen Miranda was my choice...what can I say--I like a challenge! I made this costume out of an old dance costume I had, and the fruit was plastic and heavy! It was about 5 lbs on fruit on my head. By the end of the night I had a headache, but it was worth it.

Carmen Miranda Halloween Costume


This was the first year Cats Like Us was open and we didn't have time to put together a costume. About an hour before this picture was taken we slapped this together. Andrew was Johnny Cash and I was Bettie Page. I said how will I differentiate myself from a witch, a rockabilly girl or a pinup, Andrew said add ropes to your wrists. Brilliant! It worked, and people actually knew who I was!

Johnny Cash and Bettie Page Halloween Costumes 

Before this it's kind of a blur, I've been a flapper, beatnik, black cat, cowgirl, mime, pirate, Uncle Sam, Sylvester the Cat, Purple Pie Man, Mickey Mouse, Wonder Woman, Joan of Arc (I was 5 when I was Joan), of course a bobby soxer and many more. I think it's creative to dress up for theme parties and you can get to be another part of yourself, something in this very busy world you don't get to do often. So if you get invited to a party dress up and have fun! Poor Andrew is in store for a doosie this year, I get to pick and do I like a challenge. Only 4 months until Halloween... let's get to it!

~Julie Ann

Many photos courtesy of The Next Generation Swing Dance -


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