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Actors in samurai costume at the Kyoto Eigamura film set
Yarkand ladies' summer fashions. 1870s

Costume is the distinctive style of dress of a particular people, class, or period. A costume can be a particular style of clothing worn to portray the wearer as a character or type of character other than their regular persona at a social event such as a masquerade, a fancy dress party or in a theatre performance.

Major categories[edit]

Theatrical costume[edit]

Main article: Stage clothes
Costume used in yakshagana, a theater art from India
Costumed performers from the 2006 Bristol Renaissance Faire

One of the more prominent places people see costumes is in theatre, film and on television. In combination with other aspects, theatrical costumes can help actors portray characters' age, gender role, profession, social class, personality, ethnicity, and even information about the historical period/era, geographic location and time of day, as well as the season or weather of the theatrical performance. Often, stylized theatrical costumes can exaggerate some aspect of a character; for example Harlequin and Pantaloon in the Commedia dell'arte.

National costume[edit]

National costume or regional costume expresses local (or exiled) identity and emphasises a culture's unique attributes. It is often a source of national pride. Examples of such are a Scotsman in a kilt or a Japanese person in a kimono.

Holidays and festivals[edit]

A traditional, European-style Santa suit

The wearing of costumes has become an important part of such holidays and festivals as Mardi Gras and Halloween (see Halloween costume for more information), and (to a lesser extent) people may also wear costumes in conjunction with other holidays, such as Christmas and Easter. Mardi Gras costumes usually take the form of jesters and other fantasy characters, while Halloween costumes traditionally take the form of supernatural creatures such as ghosts, vampires, pop culture icons and angels. In modern times Halloween costumes sometimes also include fashion show type costumes. Christmas and Easter costumes typically portray mythical characters such as Santa Claus (by donning a santa suit and beard) or the Easter Bunny by putting on an animal costume. Costumes may serve to portray various other characters during secular holidays, such as an Uncle Sam costume worn on the Independence day for example.

In Judaism, a common practice is to dress up on Purim. The Jews celebrate the change of their destiny. They were delivered from being the victims of an evil decree against them and were instead allowed by the King to destroy their enemies. A quote from the Book of Esther, which says: "On the contrary" (hebrew: ונהפוך הוא ) is the reason that wearing a costume has become so popular among the Jews on this holiday.

Children[edit]

Costumes also serve as an avenue for children to explore and roleplay. Children can dress up in various forms; for example characters from history or fiction like pirates, princesses or cowboys, common jobs like nurses or police officers, or animals such as those seen in zoos or farms.

Mascots[edit]

Another very popular situation where costumes are employed are for sporting events, where people dressed as their team's representative mascot help the club or team rally round their team's cause. Animal costumes which are visually very similar to mascot costumes are also popular among the members of the furry fandom where they are referred to as fursuits that match ones animal persona, or fursona.


Cosplay[edit]

Cosplay, a word of Japanese origin that's short for "costume play", is a performance art in which participants wear costumes and accessories to represent a specific character or idea that is usually always identified with a unique name (as opposed to a generic word). These costume wearers often interact to create a subculture centered on role play, so most time they can be seen in a play group, gathering or convention. A significant amount of these kinds costumes may be originally designed or homemade and unique, depending on the character, idea, or object the costumer wearer is attempting to imitate or represent. The costumes themselves are often artistically judged to how well they represent the subject or object that the costume wearer is attempting to contrive.


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Costume — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
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Entertainment Weekly
Mon, 01 Sep 2014 09:50:47 -0700

Masters of Sex has reached the '60s. Over the course of “Asterion,” the seventh episode of the show's second season, the setting jumped between 1958 and 1960. That posed a challenge for costume designer Ane Crabtree, who had to reflect the changing of ...

We Got This Covered

Polygon
Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:56:15 -0700

"People have been asking for it forever. I think it's that every Halloween you're reminded about the game. We have a lot of people who are coming back to us saying they replay it every year." The original Costume Quest was released in 2010. Steam pre ...

USA TODAY

USA TODAY
Tue, 26 Aug 2014 14:45:59 -0700

Will you dress like a "zom-bey" this Halloween, or channel your favorite show with "Crazy Eyes in Love"? Let Beyoncé be your dress-up muse with USA TODAY's Beyoncé-ify My Halloween Costume Generator. Read or Share this story: http://usat.ly/1peub5e ...
 
Bleacher Report
Sun, 31 Aug 2014 18:35:02 -0700

Matt Barnes and DeAndre Jordan of the Los Angeles Clippers decided to go all-out for a costume party with these terrific outfits. Jordan decided to go as Jimi Hendrix and pulls it off with the terrific Afro. Barnes went as Prince and posted the ...
 
MTV.com
Thu, 28 Aug 2014 13:48:45 -0700

Have you ever wanted to wear a super realistic Iron Man costume, but you only had, say, one or two thousand dollars to spend instead of however many billions it costs to create the real thing? (And of course, you would never sink as low as to purchase ...
 
Chicago Tribune
Mon, 25 Aug 2014 05:30:48 -0700

If you're planning to dress as a character from the 19th-century Austrian operetta "Die Fledermaus" for Halloween and you've found the inventory at local costume shops unsatisfactory, you may be interested in an upcoming costume sale. The Lyric Opera ...

Today.com

Today.com
Fri, 22 Aug 2014 11:10:17 -0700

It's "totally real," insists creator Johnathon Weeks, owner of the BrandsonSale.com costume e-commerce site where the outfit is available. "If you order it, we will ship you one bucket, one tulle tunic with silver ice cube embellishments, and an ice ...

Hollywood Life

Hollywood Life
Fri, 29 Aug 2014 15:03:07 -0700

SPOILER ALERT! Leaked photos from the set of Marvel's 'Fantastic Four' reboot show what appears to be Doctor Doom in all his glory. Are you a fan of the alleged new costume? Since the Fantastic Four reboot cast was announced in February, not a whole ...
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