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    Riff Raff – Getting Handy

    Window / Time Warp:


    • Bald wig with blond hair glued on.
      Hair should be sort of thin, and not all cut off neatly the same length. Riff’s hair is stringy and dirty-looking; you may want to grease the hair with gel or lotion. If your Riff wig has beautiful, silky hair, fix it.

      • Dr. Ruth’s TIP: Bald? Glue a weft of blond hair directly to your head. (Not bald? You can always buy the commercial Riff wig – see the Links page.)

    • Black ripped tailcoat. The tailcoat has peak lapels and is short in front with swallowtail tails in back. The transition from the front of the jacket to the tails is abrupt, not gradual. 2 large fabric-covered buttons placed vertically below the lapels on each side of coat. (These are easiest to see right before Riff goes to scare the monster.) The top button’s (on Riff’s left) fabric covering has worn off slightly. Two fabric-covered buttons are placed horizontally above the tails. Used tailcoats can be bought from a formalwear shop. Or cut tails out of black fabric and stitch to a suit jacket.

      Both sleeves have been ripped out — the right cuff only a little, the left cuff, almost to the elbow. A shred of fabric on the left shoulder stands up almost vertically–make out of fabric glued to a pipe-cleaner, segment of wire hanger, or part of a thin pet collar. There are also long string-like black shreds hanging from the jacket near the tails. Inner pocket on left side (store bloody rag to dry Janet here).

    • Hump.

      Use wadded up cloth or small pillow fastened into the coat. Pins comes undone easily and may tear your jacket. You can also sew a belt onto the jacket back which can then be fastened around the hump. A fabric belt with a sliding buckle (not a traditional prong-type belt) will probably be easiest.

    • Bloodstained backless low-cut white piqué tuxedo vest (waistcoat) with narrow lapels.

      3 buttonholes; only one button (white plastic) is fastened. (Which one varies by scene.) Bottom of left side of waistcoat is frayed. The largest bloodstains are on Riff’s right side: there is a horizontal bloodstain with a slight drip below the waistline, and a long vertical bloodstain above it. A red marker works.

    • Half-finger leather black gloves with mesh backs (use biking or weightlifting gloves).

      There are two wide parallel holes on the left one: one on the back of the hand, one nearer the fingers.

    • Bloody rag (white, dishtowel sized).
      Kept in left inner pocket of tux jacket.

    • Green wine bottle with gold label and clear champagne coupe.

      I suggest plastic for safety. Try modifying a green 1 liter bottle (wrong shape, but shatterproof) or get a joke bottle of bubble bath. For the coupe, don’t use the two-piece thin plastic coupes sold as partyware; they get smashed very quickly. Plastic margarita glasses that look like coupes can be found for about $3 each; ask Google.
      Pour yourself a drink in the elevator, and hand coupe to Frank in the lab.

    • White suspenders.

      The old-fashioned kind that look like an upside-down “Y” in front and button onto the inside of the trouser waistband.

    • Tight black pants with white and black lacing on the legs.

      The left leg is laced with white lacing about a third of the way to the knee (3 X-shaped stitches, bow at the top). The right leg is laced the same way with black lacing. Lace loosely so pantlegs flare a little.

    • Black undies to save time in the Takeover scene.

    • White spat.

      Bloodstained on both sides. Wear on right boot. Military supply stores, formalwear and costume shops sell spats. Cut the heel and toe off a white sock if you can’t find spats. No, I don’t think there is a black spat on the left boot. No strap can be seen on the underside of Riff’s sole when Frank kicks him during Sword of Damocles.

    • Black Beatle boots.

      The toes are quite pointed; medium tapered “cuban” heel (like a cowboy boot). Centre seam cut (looks a bit like a spat); it’s a style the Beatles wore and the boot is available from sites that cater to Beatles tribute bands – Google Beatle boots, Chelsea boots, or winklepickers. (See the Links page.)

    Scare the Monster:

    • Bloody rag from Time Warp scene.

    • Gold candelabrum with 13 white candles.

      It stands on the floor with little feet at the end of the vertical stem. Leafy motif near the candles; twisted rope design on the stem. 6 candles in lower and middle tier; 1 candle in top tier. Electric candles can be used and candelabrum plugged into wall. Battery-powered candles can be bought around Christmas. Make sure they’re secure; secure candles with poster tack or clay if you don’t want to glue them.

    Takeover:

    • Space wig.

      Bonus points for a separate wig – the hair can be made erect using liquid latex, spray starch or white glue with a metal wire support. Use a plastic banana on a wire for laughs. If you’re using your own hair and it’s the right length, hairspray or gel.

    • Spacesuit.

      • Good luck. The color photo from the RHPS Book is a MIRROR IMAGE. (The black and white photo is correct.)
        For a good photo, check out the April 2005 Mick Rock calendar for a nice side view with a good view of the anklet/boots.
      • Quilted gold wraparound top with front and back “skirt” flaps (quilted in diagonal squares and rectangles, NOT JUST SQUARES) with double black vinyl fins, belt, black rectangular “buckle” with 4 vertical gold half-cylinders (beveled ends), and black lightning bolt pin (stitched on looks wrong – surface is visibly flat and you can see it reflecting light in some pictures)
    • Silver gloves with black vinyl sleeves / gauntlets
      • Sleeves are edged with thin border of gold lamé. You can buy gold binding tape, or just use thin strips of lamé.
      • There are three short stitched 3-D wavy lines (i.e., 6 lines of stitching, 2 defining each line) on the back of the glove near where the sleeve tip comes over the back of the hand. Riff’s and Mags’ gloves are also the same size.
      • TIP: Silver gloves can be brought at bridal boutiques or accessories stores. (You can buy silver firefighter’s gloves from an army/navy surplus store, but they have suede palms, only 3 fingers and get really hot. I couldn’t make them work, though others have.)
      • The sleeves are made of shiny vinyl and extend in a point over the back of the hands. They will need to be reinforced to hold their shape. Try bridal stiffener or TimTex (a kind of stiff paper sold by the yard at fabric stores – used for things like wide-brimmed garden hats or fabric bowls), buckram (a type of stiff cloth), or thin quilt batting.
      • The inner edge of the glove sleeve comes to just over mid-forearm on the inner arm, and the outer edge extends to a point just past the elbow. Do not cut sleeves too long on the inner arm or you won’t be able to bend your elbows.
      • TIP: Some band supply shops sell black vinyl gauntlets, and you can buy Darth Vader gloves and cut ’em up.
    • Chrome pitchfork spacegun.

      Richard confirmed on Rocky Radio June 8, 1999 that: “[The gun] was chrome, it was silver…it’s some kind of fiberglass body that had been silvered somehow or other…plasticized silver.” Of course, if you have the choice between silver spraypaint and gold spraypaint, gold will still look more natural. Haven’t tried chrome spraypaint; if you have, send me a pic.

      Both the handle and the “sight” (an upward-pointing prong) angle back toward the pitchfork handle and are tipped with a ball. An upside-down lightning bolt protrudes from the front of the ball on the “sight.”
      The sight is attached to the gun where the prongs meet the pitchfork’s handle. All the pieces (handle, sight, tines, etc.) have a round cross-section. The circular “guard” around the trigger looks like a napkin ring. Handle is duller than rest of gun. The tines and the “sight” have a smaller diameter than the handle and the part of the gun that extends backwards beyond the handle. All three tines are the same length, and they taper.

      Use wooden beads from a craft store or ping-pong balls for the balls on the end of the tubes. Styrofoam balls are hard to paint and most glues melt them. Gun can be modified from a devil’s pitchfork (we used hot nails to hold it together–glue wasn’t enough) or be made of wood or metal. A box that makes electronic zapping noises is cool, but no one will hear it. Red LED’s at the end of each tine look great; red laser pointers don’t read as well. The best-looking gun I’ve seen that didn’t require welding was made by Scott Matheus. It’s plastic–he sanded it, coated it with red primer (a trick he from a public TV program on gilding), then applied two coats each of gold spraypaint and clear shellac. The problem with plastic is that eventually someone will step on it and break it (someone did).

    • Underwear, Stockings and Boots
      • Spike-heel patent black ankle boots with silver-backed cuffs cut into points (“elf booties”). Magenta’s have at least five points; they curve out slightly. Some people cut their own; I take the boots and a pattern for what to cut to a shoe repair shop. They look at you funny, but the work is professional.
        You can make lamé-backed cuffs and velcro them over a pair of boots.
      • Spiked gold anklet. – The anklet is gold with 3 rows of silver spikes arranged in a diamond pattern. 3/4″ spikes look right. Make the anklet out of leather or upholstery from an auto shop. Worn on left ankle.
      • Black undies, black stockings and garterbelt. (Maybe he wears them the whole show? Whatever floats your boat.)

    Making a quick and dirty maid’s cap

    aka I lost the damn thing again

    I won’t claim this is perfect, but I’ve yet to find a better way to do it, and I’ve made four or five of the things over the last 14 years. It beats wearing a coffee filter on your head.

    Supplies:
    *About ¼ of a yard of white cotton, not woven too tightly (1/3 of a yard would be better; don’t screw up)
    *Approx 16” of scalloped lace trim, 1.5” wide at its widest point
    *White thread, needles, pins, a ruler or tape measure

    CUT IT:
    Cut a 5.25” diameter circle (finished cap is 5” in diameter; I am including a ¼” seam allowance all the way round)

    FOLD IT:
    Pin in place three folds originating from the center back, where you’re going to put the bow. If you aren’t feeling that detail-oriented, the folds can be omitted but it won’t look as good. I suggest lighting ironing the folds into place and then tacking them down with very tiny stitches spread far apart (you want it to look natural).

    DECORATE IT:
    Pin under the seam allowance and either baste it down now or pin the lace underneath it so you can sew on the lace and sew under the seam allowance at the same time. (It saves time, sort of, but it’s fiddly and harder to take apart later.) Pin the lace so it overlaps itself at the center back, under where you’re going to put the bow so the join won’t show.

    For the ribbon:
    Cut a 21.5”x 3.5” rectangle of the same white fabric (I used 21.5” last time; up to 23” or so is fine; again, this includes a ¼” seam allowance all around.)

    Fold the ribbon right side to right side and sew along the edge ¼” from the edge, making a tube. Turn the tube inside out so the right sides are on the outside. Cut the ends diagonally, making a trapezoid.

    ——————————–
    \________________/

    Finish the ends, tucking the ragged ends in and sewing them inside your trapezoid.

    (Yes, you could just use 1.5” width white ribbon…but it looks crappy. The texture’s wrong, and it won’t have the correct body when you tie it into a bow.)

    Tie your trapezoid “ribbon” into a bow, keeping the two “tails” of the bow about the same length. The center of the bow shouldn’t be totally flat; let it have a little body.

    Tack the bow onto the cap at the base of your radiating folds (or just where you overlapped the lace if you skipped the folds). Tack down both the loops and the center of the bow to the cap with double thread; it’s sort of heavy.

    WEAR IT:
    I find the best way to attach the cap is with bobby pins. (Take them off after every wearing; I used to leave them attached but got rust stains when my costume bag got damp. Just don’t do it.)
    Slide one bobby pin along each side and one along the back under your bow so it doesn’t flop around. Buy auburn or white bobby pins.

    TIP: Some Magentas suggest making thread loops or making small loops out of satin cord underneath on either side for the bobby pins so they don’t show. I’ve been Magenting for more than 30 years and never found it necessary.

    Frank Lab, Bedroom Scenes, and Whipping Scene

    Lab Scene:


    TIP: If applicable, remove white heel covers on black shoes.

    Extender chain to lengthen Frank’s pearls (your pearls may include this as part of the necklace).

    Worn on the back right of Frank’s neck.

    Green surgeons’ gown

    • Red triangle on left breast (point up). Mid-calf length; rolled-up sleeves are rolled up to the elbows.
    • Surgeon’s gowns are available at veterinary or medical supply stores. Try on-line or hit the Links page. Department stores may have “Scrubs” catalogs (JC Penney’s does), and many thrift stores have a “uniforms” section, but you’ll have to get awfully lucky.
    • Mid-calf length. Standup collar; sleeves are rolled up to the elbows.
    • Two back ties, one at the neck, one at mid-back, and 2 ties that start under a green rectangle at the front waist, wrap around the back, then tie in front.) A short green string hangs from each sleeve.
    • There is a stitched vertical rip (outlined with red stitching; white fabric shows through) midway between his neck and his right shoulder, vertical bloodstain at the left from mid-chest down to the waistline, a big blotch with vertical bloodstain on the left front of the skirt (thigh-height), and several holes on the right side at about thigh height.

  • Pink dishwashing gloves.
    Worn cuffed for much of the scene. These can be hard to find in the US unless it’s October (Breast Cancer month), unless retro is having a moment.
  • Stemmed widemouth glass.

    “Champagne bowl” style. Actually a Riff prop, but many Franks bring their own. Look for plastic ones at party stores (not the thin-walled two-piece ones which are too fragile to be practical). I found some unbreakable margarita glasses that aren’t that weird inverted-sombrero shape that are holding up pretty well.
  • Black pick.

    Make from cardboard and duct tape.
  • Peep toe black glitter platform sandals (black heels), thin back-strap.

    Same basic style as Sweet T shoes. In several photos, Frank’s toes are far enough back that the shoes do look closed-toe, but they’re not: you can see them peeking out as the elevator comes up to the lab. Strap is not glittered. Rectangular silver buckle.

    Bedroom Scene:


    The terminally anal retentive will have a pink robe, a blue robe, a wig to pull off, and Brad glasses. If you’re less OCD, borrow Brad and Janet’s robes or use just one robe–especially if you do this scene behind a sheet. Frank wears his corset under his robe with Janet.

    Post-Bedroom Scene:


    • Cigarette.

      A sturdier prop can be made from a white ballpoint pen casing cut to length, the end slightly melted with a lighter, and then painted with red nailpolish to make “lit” end. If your theater allows e-cigarettes, that’s an option, or you can buy a prop cigarette at a theater/joke shop which actually produce “smoke.”
    • Whip.

      Alternating gray and black tails braided for about half its length, then hanging loose. The tails are probably a good four feet long. Medium brown wooden handle (“stock”). Brown leather loop on the end of the handle for hanging.

    • Relax after sex in a black leather jacket with lots of embroidered patches and enamel metal badges (mostly motorcycle themed)

      Enamel badges on the upper chest. The sleeves are vented with zippers, and are edged with black fringe. The sleeves are decorated with various embroidered patches (mostly circular), the back with different shapes.
    • Black leather jacket with lots of embroidered patches and enamel metal badges (mostly motorcycle themed) on it

      NOTE: Badges are positioned as on Poster Magazine Vol. 1 #2, but without the large Mao pin. If you want details on the jacket, take a look at Frank’s jacket, as it looks today (we think).

      Front:

      • Zips up the front. Shirt-style collar (not the more common 4-tab lapels). Round flat silver studs (“nailheads”) decorate the collar, and there is a small enamel checkered racing flag badge on the tip of both collar points.
      • Enamel badges decorate the upper chest: 34 on Frank’s right side and 41 or 42 on his left. Most are motorcycle-themed, and they include racing flags, Triumph, BMW, Sunbeam, Jawa, Matchless, Jaguar, Panther, The Vincent, (Tri)BSA, CZ, and Norton.
        left

      • Silver chain hangs in 2 loops underneath the badge area on each side. On the right side, the end of the chain by Frank’s arm is connected to a large round domed metal stud. On the left side, there is a large domed metal stud in the center where the two loops are attached, and two small studs placed vertically beneath the end of the chain closest to the front zip.
      • Slash pockets on both sides are outlined underneath with small round silver studs.
      • A dirty white string/lace hangs down to mid-thigh from the zipper pull on Frank’s left. At the left base of the jacket is a tab that could be snapped over the bottom of the zipper with a domed silver snap.
        right
        Note that this is a picture from the poster magazine, so the Mao button (which does NOT appear in the film) has been blacked out.

      Sleeves:

      The sleeves are vented with zippers, and are edged with black fringe. The zippers have metal zipper pulls that look like a jump ring attached to a very small D-ring.

      The sleeves are decorated with patches.

      Right sleeve (top to bottom):

      afrslv

      • circular BMW patch (black circle with gold ‘BMW’ above circle quartered in blue and white)
      • dirty white number “59” on circular black patch (“59″ Club)
      • “ROYAL ENFIELD” in gold on circular red patch, edged in gold, on a larger black fabric circle
      • skull with red helmet(?) and little wings on circular patch. The design is very similar to the UK Hell’s Angels logo (a skull in a red helmet with little wings, usually above a yellow banner reading “Hell’s Angels”); I have never seen a picture clear enough to prove that’s what it is, but I’ve never seen another design that was close, either, and I’m almost certain one of the badges is a Hell’s Angels badge. Hell’s Angels badges and patches occasionally come up on eBay, though the Hell’s Angels often get the auctions canceled. Keep this in mind as you do your searches.
      • skull and crossbones on black rectangular patch

      Left sleeve (top to bottom): aflslv There’s also a gorgeous but HUGE black and white full-body photo, courtesy of Larry Viezel, here.

      • “ROYAL ENFIELD” in gold on circular red patch, edged in gold, on larger black circle (see above).
      • dirty white number “59” on circular black patch (“59″ Club patches are a white 59 on a black patch; it may just be very old and dirty)
      • “TriBSA” in gold on horizontal dark blue oval patch edged in gold in the middle of a black rectangle
      • Blue circular “Triton” patch edged in gold
      • Honda Motorcycles patch (flying gold wing with “HONDA” in red under it on circular black patch)
      • gray Nazi iron eagle patch (directly above zipper vent)

      Back:

      • The back has red block letters painted along the top, obscured by a big red/yellow snarling tiger’s head patch (snarling towards Frank’s right shoulder); the letters “ROY” and “ELD” can be seen on the upper left and lower right sides of the tiger (probably “ROYAL ENFIELD”). Ashford Wyrd and Shawn Anthony showed me a Triumph tiger patch, and it’s a match.
      • Below that is a white rectangular red, white and blue-lettered TRIUMPH patch which is sewn slightly overlapping over a British flag (actually, it’s not an actual British flag–the red stripes are all the same width; the stripes in a real Union Jack are different widths).
      • There is one patch at the bottom left of the jacket back: a yellow circular patch with arced lettering along the top and a vertical object; the fellow who owns what is probably THE jacket states it’s a Sylvester the cat (think Warner Brothers) patch, and the (warning! extremely large!) black and white side view photo from Larry Viezel appears to bear him out (peek through the fringe: the cat’s white tummy, black arm and gloved hand, and the letters SY**ES are visible).
      • There are three patches in a vertical row centered below the flag: a circular white patch on top, a middle patch with a red circle with yellow winged “M” on a black square field), and a horizontal rectangular patch with some sort of wing design (Moto Ducati).
      • There are also two patches, one above the other, on the bottom right. The bottom of the two is a Rock N Roll Special square patch with a a blue triangle (point up) in a white circle; the patch above that is a white circle with Warner Brothers style Road Runner pointing to the right with the words “Beep Beep!” (quotation marks on the patch).

  • Links – Where to get the goods

    Google is your friend. Some of the most helpful costume links will be ones you find yourself, using the search engine of your choice. If you find something really good,
    email me
    , will you? Happy hunting!

    A NOTE ON LINKS: Many stores have gone to a database format, which messes up the links something fierce. So if the main link doesn’t work, try a keyword search at the main page. I try to keep everything current, but I do miss things. If you find a broken link, please
    email me
    . Thanks!

    Image Sources – or what to look at when you’re bored with Tumblr

    • Cosmo’s Factory http://www.cosmosfactory.org

      Cosmo grabs images directly from the movie. He takes requests. His high-resolution Blu-Ray photos have been down long enough I’ve removed the link, sadly.

      For lower-resolution, smallish (but detail-oriented) grabs from the DVD, visit:
      http://www.cosmosfactory.org/rocky_horror_images_mainview.shtml

    • Rare RHPS Photo Site http://nominex.com/rarerhps/archive.htm
      The main page has disappeared, but the archive is still there. One of the best places on the Internet to look at rare Rocky stills. The variety and the quality here is astonishing.
    • Cinema Collectors (no website)
      1507 Wilcox Ave

      Hollywood, CA 90028

      (323) 461-6516

      (323) 461-6519 (fax)

    • Still Things http://www.stillthings.com/Fantastique.html
    • Has an online catalog of stills you can buy (text descriptions only). Nice selection, and they will sell you wallet-size color photos (handy if the description leaves you wondering). I was unimpressed at delivery time last time I ordered, but I still order from them if I need photos from a specific scene.

    • Jerry Ohlinger’s Movie Materials Store http://moviematerials.com/

      No on-line catalog, though they will send you a text listing of Rocky photos if you send a self-addressed stamped envelope (ask for the Rocky Horror List, #37).

    Suggestions on How to Make RHPS Costumes

    • Student’s Guide to RHPS Costumes http://www.angelfire.com/film/ickle/costumes/rhpscostumes.html
      Making costumes on the cheap. Good suggestions for modifying items found in charity shops (and a large list of UK shops!), and suggestions for where to buy things in the UK. The Columbia instructions look helpful; Janet’s are much less detailed but promising. No one else is up yet.
    • ShawnAnthony.com Rocky Horror submenu http://shawnanthony.com/rocky.html
      Also uses (with permission) the text from the Anal Retentive Costume List as a jumping-off point. Information on the Frank jacket is notably more complete than the text here; information also included for Eddie.
    • Rocky Horror Costume Instructions by [Sugarsh0x] http://www.angelfire.com/nj/RHPSColumbia/index.html This is a page on how to make quick and dirty Rocky Horror costumes. I won’t vouch for its accuracy, but if you need a costume fast, check it out. Hasn’t been touched in years.
    • RHPS Costume Ideas http://members.tripod.com/~ScabbyDoo/costumes Another “quick and dirty” costume page. More fragmentary than the first one. Largely an archive.

    Forums To Talk About Making Rocky Costumes

    • RHPS Costumes (LiveJournal) http://www.livejournal.com/community/rhpscostumes/
      People post stuff they’re looking for, possible sources, etc. It’s going the way of all Livejournal pages but the archives are worth a look.

      Cosplay forums can also be helpful; you may want to add them to any searches, though I don’t have any particular recommendations. Someday someone will make a Rocky Horror costuming page on Facebook that doesn’t go moribund. I’m still waiting.

    • The Rocky Horror Costume Forum http://amadscientist.proboards.com/
      Very little traffic these days. Requires a login id (free). I’ve found the founder, Mark M’s, comments on the rhpscostumes Livejournal group helpful.
    • yahoogroup RHPSCostumesCostumersNFreaks finally went defunct.

    General Costume Construction

    • Cosplay.com’s Cosplay Tutorials http://www.cosplay.com/forumdisplay.php?f=178
      GodDAMN. Tutorial after tutorial on making costumes that look like what’s on-screen, all aimed at regular people. Want to know how to dye a wig with Sharpie markers? These people know how. OK, most Rocky people aren’t looking for tips on how to make animal feet or kimonos. But there is a wealth of knowledge here.

    What About Those Commercial Costumes?
    Fox released these in 2001. I wouldn’t recommend them except maybe the Riff wig (hard to find commercially; requires some skill to make), or the Frank wig (not bad for a wig in a bag–the shape is right at least). Many Columbias use the jacket a starter, though it’s kind of crap.
    NOTE: the photos on the packages are not the same as the actual costumes (they were probably of higher-quality prototypes).

    If you want an approximate audience costume out of the bag to wear once or twice, these may be just what you need. Just don’t expect them to last. If you’re in a cast and wearing any of these but the gold jacket…well, people may point and laugh.

    Rundown:

    • The Frank wig and costume look OK but are flimsy, cheap and nasty. Fingerless gloves and corset are fronted with a plastic scratchy material that looks okay from a distance; backs are plain black. Gloves started to run immediately (they’re not hemmed). Faux garter belt lace strip (attached to panties) looks good but started coming unstitched when I held it up.
    • The Columbia costume looks vaguely acceptable except for the awful floppy foil dot hat, which most Columbias ditch immediately in favor of a plastic glitter top hat.
      Tube top: multicolored shiny stripes with gold foil dots printed over them (plain black back). Tiny red foil dot bowtie on white elastic. Pastel stripes printed on black stretchy shorts. Thin unlined foil dot “tailcoat” with rectangular black foil dot lapels.
      The Columbia wig is an embarrassment: wrong color, too bushy. You can do better at a wigshop or Halloween store.
    • The Magenta dress is made of cheap velours with the front of an apron attached. Cap looks OK. Considering how easy it is to modify a dress, I don’t understand buying this…I guess it beats a French maid dress. Magenta wig doesn’t look good, but I’ve seen worse.
    • The Riff costume is a horrible cheap polyester suit with attached vest and a shoulderpad (?) for the hump. Two poor-quality spats and gloves are included. Just buy a black jacket at a thrift store and wear an unbuttoned white shirt under it – it’ll look a lot better.

    People Who Will Make Rocky Costumes For You

    Honest, it’s more fun to make your own. (Don’t know how to sew? Neither did the rest of us when we started. For ideas on how to find/cobble together/modify costumes, and finding supplies, visit the Finding the Stuff page.) But some people really don’t want to, don’t have time, or would rather hire someone more skilled, and I got tired of getting email asking for a list of costumers. So here it is. I haven’t dealt with all of them myself, but I have met most of them and personally seen examples of their work.

    Costumers are listed here as a service to our readers, not as an endorsement. If you have a problem with one of them, I probably can’t help. There are a couple of folks on Etsy or Facebook who aren’t listed here. Want my opinion? Ask.

    There may also be options in your area, and if you can find someone local, you’ll be able to try the costume on and check on its progress in person.
    Ask for references and CHECK them. Often once costumers become known for excellent work, they get lots of orders, get overwhelmed, and go down in flames. So ask around before you order.
    You can always talk with Edge, who prefer not to be listed here, or go to cosplay sources or Etsy.

    If you do order a costume, discuss details that matter to you (color; number of pleats/eyelets; size of quilted spacesuit squares, etc.) with the costumer. This may increase your cost over a standard item or it may not.

    Make sure the measurements you send the costumer are as exact and complete as possible. You may still have to make some final alterations once the costume arrives. On my most recent commission, I asked that the costumer send me a muslin mockup to try on and modify before they started the real thing, which helped.

    If you need a costume by a specific date, order well in advance, particularly around Halloween, when most Rocky costumers are swamped, and keep in mind the costumer may blow the deadline (life happens). You may be better off doing the costume yourself.
    If you live in a different country than the costumer, you may have to pay import duty on the costume, and shipping may be pricey!

    • Other site’s costumer links
      http://columbiascloset.blogspot.com/p/other-sellers.html
      Mina seems to be doing a better job than I at keeping track of other sellers; she includes notes about whether she’s seen the work in person.

    • UK COSTUMERS
    • US COSTUMERS
      • Edge Creations
        As I mentioned above, Edge prefers not to be listed here, but they often have a booth at cons and can easily be found via Google and Facebook. We have profound differences on some of their designs, though I like their boas and am impressed with the embroidery on their Brad robes. Many people like them.
        They do not customize as far as I’m aware; if you disagree with their color choices or other details, they have plenty of customers who don’t.
      • Hannah Cunningham From Rags to Rocky

        Hannah is the cast director of The Master’s Affairs, in Lexington, Kentucky. She got a serger sewing machine for Christmas, and learned how to use it to make a set of boas for her cast. She writes: “I wildly overestimated the material I would need, and wound up making extra boas to sell online. I’ve long since gone through my original stash of fabric, but the boas are in such demand that I’ve kept making them. I make them from gold, red, and black glitter organza, with two feet of black chiffon on either end. They’re a total of nine feet long, serged all around in black thread, pleated, and joined by a strip of twill tape running along the middle of the gold strip. I’ve sold quite a few and people seem to be happy; I have 100% positive feedback on eBay.”

        Hannah recently expanded into space suits; her first batch look pretty good and were criminally cheap. She’s looking at revising pricing as she sources more pre-quilted lam&eacute . She also makes space gloves. She is open to making other RHPS costumes, so you can certainly ask.

      • Shawn Anthony (rhpscostumes@shawnanthony.com)
      • http://shawnanthony.com/rocky.html

        As of October 2011, Shawn is back on hiatus and may not be back.
        Shawn writes: “16 years of involvement in Rocky Horror. Have created costumes for fans and shadowcast performers across the United States and Britain. Trained and certified in stage costuming and theatre technology…Particular interest in Frank N. Furter and Eddie.” Costume work won Best Frank at the 2005 Vegas con and Best Rocky at the Chicago 2006 con (field of two contestants). Photos; partial price list. Shawn notes that costume creation will take 4 to 6 weeks. We occasionally have some differences on costume shape but I must say some of his recent work is very nice indeed. He seems to be particularly well-known for his Frank shoes, and they do look very nice.

      • Mina Credeur seweccentric@yahoo.com

        http://www.ColumbiasCloset.com

        As of October 2012, Mina has stopped taking commissions, though I understand she may still have hand props and other non-sized items (badges, patches, etc.) available, notably at cons.

        Even if you aren’t interested in buying anything, check out Mina’s site; she posts reference photos and useful information on how to make costumes, as well as a growing collection of patterns and a listing of costume sellers. (Disclaimer: I contributed to the lightning bolt pattern; I haven’t used any of her others, though the spouse made a nice pair of Rocky shorts from a pattern she provided.) Her work on the site won her a BOSS award.
        Mina did good-looking costumes for reasonable prices, and when I needed something made, or someone asked for a recommendation, I usually went to her. She has a good eye, does her research, and is open to discussion. After getting overextended in the early 2000s, she issued refunds; spent some time doing only referrals and repeat customers; then moved on to eBay, where she garnered a feedback rating of 100%. Mina also does historical costumes, mostly Victorian.

        Mina is a Columbia and former cast costume mistress. She uses an embroidery machine to make patches for Frank and Brad jackets; we got a Triumph tiger patch from her and it looks great. She also makes nice vinyl lab masks (original light pink no longer available; I suggest you ask her not to cut them too large) and lightning bolt pins made of foam-backed vinyl or fiberglass. The vinyl look good but over time they delaminate and start to curl; the fiberglass are fragile and prone to breakage. Mina also made a rather nice maid’s dress for me with proper pleats from a pattern I’d cut (redoing the sleeves, which I’d screwed up).

      General Costume Sources and Lists of Sources

      Remember, you can find a lot of stuff in the real world.

      • eBay http://www.ebay.com
        This is where people post their old costumes nowadays, and if you’re looking for authentic 1970’s crap, this is where most people go to find it.
        If you can’t find what you’re looking for on eBay, consider hitting alternate country eBay sites, such as http://www.ebay.co.uk/ A lot of people use eBay as a storefront; it’s not my thing but a lot of people cruise the eBay shops and do really well.

       

    • Frederick’s of Hollywood http://www.fredericks.com/

      They won’t have exact Rocky lingerie, but it’s a good place to start. A good source for cheap stockings (fishnet and otherwise), corsets, etc. Their satin jacquard corset (cupless!) makes an excellent floorshow corset when worn backwards; a lot of casts use them. After more than 20 years, it look like it may have been discontinued; hit eBay.

      Specific Costume Piece Sources
      Note: I have not purchased these items myself unless indicated, and am not associated with any of the merchants.

      A word to the wise if you’re purchasing lingerie on-line–shop around. You’ll find that the majority of sites you visit are selling exactly the same thing –after a while the photos will all look familiar. Prices vary wildly: why pay twice as much for the same thing?

      • MISC
        • Act One Costumes
          When people recommend a general costume site, I’m skeptical. However, this one is pretty good.
          Includes mustaches (the “straight mustache” looks like a good bet for Dr. Scott), red suspenders, backseamed fishnet stockings, spats (strapless), paper wingtip collars, a fairly nice satin cape with standup collar (you’d have to re-line it in silver), and black plastic German Soldier Helmets ($15).
          And the men’s short shag wig looks like with a little trimming it might be a decent Rocky wig. Hmm.
          Definitely worth a look. Thanks to Dawn Marie for pointing this one out.
        • Ardell LashTite – Non-latex eyelash glue
          I’m not providing a link; it’s available at drugstores, or at drugstore.com if you must buy on-line. It’s supposed to hold very securely, so care is recommended when removing your falsies! This used to claim to be the only latex-free eyelash adhesive, but Andrea now also makes a brush-on latex-free formula; I bought some at Walgreen’s.
      • STAGE AND PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP
        • MAC http://www.maccosmetics.com
          Several people (in both Rocky Horror and punk makeup circles) recommended MAC eyeshadow. Their makeup includes a lot of pigment, and they don’t change their colors very often, so once you find the perfect color, you can keep buying it. Sold in some fancy department stores and standalone shops in fancy malls. Warning: the sample shades on-screen are not at all close to actual shades. Go look in person.
        • Rocky Horror Makeup by Sofia Green https://www.facebook.com/RockyHorrorMakeup
          Sofia is a Frank from Boston who sells Mary Kay. She’s put together kits for the various characters. She’s open to input and will work with you (maybe even send you samples) if you have questions. Appears very knowledgable and she has me thinking about Magenta lipstick seriously again – the shade I wear matches the Poster Magazines but not Time Warp. Prices are in the same range as MAC, so try this if you have money and would rather have someone else figure out the colors for you. A castmate who loves makeup won one of the kits in a raffle and is very happy with it. The Facebook page includes photos of people in costume wearing the various kits. The woman modeling the Magenta kit is black – you’d never know from the photo so yup, that foundation offers good coverage.
      • BOSS (TEMPORARY) TATTOOS
        • Deadly Sting Tattoos http://deadlystingtattoos.com
          Created by an NYC Cast Frank. Very nice-looking; I’ve seen people perform in them and they look very nice. $4 for one plus shipping; cheaper by the tattoo as you buy more; bulk discounts are available. Apparently they’ll stay on for days; impressive. Site features a side-by-side comparison with a Mick Rock photo.
      • SHOES
        Thanks to the Internet, whether platforms and chunky heels are in style has become blessedly irrelevant. When you’re cruising megasites looking for shoes, remember that color is often less important than the right shape. Color can be fixed (with paint or glued-on fabric). The wrong shape usually can’t, unless you’re very crafty indeed.
        The majority of the “stripper shoes” (Frank and floorshow shoes qualify) nowadays are made by Ellie or Pleaser (who also do the Funtasma line), so you’re basically shopping on price. I usually like Ellie better than Pleaser, which I find tends to run small. Halloween pop-up shops stock Funtasma, so the quality’s not great: when I wore their boots for a month, both heelcaps came off at a show. Not cool.
        To help you with Internet searches, here is a glossary of shoe terms.

        • Zappos.com Glossary of Shoe and Handbag Terms http://www.zappos.com/glossary
          This is starting to clog with non-shoe-related terms, but it is very comprehensive, and has helpful pictures.
        • Boxing Classics boxing boots http://www.boxing-classics.com/

          Finally back on-line! My husband Wally found this site and made the finals at the 25th Anniversary with these boots. We special ordered ours; they have since added gold or silver metallic boots as a standard option: boots are now up to $135 and take about 6 weeks. The gold is a little too shiny, but they are beautiful and highly recommended. The pair Wally ordered even had the correct number of eyelets and white laces. Yes, the tongue protrudes over the top of the boot like they are supposed to. The Boxing Classics people are very friendly and helpful.

          The pair we ordered came with black soles and black stitching, and a logo patch we had to remove (use a seam ripper). Wally painted over the sides of the soles with paint. The metallic shoes shown on the site have dark soles and dark laces, but you can order with the light soles and white laces (ask when placing your order).

          If you don’t want to go with Boxing Classics, sorry, I’ve found nothing remotely close anywhere else. Try searching for “wrestling boots” on eBay. Good luck.

        BEATLE BOOTS (For Riff)
        These are available primarily from UK sources. If you’re feeling lucky, they’re available in various sizes on eBay, running $40-$100 a pair, depending on the exchange rate.

        • BeatWear http://www.sixtiesbeatwear.co.uk/

          I’m not sure if these folks are affiliated with the old Beatleboots.co.uk or not. You want the “Winkle Picker,” though the High Cavern and Original Chelsea also look good. A bit pricier than some of the other options.

          I have seen the Beatle Boots model in person and they’re beautiful. In October 2012, these were L£130 *plus* £22.50 shipping from the UK. In 2012 they had a Halloween sale, allowing you to pick up a pair for £95.

        • Underground England http://www.undergroundshoes.co.uk/
          The Beatle Winklepicker or Fred Black Leather Winklepicker are probably the closest match (£108). Free shipping to the US. Edward Marlowe bought a Beat Boot from them and recommends buying a size larger than you normally wear. “They are, as is traditional, a tight fit, both over the top of the foot and with the pointy toes, and the seams can rub a little on the top of the foot.”
        • Pennangalan Dreams http://www.pennangalan.com/boots/FW245.php
          Look at the Cuban Chelsea Beat Boots (FW49). They even have a cruelty-free version in “vegetarian leather.” At £80, this is one of the more affordable options – they’ve been discontinued and the website is starting to look a little weird.
        • b>Atom Retro http://www.atomretro.com/product_info.cfm?product_id=11707&d=OUTLAW-MADCAP-RETRO-MOD-CHELSEA-BOOTS-LEATHER $97 plus shipping, depending on the exchange rate.
        • Trash and Vaudeville http://www.trashandvaudeville.com/UGFRED-BLKLEA.html
          If you just can’t bear paying international shipping or can’t hack the math, Trash and Vaudeville in NYC does carry the Underground Beatle Boot for $189 (more than you’d pay from the UK, depending on the exchange rate).

        OPEN-TOED PLATFORM SANDALS
        In 2007, the “peep-toe” style came back, so there may be fine Frank shoes out there I don’t know about. When I bought Frank shoes, I bought Ellie’s 557-LEA shoes, which show too much toe and have an open back. If you get a pair, buy it in the “PU” (polyurethane) style for a non-shiny shoe. Snaz75 has better options. In 2011 someone discovered the “Miss Me Faris” sandal; it’s clunkier than Frank’s shoes but has the heel cup, a very good heel, and the correct type of ankle strap. Sadly, I’ve never seen it larger than a women’s 10. In 2016 even Target had good Frank shoes (though very, very high heels).

        • Snaz75 http://www.snaz75.com/el-557-lea.html
          People have very good luck at Snaz (enormous selection; good prices); look around. $24 or so and sized up to a 16. This site includes several shoes with a closed heel back, which isn’t easy to find, such as the Dolly-37, which has good shape but requires both painting and removing an extra buckle. It’s no longer at Snaz, but is still findable elsewhere (Google it). Shawn Anthony used the Dolly-37 and a previous Dolly model as the base for his widely-admired Frank shoes.
        • DSW http://www.dsw.com/shoe/miss+me+faris+1+sandal?prodId=231528
          Not sure how long this link will be good (DSW has sold out of Miss Me Faris), but it’s such a good shoe that I’m including it. Finding the heel cup with correct type strap *and* the peep toe *and* a good heel shape is so rare. DSW charges $40. People have found these as cheap as $20; happy hunting.

        TAP SHOES
        Many tap shoes fasten with a ribbon tie instead of buckling; it’s pretty, but it’s not what Columbia wore. (Columbia’s shoes button. But I’ve never seen button tap shoes outside the UK.) Chunky heels are back, so I’m abandoning the Capezio 450 and 550 I used to recommend. Expect to pay $20 or so for taps. Current best recommendations are the Sansha Myrtha #CL51 (a character shoe, opening over the toes a little too pointy; Velcro closure); the Capezio Lilina 455 (character shoe; strap attachment shape not right; available in Med or Wide, about $45 without taps) or the Bloch Showtapper S0323 (usually sold with taps, strap attachment shape not right).
        A friend recently showed me a pair of squaredancing shoes, and if you don’t want taps, these are an option…but they’re $60 a pair new, so they may be even pricier than tap shoes. Shop around.

        Here are some stores that I keep in my rotation. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, type the model information above into a search engine and see what you get. They change up their links a lot.

        HIGH HEELED PATENT PUMPS
        Floor show shoes are pretty easy to find. I’ve selected the sites below for carrying a wide range of sizes and reasonable prices (around $30). Shoe sites tend to come and go, and styles change quickly, so if a link doesn’t work, please
        email me
        .

        • Snaz75 http://www.snaz75.com/pl-dream-420w.html
          $30 for 4″ heels, sizes 9-17. Don’t break your neck. See also Snaz75 http://www.snaz75.com/pl-pump-420.html (3″ heel, less than $30, sizes 6-14).
        • Glamour Boutique http://www.glamourboutique.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWCATS&Category=220

          (black patent heels)5″ black patent heels up to a women’s size 14 for about $30. D and EE widths available in 4″ heels for about $45.

      • BACKSEAMED STOCKINGS AND ACCESSORIES

        Stockings are easy to find locally, except for backseamed sheer stockings (Magenta) and backseamed fishnet stockings (Frank). (Why are these so hard to find without a lace top?!) If you’re buying plain seamed stockings, you will usually end up with Leg Avenue unless you deliberately look for another brand. After a while, you’ll recognize the pictures. Style 5026 is their regular style; style 1000Q is their Tall. Yes, Tall, not Queen–I love the length but the stockings are very tight and prone to run the first few times I wear them. Leg Avenue seamed fishnets and some other brands may have a “fake” seam: instead of a real-looking sewn-on seam, there’s just a double row of darker fishnet cells up the back. It’s hard to tell what you’re getting online, so you may want to buy in person. Backseamed stockings are also available with a Cuban heel–very elegant, but the top of the Cuban heel shows above my boots, so I don’t get them. NOTE: as of 9/12, Music Legs stockings start the backseam at the back of the foot instead of the sole, so I no longer recommend them – it makes it harder to get the seams straight, particularly in a dark theater.

        • Yandy.com http://www.yandy.com/search.php?q=seam (back-seamed sheer stockings, fishnets, etc.)
          Offers a wider selection of brands than most other sites, including Elegant Moments and Dream Girl, which I think are a little nicer than Leg Avenue. Free shipping requires a $70 minimum purchase. Some of the stockings are insanely cheap. For some reason most of the fishnets are “industrial” (oversized cells as opposed to classic 1970s fishnet).
        • Glamour Boutique http://www.glamourboutique.com/stockingshosiery.aspx

          (back-seamed sheer stockings)Available in extra tall (up to 6’2″) and Queen.

        • Admcity Lingerie http://fashion.admcity.com/index.shtml (back-seamed sheer stockings, garter belts, underwear, etc.)
          I didn’t want to include this site because it’s just so darn massive. (More than two dozen pages of women’s panties to choose from – gah.) Still, they have several choices for seamed sheer stockings, a few seamed fishnets (wrong tops, though) and occasionally some interesting garter belt choices (try a lace one for Frank). They do men’s stuff, too. There’s a search engine but their stock is so huge that descriptions are minimal. (They do corsets, bustiers, etc. as well.) If you want descriptions written by someone whose native tongue is English who knows their stock, look elsewhere.
        • Feeling Lingerie http://www.feelingusa.com/hosiery/plus-size-stockings (stockings of all sorts)
          Includes plus-size backseamed plain stockings and backseamed fishnets in plus and regular sizes, among other things. They even have lycra plus-size fishnets (albeit with lace tops). Very reasonable and there’s always a coupon – their homepage even links to a coupon site. I have been a satisifed customer since at least 2005. Free shipping now requires a minimum $50 purchase. Search feature kinda sucks.
      • BACKSEAMED FISHNET PANTYHOSE (TIGHTS)
        In the US, “tights” tend to be dancer’s tights with Lycra; pantyhose tends to be 100% nylon. Dancer’s fishnets with Lycra last longer and hold their shape better. I’ve worn them as Trixie; they are nice. Capezio 3400 fishnet tights have a backseam and are 45% lycra (and cost three times as much as regular fishnet pantyhose).
        Solid sole for comfort (won’t show unless people are looking at the bottom of your foot). Available in S/M or M/L. Body Wrappers don’t have the solid foot but are cheaper and come in L/XL for us larger folks. Tights with Lycra should run about $12-$16; regular fishnet pantyhose (no lycra), $5-$6.
        WITH LYCRA:
      • WITHOUT LYCRA:

      • 6-STRAP GARTER BELTS
      • ROCKY SHORTS
        Try an on-line search for “wrestling trunks”. Sadly, the fashion for affordable lam&eacute wrestling trunks on lingerie sites appears to have passed. Ladies, try Googling “gold”+”boy shorts” or “gold”+”booty shorts”.

      • GLOVES

        Marching band accessory stores are worth a look; apparently as long as there are marching bands, there will be sequined gauntlets (some band stores refer to them as “mitts”).

        • Theatre House, Inc.http://www.theatrehouse.com/ (wrist-length silver lamé gloves)Surprisingly difficult to find on-line; it’s much easier to find elbow-length, which are harder to stuff into your space gauntlets. They are “one size fits all” but they are darn small on me. Site also carries spandex lamé fabric, wigs, and some “laser spot” gloves that might work for Frank.
        • Band Shoppe http://www.bandshoppe.com/cgi-bin/DDA5AAF9/mac/template.mac/loadHtmlPage?htmlPage=/guard/accessories/GU912.html

          (sequined floorshow gauntlets)
          They keep moving the page, so if you can’t find it, go to “Guard Accessories” (a recent search for “sequin” turned up no results, but they’re still there – don’t panic!). You want the “finger loop gauntlet.” The standard length is up-to-the-elbow. To be more movie-exact, tell them you want them 3″ above the elbow order (minimum of 3 pairs for custom orders; they may waive the minimum). As of July 2010 this added another $5 per pair. These are real sequins, not foil dots (stretch sequin material; if you want a vermicelli pattern you’ll have to make your own). I’ve been buying these since 1999, and they look pretty good. They do run a little small, and the shipping is pretty hefty (expect to pay $20 shipping for three or four pairs of gloves). You’ll have to add your own pink feather trim.

          In addition, under Gloves, they have black vinyl gauntlets (a href=”http://www.bandshoppe.com/category-s/144.htm”>http://www.bandshoppe.com/category-s/144.htm which look very much like space glove gauntlets (you’ll need to add the gold trim).

        • Lingerie Mart http://www.lingeriemart.com/products/Electric_Lingerie_Long_Fishnet_Gloves-791-0.html (fishnet gauntlets)
          $6, minimum order 6 pairs and only available in multiples of 6 pairs (weird). Since other sites charge $15-$18 a pair, why not outfit a couple of your friends? Jenny D. notes that these do indeed have a seam, and are style number XTC818 (made by XTC Leather in NYC). Hers look great. Another site, not listed here because they charge too much, notes “elastic bands hold securely in place.”
        • Sock Dreams http://www.sockdreams.com/products/fishnet-arm-warmers?back=search
          Fishnet “arm warmers” which fasten with a loop around the middle finger (not, sadly, strictly screen-accurate). Also sells intriguing 15″ fingerless gloves. Wrong fabric for Frank, but worth looking into as a base for those who don’t sew.
        • Playtex Gloves http://www.playtexproductsinc.com/gloves/LivingGloves.aspx
          Every September/October, Playtex makes pink Playtex Living dishwashing gloves, at least in the US, where they’re hard to find during the rest of the year. They’re sized, so gentlemen, look for Large. It looks like they no longer sell them directly through the website…
      • DR. SCOTT LAP BLANKETSScott Labrecque, who won Best Dr. Scott at the 25th Anniversary, discovered that Dr. Scott’s blanket is an Anderson Modern tartan. Be careful and do not order from a site that doesn’t have pictures. Tartans may vary slightly; some sites offer a plain Anderson that looks fine; in my searches I found one Modern that wouldn’t do.

        Scottish tartan blankets are a luxury item and the price reflects that.

      • LAB COATS
      • GREEN SURGICAL GOWNSVeterinary Apparel Company http://www.veterinaryapparel.com/The “Surgery Gown” (Model 106A) looks very good. This site used to show the gowns’ front and back; it no longer does. In person, the ties are too wide and an odd color (yellow?). For some reason, every surgery gown I’ve ever seen is lighter than Tim’s; you could try tea dyeing…
        They were very helpful when I ordered in 2008 and the shipping was still the same as for one ($8). You get a coupon good for 10% off your next order; pass it on to a friend. (To be honest, surgery gowns are now available on Amazon…)
      • FABRICS AND TRIMCheck your Yellow Pages or the Yellow Pages of major cities near you as well as the Internet…many large specialty fabric stores are not on-line, and if they are, the entire stock is probably not listed. Please be careful buying fabric on-line…it’s pretty easy to figure out what color you’re getting, but texture is another matter entirely, particularly for non-specialty fabrics. If you can, request a swatch.

        If you’re buying sequin fabric, try to avoid foil dot, and read descriptions carefully: real sequins appear to be making a comeback, but many are now “baby sequins” (“razzle sequins”) and some are different shapes or dangle from off-center holes. If you do find an off-the-rack source for the correct type by the yard, for heaven’s sake, tell the rest of us where!)

        • Theatre House, Inc.http://www.theatrehouse.com/ See also Gloves. Site carries spandex lamé fabric and sequin trim, and sequin fabric by the yard, at least for now. For sequin fabric go to:
          http://www.theatrehouse.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=THH&Product_Code=0888&Category_Code=FabSequin. Thanks to Sarah for the tip.
        • JKM Ribbon and Trims http://www.jkmribbon.com/pmet.htmlTo find all the metallics, go to “Silver and Gold” and then look around. I used to recommend the Offray ribbons, but they look very odd here. You should be able to find Offray ribbon in the trim department in the fabric store. $2-$4 for 50 yards. You have to create an account to view the prices (boo, hiss). WARNING: minimum order is $25!
        • M and J Trimming http://www.mjtrim.com/
          A truly amazing trim store from the NY garment district. Buttons, marabou, fringe, rhinestones and dome nailhead studs, ribbon, tassels, stretch sequin trim (hidden under “beaded trim”)…pictures of everything, including all the colors, too. Huge selection; it may take you a while to find what you’re looking for.
        • Rhinestones.org http://www.rhinestones.org/
          A fabulous site with rhinestones (duh) in crystal and plastic, rhinestone banding, nailheads, mountings, setters, as well as information on what all this stuff is and how to use it.
        • Allstar Plastics http://www.allstarco.com/
          Acrylic rhinestones, plain and shaped; nailheads; mountings. Probably not of interest unless you are going to buy a LOT; this is essentially a wholesale site. I’m including it as it has such an interesting selection. If you need a *lot* of rhinestones/mountings or are going in with a couple of friends (minimum order for most pieces is 200-1500 pieces), the per-piece price is dirt cheap. No minimum dollar order, but minimum shipping charges are $13.
        • ReproDepot.com http://reprodepot.stores.yahoo.net/lchdgpk.html
          Vudu Doll recommends this site for 1/2″ pink gingham check. The site claims it’s double gauze and the swatch shown looks almost like a seersucker; hopefully it would flatten on ironing. Vudu Doll purchased some and says is lays fine once it’s interfaced, which you’d do with a collar, cuffs or belt anyway. Sold by the half-yard.
        • Hancock Fabrics http://www.hancockfabrics.com/
          Sadly, Hancock has gone out of business.
        • Fashion Fabrics Club http://www.fashionfabricsclub.com/
          Had several lilac/lavender fabric swatches that looked promising; might be worth checking out. Watch out for the shipping charges.
        • Vogue Fabrics http://www.voguefabricsstore.com/home.php
          A Chicago fabric chain. Lots of everything, and they specialize in corsetry, so you can find things here you won’t otherwise. When I’m just shopping for fabric, I never seem to find what I’m looking for here, but maybe you will. If you’re in Chicagoland, it’s worth visiting; the place is huge. If you need to cover buttons for Janet or Magenta, they’ll let you use the professional button-covering machine, which apparently works better than the do-it-yourself kits and a hammer.
        • Daytona Trimming and Braid http://www.daytonatrim.com/web/
          Another NYC fabric district standout. Website reads: “Due to color distortion of web item photos, we don’t sell items through the internet. You may order via phone (212-354-1713), e-mail : daytonatrim@verizon.net or at our store location – 251 West 39th St, NY, NY 10018 between 7th and 8th Avenue.”
      • SEQUINED TAILCOATS
        • Frank Bee Costume http://www.frankbeecostume.com/laskseta.html
          Sequined tailcoats with peak lapels and satin buttons, available in S, M, and L for slightly over $200. Minor modifications would be needed, but a darn close match for a darn good price. While the photo of the women’s tailcoat appears to have squared-off tails, Rebecca writes: “I ordered this exact tailcoat (from a different place, but the catalog picture was the same) and the women’s model tails ARE swallowtail, not squared off. It is just like the men’s model, only smaller.” Men, you can order the men’s model for $270. Thanks to Venus from Barely Legal for the link! Google “skip a row tailcoat” …
      • MOUSE EARS
            The Disney Store

        http://www.disneystore.com/accessories/ear-hats/disney-parks-authentic/mn/1000292+1000809/

          Mickey Mouse ears. ‘Nuff said.

         

      • NAME (NAMEPLATE) NECKLACES
        Through the 1990s, these could be found at Target or JC Penney. Those days are gone, at least in the US; apparently UK Janets can still buy the cheap costume jewelry version. US Janets can thank Carrie Bradshaw that these are available at all: $40 buys a gold-plated sterling silver necklace. 14K ranges from $80 or $90 up to $140, depending on the price of gold, so shop around. Some Janets buy wire necklaces. They’re cheap (about $25) but look totally wrong.
      •  

         

      • BRAD UNDERWEAR
        You’re looking for Jockey’s “full rise brief” (sometimes referred to as the “classic brief”). I’m not including any links here since a brief search turned up 60+ sites, and they’re sold at most major department stores. About $6.50; $5.50 if you buy the three-pack.
      • MOTORCYCLE PATCHES AND PINS
        • The 59 Club http://www.the59club.org.uk/Still around. £14 for membership (£16 outside UK). Membership good for one calendar year; pay in British pounds, or by international money order.

          Membership used to include one ’59’ patch (they call it a “cloth badge”). Their website isn’t clear, so ask. Additional cloth badges and metal lapel badges £4. Barry’s Bike Badges used to offer those in the US the opportunity to join using a credit card; doesn’t look like that’s an option any more (Barry’s has closed).

         

      • WIGS
        I find shopping on-line for wigs very difficult. It’s difficult to gauge length unless a human being is wearing them, and key word searches are nearly useless. On the bright side, sometimes you’ll luck into something, and there are now several good FAQ’s up on how to care for your wig (such as this one at http://www.headcovers.com/care_wigs.php). Check out eBay and cosplay sites too.

        • Riff Wigs
          • BuyCostumes.com (http://www.buycostumes.com/Rocky-Horror-Picture-Show-Riff-Raff-Wig/7175/ProductDetail.aspx)
            The official Rocky Horror Riff wig. A surprisingly good-looking, cheap Riff wig.
          • If you’re willing to pay international shipping, Google “Little Britain” + Andy + wig ; various UK costume sites have them. It’s basically a blond Benjamin Franklin, which is of course exactly what we want. (Thanks, Shane!)little-britain-andy-fancy-dress-wig12190
          • My Favorite Obsession: Liz Stockton’s Rocky Horror Wigs (liz@sins.la)http://www.rockywigs.com; https://www.facebook.com/rockywigs
            (Website includes price list, photos but they may be outdated)

             

            Liz has closed her Etsy and eBay stores following some customer service issues; her website appears to be up again but you’re probably best off contacting her via Facebook. She does good work but got busy, so if you’re working with her, plan ahead, be patient, and keep the lines of communication open. If you’re in a hurry, you should probably go elsewhere.

            Liz has branched out from doing wigs to doing accessories and costume pieces; I don’t think a definitive list is available at this time. The winner of the Magenta/Space division categories at the 25th anniversary was wearing wigs Liz made, and apparently the BluRay Rocky is wearing one too. I’ve liked the wigs I’ve seen of hers (the Frank wig is very nice and her Janet wig is also very popular), though I did meet one very unhappy purchaser of a “Rocky” wig. These are reasonably priced, usually about what you’d pay for a street wig you’d then have to get styled. I bought a Magenta wig from her, which I modified only a little (Liz’s wig is cut straight across the bottom front; Magenta’s hair is slightly shorter next to her face). It gets compliments and it’s held up well. I tried to do better at Outfitters and couldn’t.

             

          • Deadly Sting Tattoos and Wigs (http://deadlystingtattoos.com/
          • Jen, a Frank from NYC, is best known for her BOSS temporary tattoos. She’s branched out to do wigs, and they look pretty good. Site features 360 degree rotation capability; more photos of people wearing them are planned. The Janet wig is particularly nice. Even if you can’t afford one of her wigs yet, check out the “Tips and Tricks” suggestions for wig care, and look for her at conventions.

          • Outfitter Wigs of Hollywood (http://www.outfitterswig.com/index.html
            Website is basically an on-line business card with a small wig gallery, mostly featuring astonishing styles which require lots of hairspray.

            6626 Hollywood Boulevard
            Los Angeles, CA 90028

            (323) 462-3088

            (wide range of wigs; beautiful Bride of Frankenstein wigs)

            Good Space Magenta wigs are hard to find. Some Rocky costumers offer them but they tend to look lacquered; I haven’t seen anyone else in Outfitters’ league. Outfitters will make you a Bride wig in any color you want (send a swatch or specify a standard wig color–inquire at your local wig shop) with separate waved white hair strips.
            Outfitters did my Space wig and I will be eternally grateful. I found out about Outfitters from the Swiss cast’s Magenta. Mine was about $120 in the 1990s (shipping is extra) and was worth every cent.

            A Space Magenta wig is differently shaped than a standard Bride (Magenta’s hair is spherical; a true Bride wig is conical, like Nefertiti’s crown): send them some reference photos and tell them you want it less tall and more spherical. In the 10 years since I bought my first wig, they’re started adding a “natural” hairline to their wigs. Tell them not to for your space wig – Magenta doesn’t have one. If at all possible, have the final styling done on you.

            Properly cared for, these last. I had mine restyled more than ten years after the initial purchase; it was almost, but not quite, as expensive as buying a new one (soaking out the hairspray alone takes two days). Their stylists now are not quite as good as they were when I bought the original wig, but they’re still excellent.

            NOTE: if they tell you it will fit under an airplane seat in a wig box, they are lying. Mine fits only if I cradle it in a shopping bag. You can always wear it on the plane – I did, though this was before the Sept. 11 attacks.

          • LINGERIE FINDINGS/CORSETRY ACCESSORIESFarthingales Fabric by Mail Costume & Theatrical Supplies http://farthingalescorsetmakingsupplies.com/
          • Sells black lingerie findings, eyelets, grommets, push-up pads, corset laces…a great site. I made a garter belt with supplies I bought from them and was delighted with the merchandise and the service. Thanks to Jenny D. for finding them. Comparison shopping here is a bit inconvenient as prices are listed only on the price list, not with the items…you can’t have everything.

            Farthingales Midwest http://www.farthingalesla.com/

              This used to be Farthingales’ LA branch, but they’ve gotten out of the supply business, and all shopping is now done through Vogue Fabrics. Selection different and much smaller than the Canadian shop: notably the bones are significantly lighter. If you want to buy garter findings, forget it. On the bright side, Vogue is an excellent independent chain, and you don’t have to pay international shipping.
          • FEATHERS
            You can buy feathers cheap direct from China on eBay, but when I did, the feathers were beautiful but got black dye all over my hands. So be careful. Black coque feathers have been turning up in the “floral arrangements” section of my local Joanns, either as wreaths (a lifetime supply of Frank crown feathers!) or weird accents for floral arrangements. Worth looking into.
            • Lamplight Feather http://www.tonyhill.net/productCat43986.ctlg
              We bought some coque feathers for a Frank floorshow headdress from them; very cheap; shipped quickly and the feathers look nice. Feathers are sold by type, size and color. They also sell marabou feather trim and chandelle feather trim (for floorshow gloves), in addition to the usual chandelle feather boas and other interesting items such as ostrich feather fans,
            • Fancy Feather http://fancyfeather.com/
              Sells marabou boas of varying weights and colors, chandelle boas, coque feathers (for Frank’s feather crown), etc. Custom dyeing available; they do a lot of burlesque work.
          • MOSTLY EDDIE STUFF
            • GERMAN HELMETS
            • CHEETAH FABRIC
            • SKELETON KEYCHAINS
              Various sources – ask Google. Isn’t technology wonderful?

            • IRON CROSS RINGS
              Again, technology has advanced enough that a Google search for “Iron Cross ring” should get you there.
              • Biker Jewelry http://www.badbikerjewelry.com/
                You want the “Large Biker/Fashion Rings (Sizes 7-14).” The iron cross rings in the Small section (sizes 5-10) has extra details on the band.
            • COMEDY/TRAGEDY SILVER RINGS
              If you’re trying to get an exact match to Eddie’s Beau Sterling ring, your best bet is to troll eBay for “Beau sterling ring mask” (or something similar).
            • SKULL & CROSSBONE PINS
            • MILBRO CATAPULTS (slingshots)
              • Honestly, most people find these on eBay. Bells of Hythe, however, will make you a replica for a £34.99 setup charge (
                http://www.bellsofhythe.com/products.asp?catid=160
                ). You’ll probably spend less buying an original on eBay. They’ll sell you catapult elastic, too, but it’s red.

    I would like….if I may…..

    These are scene-by scene breakdowns of costumes and hand props for a screen-accurate rendition of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Makeup (including tattoos and scars) is treated separately in the Makeup section. This list is based on observations of several different prints of the film, discussions with other fans, and extensive use of Rocky Horror posters, books, magazines, video, DVD, Blu-Ray, stills, etc. I’ve had lots of excellent help. (My thanks to everyone on the Rocky Horror newsgroup for their input and support; I miss you guys.)

    The descriptions here are not perfect; this is a work in progress. If what’s on this list doesn’t look like what’s on-screen, go with what’s on-screen. This list is NOT “definitive” and is intended as a convenience to people assembling costumes, not the word of God.

    If you think you notice a mistake or just want to chat about costuming, please email me. (If you see something that is wrong/incomplete, tell me which scene I can see the detail in question; I reply much faster if you send a photo/screencap than if I have to drag out the Blu-Ray.) I am happy to talk with anyone so long as a tone of mutual respect is maintained. Yes, the site is still regularly updated; for details, see “What’s New” below.

    All mistakes on this list are mine –nothing goes onto the site until I have verified it with my own eyes.

    The DVD and Blu-Ray really changed everything. Now everyone can have access to high-quality stills. If you want to do serious detail work, buy a copy. I bought a DVD player specifically to watch Rocky, then did the same thing for the Blu-Ray. Get a player with zoom capabilities. If you’re looking for DVD software for your computer, I recommend PowerDVD; it has screen capture capabilities and frame advance. Blu-Ray capture is significantly more difficult.

    How To Use This List

    This list is intended for fans who want to recreate the costumes from the movie “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.”
    If you are costuming a production of the play “The Rocky Horror Show,” I can’t stop you from using this website for reference. But I can strongly encourage you to do what Sue Blane did and costume the play using your own original ideas, or, if you must, using her designs as a jumping-off point instead of slavishly copying them. Please leave that to us fans.

    • If you want to know what costume pieces a character wears, go to that character’s page.
    • If you want to know how to make yourself up like a character (including tattoos), visit the Makeup by Character and Tips & Tricks page.
    • If you are wondering how to find costume pieces or want general tips on making costumes or costume care, visit the DIY / Costume & Prop Tips & Tricks page.
    • If you are looking for specific websites which sell shoes, gloves, etc. or want to find people who will make costumes for you, visit our Links page.
    • If you don’t see what you’re looking for, or you think you’ve found a mistake or omission, by all means email me. Please do check out any details you write about before emailing me, though; if you haven’t bothered to check the detail, why should I?