How to Create a Marie Antoinette Costume

You could buy your own costume for 100 dollar or more...or you could make one for half that price! You choose!


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    First, buy a cheap prom dress, the bigger the better. You can find them for under $20 at the Goodwill or at thrift shops. If you don't think your dress is puffy enough (i.e. it can fit through the door), buy a bridal crinoline while you're at the thrift shop. I bought one for about $10. You can also search eBay or other online shops for dresses and crinolines.
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    Next, you need to add things to the dress. Head to Wal-Mart and into the craft section. There you can buy bows, ribbons, lace, beads, pearls, rhinestones, and the like in coordinating colors to your dress. If your dress has no sleeves, you will also want to buy fabric for sleeves.
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    If you need to make sleeves: Find a pattern online for bell sleeves. Sew the sleeves and leave the end that will be on your shoulder and armpit with a raw edge. Sew that to the dress in a way that you find attractive. Then, put the dress on. Right above the elbow, bunch the sleeve up so that it is skinny on the top and poofs out on the bottom. Sew it in place. You can sew a ribbon around the bunched part too.
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    Sew on decorations to the dress. If you need inspiration, look for Marie Antoinette photo gallery on Google. Bows and lace were frequently used to adorn dresses, as well as pearls and diamonds.
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    Now your dress is ready. However, you still have a ways to go - after all, what was Marie Antoinette famous for? Her hair! You could buy a wig, but if you plan on doing your hair yourself, you should begin practicing early. In order to achieve Marie Antoinette hair, you need a filler - I used a ball of yarn. You place the filler on your head, pin it in place, and pin your hair over it to cover it. When you're done achieving tall hair, decorate it similarly to the way you decorated the dress. Rosettes, pearls, roses, etc.
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    Makeup should involve a pale face, pink cheeks, and red lips. Fairly simple, really, you will just need an average makeup kit for that, so nothing to worry about.
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    Now, make sure you wear comfortable shoes - you can even wear sneakers, since your dress will be long enough to cover them.


  • Try getting a solid colored dress and decorating it in a contrasting color.
  • Wear elaborate jewelry to accompany your elaborate costume.
  • Watch the movie Marie Antoinette. It will really help.


  • Use lots of hairspray or your hair won't stay up.
  • If this is a Halloween costume for trick-or-treating, do NOT wear heels. They are dangerous if you're doing lots of walking.

Things You'll Need

  • A big dress
  • A large crinoline
  • A sewing machine
  • Tons of decorations
  • Lots of time
  • A good creative mind

Sources and Citations

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Article Info

Categories: Historical Costumes