Clowning Tutorial – creating your clown costume
When it comes time to make your own clown costumeâa few things to remember.
First, you’re going to be moving around quite a bit. You’ll want your costume to be comfortable. Pick fabrics that are comfortable, cool in summer, warm in winter. Give yourself additional size. You don’t want the seat of your pants to rip when you bend over (unless that’s part of your routine, of course :o)
Feel free to begin by simply raiding your closet, your family’s closets, and your local Goodwill store. It’s amazing what you can find for little or nothing. Harpo Marx actually bought his famous trench coat at a discount store (read the story for yourself in Harpo Speaks!). Don’t forget the advice from last time about inexpensive clown shoes (“Again, advice from Turk Pipkin — feel free to pick up some ordinary sneakers and either 1) color them with acrylic paint. They’re no bigger, but they’re definitely clown shoes now, or 2) glue them inside a pair of size 18 shoes! That way, you get to wear a comfortable pair, and still look “clownish.” One other twist from Mr. Pipkin: put the left (normal-size) shoe inside the right (clown-size) shoe, and vice versa – looks like your feet are reversed.”) You can purchase large shoes economically from Keds, or from clearance places (or, check out this short article on inexpensive clown shoes)
If you’re adept with a sewing needle, you can purchase patterns and sew your own. Don’t get the generic “Halloween one-piece jumpsuit” pattern. Simply because youâll look like one of a thousand others. Simply take an existing pattern & modify it. For example, my vest is a normal “Santa Claus” pattern, with large pockets.
If you’re of a mind, don’t forget some of the clown dealers. Again, I recommend that (if you’re fortunate enough to have one locally) you develop a good relationship with your dealer. The good advice is worth triple the cost of the merchandise. And don’t be afraid to develop that same relationship with a mail-order or online dealer as well; I owe major kudos to PeeWee at CostumesByBetty.net for her help.
Final advice: clothes may make the man, but it’s the heart that makes the clown. If your costumes imperfect, don’t sweat it too much. It can be improved over time. Work on letting the inside come out.
Next time, weâll leave costuming behind and start to talk about the various “things” you can do as a clown. See you then!
- Be A Clown, by Turk Pipkin (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada)
- Creative Clowning by Bruce Fife, Tony Blanco, Steve Kissell, Bruce Johnson, Ralph Dewey, Hal Diamond, Jack Wiley, Gene Lee (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada)
- Be A Clown by Mark Stolzenberg (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada) (highly recommended for character development)
- Clown Ministry Handbook (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada)
- Everything New & Who’s Who in Clown Ministry (with 75 Skits for Special Days) (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada)
- Finding the Clown in Yourself : Personal Growth for Every Christian by Jack Krall (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada)
- How to be a Compleat Clown, by Toby Sanders (or order it from Amazon UK or from Amazon Canada)