As I write this Halloween isn’t quite here yet. I’ve been working on my “Costume” today but it isn’t done. I put costume in quotes because I’m not dressing up like anyone or anything. I’m just dressing up.

It all started two years ago when I decided to buy a zoot suit for Halloween. A real one too and not one of these Halloween zoot suits. I wore it on my annual photo safari down in Manhattan but it really didn’t fit the bill. It looked too much like an actual suit. It wasn’t outrageous enough. It’s fairly well made and the color isn’t crazy. It’s a pleasant dark green. I almost went for the lime green one but thought that it screamed “Gag suit” too much.

So last year I decided to paint some designs on my zoot suit. I’ve painted coats before. It’s nothing new to me but it was a real pain to paint on the fabric this suit was made of. This stuff is thin and stretchy. Especially compared to denim or canvas which are the two coat fabrics I’m used to painting on. It took a while.

Coming up with a design wasn’t easy either. I ended up painting a large eye on the back, two small eyes on the front, a strange lightning bolt/swirl on one arm and an even stranger arm/eye combo on the other. I was happy with the paintings but the coat still didn’t pull together like I wanted it to. It was a disjointed series of images instead of a complete visual package.

The coat only came together when I added some decorative elements. I painted about a one inch purple trim around the hem, sleeves, and up the front buttons and also added some flames coming up from the bottom of the coat and the end of the sleeves. That’s what made it into something. After that it looked like I knew what I was doing.

It took me a better part of a week to paint the coat and I ran out of time and energy to do anything with the pants. I ended up wearing not the zoot suit pants but a pair of black pants that I decorated with rings of white tape running up from the ankles to the knee. It wasn’t quite what I wanted but it had to do.

Today I finally did what I wanted to do last year and painted the zoot suit pants. I painted the purple trim around the cuff and then flames coming up to almost the knee. It’s still drying so I haven’t tried it on but I’m happy with it and it should pull the outfit together a little bit more.

It’s still not quite complete though. I’d like to put a couple of large paintings of some kind on the front of the coat above the pockets but have no time to this year.

Instead I might look for some things to hang from it. I’ll get some safety pins and put them across the front of the suit and hang some things from them. Only I don’t know what. Ribbons, feathers, flowers, string, beads or whatever else I can find I guess.

Like I said the costume isn’t anyone or anything in particular so when people ask me who I am I didn’t have an answer for them. Boy does that make people uncomfortable so I started going with “I’m the all seeing Osiris” as my stock answer. It usually didn’t help much but it beat having no answer at all. It’s really more like how I’d dress everyday if I good. Ahhh, if only everyday were Halloween.