On Oct. 28, Kwantlen students and staff gathered in the Richmond campus rotunda for a THIRSTday Halloween costume contest. Hayley Woodin and Jeffrey Yip document the fifth annual spooky fashion show through video and photos.
Tens of thousands of Vancouveriteâ€™s dressed as ghouls and gremlins and ghosts paraded along Vancouverâ€™s Commercial Drive in the spirit of Halloween for the annual Parade of Lost souls on Oct. 25, amid conga drummers, Hare Krishna chanters, Morris dancers, fire dancers and costumed wanderers.
â€œThe parade of lost souls is one of Vancouverâ€™s best entertaining parades,â€ said Stuart Ritchie, one of the Bowen Black Sheep Morris dancers. â€œItâ€™s our third year in a row performing here and itâ€™s is always full of music and costumes. There doesnâ€™t seem to be a lot of bad stuff happening here, it seems to be actually an event that works well in Vancouver.â€
The parade derives from the Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead and is organized by the Public Dreams Society. Over the years it has become an event with all sorts of artistic expression, combining music, costumes, fire, dance, performers and art, creating a fantastic evening for people of all ages.
Not everything happens on the street, though.
At 1565 Commercial Dr., there’s a line-up outside the door of La Rocca Italian dining lounge. Inside, the customers arenâ€™t the usual sorts: thereâ€™s a table full of skeletons, one full of clowns and another with witches and warlocks. All the diners are being served by characters from Baez Luhrmannsâ€™s movie, Moulin Rouge, created by 24-year-old Rachel Zaharik, a fourth-year Fashion Design and Marketing student at Kwantlen.
She came up with the idea after recently watching Moulin Rouge. â€œIt was easy to figure out costumes for, and I love the movie so I thought it would be perfect,â€ said Zaharik.
â€œI bought the patterns. I didnâ€™t design these patterns as I usually would have, I was in a rush,â€ said Zaharik, as she explained how she created six womenâ€™s costumes, a bartenderâ€™s costume and the general managerâ€™s costume, all as a favour to the restaurant, and al in a very short period of time between schoolwork and classes.
She used broad cloth and leftovers for most of the costumes, as well as sequined fabric for the bartender’s vest. The general managerâ€™s costume consists of a black suit jacket with tails and a red vest underneath. Servers wore v-neck sleeveless tops in their choice of colour, with lace trimming, and black skirts with gathered fabric at the back, creating a burlesque look.
â€œKwantlenâ€™s fashion program is one of the best in Canada. Itâ€™s recognized within the fashion industry, but not so much within the general community, which is too bad,â€ said Zaharick. â€œStudents come out of this program much more prepared than (those in) the shorter programs.â€
The Third Annual Halloween Costume Contest was a thriller. Students and faculty got creative with their costumes, dressing up as fonts, movie characters, princesses and the undead.
Three years ago the Halloween costume competition started in room 3090, with about a dozen people in attendance. The next year, it grew to about 30 people and the competitors and the audience could barely fit into the room.
â€œWe just ran out of space because it became so popular,â€ said Linda Mossing, journalism program assistant. This year, the competition took place in the rotunda of theÂ RichmondÂ campus, where a Halloween cat-walk was set up, so people could watch from the winding staircase orÂ from the main floor.
Thirty people entered the costume contest this year, among them 26-year-old, Ashley Letts, a public relations student, who dressed up as David Bowie in his role in the movie Labyrinth. â€œThe past couple years have been really low-key for me on Halloween, so this year I decided to go for it,â€ said Letts. â€œIâ€™ve been obsessed with Labyrinth since I was a little girl!â€
Erin, Raimondo, 23, a PR student,Â found aÂ dress at a vintage shop, and put together a porcelain doll outfit for the occasion.
The program assistants, who put on the costume competition,Â were the first ones to strut their stuff down the haunted, cob-web infested runway.Â They came as fonts this Halloween, from Old English to Century Gothic. Signs were taped to the front and back of their costumes, and when they lined up, the sign read “Happy Halloween!”
Awards were given out for Best Staff Pair, Best Staff Group, Most Creative, Best Consumer Costume, Scariest Costume, Best Student Group, Best Performance and Scariest Costume.
Naughty Nurse, Lucas Nightingale, 30, an interior design student, was uncertain about how to respond to his award for “Scariest Costume.” His friend, Sean Kirkby, 26, alsoÂ an interior design student, responded for him. â€œVinyl is always scary,â€ he said.
Once the show was over,Â a woman walked up to Nightingale in the crowd in the cafeteria and noticed his six-inch black high heels.
â€œI havenâ€™t been able to feel my toes since about 10, so thatâ€™s probably not a good thing, but whatever,â€ he said. â€œItâ€™s for the costume.â€
Related story: Fashion student dresses staff for Parade of Lost Souls