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Photog Smurf Article

Gwen Costume 2000

I guess this story starts way back in April 2000 when No Doubt released their fourth album (not their sophomore one like some people say). There was Gwen on the cover of the album with her pink hair.


Flash forward to August. I went to see No Doubt at Irvine Meadows for the last show from their “Return of Saturn” summer tour. I had bought the tickets in the spring. It’s sort of customary for some of the fans to dress like Gwen at their concerts. Or at least I think it is? I wanted to dye my hair pink and have some new clothes, but I didn’t have enough money to do both. My mom said that my cousin told her the dye and bleach is very expensive. I got a new outfit and made due with a concoction of pink colored hair spray and pink hair mascara.

I’m not sure why I wanted to dress as Gwen for Halloween. Perhaps it was because I attempted a few other Gwen costumes over the previous Halloweens that came with less than desirable results.

I tried to copy the skirt she wore during her performance on Late Night with Conan O’Brien.

Although the costume was not based on one specific outfit she wore.

I worked on that costume for over a month. I had finally finished it by mid-October.

The skirt flap was nothing more than some black fabric that my mom sewed to the front and back of the pants that I wore to the concert, but they were detachable because she used Velcro. We didn’t use anything fancy like straps or D-rings to hold them onto the pants. I picked up a cheap beading set at the dollar store that also came with sequins. My mom sewed an “X” on the front skirt flap in pink sequins.

I went to the thrift store to find a top for my costume. The funny thing was I was purposely looking for something like looked very “Gwen”, but I couldn’t really find anything. I had to find something. It was kinda-Gwen. I bought this tank top covered in black sequins. It looked more “disco” than Gwen Stefani.

I could not afford a twenty dollar wig or hair dye to make my hair pink, so I made my hair pink with a concoction of pink hair mascara and two different kinds of colored hair spray. I used almost the same concoction when I went to the concert in August. That pink hair spray we got at Wal-Mart smelled horrible. It smelled like fish! The only good thing about it was it gave good coverage and I could put up with the smell which eventually dissipated.  I wanted the color to show up in my brown hair.

I got invited to a senior Halloween party. I even had a flier for it. I got it from the band's manager who I had a chemistry class with. I really wanted to go to the party. My parents made a lot of dumb arguments/reasons why I couldn’t go. There were two big Halloween parties that weekend; the one the band played at and another one. Their argument was that I could not go because I went to a bunch of parties (family parties) and that I could not go alone. By a miracle my friend decided to go. Which was very out of character for him since he was so socially awkward.

When I called up my friend about the party my temporary pink hair stained the phone receiver. I got in a lot of trouble for that. His younger brother (who was in the same grade as me) didn’t want to go because he wanted to play with the new PS2 they got. They had camped out at the local Target for it and missed a few days of school because of it. They kept trying to sell me their old Playstation.

When I got a look at myself in the mirror I thought I did look like a disco girl or some type of 80s person. I was wearing a lot of chains, a sequined top and pink feathered hair.

My friend wore a homemade Steve Jobs costume. That consisted of a t-shirt, jean jacket and some jeans. When we got there I was expecting to see a crazy high school Halloween party like I had seen in movies and TV shows. It was like a neighborhood/family party. A bunch of the popular kids lived near the house where the party was being held because they all walked there. It was a strange sight. Many of them were girls dressed as dead cheerleaders.

I wore my blue vinyl coat with the black faux fur collar trim. It was good because it looked very Gwen-like. I wore that to school regularly anyway. I got invited to a senior party; although there were not just seniors there. There were some popular juniors there too.  I felt like I didn’t belong; that my friend and I weren’t cool enough. The real reason we got invited was because we knew the bassist of the band. When I wore my Gwen costume a lot of people were not surprised. It was kind of like they expected it. Although a few people asked me what I was dressed as.

They mostly played cover songs like “Chick Magnet” and “Punk Rawk Show” by MxPx. When they played a cover of “Anything Anything” by Dramarama and the singer forgot the words. They also covered a Rage Against the Machine song. People at the party were requesting them to play a No Doubt song. The bassist asked me if I wanted to come up on stage and sing a No Doubt song. There was another girl who was a huge No Doubt fan at my high school, although she didn’t wear the t-shirts or anything like that. I didn’t really meet her until I was a junior. We had a math class together, and we were in the same grade. Only one member of the band dressed up in a costume; the lead singer. He dressed as a convict.

Then I wore the costume again at school three days later on Halloween. I woke up very early to get ready. I used the same hair concoction that I used for the party. My hair was very pink, but also very stiff. I didn’t want people touching my hair. I don’t like people touching my hair even when it is not Halloween. It’s just something that bothers me. People kept commenting on how good the coverage was on my hair. I really liked showing off my costume at school to the people who did not go to the party especially my other friends. In my French class I was the only person dressed up. One girl in my French class knew who I was dressed as. I thought my French teacher was going to make fun of my costume in French, but she wasn’t there. In my calculus class the teacher dressed as a witch and did some sleight of hand and gave out candy. That was probably the only fond memory I had in that class. My teacher wasn’t bad, I just hate calculus. Somebody had made a crow costume from electrical tape. One of the most popular costumes at school that year was the 1960s style Playboy Bunny costume. My art teacher knew who I was dressed as. She remembered all the No Doubt themed fan art I made in class the year before.

When I went Trick or Treating that night I even wore a pink feather boa. It made the costume even more Gwen-like. One of my neighbors saw my costume. I think she thought it was a disco costume. She told me something about disco. When I was almost done Trick or Treating I went to a house and there were some people sitting in front of it with candy who looked like they were about in their 20s. One of them was female in her twenties wearing an older style No Doubt shirt. She had a whole rocker look going on with Bettie Paige style hair. I wanted her to guess who I was dressed and when I said I was dressed as Gwen Stefani she said my costume needed work. I was so embarrassed! But it was funny too.

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pikachulover Posted on Oct 16, 2015 at 08:24 AM

I was like one of the biggest No Doubt fans at my high school. People who never met me knew that was my "thing".

Vaporman87 Posted on Oct 15, 2015 at 07:11 PM

That's one thing I wanted to avoid when choosing a costume for trick or treating... I didn't want to be predictable. I wanted to keep people guessing as to what I would be each year.

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