Since I’m with child and all, it would be absolutely perfect to go as either 1. The Arnolfini Marriage 2. The virgin Mary 3. Mary of Burgandy.
They all have some advantages. The Arnolfini costume would be easy to sew, but the challenge would be to avoid the temptation to make it look differently than how it is painted. Van Eyk was very detailed in his gown, and one would have to remain faithful to the painting. Also I have the urge to do one of those fantastic 15th century headdresses, which would rule this one out entirely.
Being the virgin Mary would limit my color scheme, and I would have to amazingly sprout long golden wavy hair. It would, however, quickly explain itself, since everyone knows who she is. But I hate to be irreverent, for I do take these things seriously. I am clearly not a virgin, and some might think it rather pompous to dress as the Queen of Heaven and mother to the son of God. There is always the Agnes Sorel version of the virgin, but I’m sure all that exposure would feel uncomfortable. Christmas and Halloween are both such wonderful holidays, and perhaps bringing Mary into the Halloween mix would be a tad too greedy and over-enthusiastic. All of us, I’m sure, are annoyed by people who try to wear slight spring clothes when there is still snow on the ground, or when neighbors hang Christmas decorations in early November. We laugh at their impatience, and condemn them for their lack of sense.
Mary of Burgandy would be the most satisfying, and provide the greatest artistic license but how many people know who Mary of Burgandy is? She was incredibly historically/dynastically important, was amazingly rich, sired numerous historically/dynastically significant children and lived a rather exciting life. But I have learned my lessons from Halloweens past: it’s best to be a character that explains itself. People tire of the lengthy explanations, however interesting they are.
So where does that lead us? Well, I’m not really sure.
While rifling through a seldom-used computer, I found a photo of the venetian costume being worn. Pardon the smiling face, and the modern context.