Create an old woman costume for stage, Halloween, or for a play
Dress up in an old woman costume for Halloween, for a costume party, or even for fun. The costume character of the old woman is a favorite among actors, party-goers, and young people. Why? Because the old lady role is fun. Little old ladies are trotted out every day in movies, commercials, and TV shows. How many times have you seen the nosy old neighbor lady in a mystery or the busybody old woman in a movie? Old women show up as sweet grandmothers, raging hags, old crones, and wicked witches. We know them well.
Tyler Perry banked on the Old Woman character with Madea
Tyler Perry has built a career and a fortune from his "Madea" character, but he wasn't the first. Comic actors and comediennes have entertained us with their own versions of the old lady for years. Ruth Buzzi of Laugh-In fame captured the hearts of America with her depiction of the spinsterish Gladys whose purse packed a whallop. Later comedienne Vicki Lawrence gained fame as Mama, that razor-tongued, blue-haired angry grandma and matriarch of the Harper family in the TV show Mama's Family.
Are you up for a costume challenge?
Are you content to simply buy a costume and be done with it? Or would you rather accept the challenge of identifying and creating your own old woman character? Sure, you can find a frumpy dress, some baby powder to grey your hair, and a pair of orthopedic shoes. But wouldn't you like to do more? Halloween is the time to release your inner actor and take on the role of the old woman. Which old woman will it be?
Read on for more tips, suggestions and ideas to help you create your Halloween old woman costume.
- Image credit: Bartolomeo Passerotti [Public domain], Portrait of an Old Woman by Bartolomeo Passerotti via Wikimedia Commons
Not every old women is sad
How does an old woman act? - Things to watch for with little old ladies
Think you might want to dress up like an old woman for the next costume party? Here's a fun way to research the actions of a little old lady.
How to act the part of an old woman - Frances Bay as the old woman on Jerry Seinfeld
Ruth Buzzi as Gladys Ormphby from Laugh-In TV show - Ruth Buzzi roasts James Stewart - Dean Martin Roast
Ruth Buzzi wowed America with her portrayal of the dowdy spinster Gladyx Ormphby on Laugh-In. Every week she'd put on that old brown dress, put up her hair in a bun, cover her hair with hairnet, and whack someone with her big purse.
5 tips on how to act like an old lady - Create your own old woman costume and character
Transforming yourself into an old woman is more than putting on some old clothes and lining your face with wrinkles. Each old woman is different and unique. Here are some questions that will help you define your old woman character.
- What kind of personality does this old woman have? Is she happy, sad, silly, or just plain crabby?
- How does the old woman talk? Is she always flustered? Does she talk fast? Or is her speech short and stacatto as if she's mad all the time?
- Does this old woman have a lot of energy or is she a couch potato?
- How does this old woman dress? Does she care about her appearance?
- Does this old woman use a cane or a walker? Does she stoop and walk slowly, carefully? Or does she hold herself erect and act like she's a queen bossing everyone around?
Old Lady roles made famous by actors and comedians - Maude Frickert, Edna Turnblad, Dame Edna, Mrs. Doubtfire, and the famous Pepperpots
In addition to Ruth Buzzi and Frances Bay's famous old woman characters, many men have earned fame by donning the costume of an old woman.
- Jonathon Winters entertained us as the crusty Maude Frickert.
- John Travolta danced his way into our hearts in Hairspray with his loveable Edna Turnbald
- Barry Humphries made it real with Dame Edna.
- Robin Williams played the old woman to the hilt as Mrs. Doubtfire.
- The Monty Python group became Pepperpots, "screeching middle-aged, lower-middle class housewives."
- Tyler Perry gains fame as the infamous Mabel Simmons, otherwise known as Madea.
Maude Frickert and the other old woman - Tim Conway and Jonathan Winters
Monty Python - Mrs. Premise and Mrs. Conclusion
John Cleese is Mrs. Premise and Graham Chapman plays Mrs. Conclusion in the Monty Python sketch Mrs. Premise and Mrs. Conclusion visit Jean-Paul Sarte. Also in the sketch are Eric Idle as Mrs. Inference and Michael Palin, again, as Mrs. Sartre.
Famous "Old Lady" characters - Tyler Perry, Ruth Buzzi, and Carol Burnett dressed up as old women
Study the face of a very old woman
Learn how to look like an old woman
Are you ready to dress up as an old woman for Halloween? Then you'll want to look intently at the faces of the old women below. Study each face. What do their faces reveal about who they are?
Today's focus is so much on the young that the value of the old has tarnished. Women today are exterminators in the battle against creases and lines that tread upon their faces. They arm themselves with needles loaded with Botox, remedies that promise the return of youth. But is what revealed of the soul when a face is allowed to age naturally?
Take a look at the photos below and you tell me.
Image Credit. Ceramic artist sculpting an eye via Ceramic Arts Daily
- Photo credits for the above "old woman faces' images: 1) A Happy Old Woman By http://veton.picq.fr (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons 2) Old woman in Lahic By Walter Callens [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons 3) Elderly African America womanvia Wikimedia Commons 4) Local woman in Ladakh, Indialicenses/by/2.0">CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons 5) Old woman from Ivatanlicenses/by/2.0">CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons 6) Old Sad Woman licenses/by/2.0">CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons 7) Old and wise woman licenses/by-sa/2.0">CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Create your own "old woman" look - Quick tips on what to use to create an old lady's face
One actress = many faces - Frances Bay's many old woman faces
With a little bit of makeup, you can become an old woman - Dress up as an old woman, a grandma or even an old hag
This time-lapsed video shows the transformation from a young woman to an old woman, all using a few makeup tools to make it happen. Watch how it happens.
Old woman costume makeup for Halloween or any other time - Have an Old Lady Party using these old age makeup tricks
Makeup tools to create your "old woman" - The right tools can be a big help
Applying old lady makeup to a foam latex mask - Old woman make-up transformation with foam latex
Watch John Travolta become Edna Turnblad for the film Hairspray - Developing a character with makeup effects, costumes and props
Old woman costume props - Halloween costumes, old woman masks, old woman wigs
6 movies to study "old woman" roles - Old woman characters in movies
Costumes, Mardi Gras balls, and costume parties - Do you like to hide behind a mask? Take the poll
Halloween costume balls and Mardi Gras bring out the best in masks, don't you think? Pheasant Feather Mask
Ready to wear an old woman costume for Halloween? - Share your rthoughts and what costumes you like
Treasures By Brenda from Canada on December 10, 2012:
I'm afraid being an old woman isn't something I'd like to dress up as...I feel the years are slipping by quickly enough, LOL. However, your page will prove helpful for many who do want to become an old woman.
Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on September 12, 2012:
This is fantastic. I don't even need make up.
floppypoppygift1 on September 12, 2012:
What a good idea for a fun costume! Your friends may not even recognize you! Cheers~cb
JoshK47 on September 12, 2012:
I don't know if I will be personally, though I certainly think this is a great resource for those who do plan on it! :) Blessed by a SquidAngel!
anonymous on September 12, 2012:
Nice lens awesome pictures!
Deadicated LM on September 11, 2012:
Great idea for a Halloween Costume Lens.
Marie on September 11, 2012:
What an inspiring costume page. I love the fact that you've included advice on how to act as an old lady as well as dress up as one.
aquarian_insight on September 10, 2012:
Great ideas here - an enjoyable lens.
Mamabyrd from West Texas on September 08, 2012:
Great lens ViKK I really enjoyed the videos!
anonymous on September 04, 2012:
I recently started blogging on squidoo and I read various blog posts by searching on squidoo...
i found your blog out there... My lens How to Get More Likes on Facebook
Oneshotvariety LM on May 04, 2012:
Very neat and creative lens! A good variety of costumes! :]
Cynthia Sylvestermouse from United States on April 24, 2012:
Wow! Truly a lot of great tips and advice for wearing an old woman costume. I have to admit, that is one I have never consider before :)
Indigo Janson from UK on November 03, 2011:
A very clever and different Halloween costume idea. I was only familiar with Mrs Doubtfire and Dame Edna, but can see many possibilities is this costume. One to try in 2012.