Red Queen of Hearts Costume from 100% Recycled/Thrift Shop Finds

The Red Queen of Hearts costume from Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” film is what inspired me to create this 100% custom costume from nothing but recycled materials and thrift shop finds. As I tore through old lace curtains and red panels 400 times, it finally began to take shape. Then I tore it to bits again!

It was not until I decided to use tule for the skirt that the Red Queen of Hearts costume began to take shape (and I was no longer pulling my hair out trying to get it just right:)

The Red Queen is dramatic and I knew the skirt had to be as well! Once the skirt was constructed, the corset took shape. My imagination saw the sleeves being large and dramatic along with the card collar. I also wanted a dramatic septer and therefore chose to wrap a large stick with fabric remnants and top it off with a rose, also found thrifting!

Once the sleeves were created, I found a bag of old vintage buttons and glued away! The cuffs are adorned with emerald links, the sleeves with gold and silver as well as rubies.

With the Red Queen having a large head, it was a must that the crown be small to give effect, but not go unnoticed. The crown was created using a sour cream container being cut into the shape of a crown and bejeweled with the same vintage gems from the body of the costume.

Once the Red Queen of Hearts costume was created, the effect of make-up was the last element to pull the entire character together. Using Halloween face paint,  blue eye shadow, red lipstick and black eyeliner, me, the queen emerged!

After 5 solid weeks of hot glue burns, fabric fiascos and more tule then Juliard, IT WAS COMPLETE!

Want to know how to make this?!?!

Red Queen of Hearts Costume Must Have Supply List

All of the items can can be found at a thrift store!

  • Any red, white, black or maroon fabrics you can find.
  • Costume jewelry or vintage buttons.
  • Scrap red velvet and gold ribbon.
  • White dress shirt, black dress shirt.
  • Deck of old cards using only the hearts.
  • Hot glue gun (high heat).
  • Sour cream container.
  • Scissors.
  • Halloween make-up kit

Costume Directions

  • Cut collar off black shirt and place over white shirt, hot glue neck line together.
  • Fan cards and use hot glue to hold them, hot glue to white shirt collar.
  • Use curtain panels and tear them into 3″ strips; tie tops around a rope until entire rope is covered and you are able to tie around waist. Tie velvet strips in a criss cross pattern down the sleeves and then glue.
  • Use ribbon and buttons to embellish the sleeves as desired.
  • Use imagination to create what YOUR VERSION of the Red Queen is. No two costumes are the same and staying true to your vision is the funnest part about creating this costume.

You will become the Red Queen of your dreams and radiate her as you wear the creation. People will not be able to ignore your confidence as you demand to be noticed.

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  • Tags

    Adult/Teen Cost: $20-$50 Disney Editors Picks I Won a Costume Contest Individual Woman/Girl Costume Makeup / Body Art More Than a Week No-Sew Recycled / Eco-Friendly Tim Burton Movies