Saturday, November 23, 2013

Happy Hunger Games

In a recent blog post I mentioned that I was finishing Catching Fire, the second installment of the Hunger Games series. In eager anticipation of the movie, I finished the book before the film hit theaters. To say I liked the second book more than the first would be an understatement. As hard as it is for me to admit, Catching Fire turned me into a real "Gamer".

In true "Gamer" spirit, I decided to properly celebrate the film's release...go ALL OUT. When the idea first struck, I couldn't contain my excitement. "OMG, Chloe," I said, letting the words fall out as quickly as they hit me. "We need to dress up for the Hunger Games! When the movie comes out!" My brain was spinning with ideas, I nearly fell over from dizziness. "Like, get all crazy with our makeup and outfits like those people from the Capitol!"

She matched my enthusiasm. " hilarious would that be?!" she laughed, and I could tell she was vividly picturing the thought in her head.

"But wait," I paused, "You have brown hair. You could be Katniss!" 

"Perfect!" she agreed. And so we did a little jig together, which involved a lot of shrieking and clapping our hands.

When the day arrived, I hastily Googled for inspiration: Capitol fashion, Effie Trinket, Hunger Games costumes. There were several things I noticed. Every aspect of the look was crazy-colorful: from the hair to the makeup and the outfits. Seeing as I didn't have a wig or hair dye, I decided my ginger locks would have to do. 

To style my hair, I rolled the front pieces of my hair into pin curls and secured them with bobby pins. With the remaining hair in the back, I created one large bun. Chloe made this beautiful bow headpiece with an assortment of ribbons.

I also noticed a pattern with the clothes: lots of satin (probably used to portray the overwhelming wealth over the districts).

I had two options in mind: a silky navy skirt from J.Crew or my metallic BB Dakota dress. So I decided to consult Chloe before making the final decision. I bet you can guess which one she chose...

Puff jacket: BCBG Max Azria // Metallic dress: BB Dakota

About this coat...I'm sure you're wondering where in the world I could've gotten this creampuff-like confection. Having developed an intense passion for haute couture by the age of 15, and an equally enthusiastic taste for cream puffs, I was immediately smitten the minute I laid eyes on the jacket. While most of my peers lusted over the latest model of the hot pink bedazzled Sidekick, I was drooling over this strange cream puff coat, draped artfully on a BCGB Max Azria mannequin.

Like most things I obsessed over at the time, I talked about it nonstop. Being the savvy shopper that my mom is, she kept an eye on the coat until it went on clearance, originally gifting it to me in a navy blue color, until she lucked out and happened upon one in pearlescent cream. Pictured below are photos from my Sweet 16 birthday party, one of the first occasions I was able to bust  it out.

What you may not realize is, the Capitol (like many aspects of the Hunger Games) is far from fictitious. Wacky, bold outfits have been gracing the runways for years, oftentimes paired with crazy hats, makeup and poufed-up pastel hair. Another not-so-coincidence? These frocks have a price point that only the wealthy upper class can afford, making them fashion reserved for the elite.

Makeup close-up

The most time-consuming aspect of my "Capitol look" was the makeup, hands down. 

1. I started off with my routine Even Better foundation by Clinique (in a very appropriate shade of alabaster), but this time coating my lips with a layer. Under normal circumstances I would never do this, as it gives off a creepy zombie-with-no-lips effect, but created a perfect neutral canvas to paint on my pucker lips.

2. I coated my eyelids (up to my eyebrows and also on my upper cheeks) with e.l.f. eyeshadow primer. Eyeshadow primer makes colors more vibrant and last longer. I applied purple eyeshadow to my upper lids and outer lower lash line. Above the crease line on my upper lids, I doused the remaining area in fuchsia shadow, extending it around my eye and onto the upper half of my cheeks. On the inner corner of my eye I used a light pearly pink.

3. Next, I doused my eyebrows in concealer and some old Urban Decay eyeshadow potion I had stashed in a drawer, rubbing the hairs back and forth to ensure they were saturated. This essentially made my eyebrows disappear, and also prepped them for the gold eyeshadow I applied afterwards. 

4. I lined my upper lid with black MAC gel eyeliner, then topped it with a coat of e.l.f. liquid eyeliner, also applying a coat of Maybelline Great Lash mascara to my upper lashes.

5. To seal the makeup, brushed e.l.f. translucent powder all over my face.

6. To finish the look, I drew my pucker lips on with pinkish-purple lipstick, then lined it with Maybelline gloss stain in "Fresh Fuchsia."

I used OPI nail polish in "Coney Island Cotton Candy",  "Louvre Me Louvre Me Not",  and "You Don't Know Jacques!" as well as Beauty Secrets base coat and top coat

As fate would have it, my nails happened to match perfectly with the rest of my outfit! To achieve this "geometric nail art," start with a neutral colored base coat. Next, draw a diagonal line from one corner of your nail to the other (using a lighter, vibrant color) and fill it in. Do the same thing with a darker polish, drawing from opposite corner to corner. Finish with top coat, and wah-lah! You're fingertips now look as mod as they do in the Capitol ;-)

Green army surplus jacket: American Eagle Outfitters // Black t-shirt: Aerie // Khaki pants: American Eagle Outfitters
Black lace up combat boots: Wanted (DSW)

As you can imagine, Chloe's look was a lot simpler. She paired our American Eagle army jacket with a plain black t-shirt, slipping black lace-up combat boots on over khaki pants. The point of the outfit was not to match Katniss to a T, but rather to capture the mood by selecting pieces that had an army surplus, rough and tumble feel to them. To top it off, she wove her hair into Katniss' signature side braid.

To fully morph into Katniss, Chloe needed a mockingjay pin. I created this pin last-minute using yellow construction paper, scissors, and a black permanent marker. 

Effie's black lace-up cage heels: Prabal Gurung for Target // Metallic purple dress: BB Dakota

Our friend Bryan (who bravely accompanied us to the movie despite our festive garb) insisted that we see it in IMAX. The last time we saw a movie in IMAX was Tim Burton's version of Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, so it's safe to say it'd been a while since we'd seen a movie on the BIG screen. While it was a bit pricier than normal, if you're going to go all out, you might as well go all out.

It was looking like we were the only avid fans crazy enough to dress up, but after the 7 o'clock showing we met these awesome kids who, like us, went all out in the name of the Games.



Photos shot with an Olympus PEN camera

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