Winnipeg woman shocks with elaborate Halloween costumes

By day she works as a multimedia developer and videographer. By night she makes costumes
Nicole Magne makes costumes, including this headless one of Marie Antoinette. (Andy Bart)

By day she works as a multimedia developer and videographer. By night she makes costumes. Not just any costumes. Masterpieces.

Nicole Magne was recently featured in Make Magazine for her annual costume exploits. Make is a popular American magazine that showcases do it yourself projects.

Nicole Mange's headless Marie Antoinette costume in progress. (Andy Bart)
In 2006 Magne made a headless Marie Antoinette costume. "The costume was an elaborate illusion to look as though I was a decapitated person holding my own head," she explained. "It involved creating a fake bust which was elevated above my head."

She refers to her costumes as her sculptures. "I use clay model, then cast it in plaster." Then she uses a liquid foam that is poured into the mold, creating a nerf-like material. "It's lightweight, it's flexible and great for costumes."

Nicole Mange's original sketch for headless Marie Antoinette costume (Andy Bart)
Magne always posts her methods online so she can share how she makes her creations with others. "It's great because I do get feedback from people who have followed through and they will send me the photos of their final version." Magne says she really enjoys the online community of crafty people.

It usually takes her one month to create her costume, from concept to creation. She says she figures out what she wants to do on paper, then works backwards to figure out how to do it. "There's definitely some trial and error involved but I think my fine arts background helps me problem-solve," she explained.

This year's costume is based on the Orange is the New Black Netflix show. "I'm a three person dancing chain gang, using mannequins that I built....It's a lot of fun to wear," she said, clearly delighted with herself.

To learn more about Nicole Magne's Halloween creations, listen to Information Radio on Tuesday October 29 after 7 a.m.


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