History depicts that fashion-conscious ancient Egyptians paid close attention to detail in every facet of their appearance, from their bold gold jewelry to their soft linen clothing. The enduring images of their ornate headpieces might be the most identifiable Egyptian fashion standard. Men and women alike wore beautiful headpieces that you can replicate for an Egyptian-themed costume.
Ancient Egyptian deities, pharaohs and noblemen and women proudly wore intricate headpieces that covered their heads and hair almost completely. These pieces served several purposes, including a way to protect from heat and lice, a way to distinguish class and rank, and a way to recognize deities. Many ancient Egyptian kings wore headpieces, or crowns, in order to associate with a particular deity, whereas most queens and noblewomen wore variations of skullcaps, which indicated motherhood.
To make an Egyptian king's headpiece, you need black cloth, scissors, adhesive and gold ribbon or paint. Using a picture of an Egyptian king's headpiece as a guide, cut the headpiece out in the desired style. Wrap the cloth around your head and join the two ends together to fit snugly around the head so that the rest of the cloth drapes over the shoulders and back. Finally, decorate the headpiece with gold ribbon or paint.
When thinking of Egyptian queens, Cleopatra undoubtedly comes to mind. You can emulate her style with a skullcap or headband and some beaded costume necklaces, such as gold Mardi Gras beads. Cut the beaded necklaces in half, keeping all pieces of equal length. Glue the beads to the skullcap or headband. For a more authentic look, add black beads to a black crocheted skullcap.
In ancient Egypt, children did not wear any type of headpiece. However, dressing modern children up as Egyptian pharaohs might just elicit adoration from everyone around. Doing so can be as simple as wrapping a gold band around the child's head. For boys, consider adding an element, such as a cobra cut out, to the band. Girls can attach gold beads or sequins for a fancier band.
To complete the Egyptian Pharaoh look, men should attempt to hide most, if not all, of their hair under their headpiece. Women should use a black wig, if necessary, under their homemade headpiece. Men, women and children should all wear blue and green eyeshadow and black eyeliner to further the authenticity of the Egyptian costume. Bold gold jewelry around the neck and wrists can also help accentuate the homemade Egyptian headpiece.
- "The Complete History of Costume and Fashion: From Ancient Egypt to the Present Day"; Bronwyn Cosgrave
- History for Kids: Egyptian Clothing
- Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images