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Do-It-Yourself Doctor Who Costume Ideas

Updated on March 28, 2015
Used under a CC Attribution 2.0 License.
Used under a CC Attribution 2.0 License. | Source

Doctor Who Costumes

Whether you're looking for an individual costume or a group, the Doctor and the Whoniverse give us a wide array of options.

Each Doctor has his own quirks in his costume which help set him apart, enabling us to portray them with relative ease. Key elements of some costumes could be found in thrift stores or put together from items already in your closet. Villains, aliens, and historical figures are often more difficult, but the results can be spectacular.


Awesome Femme Four!  Photo used under a CC Attribution 2.0 License.
Awesome Femme Four! Photo used under a CC Attribution 2.0 License. | Source

Doctor Who Costumes for Women

Among the options for Doctor Who costumes for women are the Companions, episode characters, and even The Doctor himself if your look will suit. Femme versions of the Doctors, the Master, and Captain Jack Harkness are increasingly popular, with some donning re-imagined costumes inspired by the male versions' on-screen attire.

Whether you choose to portray your favorite Doctor with a fairly literal version of his on-screen costume, or switch it up in skirts and heels, keeping only the general theme and trademark quirks, you join a growing sisterhood appearing on Halloween and at our local conventions.

I particularly loved this article, which has more great photos of Lady Doctors: Gender-Swapped Doctors.

New Doctor Who Costumes

Ten and Eleven
Ten and Eleven

The Tenth, Eleventh, and Twelfth Doctors

Played By David Tennant, Matt Smith, and Peter Capaldi

To cut down loading time, as this page has gotten so long, I'm moving the newest incarnations of The Doctor over to my geek blog. My latest articles on the Weeping Angels and River Song Cosplay can be found there as well.

Doctor Who Cosplay at Eternal Geek

Thanks!

The Ninth Doctor

Played by Christopher Eccleston

The Ninth Doctor's costume was often all black: black pants, black leather jacket, usually a black v-neck shirt (sometimes the v-neck shirt was dark blue, burgundy, or green). His is by far the most stark of the costumes.

His costume matches his backstory as a brooding survivor of the catastrophic war between the TimeLords and the Daleks, but whether it was this incarnation or the previous one who actually fought in the war isn't made clear. His was the revival of Doctor Who, last seen in series as the Seventh Doctor in 1989 and in a television movie as the Eighth Doctor in 1996.

The Ninth Doctor's black leather jacket is an amazing piece. It's a vintage WW2 era double-breasted black jacket with lots of details. It has a belt, straps on the cuffs, and fairly unique styling to its double row of buttons. Like our Nine, it has clearly been through a lot, but was strong enough to survive the test.

I've found accurate vintage leather jackets on eBay, and so I've set up a feed below to display any current auctions.

Classic Doctor Who Costumes

The Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Doctors

The Eighth Doctor, played by Paul McGann, appeared in one televised movie in 1996. The rest of his time as Doctor has been portrayed in comic books, audio dramas, and novels, although the alternative media are typically treated as an alternate timeline to the televised series. He's been described as "Byronesque", wearing a long frock coat and a dark grey cravat. Click here to see the exhibit of the 8th Doctor's costume.

The Seventh Doctor, played by Sylvester McCoy, wore an off-white safari style jacket over a plain white shirt and a yellow pullover with blue-green zigzag patterns and red question marks. His pants were sand-colored tweed plaid; his shoes white/brown brogued spectator shoes. His hat was a white colonial-styled Panama hat with a paisley hatband and an upturned brim. A red paisley tie, red paisley scarf worn under his jacket lapels, and a matching handkerchief tied up the paisley theme. He also carried a fob watch chained to his left lapel and an umbrella with a red question mark-shaped handle or bamboo handle. His is one of the most complicated wardrobes, though much could be done with the right hat, jacket, and umbrella, with red paisley accessories. Exhibit of the 7th Doctor's costume.

The Sixth Doctor, Colin Baker, would have preferred to wear black but was instead costumed in tasteless, mismatched, garish clothes he described as "an explosion in a rainbow factory". Best seen for yourself, check out this photo of the 6th Doctor's Costume.

The Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison, wore a variation of an Edwardian cricketer's uniform, complete with a cricket ball in one of his pockets. He favored a cream-coloured frock coat edged with orange, brightly striped trousers, and a celery stalk in his lapel.

Great Resources for Cosplayers of Five

1) 5th Doctor's Costume

2) Close up of detailing on collar

3) The BBC America Blog has an awesome post with insight into his costume and behaviour: A Companion To The Fifth Doctor.

Make Your Own Frock Coat

Patterns - Laughing Moon #109, Men's Frock Coat with Vests 1850-1915
Patterns - Laughing Moon #109, Men's Frock Coat with Vests 1850-1915

First and Eight both wore frock coats. They're an uncommon item, but crafty types can whip up their own with this pattern.

 

The Fourth Doctor

Cool Four Cosplay
Cool Four Cosplay | Source

The Fourth Doctor's Costume

Played by Tom Baker

The Fourth Doctor Who is known for his mass of curls escaping beneath his broad-brimmed hat, and his impossibly long scarf.

He wore three distinct coats: a reddish-brown blazer that he wore throughout his first season, a full-length dark brown coat for the darker horror stories, and a full-length light gray for more action-packed stories.

In his last year on Doctor Who, they changed Tom Baker's costume to a full-length burgundy overcoat, a wide-brimmed fedora, a matching blazer, and a new, redesigned, and even longer scarf of varying of reds and purples. Before long, he'd ditched the hat and blazer, leaving the hat to be seen in the background on a rack.


Fourth Doctor Accessories

Our Fourth Doctor is pictured in many hats, some appearing more stiff or new and others more battered. There is a retail "4th Doctor hat" to consider (pictured to the right). If that doesn't match your preference for your Four, you might give a look to the fedoras styled as Indiana Jones hats - their color and style is similar.

Destroying hats for fun and profit: A Fourth Doctor hat tutorial is helpful if you can't find just the right hat.

At the same forum I found Customizing a Pattern for a Season 17 Coat - In Detail which describes how to alter a Simplicity retail pattern to recreate one of the Fourth Doctor's coats.

Doctor Who Style Scarves - Like the scarf worn by Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor

Whovians seeking their own version of the Fourth Doctor's scarf are in luck. There officially licensed replicas in a two lengths.

The 6 foot version is much too short for costume purposes. The 12 foot version gives you the insane abundance of drape and loopage a Four needs.

Or, if you're a crafty type - or know one - and would like to make your own, check into the old Doctor Who Pattern Book for a pattern.

Bassetts Jelly Babies Bag, 215g
Bassetts Jelly Babies Bag, 215g

Don't forget your Jelly Babies.

 

The First Three Doctors

The Third Doctor, portrayed by Jon Pertwee, wore frilled shirts, velvet smoking jackets in blue, green, burgundy, red, or black, evening trousers in colors that matched his smoking jackets, and Inverness cloaks. His shoes were dress shoes, formal boots, or riding boots, and he accessorized with bow ties, cravats and leather gloves.

Resources for Cosplayers of Three

1) Photo of the 3rd Doctor's black velvet jacket and Inverness cloak set.

2) A Companion to the Third Doctor.

3) A replica of his sonic screwdriver is available here: Underground Toys Doctor Who Third Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver.

The Second Doctor, played by Patrick Troughton, wore clownishly baggy trousers, dark jackets, and a bowtie. Another of his quirks was to carry a recorder. His personality as well as his wardrobe was more relaxed than the original doctor, and he was called a "Cosmic Hobo" and a clown.

Resources for Cosplayers of Two

1) Photo of the 2nd Doctor's costume.

2) A Companion to the Second Doctor on the BBC America blog gives an interesting look into Patrick Troughton's portrayal of the Doctor.

The First Doctor, portrayed by William Hartnell, wore a frock coat and plaid trousers. Sometimes he wore a cape, an Astrakhan, or a Panama hat. He wore a blue signet ring, and occasionally used a walking stick. When in Earth's past, he would often alter his standard outfit in an attempt to blend in.

Resources for Cosplayers of One

1) Photo of the 1st Doctor's black frock coat and trousers costume.

2) A Companion to the First Doctor, takes an insightful look at his presence and personality onscreen.

Doctor Who Pattern Book

Offering both knitting and sewing projects, the Doctor Who Pattern Book dates from 1984 and includes a few must-haves for old-school Doctor Who fans. The patterns include, but are not limited to: Tom Baker's scarf; Peter Davison's cricket jumper; Nyssa's jacket; Romana's t-shirt and sailor top; Adric's tunic and anorak; a K-9 toy, cushion and shoulder bag; toy Cybermats; a TARDIS sleeping bag, tidy and cushion; clothes for action figures; a celery brooch; a console floor cushion; and Nasty puppets.

Most of these are not easy beginner projects, but offer a lot of fun for the dedicated Doctor Who themed crafter.

Although no longer in print, copies can sometimes be found on Amazon.

The Best Doctor Who?

My husband, kids, and I all love watching together, even though we have our own fave Doctors. Mine and my son's are Ten, while my husband prefers Four. Who's yours?

Which Doctor is your favorite?

See results

Companions and Others Costume Photogallery

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Clockwork Droid Photo by Matt MechtleyForest Queen Photo by May S. YoungRiver Song and Femme Doctors Photo by Pop Culture GeekSisters of the Sybelline Photo by Clinton SteedsWeeping AngelPhoto by Tomasz StasiukTime LordsPhoto by Clinton SteedsSister JattPhoto by Ewen RobertsTime Lord CostumePhoto by Counse
Clockwork Droid Photo by Matt Mechtley
Clockwork Droid Photo by Matt Mechtley
Forest Queen Photo by May S. Young
Forest Queen Photo by May S. Young
River Song and Femme Doctors Photo by Pop Culture Geek
River Song and Femme Doctors Photo by Pop Culture Geek
Sisters of the Sybelline Photo by Clinton Steeds
Sisters of the Sybelline Photo by Clinton Steeds
Weeping AngelPhoto by Tomasz Stasiuk
Weeping Angel Photo by Tomasz Stasiuk
Time LordsPhoto by Clinton Steeds
Time Lords Photo by Clinton Steeds
Sister JattPhoto by Ewen Roberts
Sister Jatt Photo by Ewen Roberts
Time Lord CostumePhoto by Counse
Time Lord Costume Photo by Counse

Real Doctor Who Props and Costumes

If you're still coming up empty for ideas, check out Doctor Who Props.com. I found it absolutely fascinating for the photos and discussion of real, old-school costumes worn by The Doctors and others in the series. They have close up shots of costumes and discussion of how they were made, very helpful for anyone wishing to recreate their own. The tales of how the props came to be used in the show are wonderful.

You might also enjoy the Doctor Who Experience photo stream on Flickr, which includes close-up shots of costumes from the series. You can find Time Lords, Captain Jack Harkness, River Song, and other companions and characters.

Guestbook - Thanks for visiting my Doctor Who Costumes page! :)

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    • profile image

      Kitty Krell 2 years ago

      Hey! This is awesome! I just stumbled across this article from pinterest-I'm the Weeping Angel pictured! I have more pics up, as well as a description of how everything was made at Facebook.com/kittykrellcosplayer.

    • profile image

      KayCross 3 years ago

      Hello. I was hoping to find someone that might help me with a guide for creating the Queen of Years costume for a young girl.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Hi. I would never have thought about dressing up as the Doctor or one of his companion at Halloween but who wouldn't like to look like the Doctor.

      I saw the very first ones and hid behind the sofa when the Daleks came on (oops showing my age here!)

      David Tennant was a great doctor and really brought the series back to life again. He is definitely my favorite.- I was so sad when he left.

      I also have a similar scarf to Tom Baker's one - really really long.

    • KerryVor profile image

      Kerry Voronoff 4 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      awesome lens. love the Blink outfit. It was a difficult choice for my favorite doctor though...

    • boneworld profile image

      Jackson Thom 4 years ago from West of Left South Lucky

      Love Dr. Who. I never thought of going as one of the Doctors for Halloween though. I was torn between David Tennant and Tom Baker, because Tennant was so good, but alas, I grew up with Tom Baker, so I had to go with him.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I Miss You David !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • kimberlynapper profile image
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      Kimberly Napper 4 years ago from U.S.

      @RinOfAllTrades: :) Welcome to Squidoo!

    • profile image

      RinOfAllTrades 4 years ago

      Great lens! I've been looking for inspiration for my 3 year old's costume this year (especially since his birthday falls near Halloween), and I got a few good ideas and sources from this. Now I just have to find a small pair of Converse-like sneakers!

      And it's particularly awesome to find another mom who is a gamer, and homeschooling (which is my intent) within my first 24 hours on Squidoo! ^_^

    • mmwoodward profile image

      mmwoodward 4 years ago

      This lens is pretty neat! I've done my own Doctor Who cosplaying as well (as Jack Harkness). Haha, the Dalek costumes are amusing, though...

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      i only wish they had the master preferably the harold saxon one here he is my favourite characto other than the doctor, but all in all great ideas and costumes :)

    • kimberlynapper profile image
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      Kimberly Napper 4 years ago from U.S.

      @mmwoodward: Very cool!

    • mmwoodward profile image

      mmwoodward 4 years ago

      I went to a sci-fi convention last year dressed as Captain Jack Harkness. My best friend went as Ianto Jones! It was great. :) Although I wanted the replica coat SO BAD, I didn't have the money to dish out, so we went to an army surplus store and got a pretty decent one there. :) Just $20 or so, too, since the lining was missing.

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      meggiestardust 4 years ago

      Great costume information! I'm pretty partial to Ten's costume

    • Boomer1952 profile image

      Boomer1952 4 years ago

      All these years later, and I still think of the scarf when I picture Doctor Who.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      SIXTH rocks

      COSTUME AND ALL

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Brilliant ideas! Pretty nice lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      plenty of ideas here for the next fancy dress party

    • blujeanmomma profile image

      blujeanmomma 5 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      It took me a little bit to get into Dr. Who but once i did I was hooked. Love the costume ideas.

    • profile image

      dellgirl 5 years ago

      This is a great lens you have here, lots of good 'Do-It-Yourself Doctor Who Costume Ideas'.

    • Travelschooling1 profile image

      Travelschooling1 5 years ago

      This is fantastic! I have a 6 year old who dresses up as his hero just about every day, we even have a fez. I clicked because of The Doctor and I see you are a fellow homeschooler. Cool!

    • Dusty2 LM profile image

      Dusty2 LM 5 years ago

      Interesting lens and costumes. Used to watch Dr. Who religiously every weekend. Don't know what happened as I kinda lost touch with Dr. Who. Work? anyway, still a fan of Dr. Who. Thank you for sharing.

    • Tennyhawk profile image

      Tennyhawk 5 years ago

      Dr. Who is a recent discovery (and obsession) for me. Love the costume ideas, and the history and videos of the various Doctors.

    • profile image

      DigbyAdams 5 years ago

      I think I could find many of the Dr. Who clothing pieces at thrift shops and second hand stores. It would be fun to make a Dr. Who costume out of vintage clothing. Thanks for these great costume idea.

    • profile image

      MissMalaprop 5 years ago

      We went to Dragon*Con in Atlanta last year, and it was definitely the year of Doctor Who! Saw SO MANY 10th and 11th Doctor costumes especially. Also plenty of Tardis & Dalek costumes. But the only Cyberman costume I saw was this group of little kids - one of them had a fantastic costume! (Picture I took here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/uproar/6131165568/in/...

    • kimberlynapper profile image
      Author

      Kimberly Napper 5 years ago from U.S.

      @MissMalaprop: Loved the pic. They're adorable.

    • athomemomblog profile image

      Genesis Davies 5 years ago from Guatemala

      Very nice! I prefer the 9th doctor's costume, like many others, but 10 is also good!

    • profile image

      lovelikewinter3 5 years ago

      Wow, super easy to follow and very complete! I loved the 9th doctor's outfit for its simplicity, it fit in just about everywhere! 10th is pretty universal too, and I'm working through to the 6th series, so haven't seen Matt Smith in action yet, just photos.

    • CameronPoe profile image

      CameronPoe 5 years ago

      Hey, these are really simple to follow.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      This lens was so thorough! The Ninth Doctor's costume is probably my fave of all time, even if it's not as "iconic" as the Fourth's, Tenth's or Eleventh's. Leather-clad + time-traveler = yes please!

    • MelonyVaughan profile image

      MelonyVaughan 5 years ago

      Great lens! Exterminate!

    • profile image

      Edutopia 5 years ago

      My friend is a huge Doctor Who fan and she'd get a big kick out of this. Thanks for the lens.

    • Board-Game-Brooke profile image

      C A Chancellor 5 years ago from US/TN

      Great lens! I loved "The Girl in the Fireplace" -- that's still my favorite episode. I thought the weeping angels were great too.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I know David Tennent was by far my favorite Doctor. Matt Smith is obviously the most demented, and fun Doctors.

    • LaurenIM profile image

      LaurenIM 5 years ago

      I only knew of David Tennant. I hadn't realized that this was a long-time show but I love the shows that I have seen.

    • alexis84 profile image

      alexis84 5 years ago from Kent, UK

      Wow! What a great lens! Really informative, you've gone to a lot of trouble to do all the research and links for every doctor! Really enjoyed reading it! x

    • profile image

      ThisAndMoreofThat 6 years ago

      Great analysis and tips for getting the costume just right.

    • youthministry profile image

      Paul Turner 6 years ago from Birmingham, Al.

      Great lens! Dr. #4 is the one I grew up with.

    • seeker2011 lm profile image

      seeker2011 lm 6 years ago

      I started knitting the scarfe (Tom Baker fourth doctor) when my parents went on holidays. Problem was I did not know how to end so every few nights I would just add another ball of wool and continued until my parents returned several weeks later and my mother could finish off. Needless to say the sacrfe was over thirty foot long. Great lense.

    • bassetmonkey profile image

      bassetmonkey 6 years ago

      OMG. Beautiful lens! Love that you did each doctor ... plus ... Bowties and fezes are cool.

    • profile image

      NevermoreShirts 6 years ago

      So many wonderful choices for costumes - I'm not even sure where I'd begin. Except with a bow tie. Bow ties are cool.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Awesome. I'm going to school with a few friends dressed as MAtt Smith's version of the doctor and I'm going to stage a fight with the Master. Thanks a lot!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      thank you for putting this stuff on here. it helped a lot. :)

    • Lisa Remmick profile image

      Lisa Remmick 6 years ago

      This is a great in depth lens with info I wouldn't have thought of with Dr. Who. I'ts been years since I saw any of the Dr. Who series. Sparked my interest to look into it more....

    • LizRobertson profile image

      LizRobertson 6 years ago

      What a fun lens and so thorough! You must be a huge fan?

    • AdeleW profile image

      AdeleW 6 years ago

      What a great lens, well done. I will refer it to people who need this costume inspiration, thanks again

    • cuteordeath profile image

      cuteordeath 6 years ago

      This lens is, dare I say it, brilliant!

    • dukethepcdr profile image

      dukethepcdr 6 years ago

      Very nice lens! I love Doctor Who! Both the "original" and "revival" series are great! Sometimes the stories in the revival series get to be a bit heavy handed, especially the Tenth Doctor's, but I still enjoy the show overall. I picked the Fourth Doctor in the poll partly because I grew up watching Doctor Who on PBS in the U.S. and they mainly showed the Third, Fourth and Fifth Doctors. Tom Baker was and still is, the perfect actor to play the Doctor. He has an uncanny ability to change his mood from deeply serious to perfectly silly at the drop of a hat. There is a certain impish quality to him. He always seemed very young, almost child-like yet his eyes looked very old but with a twinkle still in them. I've yet to see any of Matt Smith's work as I don't get BBC America and haven't saved up for the DVD box set yet (why do they cost so much?) of his first season. So I can't be too hard on him I suppose. He does seem a bit too much like a little kid though from the trailers. I've heard one reviewer call Smith the "Twilight-ification" of the Doctor :)

      My favorite "new" Doctor was the Ninth one. Chris reminds me a lot of Tom (minus the curly hair :)).

    • profile image

      zaptrollwen 6 years ago

      This lens is STUPENDOUS!!! I LOVE watching Doctor Who, especially the tenth Doctor. The eleventh is still second best though.

    • kimberlynapper profile image
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      Kimberly Napper 6 years ago from U.S.

      @Missmerfaery444: Thanks :)

    • kimberlynapper profile image
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      Kimberly Napper 6 years ago from U.S.

      @Kitsune64: hehe! This was, by far, my favorite page to write in a long time - utter geek-girl heaven. :)

    • Missmerfaery444 profile image

      Missmerfaery444 6 years ago

      Brilliant lens! A superb resource for anyone wanting to dress up for a party, convention or other Doctor Who event!

    • sheilamarie78 profile image

      sheilamarie78 7 years ago

      I used to enjoy watching Dr. Who -- quirky! You've gathered some great costume ideas! Bravo!

    • profile image

      Kitsune64 7 years ago

      This is utterly fantastic! My first Doctor was the Ninth, so I'll always have a special place in my heart for Dr. Dark and Dangerous - just enough to nudge him above Tenth in your poll. I loved seeing the breakdown of all the different Doctors' costumes (and by "loved," I mean "was reduced to a puddle of giggling fangirl glee," of course). Definite like.

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 7 years ago from Idaho

      What great ideas for Doctor Who costumes, I didn't realize there had been so many.

    • tandemonimom lm profile image

      tandemonimom lm 7 years ago

      These are fabulous costumes! Our family is new to Dr. Who, but we're already big, big fans!

    • CastleRoyLisa profile image

      Lisa 7 years ago from Rhode Island

      My husband loves Dr who this is a wonderful lens well done. love the costumes.

    • aka-rms profile image

      Robin S 7 years ago from USA

      Fun costume ideas!