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How to Dress Like Jack Skellington

Updated on July 26, 2017
MyCrazyAdventures profile image

Melissa lives in Downtown Albuquerque. She loves sharing her local discoveries with fellow travelers and explorers.

Introducing the perfect Halloween host--Mr. Skellington!

I have assembled some ideas for a Jack Skellington costume to make at home.

He's a dapper fellow, that Jack. As long as you have the Jack Mask and a black tailcoat jacket, you can carry this off pretty easily.

But for those who like details, you may need to shop around for the right items -- not all of Jack's personal accessories are available to the public, btw. But that is a very Jack Skellington kind of truth, now isn't it?

You can buy the Nightmare Before Christmas black light poster

The Jack Skellington Face - You Need This to Complete The Look

Of course, the best way to be Jack---just buy the ready-made costume and be done with it.

However, the mask? It's a must have.

Jack's face is round. His eyes are hollow and his teeth choppy and square. In order to get that look you would have to have a face shaped that way and there aren't many of us born with a face like that. :-)

So, splurge on the mask and build the costume around it.

Different Mask Styles and Prices

You'll find lots of different Jack faces. Having two or more on hand broadens the different looks you can create for Jack. Jack often wrinkles and lifts his brow when he is thinking. There is a mask with that look available on Amazon.

The standard Jack mask comes in a lot of different sizes and price ranges. The round toothy grin is the most common.

Disguise Men's The Nightmare Before Christmas Jack Skellington Mask, One Size
Disguise Men's The Nightmare Before Christmas Jack Skellington Mask, One Size

This is the one item you must purchase to complete your Jack Skellington costume. Jack's look isn't something you can paint directly on your own face without some difficulty.

Who has a mouth that wide or a grin that crazy? You could blacken each eye and extend your mouth with face paint but it isn't going to look as good as the mask. Odds are people will be asking you who you are instead of recognizing Jack's goofy grin.

This mask is inexpensive and will completely transform your appearance. Get it and finalize your own version of Jack.


Jack the Skeleton Tails

You can have someone make the tailcoat jack wears using a pattern like the one below.

Most modern males do not have tiny waists and long skinny legs and arms like Jack, unless they live permanently in Halloween Town, hehe.

Getting that exact look is possible, however, if the right seamstress is used, black and white stripe fabric like Jack wears can be used to trick the eye.

OR, you can wear a black tuxedo tailcoat. Jack often shows up completely in black.

Pattern Alternatives for Tailcoats

Here's another pattern for a man's tailcoat : an 1840's Dress Coat Pattern.

The 1830-40 period of dressing uses the tailcoat.

1840s Dress Coat Pattern
1840s Dress Coat Pattern

Jack's clothing often includes a tailcoat and tailcoats aren't something you can find easily in retail stores. You could probably find something similar to this pattern in a formal wear store.

Call around and see if you can find a local men's tux outlet that carries evening coats or tailcoats. You can either rent it or ask if they sell older, worn items from their inventory. In fact, some of those stores might have a sale rack or used clothing rack.

If you aren't successful with that route, buy the pattern and locate a seamstress that can make the coat for you. You'll have to pay for the fabric, buttons and the sewing labor but you'll end up with a great costume piece that you can wear over and over and over.


Jack's Lament - Nightmare Before Christmas

Jack's Batwing Collar

You can get this great poster at AllPosters.

The image has a very clear view of the bat wing collar.

Unfortunately, this is not a separate Halloween accessory you see very often. So, if you are making your own costume you will need to get creative.

How I would make this collar--quick and easy---no sew

You can make one using black poster board (get the kind that is black all the way through) that you buy from an art store. Hobby Lobby may carry this type of poster board, too.

Make a pattern using newspaper or a paper bag. Draw out the collar shape to the size you need on the newspaper or paper bag. (you could even copy the image above to your computer and enlarge it so that you don't have to draw it freehand.)

Cut it out and use it as a pattern. Lay it on the black poster board, trace the image on the poster board and then cut the shape out.

Punch two small holes at the bottom of the wings on either side and run a single, black shoelace through so you can tie the collar around the neck.

Other Bat Wing Collar Ideas

54" Fully Lined Deluxe Black Cape ~ Halloween Costume Accessory
54" Fully Lined Deluxe Black Cape ~ Halloween Costume Accessory

Adapt the stand up collar "look" by using a vampire or Dracula collar or cape.

It's not a bat wing shape but, hey, it's Halloween. As long as you have the Jack mask, everyone will get the idea. :-)

You can find Dracula capes at Amazon, Halloween stores and costume shops during the Halloween season.

Fabric stores carry costume patterns for capes so you can make one at home.


What is This? - Jack Visits Christmas Town

Dress Like Jack's Personas -- Santa Jack

Santa Jack is just one of many adaptations you can use for costume inspiration.

Use this drawing of Santa Jack for a reference.

How to create Jack's Santa Look

  1. Buy a red union suit.
  2. Add a cheap black belt.
  3. Add some fur around some tall, black boots.

FYI: Fur attachments are called boot cuffs.

You could also head to the local fabric store and buy some fake fur, cut it to the right length and width and attach it around your wrists or boots with Velcro or glue--cheaper and works without any sewing. :-)

Just remember, if you use glue you can't undo what you've done so don't use glue on any items you want to keep or have an emotional attachment to.

The Deluxe Jack Skellington Costume

You can find this costume on Amazon.

All you have to add are the pants, gloves and shoes.

It's any easy fast way to look like dapper Jack and it all arrives via delivery.

Favorite "Nightmare Before Christmas" Character?

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    • Rangoon House profile image

      AJ 5 years ago from Australia

      Happy Halloween!

    • Monica Ranstrom profile image

      Monica Ranstrom 5 years ago

      Jack is my favorite of course and I love Sally. Great ideas!

    • profile image

      olmpal 5 years ago

      The Jack Skellington costume is a cool idea!

    • loveanime22 profile image

      loveanime22 5 years ago

      Very cute nice lens

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      We watch it every Halloween AND Christmas - of course my fave character would have to be Jack... tied with Sally!!

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      Jack Skellington, definitely! He's very much my favorite character from that film. Love this lens! :)

    • Mr-Panda LM profile image

      Mr-Panda LM 5 years ago

      Great lens, and thank you for the ideas =)

    • yayas profile image

      yayas 5 years ago

      The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of my favorite movies. Tim Burton movies are always entertaining. What a great idea to dress like Jack Skellington for Halloween.

      Congratulations on being on the Front Page!

    • Kalafina profile image

      Kalafina 5 years ago

      I love Tim Burton (as you can tell my half my lenses devotion to his films). This is one of his best films of all times. Favorite Character? Sally of course! although the sax player is a close second.

    • profile image

      nhannguyen686 5 years ago

      so great!

    • makemoneyonline5 profile image

      makemoneyonline5 5 years ago

      Creepy!! Terrific lens though ... well done :)

    • HighStreetFashi1 profile image

      HighStreetFashi1 5 years ago

      Hahaha! This is great! Love your lense :)

    • MyCrazyAdventures profile image

      Melissa 5 years ago from Albuquerque, NM

      @sweetstickyrainbo: Yes, silly.

    • XxSadieLadyxX profile image

      XxSadieLadyxX 5 years ago

      Great Lense!

    • sweetstickyrainbo profile image

      sweetstickyrainbo 5 years ago

      wicked looking baseball! Oh. That's Jack.

    • profile image

      Donnette Davis 5 years ago from South Africa

      Very sweet... he's got the cutest face... Blessed x

    • MyCrazyAdventures profile image

      Melissa 5 years ago from Albuquerque, NM

      @SolarEclipseWatcher: Yes, Santa Jack is a great Halloween costume choice!

    • profile image

      SolarEclipseWatcher 5 years ago

      Santa Jack is my favorite.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      nice lens nice videos keep up the good work

    • Rhidawn profile image

      Rhidawn 5 years ago

      I absolutely LOVE TNBC! Great lens!