Athena is easily the best-known and most popular Greek goddess. Yet none of the so-called “Athena” costumes for sale out there look remotely like her. Come on, people! She’s Athena! Helmet! Shield! Spear! There were two very important statues of Athena on the acropolis in ancient Athens. The colossal statue inside the Parthenon was 38 […]


Halloween 2017 Costume Contest Winners

Hoo boy, it was tough this year. So many great costumes! And we had so many entries in the new Masquerade Division that we divided it into amateur and professional sub-divisions, added a category for “Fantasy” costumes, and reworked the prize money a little bit to make it go further. (For reference, here’s the original […]



Long ago, before Venus or Aphrodite, before Artemis or Athena, before Demeter or Persephone, there was Inanna. She was the great Mesopotamian Queen of Heaven and Earth, the goddess of love, fertility, and war. Inanna was what the Sumerians called her; their Semitic neighbors, the Akkadians, called her Ishtar. As time went on the Sumerian […]


Halloween 2016 Costume Contest Winners

Announcing the winners of our 2016 Costume Contest! Thank you so much for your patience in the wake of recent events. All the winners will be uploaded to our 2016 Costume Contest Winners album on Facebook. You can also review all the entries this year in our 2016 Costume Contest Album. The prizes track pretty […]


Halloween 2015 Costume Contest Winners

They’re here! The winners of our 2015 Costume Contest! Our contest was huge this year, and we were astounded by not only the number of entries but the quality and variety. They’re all in our Facebook album, which I invite you to marvel over: 2015 Costume Contest Album. And if you need a refresher on […]


Halloween 2014 Costume Contest Winners!

They’re here! After much agonized sifting through the many amazing entries, we have finally settled on the winners of this year’s costume contest. If you need a refresher on the rules and what the whole deal here is, check out our original contest announcement post. The level of quality in the entries was incredible this […]


Halloween 2013 Costume Contest Winners!

We had over 200 entries to our costume contest this year, which was way more than we expected. That’s the kind of response big newspapers and magazines get when they run contests, though I daresay the level of quality of our entries was higher. But that just made the judging harder. To make it manageable, […]


Costume Candidate for 2013: Inanna-Ishtar

Thanks to our Kickstarter campaign for 2013, we’re adding 19 new costumes this season, 7 of which our backers and supporters will get to vote on. This series of posts is designed to briefly introduce the many notable women and legendary figures we’ll be considering. Voting will take place spring/summer of 2013. Before Freyja or […]

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Press Release: Why be Sexy Big Bird when you can be Hatshepsut?

PRESS RELEASE Why be Sexy Big Bird when you can be Hatshepsut? FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 25, 2012 — Halloween costumes for women tend to fall into two categories: Sexy and Sexier. But a website called Take Back Halloween is bucking the trend. Launched in 2010, the site is a free how-to guide with instructions […]


Bedsheet costumes

We were thinking about doing this closer to Halloween, but the awesome shout-out today from The Mary Sue (thank you!) prompted us to go ahead and post it now: bedsheet costumes. That’s right, costumes you can make with a bedsheet. The reason you can get away with using a bedsheet for ancient costumes is because […]

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Last-minute costume suggestions

Tomorrow is Halloween, and if you don’t already have your costume together, you’re probably freaking. Relax! We’re here with some de-freaking advice on how you can pull together a last-minute outfit: If you have a sheet: Come on, everybody has a sheet. As long as you have a sheet that doesn’t have Hello Kitty or […]

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Welcome to Year Two of Take Back Halloween!

Halloween Season 2011 is upon us. It’s the week after Labor Day, and the stores are starting to stock up on costumes. For us, it’s Year Two of our project to Take Back Halloween! The response to our website last year was incredible, and this year we’re working overtime to make it even bigger and […]