How to Make a Vampire-Count Costume

A billowing cloak of red taffeta surrounds this dashing creature of the night, shielding his countenance from scrutiny.

man in in homemade vampire costume
Photo: Roland Bello

Don this spooky DIY Vampire costume for a night well spent. A formal cummerbund and bow-tie—just strips of taffeta tied in place—dress up the tuxedo shirt. His medals of honor are constructed from gold origami paper and snips of ribbon. Only the razor-sharp fangs reveal his true nature for a spooky Halloween.

What You'll Need


  • Basic sewing supplies
  • 2 1/2 yards red taffeta
  • Scissors
  • 1 1/2 yards of 1 1/2-inch-wide red ribbon (for cape)
  • Gold paper
  • Assorted widths of ribbon in shades of red (for medals)
  • Craft glue
  • Assorted small pom-poms
  • 20 inches of 2-inch-wide ribbon (for rosette)
  • 2 yards of 4-inch-wide velvet ribbon (for sash)
  • Small paintbrush
  • 1/2 yard black taffeta (for cummerbund)
  • Safety pins
  • BlueStik reusable adhesive
  • Fangs (Delightbox Vampire Fangs)
  • Four-Point-Star Template


  1. Cut an 85-inch-long piece of taffeta. Lay fabric right-side down. Fold top edge toward you 1/2 inch; press. Fold top toward you 8-inches; sew in place 1/8-inch from the edge. To make a channel, top-stitch 1-1/2-inches from the folded edge. Cut a 50-inch length of black ribbon (cut ends on the diagonal to prevent fraying). Attach a safety pin to one end, and use the pin to guide the ribbon through the channel. Gather fabric as you go, leaving 15-inches of ribbon on each side for ties. Sew the channel closed on both ends; hem the cap.

  2. Fold a square of gold paper in half to make a rectangle; orient the rectangle with the crease on the left side. For a six-point star, bring the upper-left corner down to a point on the right edge of the rectangle, about one-quarter of the way from the lower-right corner. Bring the lower-left corner up and to the right so that the left edge of the shape meets the top edge. Using the left point for reference, fold the paper in half horizontally, bringing the top edge down. Cut diagonally from the top edge of the shape down to about the midpoint on the bottom edge (the closer you cut to the point, the smaller your star). Unfold, and shape. For four-point-star instructions, get our template. Make two small six-point stars to serve as cuff links.

  3. Cut 3-inch lengths of ribbon in a variety of widths; notch the ends. Layer ribbons; glue them together. Glue a pom-pom to the back of each star. Glue stars to ribbons. For the rosette, cut a 20-inch length of 2-inch-wide ribbon. Sew a running stitch along one edge. Gather ribbon into a rosette shape, and stitch ends together. Press flat. Glue two stars to the center, one on top of the other. For medallion necklace, layer 12-inch strips of 1/4-inch-wide ribbon and 1/2-inch-wide ribbon; glue star to center.

  4. Cut 2 yards of 4-inch-wide ribbon (cut ends on the diagonal). Glue the medals to sash so they appear straight when sash is draped diagonally over the body.

  5. Wear a tuxedo shirt and black pants. Tie 1/2 yard of taffeta around the waist for the cummerbund. Tie a 30-inch strip of 2-1/2-inch-wide red taffeta around the neck for the bow tie, and trim off excess. Drape sash over the body and pin in place; pin the medallion necklace to the shirt. Secure the cuff links to the shirt buttons with reusable adhesive.

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