Gaping hole costume for Halloween 2009

This year for Halloween I tried to do a see-through hole in your body costume:

Gaping hole costume

It worked okay, but not great. The biggest problem was that I didn’t have a gadget lying around the house that could output live composite video. Both my normal video camera and my digital camera had exhausted batteries that wouldn’t recharge, which is a gadget fail on my part. And while my Flip video camera is tiny and it can output pre-recorded video through a composite cable, it can’t output live video (?!). Lame. I didn’t care enough to buy a new battery-operated gadget that could send out out live video. I settled for projecting scary Halloween images and video, but it wasn’t the same as a hole going right through your body.

I found a plastic “Roman centurion” breastplate for $10, but that led to the second problem: the breastplate was too bulky. I trimmed the breastplate down a lot, but it still was too substantial:

Gaping hole costume

Next time, I’d go with just cardboard and duct tape. On the bright side, the costume was comfortable and quick to take on and off. It wasn’t that hard to make, either. Just a little bit of cutting and duct tape did the trick:

Gaping hole costume

I might circle back to this idea down the road, but I think it’s safe to call Halloween 2009 a mixed bag.

40 Responses to Gaping hole costume for Halloween 2009 (Leave a comment)

  1. By the way, the TV was a 7-inch portable digital LCD TV. This one was by a company called “Digital Prism” but you can find lots of similar projects, e.g. portable DVD players.

  2. Sweet idea, nonetheless, Matt. Who needs Halloween to get mileage out of a costume like that? It might even be more entertaining to do it mid-year.

  3. Awesome idea…

    Still turned out pretty cool. It’ll look pretty crazy at night when you’re standing in the dark and can see little critters inside you.

  4. Decent attempt, the one on that other page is pretty amazing. Sooo simple too. “looks around the house for gadgets to use”

  5. it looks nice, but it may also be heavy isn’t it?

  6. I’m first surprised you defaced a Google shirt, and even more surprised you used it as a Halloween costume! πŸ™‚

  7. Happy Halloween πŸ™‚ but I must say, nice Gadget n pretty strange costume ^^ What about those ols fashion Wizards n Witches crawling around town? Did you really wear a google shirt?? ^^
    happy celebration

  8. Simple is sometimes better…

    I saw the hair cut video. And I think you wanted to try a new look… And made the bet. And then you got a free hair cut. Smart… πŸ™‚

  9. This is the geekiest yet greatest costume idea ever. I wish I thought of this.

  10. Nice to see liberal use of the DUCT TAPE.

    The universal problem solver..

  11. Great idea! Just wonder if the people working in “promo” at Google might have preferred you used a different shirt!

    Ideas for next year:
    – Link bait
    – Large can of “web spam”
    – Larry

  12. The plastic underneath your shirt makes it look like it’s bulletproof or made from some kind of secret fabric.

  13. Matt,happy Halloween!It looks nice!

  14. I can’t get past the hair. ;-p

  15. Matt, someone hacked your blog avatar and gave him a wig. Just FYI.

  16. You look nice in the Picture πŸ™‚

  17. Matt,

    Two things:
    1. Costume not one of your best. You have done a lot better over the years.

    2. Grow your hair back fast and don’t make anymore hair bets. Balding is not your look πŸ˜‰

  18. Nice Matt!

    I hope you used the effect of your last bet as an additional and positve advantage that day.

    may be next the time you can get some OLEDs on foil as a flexible screen?

  19. Lot of bother for nothing, IMO. You already have your head shaved, you should have played on that. E.g Uncle Fester etc.

  20. I can’t remember ever dressing up for Halloween. Hate that I missed those fun opportunities as a kid. This year I was traveling on Saturday. After spending the day in 3 different airports, it was really cool to see the airline employees dressed like everything from Cinderella to the Grinch. I love people who love their jobs!!

  21. OMG, I’ve been thinking about this kind of thing for awhile. Did you invent this concept or is there a website or something?

  22. Well it does have an engineering theme to it, the costume you linked to did seem to work, but way too much time and effort. There are newer gadgets that would make this much easier (Google for worlds smallest DVD player ) small and not overly expensive, might not take a video input though. But why not a halloween DVD ? The trouble is, once these ideas do the rounds then it’s not so original anymore.

  23. Very creative! Could put a ‘chin-face’ video in there and have a little ‘chin’ creature in your stomach! LOL – you ever see a chin-face?

  24. Doesn’t Google pay their executives enough to get a legitimate live feed camera?

  25. That’s sacrilege destruction towards a Google shirt , wouldn’t trust myself with all that kit gaffer taped to my body after a few !

  26. Hey Matt,

    You mentioned your various cameras, but your iPhone can <a href=""Output Live Video Via Composite Cables as well. I know it doesn’t help for this years costume…but it might for the next one.

  27. Hey Matt,

    You mentioned your various cameras, but your iPhone can Output Live Video Via Composite Cables as well. I know it doesn’t help for this years costume…but it might for the next one.

    Oops, forgot to close the hyperlink tag

  28. Nice attempt, I think a baby harness might be more suited to hold the display though probably a little higher budget for the sake of this exercise – love the hair πŸ˜›

  29. Wow, I was shocked for a couple of seconds thinking like “What the hell was going on at your recent Halloween party…” – as I now know about your bet lost, I believe your new haircut just rocks.

    That’s a cool idea for a costume by the way πŸ™‚

  30. The ideas great but I think you could have done a much better job on the shirt.

  31. Geektastic! Stinks that you put all of that effort into the costume and couldn’t output live video. I bet it looked pretty neat in the dark. Do you have any after hours pictures? πŸ™‚

  32. Your hair is growing back nicely Matt!

  33. You better take off the T-shirt and give it to me. Hehehe joking, I like the concept anyway. Happy Halloween Matt.

  34. If this costume succeeded you could call yourself: Matt Cut

  35. Yet another great use of Duct Tape… the tape of the gods. lol

  36. Ah, Halloween… Remember long days building a robot costume once. Thought it was way cool then – about 30 years or so, I must have been 6 or 7… No LCDs, small cameras, etc. back then. A battery & a few lights was a tech marvel… Oh, and a “voice generator” – a compact turntable with a 2″ record pulled from a stuffed toy.
    Your costume is – was πŸ™‚ – pretty cool though – almost as cool as those 40″ screen walking iPhone guys…

  37. > I think it’s safe to call Halloween 2009 a mixed bag

    I’d say it looks more like a “hole in one”!

  38. Brian McDowell

    Hey Matt, this is Brian McDowell. We met at SMX Advanced and you signed my Matt Cutts / Raven Tools stress ball (the ones we handed out at Search Exchange here in Charlotte NC). I have a bunch ready to send out to your team. Can you please have someone send me the proper mailing address to the email associated with this comment? I have approximately 20 for you and your team, let me know if that is enough.


    PS, I figured this was a good post to send this to since it has not had much traffic lately. Sorry if this is not the best place.

  39. Wish u a Very Happy Halloween Matt. I truly liked the concept πŸ™‚

  40. Great costume, thanks for showing us how you put it together.