80s Party Costume Ideas: Wham!

Wham! was pure 80’s fun, yummy pop candy for the ears. George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley paired up to create the hit group, and, although George had a successful solo career after they split, dressing as the duo will give you the best visual effect. Here’s the video for 1984’s Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go (and just TRY not to smile and chair dance as you listen): http://youtu.be/pIgZ7gMze7A Note: the Choose Life T-shirts were designed by Katharine Hamnett. Her designs were also worn by members of Queen and Frankie goes to Hollywood. The “Choose Life” message on Wham!’s T’s was unrelated to our current pro-choice debate; instead, Hamnett’s message was more about electing to live an engaged, happy, positive life. Two looks from their Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go video will give you that great awesome Wham! look for your next costume event.

The All White Look

  • Choose Life T-shirts. Buy it one size too big and roll the cuffs. Tuck it in.
  • White pants. Bright white jeans would be great if you have a pair, but you could also buy some white scrubs. Whichever you choose, DO peg the cuffs and DON’T wear a belt.
  • White shoes and socks.
  • Blowdried hair.

Wham! Costume idea: All White "Choose Life" Look

The Colorful Look

For George:

  • A long sleeved T-shirt with button placket, ideally in pinkish-red. Scope out Goodwill or Ebay for a vintage T.
  • Solid color SHORT shorts. Option #1 is a pair of vintage shorts. Check out Etsy.com for some good choices. If you want to be true to George’s blue and white look, go with Option #2. Buy an all white pair and get crafty with fabric paint to create the color block effect.
  • Yellow gloves with the fingers cut off.
  • Pink socks layered over white socks, worn with clean, newish sneakers.
  • A clip-on large gold hoop for your left ear.

Wham! Costume idea: George For Andrew:

  • A long sleeved T-shirt with button placket, ideally in soft blue. Again, check out your vintage options, or buy new.
  • A painters hat with neck flaps. These are hard to come by. You may need to get a painters hat and add your own flaps to the back. Bonus points if you can find a vintage one in a cool print, like Andrew sports in the Go-Go video.
  • SHORT shorts in a print fabric. Scope out Etsy.com for treasures like this playful pair.
  • White sneakers and tennis shoes.
  • Optional: A toy saxophone, sound-producing or just for show

Wham! Costume idea: Andrew OR, you can keep it simple, not worry too much about the details and create the feel of it like these guys did with very few elements.

  • White tee and shorts
  • You could add the Choose Life to the tee with a thick black sharpie
  • Fingerless gloves
  • A microphone

Wham! costume in action (photo credit: soaraway) Photo credit: soaraway

*NOTE: Please DON’T be insecure about leg hair and the short shorts, guys. George and Andrew sure weren’t. Blast Wake Me Up and dance with your friend to share your giddy Wham! mood with the rest of your 80’s costume party. It’s easy: just step side to side, move your arms in wide pinwheels, and clap. And don’t forget to smile!

Author: Pia Sooney

Just a little obsessed with all things 80s, Pia still has her Swatch, her cassette tape collection, and her Converse Chucks. When not making friendship pins or listening to Depeche Mode, she runs a web design business.

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