Glasses as Masks for Glasses

As someone who wears prescription lenses, my range of choice in Halloween costumes has always been somewhat limited. Since this is true for many others as well, I have decided to remedy the situation by creating masks designed specifically for people who wear glasses.

The first page of the mask pdf has glasses for David Hockney and Audrey Hepburn. There is also a DIY lit cigarette. (The cigarette is optional for Hepburn, but absolutely obligatory for Hockney.)

I made the Hockney for myself.

The page was printed on lightweight card stock, so I added another layer of cardboard from a tissue box to make it stronger. The temples were fitted to the front to allow them to fit over my glasses. The slightly angled end of the temple should parallel the side of the frame —see left pointy finger— so that the temple is angled slightly, like a real pair of glasses. If you are going to wear these longer than for a quick photo I also recommend adding a small strip of paper close to the hinge and gluing it around the temple of your actual glasses to keep the card stock ones in place. (You will have to cut the mask frames off your real glasses when you are through wearing the costume.)

You could print on paper and glue everything but the cigarette to heavy card, though this will make cutting accurately a bit more difficult. If you print on paper you will want to cut the blank part of the cigarette the full width of the sheet of paper.

Rolling the card stock for the cigarette was a bit tricky. I pulled the blank end over a ruler a few times to soften it, then rolled it around progressively smaller diameter knitting needles. I did the final roll around a bamboo skewer before gluing the side in place.

The final touch is crumpling the lit end.

You will need a flat cap of some kind. If you have access to a really loud plaid suit that would be excellent. (I wonder if Hockney bought the suit in the self-portrait below just so he could paint himself in it?!)

Failing the plaid suit, I opted for a coloured shirt (my husband’s) and an old cardigan (my Dad’s) for a more common Hockney look.

For Hepburn, if you don’t have a large black hat and a small black dress for the Holly Golightly look, I recommend a black turtleneck, black capris, black ballet flats, and a head scarf large enough that it can be worn crossed at the front of the neck and then tied at the back over the hanging point of the upper part.

If you would rather be Elton John or Peggy Guggenheim (page two of the mask pdf), I have provided parts for them as well. The sequined bow-tie isn’t really an Elton John thing, but I couldn’t find a decent image of his Swarovski crystal one. Cut a strip of card stock the width of the bow centre and long enough to go around your neck and fasten in the back. Glue it to the back of the bow-tie.

The rainbow Rolex is based on one Elton John owns. (Apparently he collects Rolex watches.) Cut out the watch and glue the strap ends round your wrist.

I got lazy when creating the designs for the next pair so you will have to cut out the image in the lens area. Both the Elton John and Peggy Guggenheim glasses would work best over tinted lenses.

If you can find a shiny jacket with super wide lapels and boots or shoes with platform soles, that would complete the look for Elton John.

For Peggy Guggenheim you can wear a small head scarf —preferably Hermès— tied under the chin and an expensive looking coat. I have also provided a little dog (page three of the mask pdf ) so that you can bring along one of your favourite companions.

If you can find a gondola to sit in, that would be perfect.

Have fun!

If you enjoyed today’s project, you can help support the blog here.   ; ]

In book arts news:

From October 22, 2022 to January 8, 2023 the SFCB is hosting Cognitive Distance, an exhibition of Timothy C. Ely’s work. You can learn more about it and register for the in-person opening here.


Adam Smyth has a new post, Preserving unimportant papers. You can read the full article here.


The article Researcher discovers another astronomy book written by Galileo Galilei might interest you. You can find it here.


In some relatively recent posts you may have noticed my ongoing interest in polyhedra. If you share that interest, you could read The Polyhedral Perspective by Noam Andrews.

About Byopia Press

I have been working in the book arts field for more than thirty years, and operating Byopia Press with my husband David since the late 1990s. I began producing artist's books and altered books in 2004. I also create prints and drawings that are frequently text-inspired or text-based.
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2 Responses to Glasses as Masks for Glasses

  1. dinahmow says:

    Hallowe’en has never really been a “thing” here, but we do see increasing displays of plastic pumpkins and fake spider web in stores.
    But I LOVE your specs masks!
    (And I just sent you an interesting, I think, link via email.)


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