November 14, 2008

Day of the Dead Parade 2008

Filed under: holidays, Rachel's Wardrobe Remix, san francisco — maryparadox @ 11:53 pm

Holly and I went to the Day of the Dead parade in the Mission district of San Francisco — just a couple blocks from where we live. I’d never even heard of this event before, but was really excited to get dressed up as a dead person, ever since seeing this painting by Sylvia Ji in a magazine.


If I had been better prepared I would have bought some black eye shadow and liner pencils, as it was I only had brown, which didn't quite make me look dead enough. I think I need to work on the whole mouth-part too.

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Holly was much more prepared for the parade, having made this shirt with a rib-cage painted on it. Also check out her amazing white leather gloves!

One of the best parts of this event is that you get to dress up super cool, but also be completely warm. I wore wool tights and arm warmers under my dress and with the shawl, scarf, and hat I was pretty comfortable even though the night got chilly.

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Holly and me in full regalia. I got this beautiful mexican wedding dress from my grandmother, and neatly hid my sling with the shawl and scarf. Holly made her own dress and it has black and white flowers and skulls.

The parade ended at Garfield Park at the Festival of Altars, which was as it sounds — people had set up altars to the dead all throughout the park. They were very beautiful, and at first I thought that they were general displays, but then I realized that they were created for specific dead people, which made them quite sad, especially one decorated with baby clothes.

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I couldn't quite figure out what kind of animal these skeletons were for... but they are cool nonetheless.

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This was one of the only men I saw dressed up, and I thought he did it quite well.

The most amazing display was of this deceased married couple on a tandem bicycle with wings. The wings were made up of individual metal feathers with names of the dead engraved on them, and the wings were attached to a battery which caused them to beat up and down — while also engaging the pedals so that it appeared as though the couple was pedaling the bicycle.

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With the wings beating.

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Detail shot of the feathers, and you can see the artist connecting the battery in the lower left.

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The creator of the flying bride and groom, left, and another sightseer with great face makeup. I kept trying to get a good shot of this girl on the right because her makeup was so fantastic, and the contrast between her hair and flower was intense. I felt a bit like a voyeur, except I kept catching people taking my photograph as well, at which point I had to remind myself that I was looking pretty and fantastically dead myself.

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Hard to see, but the item on the left is a dead mermaid, and on the right a dead fairy, both made out of tinfoil. The item in the middle was just a paper bag with a candle in it (fire hazard!?) but it was beautiful and I couldn’t tell if someone made it by hand or bought it at a shop.


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