The last time I dressed up for Halloween, I was 13 years old.  Now at —  years old (Ahem…don’t think I’m going to tell you!) in the company of my friends Tom and Don, I found myself looking forward to celebrating Halloween as never before.  Knowing that Tom was busy at work on a costume for me, I started to get excited.

Would I have blue hair like Rapunzel Choi?

Photo of Asian girl with blue hair, taken by Joana Miranda

Or, maybe make a good witch?

Photo of Joana in witch hat, taken by Tom Cathey

At the Halloween store, Tom flirted with being a clown.

Photo of Tom as a clown, taken by Joana Miranda

(Meanwhile, just two days before Halloween,  I met a REAL clown – Grandma – at the Big Apple Circus.)

Photo of Grandma the Clown with Joana, self-portrait taken at the Big Apple Circus

My parents were visiting, so we stopped by Tom and Don’s to try on some wigs…

Photo of Joana and her mother wearing silly wigs

But I still hadn’t found my “look” until I donned this beauty.

Photo of Joana in afro wig

(Joana and Tom – long lost siblings reunited on Halloween.)

Photo of Joana and Tom in ridiculous black wigs

All that was remaining to complete my outfit was the dress that Tom had picked out for me, a Wonder Woman mask and a thrift-store necklace!

Photo of Joana dressed as tart/Wonder Woman on Halloween

Meanwhile, Marcia had outfitted herself in peacock blue…

Photo of Marcia in blue hair and peacock mask, taken by Joana Miranda

And Miriam was trying out different masks.

Photo of Marion in red mask, taken by Joana Miranda

(I think this look spooked her.)

Photo of Marion trying on different Halloween looks, taken by Joana Miranda

Tom began to get dressed in his costume…

Photo of Tom getting dressed on Halloween as King Tut, taken by Joana Miranda

And debated which accessory to carry.

Photo of Tom in his 2011 King Tut Halloween costume, taken by Joana Miranda

In the hallway outside their studio, Tom and Don had spent days decorating the walls…

Photo of floating Dracula head Halloween decoration, taken by Joana MirandaCeilings and floors.

Photo of Tom and Don's 2011 Halloween decorations, taken by Joana Miranda

At the end of the hall, Tom (aka – King Tut) presided over the Beanie Baby toys, candy and jewelry he and Don had amassed for this year’s little trick-or-treaters.

Photo of Tom as King Tut presiding over the loot he was giving away for Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

Shortly after 5:30, the elevator doors opened and excited children took in the splendor and grabbed for the toys.

Photo of young girl dressed as a cowgirl on 2011 Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

The Ninja threatened me with his sword…

Photo of young boy dressed as Ninja for 2011 Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

The harlequin ducked playfully behind his friend…

Photo of young boy dressed as red Harlequin for 2011 Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

While the princess looked a little lost.

Photo of toddler dressed as a princess for 2011 Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

Meanwhile, I tried to get a picture of the cow…

Photo of father and son dressed for Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

But he was more interested in checking out the mechanical spooky toys in Tom and Don’s collection.

Photo of toddler in cow costume looking at Halloween display, taken by Joana Miranda

Ready for a break, the 6 of us adults headed out (in full costume) for a bite to eat.  Costumed store owners and employees greeted passerbys…

Photo of Aveda hairstylists dressed up for Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

And at 69th Street a block party was well underway.  Many houses were eerie in the moonlight…

Photo of spooky Upper West Side house decorated for Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

And the creepy crawlies had come out in full force.

Photo of large spider Halloween decoration on side of brownstone on Upper West Side, taken by Joana Miranda

I passed a pair of prisoners…

Photo of two people dressed as prisoners at 2011 Upper West Side Halloween festivities, taken by Joana Miranda

A lady in white…

Photo of lady dressed extravagantly in white for 2011 Halloween, taken by Joana Miranda

And Dracula and friends…

Photo of Dracula and friends during 2011 NYC Halloween festivities, taken by Joana Miranda

Before happening upon a sleeping duckling.

Photo of little black girl asleep in her Halloween duckling costume, taken by Joana Miranda

And with that, I decided to call it a night and head home myself.  

Wonder what I’ll be next year?


  1. ma says:

    Ah, Joana the afro lady is the winner! I think you should adopt that wig and wear it with MY new wig when I come to the big apple.

    • Joana says:

      Fine, it’s a deal! (But I think you’d better come at Halloween, or else we might be deposited into the funny farm.)

      Love, J

  2. Marta says:

    Wow! Looks like you had fun! Tom & Don’s looks like a costumer’s dream!


    • Joana says:

      Absolutely! I’ve never seen such a collection of wigs and costume-related accessories! If you need it, Tom and Don probably have it;-)


  3. OK you win the Fashion Institute of Technology award for coolest costumes Imagine being very small and going to Tom and Don’s a memory forever! TRANSFORMING! FABULOUS! YOU wind the COOLEST LIFESTYLE life style award from MOI! I was building a pirate ship for my next days class Photos to come! Bravo to the Tom and Don empire! Creativity plus! Time to draw you all.LOVE LOVE LOVE
    Prof Santry

    • Joana says:

      Hi Karen,

      I think YOU might be the prize-winner for coolest lifestyle! (For sure, you get the daily award for having the most fabulous clothes:-) Are you in Japan now? When does the pirate ship set sail?

      Hope to see you soon –

    • Joana says:

      Hmmm, I’m embarrassed to say that I don’t know what Donna Summer or Roberta Flack look like, but I’ll do a Google search to remedy that!

      The wig was HOT. I have too much hair on my head as it is.;-)

      Ciao –

  4. Helen Reich says:

    I used to love Halloween, and now I just haven’t had (or taken) opportunities to dress up. Damn adulthood.But it’s clear that there is NOTHING like Halloween in New York!

    • Joana says:

      Hi Helen,

      I loved Halloween as a kid, but didn’t care much for it in the past until I experienced a NY/Tom-and-Don style Halloween. Getting to “shop” for a costume at their studio and being in the company of 5 other (crazy) adults made it all the more fun. Unfortunately, I didn’t dress warmly enough, so now I’m nursing a sore throat.

      Croak… Joana

      • Helana Nguyen says:

        Thank you, that picture actually was of my costume for New York Comic Con that day.

        • Joana says:

          Fun! I didn’t know about New York Comic Con…is that a yearly event? Are you a fashion student?

          Thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog! Joana

          • Helana Nguyen says:

            It’s an annual event that’s held at the Javit’s Center for 4 days that centers around comics, games, and anime. There are people who dress up and “cosplay” which is short for costume play where you not only dress up as the character but you become the character.

            • Joana says:

              Interesting! I’m not up on my comics/anime characters. Which character were you?

              🙂 Joana

              • Helana Nguyen says:

                Yeah I’m a big fan of them, I go to New York Comic Con every year :3
                I was a version of Hatsune Miku but, I was wearing a jacket over my dress.

                • Joana says:

                  Hmmm, I’ll have to look up Hatsune Miku since I’m not familiar with the character. By the way, how did you come across the picture and my blog?

                  Hope you are enjoying the lovely snow we got last night! Joana

                  • Helana Nguyen says:

                    My brother typed in “blue hair asian” and my picture was one of the pictures when searched in google lol. I enjoy snow but not the cold 😛

                    • Joana says:

                      Hi Helana,

                      Fun to know (and I guess tagging photos IS important.) 🙂

                      Yes, this cold is a bit hard to take. I’m headed soon to the Midwest for a short visit and it’s supposed to be even colder than what we’re currently having in NYC. Brrr!

                      Stay warm – Joana

                      On Sat, Jan 4, 2014 at 4:16 PM, JOANA MIRANDA STUDIO wrote:

                      > Helana Nguyen commented: “My brother typed in “blue hair asian” and my > picture was one of the pictures when searched in google lol. I enjoy snow > but not the cold :P”

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