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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Conn Coll chapter.

David Bowie created the icons that were Ziggy Stardust, Major Tom, Aladdin Sane, and The Thin White Duke. He made music for the people of space. He won countless awards for his songs and performances. And he forever changed the face of the industry. Bowie has worn some of the most extraordinary, colorful, and out-of-the-box costumes the rock world has ever seen. I believe he perfectly embodies the androgynous, glam rock fashion of the 1970s. I will list my top 6 favorite outfits ever worn by him, in no particular order.

First up, we have his Halloween Jack outfit. He introduced the character Halloween Jack for the album Diamond Dogs in 1974. He sports his iconic red mullet and shaved eyebrows. I love the red theme, especially the matching overalls and guitar. Bowie’s use of pattern mixing is incredible with the sleeves and scarf.

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Next, I love his black and white striped costume, made by Kansai Yamamoto in 1973. Yamamoto made several of Bowie’s costumes throughout the ‘70s.  They met in 1971 after Bowie saw a fashion show directed by Yamamoto. Then, Bowie asked Yamamoto to do his costume for his 1973 tour. Regarding this outfit specifically, I love the unique silhouette it creates.

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Next on my favorite outfits list is the “Life on Mars?” music video suit. “Life on Mars?” is my favorite song of all time by David Bowie, so this outfit has a special place in my heart. Teal is my least favorite color, but on Bowie, I love it. It goes well with the metallic tie and the blue eyeshadow. 

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Keeping with the theme of suits, up next, we have the mustard yellow suit from 1974. This shoot, by Terry O’Neill, was during a time of transition for Bowie. He was beginning to stray from crazy costumes and altar ego, Ziggy Stardust. But he came into this shoot, styled by himself, wearing a yellow suit with matching yellowish-orange hair.

Next, we have Bowie’s Alexander McQueen Union Jack Coat from 1996. This is decades after his 1970s era of crazy costumes and altar egos, but he still wears show-stopping clothes. In the ‘90s, Bowie was setting off on a new tour and needing new outfits. He got in touch with Alexander McQueen, and although McQueen was not a massive fan of Bowie, the fashion designer made the iconic Union Jack Coat. This coat ended up being a favorite of Bowie’s, and he even wore it on the cover of his Earthling album in 1997. Personally, I love anything with the Union Jack on it, so I, of course, love this coat!

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Last but not least, on this list of my favorite Bowie outfits, we have his Aladdin Sane costume. This costume was created by the same person who made the 1973 black and white striped costume, Kansai Yamamoto. This is one of the most recreated costumes Bowie has worn. The Aladdin Sane album also created the lightning bolt makeup. People will usually wear this costume with the lightning bolt on their face, even if that is not what Bowie wore.

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These are just my opinions on some of Bowie’s excellent costumes, but I barely even touched the surface of his incredible wardrobe. So, to show some more of Bowie’s genius, I will talk more about his makeup. Bowie’s character, Ziggy Stardust, frequently has a circle on his forehead. This is an astral sphere designed by Laroche. The other makeup that Bowie wore frequently as Ziggy Stardust, such as the lightning bolt, and the colored eye shadow, was also designed by Laroche. Without the makeup, Bowie’s outfits may not have been as iconic.  The makeup added a level of androgyny that many people really admire about his work.

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Hanna Thompson

Conn Coll '27

Hi :) I'm a first-year at Connecticut College