Hi, I am Adele, and I have run a large fancy dress shop in Essex, England, since 1998. I'm happy to pass on my knowledge to help others.
Alphabet and Letter-Related Parties
In costume party season, the pressure is on to host a fun, unique party. One fun party theme is encouraging your guests to choose a costume that starts with a specific letter of the alphabet.
Here are some ways to go about choosing the letters for the party:
- Allow guests to dress up in a costume related to their initials (or just their first names if you want to narrow down their choices).
- Ask guests to dress up in costumes related to your initials.
- Choose one or two letters to inspire their costumes. These could be randomly or deliberately chosen.
When you first send out invitations, it's possible that your guests will be confused about what you're asking them to do. To avoid confusion, be sure to explain the idea thoroughly and simply—since if your guests are confused, they might not dress up. Even worse, they might not come to your party.
This article will give you some ideas for costumes that start with the letter "B," some based on famous characters or people. If you come up with any ideas, please put them in the comments box so you can help other people too.
Have a fantastic party!
Baby — Go on, you big baby! Get the baby look with an instant baby costume kit that could include a bonnet, a giant safety pin, an inflatable bottle, and a diaper. You'll also need a onesie, which may or may not come with the kit.
Baby Doll — The baby doll was originally a style of nightwear typified by a short frilled dress with a high waist. More recently, Baby Doll was one of the five feisty females from the 2011 film Sucker Punch. An official costume is available to get that look.
Barbarella — Barbarella is the heroine of the 1968 cult film of the same name starring Jane Fonda. The costumes featured in the film were very revealing with see-through bodices and very short skirts. The movie also fueled enthusiasm and demand for PVC or vinyl boots. To get the look, wear a white or silver catsuit, heeled boots, and a full strawberry-blonde wig.
Barbie — Barbie is the famous doll associated with the colour pink. Since there are so many variations on her look, you could almost certainly make up your own costume. One of the more famous options is the flight attendant outfit from Toy Story 2. A licensed Barbie costume is available but, surprisingly, the dress is not pink. To get the look, however, a long blonde wig is a must.
Barney — Barney is the beloved purple dinosaur with green spots from the popular American television series for kids.
Barney Rubble - A friend of Fred Flintstone from the cartoon, The Flintstones, Barney has blonde hair and wears a fur tunic. Licensed versions of the costume are available to purchase.
Bad Fairy — Bad (as in evil) fairy costumes are becoming more and more popular. You can easily find many styles available to purchase, or you can buy black wings and a wand to make your own outfit.
Barrister — Barristers are law professionals who appear on behalf of clients in the higher British courts and are famous for their short white or grey court wigs which are similar to those used by men in the Georgian era. The wigs are available to purchase and go well with a teacher's gown and a smart suit. Glasses could be a good accessory to accentuate the barrister's intellectual image.
Bart Simpson — Bart Simpson is a character from the ever popular television series, The Simpsons. Masks are available to buy, and you can just add a red t-shirt, a pair of blue shorts, and a pair of blue tennis shoes to complete the look.
Bat — You can buy a bat headpiece and borrow or purchase a cape, modifying it to look like wings. Wear the cape and headpiece with a black catsuit and you're good to go!
Batman — The original caped crusader was a comic book and television series hero who wore a light grey costume with a yellow bat symbol on the chest. You can find licensed versions of this costume to buy. In later films, Batman develops into a darker character, the Dark Knight. The costume is all black, and licensed versions of this rendition are also on the market.
Baron — A baron is a type of nobleman from the British medieval era. Barons are prominent in most British pantomimes as wealthy villains who wear medieval or Georgian dress.
Baron Samedi — Baron Samedi is the Voodoo Lord of the Dead and a character in the James Bond film Live and Let Die. Wear a top hat, a tail suit, a cane, and skull makeup.
Banana Man — Banana Man is the cartoon superhero of the popular television series by the same name. An official costume is available to purchase.
Banana — This tropical fruit is a perennial Halloween favorite. Fun, foam costumes are easy to find.
Ballet Dancer — For this costume, wear a leotard, a tutu, tights, and ballet shoes. Traditionally the outfit is white, but a darker version was recently popularised by the film Black Swan featuring Natalie Portman. Men only need to wear tights and a leotard or bodysuit. This costume is not for the faint hearted!
Ballroom Dancer — For the traditional dancer look, you will need a long flowing gown. For a more modern version, you'll do best with a short sequinned or tasselled latin dress. Both hair and makeup should be extremely done-up, and a permanent fixed smile is a must! Men can get away with wearing either a standard dress suit or a '70s jumpsuit.
Baldrick — Baldrick is a long suffering character from the Blackadder television series. Depending on the series, Baldrick could wear a medieval peasant costume, a 17th century workman's costume, or a World War I uniform.
Bandit — For this costume you could take inspiration from Zorro, the legendary swordsman of Spanish California. A highwayman costume could also suffice.
Bank Robber — This is an easy costume to put together. You just need to pull a pair of tights over your head (though a black domino mask or cycling balaclava might be more practical) and wear normal clothing. A replica gun would complete this costume, but be careful of where you wear the outfit lest you scare people or get arrested!
Bavarian Man — Bavarian dress is from the southern region of Germany. Wear lederhosen, a shirt, long socks, and a hat and be sure everything is decorated with Bavarian motifs. Elements of the outfit such as the hat and 'hosen may be found separately, but full costumes are normally only available to hire.
Bavarian Lady — Wear a green dirndl skirt with lace petticoat showing underneath, an elaborately embroidered top, a waistcoat, and an apron (optional). The corset or basque approach is also popular for this costume. Heidi, from the book Heidi by Joanna Spyri, is a well-known character that wears this style of dress.
Bear — You have quite a few choices for this costume idea. Many hire shops have mascot bear costumes but these might be too hot to wear all night. Bear face bops are available to buy and would need to be complemented by a brown top and trousers.
Bloody Costume Selection
Bloody costumes are very popular for Halloween even though they are also quite gory!
Bloody Doctor — You can take a white jacket and spray it with theatrical blood or buy a complete costume. Pro tip: When putting theatrical blood on a costume, put blood on your hands first and then wipe them down both sides of the front of the outfit. This will give you a more realistic bloody look.
Bloody Surgeon — Similar to the doctor costume above, spray a standard surgeon's uniform with fake blood to get this look.
Bloody Bride — You can easily do your own version of this costume or buy one off-the-peg. Just take a light coloured dress that you are willing to ruin (fake blood does stain light fabrics), and spray it with theatrical blood. Blood can also be put into a light wig for a complete gory effect.
Bee Girl or Queen Bee — This is an extremely popular costume. There is a ready-made costume for which a wig (with antennae) is available, but you could also make your own costume with the bee wings and kits that are on the market.
Beauty or Belle — Belle is a character from Disney's Beauty and the Beast. The costume is normally shown as a yellow rouched ball gown with matching gloves and a fancy up-do.
Beast — This is a character from Disney's Beauty and the Beast. The Beast costume is harder to create than Belle. One option is to use a Georgian costume with a wolf mask, or just some theatrical hair to give an animal impression around the hairline and on the hands.
Betty Rubble — Betty Rubble is Barney's wife and the friend and neighbour of Wilma Flintstone in the cartoon series The Flintstones. She wears a blue halterneck dress with black, flicked out hair and a blue headband.
Bellboy — Bellboy is a character from the Cinderella pantomime. The bellboy costume consists of a short ornate jacket, trousers, and a pillbox hat.
Beefeater — Beefeaters are the yeoman guards and keepers of the Tower of London, named beefeaters by the Duke of Tuscany in 1669. Their traditional costume is a red coat with gold embellishments and an insignia, a flat black hat, and red tights. You will probably need to hire this costume.
Benedictine Monk — Wear a standard monk costume, which should include a brown robe, a wooden cross, and a monk's wig.
Benjamin Disraeli — Disraeli was the Prime Minister during Queen Victoria's reign. Any formal Victorian costume will suffice for this character but be sure to brush up on your history.
Beetlejuice — The anti-hero of Tim Burton's film of the same name, Beetlejuice is an exobiologist with a hidden agenda. You'll need a black and white striped suit with mad grey hair and a pale face to create this character.
Belly Dancer — This is a popular costume especially for Arabian, entertainment, or dance-themed events. Many costumes are available on the market, some more revealing than others!
Beatles (The) — The Beatles are a world-famous band from Britain formed in 1960 that continues to influence music to this day. Costumes (usually based on the costumes from the Sergeant Pepper album) are available on the market to buy and can make a great group costume. To get the hair, you can purchase 1960s mop-top wigs. Round glasses complete the look. You can also use a hippy-style costume, especially for John Lennon.
Beyonce (Knowles/Smith) — Originally from the group Destiny's Child, Beyonce has now carved out a memorable solo career for herself. To get her look, you could either go for one of her film roles like Foxy Cleopatra in Goldmember (which has an official costume available along with a wild afro wig), but you could also go for another recognisable choice which is her workout dance gear plus gauntlet glove from "Single Woman (Put a Ring on It)."
Big Bad Wolf — Wolf masks are available to buy. This is a great companion costume to Little Red Riding Hood. Granny Wolf is a fun variation, which comprises of a dress with a wolf's head and paws.
Ben Hur — Ben Hur was a hero of Roman times. You can portray this character with any Roman centurion costume, and if you can find a matching female Roman, you can go as Ben Him and Hur!
Big Ears — Big Ears is a friend of Noddy, a character created by Enid Blyton. Big Ears wears a red and white striped top, a blue jacket, a red hat, a yellow scarf, and green trousers. Not surprisingly, he also has very large ears!
Biker — You will need a black leather (or faux leather) jacket and trousers. Body piercings, motorcycle helmet, and tattoos complete the look.
Bill — Bill is a companion to Ben (of the Flowerpot Men) first seen in the Watch With Mother television series. You can make up a flowerpot costume, though it is tricky so it might be best to hire this outfit. Believe me, I speak from experience!
Ben — Same costume as Bill from above.
Big Game Hunter — Wear a safari suit, a pith helmet, a huge handlebar moustache, and bring a fake rifle.
Biggles — You can create this character with a leather flying jacket, jodhpurs, and a flying helmet. You'll also need a white scarf and a handlebar moustache.
It wasn't long ago when you'd have to hire a bird costume if you wanted to wear one for Halloween. However, recently the amount of novelty costumes on the market has increased tremendously. You obviously still have the option to hire if you'd like to, but you could also purchase one.
Bird costumes are available in the following species:
Face Bops - Face bops are a mask on a headband and come in a range of animals and birds. They've been cleverly designed so that you can see, speak, and even eat with them on. Just wear the correct coloured clothing and you have a very simple bird costume.
Face bops come in the following bird designs:
Some hats are also available in bird designs:
Birdman of Alcatraz — Robert Franklin Stroud was sentenced to life in solitary confinement, and his story was later brought to life by Burt Lancaster in a film of the same name. Wear a standard convict uniform and bring some birdseed with you.
Beer Girl — This is a novelty costume designed to look like a superhero, but in this case the wearer is coming to the rescue of poor men who are desperate for a beer!
Beer Bottle — This is a fun novelty costume that has proved to be very popular. You can also find a beer keg outfit which dispenses real beer!
Billy Bunter — Billy Bunter is a rather rotund schoolboy made famous in books and television series during the 1950s. Wear a schoolboy uniform with some padding around the middle to get his look.
Bishop — Many variations of a standard bishop costume are available to purchase. A chess-piece bishop may require some improvisation but it is also a solid choice.
Black Cat — Standard black cat costumes are fairly easy to find as there are many cat accessories on the market to purchase. For your face, you can use flyaway eyemasks, face bops, or makeup.
Black and White Movie Star — Going as a movie star from the black and white era is a classic idea. Ladies can go for noted stars such as Theda Bara (the earliest Cleopatra film star), Clara Bow, or Mary Pickford. Men can choose from many others such as Charlie Chaplin or Laurel and Hardy.
Blackadder — Blackadder is a character played by Rowan Atkinson in a television series by the same name that took place in various historical eras. You can use a medieval, Tudor, Georgian, or WWI costume to create his look. To make it a couple's costume, pair it up with Baldrick or Bob, a character who was a lady pretending to be a boy.
Black Knight — The black knight was the villain of many medieval tales. Wear a suit of armor and bring a fake horse!
Black Swan — In the film Black Swan, Natalie Portman played the role of Nina, a ballerina in competition for the main role in the ballet Swan Lake. The costume is based on a black feathered leotard and tutu with dramatic eye makeup. A tiara or eye mask are excellent additions to this costume.
Blofeld — This villain of the James Bond films primarily wears a grey Nehru suit and has a bald head and a distinctive facial scar. His white Persian cat also features prominently in the movie. In the Austin Powers movies, Blofeld is mimicked by the character Dr Evil.
Blofeld Cat — As mentioned above, Blofeld had a white Persian cat which would make a fun companion costume for Blofeld. Wear a white catface mask or makeup and accessorize with a sequin-based diamond collar to channel the movie Diamonds Are Forever.
Blues Brothers — The Blues Brothers are an American blues and rhythm band from the movie of the same name. To get their look, wear a black suit, a white shirt, and a black tie along with dark glasses and a pork pie hat.
Bo Peep — Little Bo Peep is the famous nursery rhyme character who lost her sheep. Wear a Georgian or Victorian dress and bonnet and carry a crook or shepherd's staff. There are also several sexy versions of the costume available to purchase.
Butterfly — Wings are available to purchase if you want to create your own butterfly costume, but costumes can also be hired or purchased in their entirety.
Bollywood Star — A Bollywood star is a great choice for an Indian themed party. Women's costumes are colourful and elaborate with lots of jewellery, and costumes are available to hire for both men and women.
Bob the Builder — Bob the Builder is a British children's animated television series featuring Bob, a construction worker. To get Bob's look, wear a construction worker's hat, overalls, a tool belt, and a plaid shirt.
Boadicea — Boadicea is a first century warrior queen who fought against Roman invaders before finally committing suicide. Wear an ancient British tribal costume with a breastplate and a crown.
Bonnie Parker — Bonnie Parker is the female half of the notorious 1930s bank robbing duo, Bonnie and Clyde. Get her look with a long skirt, a jacket, and a beret.
Bonnie Prince Charlie — Bonnie Prince Charlie is a Scottish hero famous for his rebellion against the English. He's also famous for escaping from the English dressed as a washer woman. To portray him, you can wear a wench costume or a Georgian costume.
Boxer — You can make this costume as sexy or as authentic as you want. You can purchase boxing gloves separately and add them to a pair of plain shorts to get the look.
Boy George — Boy George was a 1980s pop star. Get his look with a long white tunic, trousers with a black waistcoat, a large hat, black plaits, and heavy face makeup.
Brave — Originally a term used to describe a Native American Indian warrior, Brave is now also the name of a Pixar film featuring Merida, a Scottish chieftain's daughter who is handy with a bow and arrow.
Braveheart — Braveheart is a movie that tells the story of William Wallace, a 13th century Scottish leader. To become the iconic hero, wear a kilt, add a scruffy wig, and paint your face with the Scottish flag. Although a coloured tartan would not have been worn in those days, it will be difficult to find a non-tartan kilt.
Bride — You can wear a traditional bride's dress, complete with veil and bouquet, or, add some blood and fangs to become the Bride of Dracula (or Frankenstein, Death, etc.)
Bride, The — The Bride is the heroine of Quentin Tarentino's Kill Bill films. The costume most frequently available in shops is usually based on the yellow motorcycle jumpsuit and ninja sword seen in the first film.
Bordello Lady — The bordello lady is often seen in Western films. To get the look, wear a saloon girl outfit and add some fishnet stockings.
Britannia — Why not go as the essence of Britain? Create this fun costume with a white robe, a Roman helmet, a trident, and a Union Jack shield.
Britney Spears — Though there are many songs and outfits to choose from to portray this iconic pop character, probably the easiest one to create is the schoolgirl costume from the music video of '...Baby One More Time.' Be sure to wear your hair in plaits! You could also wear the red PVC catsuit from 'Ooops, I Did It Again," or the black PVC catsuit and red hair ensemble from 'Toxic.'
Buccaneer — A buccaneer is the classic pirate costume as worn by Errol Flynn and Johnny Depp. It's perfect for ladies too! You can find many costumes available on the market due to the popularity of The Pirates of The Caribbean.
Bucks Fizz — Bucks Fizz are a pop group of the 1980s and winners of the Eurovision Song Contest. Costumes are available to hire and make a great idea for a group of four.
Buddha — Buddha was a spiritual leader and the founder of Buddhism. Costumes are available to purchase.
Bugs Bunny — Bugs Bunny is an iconic cartoon character first seen in 1940. Official costumes are available to purchase.
Buddy Holly — Buddy Holly was a legendary pop star of the 1950s who died in a plane crash. To get his look, wear a '50s-style jacket and his trademark glasses.
Buffalo Bill — Buffalo Bill got his name after killing buffalo to supply railway workers with meat. Famous for his Buffalo Bill Wild West Show featuring sharpshooters and expert horse riders, his costume consists of buckskin trousers and a tunic though a standard cowboy outfit would suffice.
Bumblebee — In addition to the insect, Bumblebee is a character from the 2010 and 2011 film series Transformers. Both adult and children's costumes are available.
Bunny (Rabbit) — Bunnies are adorable animals and make great costumes for children or people who want to look extra cute. To get the look, you can purchase or hire a costume.
Bunny Girl — The Playmate or Bunny Girl concept was introduced by Playboy in 1962 and is now making a retro return. You can easily find kits to create this costume or hire one. There is also an abundance of Playboy merchandise to choose from.
Burglar — To get the burglar look, wear a black and white striped top, black trousers, a black eye mask, and carry a black sack with SWAG written on it.
Butler — To be this mainstay of the well-to-do British household, wear a smart suit (or tailsuit) and carry a silver tray in one hand with a towel over your arm. Be sure to keep a haughty expression!
Buttons — Buttons is a butler character in Cinderella who normally wears a short bellboy jacket, trousers, and a pillbox hat.
Buzz Lightyear — Buzz Lightyear is a hero seen in the Toy Story films who represents a new era of space- and technology-themed toys. Official costumes are available to purchase.
Now It's Over to You!
My little list ends here, but I'm sure that I've missed plenty of other costume options. If you think of any, please pop them into the comment box below to help out others.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article. I hope it has helped you choose your costume. Now all you have to do is have a great party!
Emma-Li on October 18, 2017:
Banshee, Bridesmaid, Bat
idigwebsites from United States on July 05, 2013:
I'm having fun reading this hub. How come did I see this now? Anyway, I will use some of these ideas this coming Halloween. Thanks for posting! :)
Bartley on October 17, 2012:
B themed goodness baby hell yeah
Joe on August 31, 2012:
Need to add ballsack
Bob on August 07, 2012:
You should add a bodar costum!
b is da best on May 23, 2012:
your awesome heaps of ideas!
lala #11 on May 10, 2012:
Anne on March 25, 2012:
Golden Angel :] on January 03, 2012:
Maybe a box ???
sophia webber on November 17, 2011:
what about a bratz? that would be funny :)
Mattley on August 24, 2011:
What about Bender from Futurama?
Aroha on August 08, 2011:
Hi thanks for the page I was struggling to think of costume idea's, this has been extremely helpful
Betty Boop Figurines on July 13, 2011:
Nice costumes. I wonder how much one would cost?
Sarah is here on April 24, 2011:
Thanks u too to too much u are a very imaginative person!
Fancy Dress Costumes on February 02, 2011:
Bumblebee from Transformers belongs here! What about a baroque opera singer? There are also other animals, like a badger. You could try a balloon too. But overall, there isn't much you could add to this list, it's pretty extensive.
Adult Costume on October 23, 2010:
Batman & Batgirl were tops with me though the Womens Bee costume is stunning & sexy
nicole on September 13, 2010:
i dont know what to go as with the first letter of my name i wanted to go as nemo
lenny on September 10, 2010:
awesome costumes. I love them
Pat on September 01, 2010:
Excellent - thanks. Lots of really good (and some easy) ideas.
eric on July 12, 2010:
what about bird man of Alcatraz
bonnie on June 18, 2010:
soooooooooooooo weird costumes but some were kk
Jackie on June 15, 2010:
Some wonderful ideas, I was really stuck... Thanks
shorty on March 18, 2010:
stefan on February 13, 2010:
Billy Elliot - half boxer half ballarina (sp?!)
Birds nest - for those with a lot of hair
Big Bird - Seasame street classic
British - Use your imagination
Boy George - watch the weddin singer for an idea on that
Blue Man group - easy all u need is paint and a swimmin cap
Bugsy Mallone - dress like some one from the godfather except walk around with a cream pie.
Buiscuit! - difficult but if you can pull it off brilliant.
Blair or Bush
or my personal favorite and the asiest of them all....
.... a box
Costume Guy on January 28, 2010:
I really like the Buzz Lightyear costume. Makes me feel like a kid again.
claire on July 11, 2009:
Ryan From Blonde Wig UK on June 16, 2009:
How about adding a ballerina?
Belinda Evans on May 29, 2009:
I used the information you provided to help me come up with an original idea for a 'B" Costume for my 30th birthday party.
Sarah J on March 09, 2009:
Party Girl (author) on November 15, 2008:
Great idea Kelly, this give lots of costume choice. Thanks for your comment and taking the time to look at this page.
kelly on November 14, 2008:
burlesque in B ! :)
Party Girl (author) on October 30, 2008:
Thanks for your comment Melady. Good idea!
Melady on October 30, 2008:
For the guy with allot of guts: Borat. you could wear that lime green thing as a costume!haha
And thanks for all the great ideas, I'm gonna have buckets of fun!!
Party Girl (author) on October 28, 2008:
Great idea Andrew, all you would need would be tennis whites.
Andrew on October 25, 2008:
Great page, loads of ideas! Bjorn Borg?
luke on October 09, 2008:
John Austwick from Bolton on August 12, 2008:
another great page Adele looking forward to more of the same
artstudio from Toronto on August 02, 2008:
I like to come at your hubs. Good costumes ideas and fun
This is my ANIMOTO
Party Girl (author) on August 01, 2008:
Thanks Kotie, Have a great weekend!
Kotie on August 01, 2008:
I love it! Good job! I am going to use it and send everyone to your pages!
Party Girl (author) on August 01, 2008:
Thanks Sisterkate, I really appreciate it.
sisterkate from Chicago, IL on August 01, 2008:
What fun! I enjoyed this hub so much I submitted it to Digg.
Loved the video.