So I know it’s only September, but I’m already getting super excited for Halloween this year. It’s one of the few times I get to show off how truly geeky I am–in the past I’ve gone as a cowgirl (with my beagle Sammy dressed as a cow), penguin supporter (in which I carried a huge sign and petition declaring that penguins couldn’t fly for the sole reason that the government had stolen their right to) (please note that some people were actually drunk enough to sign the petition), and Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games (check out my guide to that costume HERE).
I haven’t decided who/what I’ll be dressing up as this year yet, but with the last book in Veronica Roth’s NY Times bestselling, and absolutely phenomenal, Divergent trilogy coming out just before Halloween–and the first Divergent movie releasing in March, 2014–I’m definitely considering going as a member of one of her factions.
So, here’s a guide to how to dress like a member of a Divergent faction. (Please note: this is based on the descriptions in the books and just what I had lying around at home; I’m going to see about doing another post eventually based on the movie costumes, but for now, this is what we’ve got.)
Excerpt from Faction Manifesto: “Dishonesty is rampant, Dishonesty is temporary, Dishonesty makes evil possible.”
How to Dress: Our first faction today is the Candor–a people who believe that the best way to further society is by being honest no matter what. Because of this belief, they dress in all black and white (ya know. like the truth).
A character in Divergent who’s originally from Candor is Tris (the MC)’s best friend Christina, who she meets while in Dauntless initiation. Although by the time we meet Christina she’s already transferred out of Candor, she still holds onto some of her habits from growing up, like the fact that she is loud and abrasive, and never holds back what she thinks, even when it hurts those she loves. Christina is proud and honest, and will always support what she believes in, even if it isn’t popular.
For my Candor costume, I wore a white lace dress, black leggings, black ballet flats (not pictured), and a black headband. I feel like the Candor wouldn’t be a faction to wear a lot of makeup or do much with their hair, because those things conceal what you naturally look like, to an extent, but I did throw in the headband to get just a little more contrast into the outfit, since the white dress is sort of in-your-face.
If you don’t want to wear a dress (or you’re a guy), you can go for some nice black pants, a white button-down, and black oxford shoes.
Purchase These Items:
White Dress** – $25.00, JC Penney
Black Leggings – $11.96, American Eagle
Black Shoes – $24.99, Payless Shoesource
Black Headband – $5.69, Rite Aid
Excerpt from Faction Manifesto:
“I will be my undoing If I become my obsession.
I will forget the ones I love If I do not serve them.
I will war with others If I refuse to see them.
Therefore I choose to turn away from my reflection,
To rely not on myself
But on my brothers and sisters,
To project always outward
Until I disappear.”
How to Dress: The Abnegation believe in selflessness–putting everyone else before themselves at any cost. Because of this, they dress very conservatively (author Veronica Roth has described them as being Puritan-like) in different tones of grey.
Tris, the narrator of the first two Divergent-books (and co-narrator of the soon-to-be-released finale, Allegiant), is originally from Abnegation. When she transfers to Dauntless towards the beginning of book 1, she brings with her the selfless tendencies drilled into her from birth, which makes her at first appear shy and weak to the Dauntless–that is, until with a little help from her love interest and fellow Abnegation-transfer Four, she discovers that her selflessness can actually make her stronger, because it means that she’ll do anything to protect those she loves when they’re put in danger.
For my Abnegation costume, I wore a loose grey dress (the longest one you can find, the better), grey tights (not pictured), grey ballet flats (also not pictured), a too-big grey cardigan (there is just so much grey in this outfit), and my hair pulled back in a practical side-braid, tied off with a black hair tie. [Update: A lovely commenter alerted me to the fact that the Abnegation only wear their hair in tidy buns, never braids. Sorry for the bad advice!] I pulled my bangs away from my face with bobby pins, and suggest not wearing any makeup. I’m also wearing a very plain watch with this (hidden by the sweater sleeve), because that is the one sort of adornment the Abnegation allow.
Abnegation women generally have long hair pulled back from their face in a bun or braid, and men keep their hair buzzed short.
Another option for this outfit would be to wear baggy grey pants, shirt, and shoes with a plain watch.
Purchase These Items:
Baggy Grey Dress** – $22.80, Forever 21
Grey Tights** – $7.80, Forever 21
Over-sized Grey Cardigan – $19.99, Kohl’s
Grey Ballet Flats** – $39.99, Famous Footwear
Simple Watch – $34.99, Target
Excerpt from Faction Manifesto:
A daughter says to her father: “Father, today I fought with my friend.”
Her father says: “Why did you fight with your friend?”
“Because she insulted me, and I was angry.”
“Why were you so angry?”
“Because I was hurt by her words.”
“My daughter, did your friend’s words change who you are?”
“Then do not be angry. The opinions of others cannot damage you.”
How to Dress: The Amity believe in peace and happiness leading to prosperity. They’re pretty carefree, love the environment (they supply the food for Divergent Chicago), and wear lots of reds and yellows.
Amity barely makes an appearance in Divergent, but plays a much larger role in Insurgent. An important character from Amity is Robert–Tris’s old neighbor from Abnegation who transfers to Amity at the same time as she transfers to Dauntless. Robert, and the rest of Amity, like to avoid conflict at all costs (including drugging themselves to keep from disagreeing) and spend their free time singing, playing guitar, and just generally being casual and relaxed (so they’re basically hippies).
For my Amity costume, I wore a flowy red skirt with flowers on it, a red v-neck, and bronze, strappy gladiator sandals. I put my hair in a side ponytail with an orange flower-clip tucked into my hair, and I wore rose-tinted lip balm, mascara, blush.
If you’re not up for wearing a skirt, you can exchange that for red or yellow pants. Same goes for shoes. I think a pair of bright red Keds or Vans would fit this look really well.
Purchase These Items:
Floral Skirt** – $16.00, Kohl’s
Red V-Neck** – $9.00, Target
Sandals** – $19.99, Payless Shoesource
Flower Clip** – $2.25, Claire’s
Excerpt from Faction Manifesto: “Intelligence is a gift, not a right. It must be wielded not as a weapon but as a tool for the betterment of others.”
How to Dress: Euridite is a faction that believes in knowledge being power. This is the place all the nerds go. (Unfortunately, it’s also corrupt by the time the trilogy begins, so it’s associated with being the bad guys and has taken to withholding information, rather than spreading it). They’re required to wear at least one blue article of clothing at all times, because it gives off a calming aura, and they’re often found wearing hipster glasses.
A well-known character from Euridite is Jeannine, an antagonist in the Divergent world, and the primary baddie of Insurgent. The Euridite are very concerned with self-image, and are known to be ruthless, self-centered, and arrogant, although they generally do have the greater good at heart when making decisions (they’re just not very good with people).
For my Euridite costume, I wore a navy blue skater skirt, navy blue tights (not pictured), a medium blue v-neck, navy blue kitten heels (not pictured), and my hair pulled back in a prim bun. Euridite are definitely the type to wear makeup–they’re all about impressing people. (I forgot to put on my hipster glasses when taking this picture, but I definitely suggest them–they’re a fun touch.)
If you’re STILL not up for wearing a skirt (seriously, you should get on this dress/skirt bandwagon), then I’d suggest wearing navy blue trousers, a blue button-down or Polo, and dark blue dress shoes. Don’t forget the unnecessarily large plastic glasses.
Purchase These Items:
Navy Blue Skater Skirt** – $14.80, Forever 21
Blue V-Neck** – $9.00, Target
Blue Tights** – $5.80, Forever 21
Hipster Glasses (not worn here, but you should really get them) – $9.50, Claire’s
Excerpt from Faction Manifesto: “We believe that cowardice is to blame for the world’s injustices. We believe that peace is hard-won, that sometimes it is necessary to fight for peace.”
How to Dress: And finally we come to the faction that plays the most prominent role throughout Divergent–the Dauntless. Dauntless is a faction of kickbutt thrill-seekers who primarily supply the security force of Divergent Chicago. They wear all black, generally have lots of tattoos and piercings, and basically look like those people your mother hoped you’d never grow up to be. Like Euridite, Dauntless has grown pretty corrupt and ruthless by the beginning of Divergent–but those who have resisted the corruption remain loyal and strong, and they’re deadset on lending their strength to those who are weaker than them in order to protect innocence and loyalty and all that gushy stuff.
If you’ve read Divergent (or even just the back flap), then you know that Tris transfers to Dauntless at the beginning of Divergent, and once there she meets the majority of the other main characters in the books, including her love interest, Four. Four embodies everything Dauntless is supposed to be: he’s resolute, confident, and wants nothing more than to make everyone as powerful and independent as they can be. He teaches Tris that being in Dauntless isn’t about being fearless, but being strong despite their fears.
For this costume, I wore black skinny jeans, a black v-neck, and black ballet flats (not pictured). I don’t suggest the black ballet flats–you’d be better off with some black Converse or combat boots–but since I don’t own either of those, ballet flats it was. [Update: Zara has some really kickbutt trousers that remind me of the ones the Dauntless wear in the movie. Check ’em out: pair one, pair two, pair three.]
Like I mentioned above, the Dauntless like piercings and tattoos, so if you’ve got some of those to draw attention to, or can get your hands on some fake ones, go for it. I also suggest wearing lots of eyeliner and maybe putting your hair up in a ponytail/braid/etc.
Purchase These Items:
Black V-Neck** – $9.00, Target
Black Jeans – $29.99, American Eagle
Black Combat Boots (option 1) – $99.95, Steve Madden
Black Converse (option 2) – $100.00, Converse
And that wraps up how to dress like you’re from a Divergent faction, based on the descriptions in the books! Again, I’m going to see about doing another post, eventually, about how to dress like the five factions based on the costumes in the movies, so watch out for that. Thanks for reading! If you use any of these costume ideas as inspiration at any point, feel free to email pictures of your cool Divergent-wear to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I might feature them on the blog!
Faction manifesto quotes courtesy Divergent Wiki: http://divergent.wikia.com/wiki/Divergent_Wiki
[Photography by my super cool brother.]
** This is not the exact item that I’m wearing, but either the closest I could find or one that fits the descriptions in the books better.