Eleven Costume Guide

Eleven is an iconic figure from Stranger Things, known for her extraordinary abilities and resilient spirit. This costume guide will help you recreate Eleven's memorable looks with detailed outfit instructions and tips on embodying her unique presence. We'll explore how to transform yourself into this captivating character, perfect for a couple's or group costume. Our insights and resources will help you create an Eleven costume as authentic as it is impressive.

Our Verdict:

  • Difficulty: 3/10
    • Most elements involve modifying existing clothing or purchasing basic items. The most challenging aspects might be finding an exact pattern match for the dress or replicating the tie-dye sneakers perfectly.
  • Can you build it from your own wardrobe: 
    • This depends on what you have! The plaid shirt and white socks are likely closet staples. The dress might be trickier, and the wig is necessary unless you already have a similar hairstyle.
  • Scare factor: 1/10
    • Eleven herself isn't inherently scary, though her powers can be used in intense ways. Adding a little fake blood splatter could up the scare factor if desired.
  • Cost: $$$$$ Here's a rough breakdown:
      • Basic (from your wardrobe or thrifted): ~$20-$50
        • (assuming you find the dress and shirt at a thrift store, and potentially need to purchase fabric paint).
      • Mid-range (mix of new and pre-owned items): ~$50-$75
        • (If you need to purchase new sneakers, fabric for the dress, or a more specialized wig).
      • High-End (replica pieces): ~$100+ (If you seek an exact replica wig, custom-printed dress fabric, etc.)

Additional Notes on Cost:

  • Fabric choice greatly impacts cost – a simple cotton for the dress keeps things budget-friendly.
  • Check your closet before buying! You might be surprised what you already own that could work.
  • Don't underestimate the power of thrift stores for unique vintage finds.

Eleven Costume Ideas

  • Eleven Season 4 Costume Essentials

  • Eleven Battle Outfit Essentials

  • Eleven Season 3 Costume Essentials

Eleven Shopping Costume

You will need the following items for your Eleven Season 3 Costume:

  1. Eleven Season 3 Dress
  2. Brown Wavy Wig
  3. Turquoise Hair Ties
  4. Reebok Princess Sneakers
  5. Fake Ice Cream

Undoubtedly a fan favorite, this graphic dress might just be Eleven's favorite too, considering she wore it to Starcout. From its wrap design to its intricate patterns, perfect length, and captivating colors, every aspect of this dress exudes charm. It speaks volumes about Eleven – a girl with extraordinary powers, battling villains, yet during her moments of respite from kicking butt, she's just an ordinary girl, relishing in the simple joys of life.


  • Eleven Pink Dress Costume Essentials

Eleven Pink Dress Costume

You will need the following items for your Eleven pink dress costume:

  1. Eleven's Pink Dress
  2. Eleven Cosplay Jacket
  3. Eleven Cosplay Wig
  4. Converse White Sneakers
  5. Green Striped Socks
  6. Stage Blood
  7. Stranger Things Eggo Card Game

After finding Eleven, the boys took her to school, but to avoid detection, they had to disguise her. They quickly assembled a costume using the first clothes they could find, resulting in Eleven's iconic pink ensemble. The pink dress and blonde wig belonged to Nancy.

How To DIY Eleven's Iconic Look

Eleven's Season 4 look is instantly recognizable, marked by her bold patterned dress and colorful sneakers. If you're ready to channel her unique style, let's get started! While we've provided a shopping list above for ready-made pieces, this section is all about crafting those elements yourself for a touch of personalization and budget-friendly fun.

The Plaid Shirt

  • What You Need:

    • Beige/brown plaid shirt (thrift store find or your closet)
    • Fabric scissors
    • Sewing needle and thread OR fabric glue
    • (Optional) Fray Check liquid
  • How To Do It:

    1. Examine the reference images: Pay attention to the fit and sleeve length of Eleven's shirt for the most authentic look.
    2. Modify the fit: If your shirt is too large, consider taking in the sides for a more tailored look. Use pins for a test fit before sewing or gluing.
    3. Adjust the sleeves: Eleven's sleeves are often rolled up. You can either roll and tack them in place or shorten the sleeves for a permanent rolled-up style. If cutting, use Fray Check to prevent unraveling.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Fabric glue is a great no-sew option for quick fixes!
    • A slightly oversized shirt adds a touch of '80s authenticity, especially for a younger wearer.
    • I've found that thrift stores are treasure troves for vintage plaid – you might even find a closer match than a brand-new shirt!

The Eye-Catching Overall Dress

  • What You Need:

    • Plain overall dress in a light/neutral color (khaki, denim, etc.)
    • Fabric suitable for printing (amount depends on the size of the dress)
    • Iron-on transfer paper
    • Home printer
    • Iron
    • (Optional) Sewing supplies for resizing the dress
  • How To Do It:

    1. Find the pattern: Search online for "Eleven dress pattern Stranger Things" for printable options. You might find both free patterns and paid versions with higher detail.
    2. Transfer the design: Follow the instructions on your iron-on transfer paper carefully. Print the design and prepare your fabric.
    3. Iron with care: Ensure the design is fully adhered to the fabric and let it cool completely before handling.
    4. Adjust the fit (optional): If the dress is too large, consider taking it in at the sides or shortening the straps.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Experiment with different fabrics! A thicker cotton will mimic Eleven's dress, but a lighter fabric might be more comfortable for warmer weather.
    • This is where my passion for crafting shines! If you're unsure about printing and transferring, some fabric stores offer custom printing services.
    • Consider adding text or additional designs from Eleven's dress if your chosen pattern is a bit simplified.

The Black Shoulder-Length Wig

  • What You Need:

    • Black shoulder-length wig with slight wave/curl
    • Wide-tooth comb
    • Hairspray (optional)
    • (Optional) Wig stand for styling
  • How To Do It:

    1. Style the bangs: Carefully comb out the wig, focusing on replicating the shape of Eleven's bangs.
    2. Add volume (optional): If the wig is flat, gently backcomb at the crown for subtle lift. Use hairspray sparingly to set.
    3. Secure Fit (optional): Use bobby pins discreetly placed at the sides if you're worried about the wig shifting
  • Bonus Tips:

    • A wig stand makes styling much easier!
    • Most costume wigs benefit from gentle combing. A wide-tooth comb prevents excessive shedding.
    • Have a friend help when styling, especially for the back sections.

The Colorful Sneakers

  • What You Need:

    • White or light-colored canvas sneakers (low-top)
    • Fabric paint (various pastel colors: pink, yellow, blue, etc.)
    • Paintbrushes (various sizes)
    • Masking tape or painter's tape
    • Reference images of Eleven's sneakers
  • How To Do It:

    1. Protect your workspace: Cover the area with newspaper or a drop cloth before you start painting.
    2. Prep the shoes: Optionally, use masking tape around the soles to protect them from stray paint.
    3. Sketch the design (optional): If you're not confident freehanding, lightly sketch the tie-dye pattern onto the shoes with a pencil.
    4. Paint the pattern: Start with the lightest color. Apply paint in loose swirls and uneven shapes to mimic the tie-dye effect.
    5. Layer the colors: Gradually add the other colors, blending slightly where they overlap. Let each layer dry partially before adding the next.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Fabric paints have the best durability on canvas. Acrylic paints can work, but may be more prone to cracking with wear.
    • Consider practicing your tie-dye technique on a scrap piece of canvas before tackling the shoes.
    • I like to dilute the fabric paints slightly with water for a more watercolor-like effect, similar to Eleven's sneakers.

The Classic White Socks

  • What You Need:

    • A pair of plain white crew socks
  • How To Do It:

    1. Source the socks: This element is refreshingly simple! Look for a classic white crew sock in any clothing or department store.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • "One size fits most" socks will likely work well.
    • For a truly authentic '80s touch, try to find socks with a slight ribbed texture and a sporty stripe near the top.

With these DIY tips, you're well on your way to capturing Eleven's distinctive style. Next, we'll explore how to embody her personality and truly bring this beloved character to life!

Other "Stranger Things" Costume Ideas

Stranger Things Costume Ideas

Eleven Cosplay

You've got the look, now it's time to inhabit Eleven's world! Embracing her mannerisms and personality adds a whole new dimension to your costume, making your portrayal all the more convincing.

How to act like Eleven at the Halloween Party:

Elijah Wood As Eleven
Elijah Wood As Eleven

Quiet Intensity

  • What To Do: Eleven is often reserved and observant. She carries both strength and vulnerability in her quietness.

  • How To Do It:

    • Focus your gaze: Eleven often looks directly at people, sometimes intensely. Maintain eye contact a bit longer than usual in conversation.
    • Speak deliberately: Choose your words carefully, avoid filler words like "um" or rambling.
    • Controlled posture: Stand tall, but not rigidly. Eleven has an underlying stillness even when moving.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Her quietness is often a reaction to the overwhelming world around her. Try conveying subtle wonder or confusion when observing new situations.
    • Watch Eleven in scenes with characters she trusts (like Mike or Hopper); her posture softens slightly, revealing a different layer.

Chris Hardwick as Eleven
Chris Hardwick as Eleven

Limited Vocabulary

  • What To Do: In Season 4, Eleven's vocabulary is still developing. She often uses simple phrases and focuses on the essentials.

  • How To Do It:

    • Concise statements: Aim for short sentences focusing on actions or needs (e.g., "I need food," "Where is Mike?").
    • Repetition: Eleven sometimes repeats words or phrases she hears for emphasis or understanding.
    • Direct questions: When seeking information, keep your questions clear and to the point.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Don't be afraid of silence! Eleven communicates powerfully through facial expressions and gestures.
    • I find it helpful to watch her scenes and try to summarize what she's trying to say in the fewest words possible. This helps me get into her mindset.

Guarded Emotions

  • What To Do: Eleven has experienced great trauma and can be slow to express her feelings openly. Her emotions are often just beneath the surface.

  • How To Do It:

    • Subtle expressions: Focus on small shifts in your facial expression-- a furrowed brow, a slight tremble of the lip.
    • Body language: Eleven may clench her fists, hold herself very still, or avert her gaze when she's uncomfortable or upset.
    • Outbursts: When her emotions DO break through, they can be intense. Consider practicing a short yell or a frustrated gesture in private.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Think about what triggers Eleven's strong reactions (fear, betrayal, protecting loved ones). Understanding her motivations will help these moments feel authentic.
    • It's okay to let a bit of vulnerability show even in her guarded moments. This makes her even more relatable.

Noah Schnapp as Eleven
Noah Schnapp as Eleven

Fierce Protector

  • What To Do: Eleven cares deeply for her friends and becomes fiercely protective when they are in danger.

  • How To Do It:

    • Determined stride: When Eleven is on a mission, she moves with purpose. Walk with confident, focused steps.
    • Protective stance: Stand slightly in front of those you're "defending," maintain a vigilant expression.
    • The hand gesture (optional): If you're comfortable, you can practice Eleven's signature outstretched hand gesture used when channeling her powers.
  • Bonus Tips:

    • Eleven's protective side is fueled by love and loyalty. Try to channel that positive emotion even when portraying her intensity.
    • A key part of this is conviction! Truly believing you have the power to help your friends makes your portrayal more believable.

Combine these techniques to bring Eleven's distinctive personality to life. Don't be afraid to experiment and make it your own – the best cosplay comes from a place of understanding and having fun with the character!

Couple, Group and Family Costume Ideas

Take your Eleven costume to the next level by incorporating friends and family into the fun! Let's explore creative pairings and group themes inspired by Stranger Things and beyond.

Couple Costume Ideas

  • Idea 1: Mike and Eleven

    • Why it works: This iconic duo from Stranger Things represents friendship, young love, and extraordinary abilities. Capture their dynamic with Eleven's unique look and Mike's signature '80s attire.
    • This one is my favorite couple costume idea!
  • Idea 2: Eleven and the Demogorgon

    • Why it works: Embrace the classic hero vs. monster conflict! This pairing offers a striking visual contrast and plenty of opportunities for dramatic poses.
  • Idea 3: Eleven and E.T. (from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial)

    • Why it works: Both characters are young outsiders with powerful abilities trying to find their place in the world. This crossover is perfect for fans of classic sci-fi.

Group Costume Ideas

  • Idea 1: The Hawkins Middle School AV Club

    • Why it works: This core group is full of memorable characters! Dustin, Lucas, Mike, Will (and later Max and Erica) offer a variety of costume difficulties - perfect for mixed skill levels.
  • Idea 2: Creatures of the Upside Down

    • Why it works: Embrace the spooky side of Stranger Things! Options like the Demogorgon, Mind Flayer, or Vecna offer different levels of DIY complexity for a monstrously fun group theme.
  • Idea 3: The Heroes of Sci-Fi

    • Why it works: Team up with characters who share Eleven's struggle to understand their powers or a similar outsider experience. Think Matilda, Carrie, or even Hermione Granger for a fun crossover.

Family Costume Ideas

  • Idea 1: The Byers/Hopper Family

    • Why it works: Joyce, Jonathan, Will, and Hopper form the unconventional but loving family at the heart of Stranger Things. Coordinate '80s outfits with a touch of Upside-Down weirdness.
  • Idea 2: Superpowered Squad

    • Why it works: Gather the whole family as different heroes with special abilities. This theme allows for creative interpretations and works for all ages!
  • Idea 3: Millie Bobby Brown's Characters

    • Why it works: If your family loves Millie Bobby Brown, celebrate her various roles! Options include Enola Holmes, Princess Elodie, Madison Russell (Godzilla vs. Kong), and of course, Eleven.

About Eleven

Eleven is far more than her powers or her iconic look. She's a complex figure who evokes curiosity and enduring fascination. Let's explore what makes her so compelling.

Eleven by Midjourney
Eleven by Midjourney

Character Overview

  • Role in Stranger Things: Eleven is a catalyst and a protector. Her extraordinary abilities make her both a target of shadowy forces and the key to saving her friends.
  • Played By: Millie Bobby Brown

Background and Personality Traits

  • Personality: Eleven possesses remarkable strength and resilience born of hardship. She's both vulnerable and fiercely loyal, longing for connection while grappling with the trauma of her past.
  • Appearance: Her shaved head in earlier seasons is a stark visual reminder of her unique origins. Her Season 4 look reflects a greater desire to blend in, yet her quiet intensity still sets her apart.

Role in the Story

  • Major Plot Points:

    • Eleven's escape from Hawkins Lab opens the doorway to the Upside Down, setting the events of the series in motion.
    • Her sacrifices to protect her friends, most notably closing the gate, repeatedly save Hawkins from destruction.
  • Impact on Narrative & Characters:

    • Eleven's presence forces those around her to question the nature of good and evil.
    • She offers friendship and a chance at normalcy to outcasts like Mike, Dustin, Lucas, and Will.

Cultural Impact

  • Fan Reception: Eleven is a cosplay favorite! Her shaved head and telekinetic powers provide a striking visual for fans to recreate.
  • Thematic Significance: Eleven embodies themes of childhood trauma, the struggle for identity, and the extraordinary power found in friendship and love.

With this deeper understanding of Eleven, you're well-equipped to bring her to life—whether through your costume or by channeling her captivating spirit.

Further Reading


You've got the DIY skills to recreate Eleven's iconic look, an understanding of her mannerisms, and insights into what makes her so beloved. With the help of this guide, you're ready to channel her quiet strength and extraordinary spirit. Whether you're rocking the costume solo or joining a Hawkins crew, your Eleven portrayal is sure to impress. Now go forth and amaze!

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