Get the look: Margot and Richie Tenenbaum, perennially cool Halloween characters with uptown roots

Updated: Oct 27, 2020

Margot and Richie Tenenbaum

If you're a fan of Wes Anderson's "The Royal Tenenbaums," you'll know that "Royal Tenenbaum [the character played by Gene Hackman] bought the house on Archer Avenue in the winter of his 35th year." Much of the action in this quirky tale about a dysfunctional family takes place in and around his home.

The Royal Tenenbaum House

In real life, Archer Avenue is Convent Avenue in Hamilton Heights, and the house in the movie can be found on the southeast corner at 144th Street. Walking past it on my way to the express train, I always look up and admire this beautiful building and marvel at the fact that Anderson scouted it so many years ago when the neighborhood was ignored by anyone who didn't live there.

Richie and Margot Tenenbaum

It just goes to show how ahead of his time Anderson was–and is. Another example? Sixteen years after the movie came out, the characters of Margot and Richie Tenenbaum (Royal's children played by Gwyneth Paltrow and Luke Wilson) are as popular as ever on Halloween.

Although I didn't find the full costumes at Spirit or any of the other big Halloween stores, the looks are easy to cobble together from old clothing and thrift shop finds. Or type in either character's name on Amazon–the site finds every item you need and automatically groups them together.

Striped tennis dress, pin-straight blond bob, girly barrette, cigarette and short gloves for wannabe Margots (a vintage tan fur coat is her real signature, but that doesn't pop up in the search). White tennis shirt, khaki suit, '80s aviator sunglasses and a terry sweatband for those who aspire to look like Richie–don't forget the mustache and beard.

Get the look, pose in front of the Tenenbaum house, post it on Instagram, and you've won Halloween.

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