Negan is a brutal but charismatic antagonist in both the comic book and television series versions of The Walking Dead. The character was first introduced in July 2012 in the comic books–issue #100–as leader of the Washington, D.C. bandit group The Saviors. He has been a popular recurring character ever since. In April 2015, Negan appeared in the final episode of season six of the television series. This was hyped since the mid-season break, along with the fact that he would kill one of the protagonists. Our DIY costume and makeup guide is based on Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s performance in the television series, as he threatens the protagonists with Lucille, his bat wrapped with barbed wire.
Negan in The Walking Dead
Here’s Negan from “Last Day on Earth”, the 16th episode of season 6. He’s towering over Rick, the show’s primary protagonist. Note his leather jacket, maroon/red scarf, and bat. We’ll be building our DIY around these elements.
Here’s our completed DIY look. We’ll go over the products we used with some step-by-step instructions below.
Adult Grease Authentic T-Birds Jacket – Shop Elvis Scarves – Shop Western Bandolier Bullet Belt – Shop
Mustache Multi Pack – Shop Adult Plastic Baseball Bat Wood Look – Shop Barbed Wire Garland – Shop
Putting this costume together is a cinch. We’ll start with the leather jacket. We chose our Grease Authentic T-Birds jacket, but that’s because we knew we’d be taking photos from the front. Unless you’re an expert at removing embroidered patches, we’d suggest checking your local thrift stores for the real deal. We added some maroon Elvis scarves, just wrapped around the neck and tucked into the jacket. Our western bandolier bullet belt is sized to hang from one shoulder to the opposite hip, so we shortened it to hang around the waist. Duct tape works fine for this, as long as you can hide it under the jacket. Add some dark pants and belt and you’re set. Depending on your natural beardiness, you may need a fake mustache. We'll get into coloring your real or fake beard later on. But now onto the bat!
DIY Barbed Wire Bat
This one’s easy, because you have options. You could get a replica of Negan’s bat, Lucille. But you can also wrap some barbed wire garland around a toy baseball, which is super simple. (Please don't use real barbed wire and a real bat. Safety first!) Here are the step-by-step instructions. Start with your bat, garland, and tape (1, as shown in the image above). Tape down one end of the garland onto the bat (2). You can also start by tying the garland around the bat, but we found that the tape keeps the garland from sliding all over. Next, wrap the garland over the tape and around the bat (3). If necessary, add another piece of tape to further secure the garland (4). Space out the garland so that the end reaches the tip of the bat, then tie it in a knot (5). Now let’s look at the makeup!
Negan’s been roughing it for a while, so he’s a bit scruffy. Get some dirt effects with makeup, but don’t overdo it. (He's not Pig-Pen. Also, that will be the only Peanuts reference in this Walking Dead DIY.) As mentioned above, add a fake mustache if you need it. Some silver and black hairspray will help you get that salt-and-pepper beard effect. Also remember to slick back that hair, and you're done.
The Final Look
"You are so gonna regret crossing me in a few minutes…. Yes you are."
"This. This is Lucille, and she is awesome."
"Today was career day. We invested in a lot, so you would know who I am and what I can do."
What did you think? Are you planning on dressing as Negan for Halloween? Or maybe for a Walking Dead premiere party? Tell us all about it in the comments below. Be sure to link some photos, too! And remember that if you plan to recreate scenes from the television series or comic book, your friends will need some Walking Dead costumes of their own.