Costume Time!

It’s costume time again, but not just because it’s Halloween month. Our local high school homecoming is this week, and today each class has a theme to follow for dressing up. I made two costumes, both without patterns.

First, my 5th grader decided to be a Circus Ringmaster (his class theme is circus/carnival):

E-man is ready to enter the Big Top!
E-man is ready to enter the Big Top!

I was able to make this from fabrics I had on hand (other than the top hat which I bought online). The vest is really just the two fronts attached at the shoulder and side seams to the jacket. I cut  out 4 and seamed them together so they are completely lined. It was a little too tight so I added the rectangular trim to the front to make a placket. I ran out of time to add buttons and buttonholes so it is safety-pinned closed from the inside here. The jacket gave me fits…but of course I was sewing and designing it as I went, so that meant seam ripping, re-cutting, etc. I guess for no pattern it turned out okay. My biggest disappointment with it was thinking I was out of the red fabric so I improvised and cut the tails of the coat out of black. Only after I finished did I find another large scrap of the red corduroy! ARGH! I used an old buttondown shirt with the sleeves cut off (so he wouldn’t get hot) for the white shirt and made the bowtie out of the same red corduroy (21 wale, very lightweight). The pants are a pair of my old jersey lounge pants cut off just below the knee. I draped the faux leather fabric over his shoes to get an idea of shaping, cutting three pieces (two side and one back), seamed those together, then seamed a wedge shaped rectangle for the leg section. Of course I did this at 11pm last night, and when he tried them on this morning the calves were too tight. Alas this morning was a marathon seam ripping/adding in a back panel/re-attaching to the pants sewing session (Hey, he was only 15 minutes late for school!  ;-D)

The second costume I made is for a friend’s daughter who is a senior this year. Her class theme was “The Hunters and The Hunted”, and she chose to be a squirrel.

squirrel costume blog photo 2

Her mom bought 1 1/4 yards of faux fur, and I used an existing vest as the template to cut out the top. I cut out a slightly shaped tube for the tail, seamed it up, stuffed lightly with polyfil, and straightened a metal hanger out to give the tube some stability. I then just safety pinned it to the vest so it would stay upright. The ears are just rounded triangles seamed about an inch at the top and folded in at the bottom and seamed, then turned right side out and pinned to a headband. Voila! She had faux fur boot tops that matched perfectly and just added a brown top and leggings. I think she is the most adorable squirrel I have ever seen!


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