I have a love-hate relationship with Halloween costumes. First of all, I love making costumes! I love being able to “play” with colors and fabrics and create something fun and playful. Halloween however seems to always creep up on me just a little faster every time I decide to sew my kid’s costume(s). There is just something about a handmade costume though, that makes it last just a little longer than a factory made, store purchased costume, not to mention the love and attention (and a little blood, sweat, tears and swearing) that go into it.
This year, with all of the Frozen-fever going on, my kids asked to be Elsa and Anna. We have kept an open eye for pre-made costumes as they are pretty much everywhere but had yet to find a set that we were willing to pay the retail price on. Some stores only have Anna, others only have Elsa, some are poor quality, some were more expensive than I am going to pay for a “play” dress! I finally convinced the hubby to Let It Go and let me make the girls their costumes this year. This is also the point at which I hear about how we can’t spend a fortune for me to make the costumes either… Fine!
Starting with Elsa was a no-brainer. Not because I thought she would be easier to make, but because Peek-A-Boo Pattern Shop had a blog post on how to make it along with a free pattern (for size 4T, which will fit approximately 3-5 because it is made of knits) and I just love the way hers turned out! The best part is, I did not need to go out and buy any new fabric! Yup, I had more than enough fabric to choose from, and even had a “precious” piece of fabric I have been holding onto for the perfect project. I must tell you, that fabric has been around since before Anna asked “Do you wanna build a snowman?”
Anna is going to take me a little more work. I knew I could go out and buy a pattern from a big-name company but I am kind of a cheap-o when I buy patterns and I won’t spend more than $2 for a tissue paper pattern. Not only that, trying to find the right pattern, in the right size, on a sale day would be a lot of work. I decided to go with the option of finding a pattern online (I looked for free patterns but didn’t find any I liked) and I wanted something that I could use again for everyday clothes. My first choice was to go back to PAB Pattern Shop, where I found the Poppy Polo! I liked this pattern because I can modify the collar to stand up and be more rounded, and after making the dress two-tone, I can just add a vest! I considered buying a pattern to make the vest, but I’m going to just use the Elsa bodice to make the front of the vest. I was very excited when I found some baby blue knit gauze fabric for $3/yard, and I only needed 1/2 a yard for the long sleeve bodice, although I didn’t know that when shopping, so I splurged on the full yard to be sure. While cleaning my sewing room, I found a terrific blue knit for the skirt and a simple black woven for the vest. Once I start getting my fabric cut I will be heading on over to Frou Frou by Heather Sue to pick up some embroidery files for the Anna vest and skirt!
I have seen all of the cute accessories out there for both Elsa and Anna but to be honest, neither princess, or queen, is much for accessories, so why load my kids up? The last little touch will be something for their hair. I have seen some adorable crocheted hats with braids themed for Frozen characters, but I just don’t know if I want to attempt to make them myself, spend the money and hope they get here, or just grab some yarn and make braids and attach them to hair clips and call it done!
All-in-all, I will end up spending less than $40 (not counting whatever I spent on fabric and thread years ago) to make these, but the bonus is that I will be able to make more tops and dresses out of the pattern as well as being able to use all of the embroidery designs again and again!
I can’t wait to share my progress with these costumes! So, what do you do? Do you buy pre-made costumes or have you ever made your own?