For the past couple of years we’ve dressed the girls up in coordinating costumes. I usually try to base the costumes on something the girls are interested in. Last year Tinker was all about birds, and Lovey was in a big fairy stage. With a little creative thinking we decided to dress up as a Scarecrow Fairy and the baby Crow. The crow costume was so adorable and easy to put together. I thought I’d share the details with you in case your still thinking of your little one’s costume for this year.
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- 72 Inch Black Feather Boa-The fluffier the better!
- Black Hair Elastics (or black ribbon)
- Elastic Headband with Holes-Check the headbands you have at home to see if they will work. We were able to just use one from our collection.We have headbands like these, but I could not find them for sale on Amazon. If you have crochet headbands, they should also work.
- Large Black Bunch of Feathers with Stem-I bought one similar to this double stem.
- Black Outfit with Long Sleeves and Shoes (Dress and leggings or sweatsuit will both work well)
I used what we had on hand for clothing, headband and elastics. I only ended up purchasing the boa and feather for the hairpiece. By using one of the Sunday coupons from JoAnn Fabric and Craft Stores, I was able to make the costume for around $12. Your final price will vary based on where you purchase the items and what you already have on hand.
Assembling the Bird Body
If you have a toddler, you know that the odds of me getting any decent photos to show you how we assembled the costume were very unlikely. To put together the bird body, we first got dressed in black pants and a black sweater with a zipper in the front.
I placed one end of the boa near her wrist and slipped an elastic over it to secure it to her arm. Be sure that the elastic is just tight enough to keep the feathers from falling off, and check after a bit to make sure it isn’t making a mark on the child’s arm.
If you aren’t comfortable with using elastic bands you can try and secure the feathers with ribbon or even pin them to the sweater. I knew my child was not going to stand still for the feathers to be pinned, and I wanted to be able to get the costume on and off easily, so the elastics worked well for us.
Once one arm was secure, I draped the boa around her torso and over her shoulders. You may need to play with it to see how it will lay best and also stay out of your child’s face. If you want you can also pin one section of feathers to the back of the sweater. I laced a ribbon through the zipper pull and tied the front center section of the boa down so the featers would stay out of her mouth.
I left enough of the boa to then drape it down her other arm and secure again with another elastic.
I make it sound much more difficult than it was–basically, secure-twist-secure. Ta da! It took less than a minute to get her into the bird body, because let’s be real. That’s all you have with toddlers, right?
Note: Before the day we were first going to wear the costume I used the boa for some play activities to let my daughter get used to it. The first day she wanted nothing to do with it, and I don’t think I could have gotten her into it if she hadn’t played with it and come to love the soft feel of the feathers.
Assembling the Headpiece
For the headpiece, I bent the bunch of feathers over the side of her head to my liking. Then I trimmed the stem off leaving a soft end. If yours doesn’t have a soft end, you can wrap it in black ribbon and secure with hot glue (if you have the time) or electrical tape (if that’s easier). I didn’t have to do anything to the stem we trimmed.
Then I poked the base of the stem through one of the holes in the headband and poked the top of the bunch into the top part of the headband. I secured it in two places with piece of thin black ribbon just to make sure it wouldn’t come undone.
This part took about two minutes to put together, and she wore it for all of our Halloween activities last year.
You can also modify the colors of the costume to be different birds, or a whole flock of colorful birds if you’d like. Have fun!