So this year I fully intended to make Abe a Buzz Lightyear costume for Halloween. If there is anyone who can outshine George in his eyes, it's Buzz. For months he's been running around the house yelling "To ininity...and beyond!" so I figured this costume would be a big hit. Unfortunately, I made the mistake of asking him if he wanted to dress up like Buzz for Halloween. He gave me a flat out "No." What?! How can you idolize someone and not want to dress up as them for Halloween? (I'm pretty sure I was Punky Brewster for at least three years running!) So now what? I could either make a rather complicated costume and hope that he liked it, or come up with a Plan B, but every other idea I offered with was shot down as well.
Then along came dinosaurs. Abe's been somewhat interested in dinosaurs for awhile now (mainly thanks to Rex on Toy Story), but after seeing a couple episodes of Dinosaur Train, and then watching The Land Before Time at grandma's house a few weeks ago, he's become obsessed. Completely obsessed. Each morning, sometimes before he even eats breakfast, he asks me to make Littlefoot (or Spike...or Sharptooth...or Cera) out of Play-doh. Then he carries my Play-doh creation around for the rest of the day as he plays, eats, and even sleeps (bringing it back for repairs whenever a foot or tail falls off). Incidentally, I've become quite skilled at morphing a brontosaurus into a stegosaurus, triceratops, and even a T. Rex!
Although my hands are incredibly dry from playing with Play-doh so much, his new love for dinosaurs couldn't have come at a better time. It solved my Halloween costume dilemma...and this time I knew I wouldn't even have to make a pattern because I pinned some great dinosaur costume tutorials months ago!
I started by gathering my materials:
hooded sweatshirt and matching sweatpants
1/2 yard gray fleece
1/4 yard yellow felt
small bag of Polyfil
I bought the sweatsuit on sale at Target for $12, and picked up the rest of my supplies at Joann Fabrics, where I spent a whopping $6.90 (after using a bunch of 40-50% off coupons). So for less than $20 I've got a costume that he can wear for Halloween and general dress-up, and the pants at least can be reused as everyday clothes.
I followed two different tutorials pretty closely, only adding spots on the tail, pants, and sweatshirt for a little extra embellishment. It went together really fast too! I think I started on it around 8:00 last night, and was done before midnight, even after taking a break to put Abe to bed.
Abe loves his costume (especially the tail) and seems happy with the fact that he can take off the sweatshirt and tail without any help from mom. I wanted to get some pictures of him running around in it outside, but it's been cold and rainy, so I just followed him around the house with my camera. But this costume is made for Minnesota (meaning it's warm!), so when he started getting too hot, he decided it was time to take it off.
For the dinosaur hoodie, I followed this tutorial from Living, Loving, Learning Naturally. She suggested cutting a line down the back of the hood and sweatshirt, inserting the spikes, and sewing it back up. At first I was nervous about basically destroying the hoodie, but then I realized that I wanted to keep the dinosaur costume intact for dress-up purposes anyway, so there was really no point in trying to keep the sweatshirt in pristine condition. Plus, her technique made this part of the costume sooooo easy! FYI I cut two lines - one from just below the neck seam to the top of the waistband, and another from just above the neck seam to the hem at the edge of the hood. That way the hoodie is still held together in critical places and I didn't have to worry about a weird seam on the front of the hood.
My only addition to her design was the felt spots I stitched onto the front of the sweatshirt. It looked a little plain from the front without them.
I added a couple to the sweatpants too. Otherwise, the sweatpants were left as is.
For the dinosaur tail, I followed this tutorial from Running with Scissors. I followed her instructions except when it came to the spikes. I made those from felt (2 pieces stitched together to help them stand up), and they're all individual pieces instead of one long row of spikes. I mainly did separate spikes to make it easier on myself. My sewing machine and I don't get along, so rather than try to pivot around the point of each spike (like I'd have to do if I was working on a full row of them) I just did two separate lines of stitching up the sides of each triangle. If you look closely they're not perfect or very professional looking, but I only wanted to throw my sewing machine out the window once during this whole process, so I'll take that as a win!
Oh, and the other spot where I strayed was the velcro. I only had self-adhesive velcro (which I'm not entirely sure is meant to stick to fabric), but if there's one thing I hate more than sewing buttonholes, it's sewing velcro. I just stuck in on the waist straps and miraculously it has stayed put! Once the tail was fully assembled, I stitched a few spots here and there and voila!
Instant and adorable dinosaur. I must be part T. Rex because I could just gobble him up!
Anyone else making Halloween costumes? How's it going? I'm so glad to be done early this year. I'm pretty sure I finished his wolf costume just before we headed out trick-or-treating last year!