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COLEstumes | DIY Halloween Costumes

Some of my favourite childhood memories are the homemade Halloween costumes my mother used to make. I have five older brothers and two younger sisters so this was no small feat. One year we were a very colourful Chinese dragon complete with a huge paper mache head made out of chicken wire and strips of newspaper, worn by my eldest brother with the rest of us trailing behind in order of height to my little sister bringing up the tail. Another year we were all King Tut, well seven Tuts and one Queen Nefertiti because I refused to wear a boy costume!

By: Janet

My mother taught me to sew, and at the age of seven I completed my first dress (with a button front, gathered waist and a Peter Pan collar). Since then, I have always loved whipping outfits together. As a teenager I would always be ripping apart different pieces and resewing together to make something new, more form-fitting and, most importantly, me! When people would ask me to make something for them I would cringe (as my finishing skills were not super professional). They were fine for me but not, I felt, for anyone else. However, with costumes there is no need to worry about professional finishing. They are really only used a few times, so whether they are hand sewn or made by machine, it’s easy to create amazing costumes. And by using materials such as felt and fleece which do not fray, it opens up a whole wealth of ideas, such as custom lettering!

Anyway, I digress. Back to Halloween! My son Cole was born in September, so for his first costume I made him a lump of “Cole” because, at 1.5 months, he was pretty much a lump. Anyway from there the theme of “Cole” blossomed and six costumes later, I am now trying to convince him to let me do one more…

Lump_o_Cole

LUMP O’ COLE:

For this costume I created a sack with an open bottom. I used elastic at the top to gather the neck and left the sides open to create arm holes. I then used hooks and eyes to close the neck. For the front I used the computer to create the word mark, I then printed out 4 sheets (1 for every colour of felt I needed). I pinned the sheets to the felt and cut out each layer. I sewed on the chocolate brown and beige bottom by sewing machine and hand sewed on the letters. Felt is an amazing fabric to work with because it doesn’t need any finishing (it doesn’t fray), so you just cut and sew. Letters are a bit tricky to cut out so make sure they are large enough that you can cut out the centres.

Materials:

– Felt: $4.99/meter Fabricland

– Thread

– Scissors

– Printer

– Paper

– Computer

– Fabric: $3.99/Meter Fabricland

– Hooks and eyes

– Elastic

Popsi_Cole

POPSICOLE:

For this costume I added a bit of padding so that it had more shape. You can use quilt batting or thin foam. To decide on the length of the costume I measured my son from neck to just below his waist. I wanted him to be able to move around easily. On this costume I used ribbon at the tops of his shoulders and at the waist to tie it on. For the logo, I used the same process as in Lump o’ Cole.

Materials:

– Felt: $4.99/meter Fabricland

– Thread

– Scissors

– Printer

– Paper

– Computer

– Quilting batting or thin foam

– Ribbon

Cole_gate

COLEGATE:

The body of this costume was made the same as Popsicole, however I used small bits of elastic at the neck and sides to keep it closed. For this costume I added a toothpaste hat made out of felt and of course the much needed toothbrush, made out of a scrub brush, cardboard, foam and felt.

Materials:

– Felt: $4.99/meter Fabricland

– Thread

– Scissors

– Printer

– Paper

– Computer

– Quilting batting or thin foam

– Elastic

– Scrub Brush

– Cushion Foam 2″

– Cardboard (cereal boxes or other)

 Coca_Cole_a

COCA-COLE-A:

This costume has a bit more shape to it. I achieved this by using foam. I created a circular tube out of the foam the length I wanted and sewed it up the side. I then put it on my son to figure out where the arm holes needed to be cut. Next, I sewed the felt exterior for the sides (don’t cut the armholes yet). For the neck portion I used a soft fleece (easy to use because, similar to felt, it doesn’t fray). It’s stretchy so it easily slides over the head. I then slid the entire felt piece over the foam cylinder. Once in place, I cut the arm holes out. Finally, I created a fleece tab hat. It was a colder October this year so it worked out perfectly to keep my little can of pop warm. I made the hat by first creating a cardboard form and sewing the fleece shape to slide over. Once it was in place I hand sewed the opening closed and cut out the holes in the tab, and then sewed those closed.

Materials:

– Felt: $4.99/meter Fabricland

– Thread

– Scissors

– Printer

– Paper

– Computer

– Cushion foam 1-2″ thick

– Fleece

– Cardboard (cereal boxes or other)

Pi_Cole

BICKS PICOLE’S:

The body of this costume was lined with quilt batting, which was helpful for warmth on the cool night. To help with walking I left the bottom portion of the costume as flaps. The logo was applied the same as on Lump o’ Cole.

Materials:

– Felt: $4.99/meter Fabricland

– Thread

– Scissors

– Printer

– Paper

– Computer

– Quilting batting or thin foam

 Cole_man

COLEMAN LANTERN:

This costume’s body was made exactly like Coca-Cole-a. I had a bit of fun with the hat. I first made the top by cutting a circular piece of 2″ foam which I then covered in felt. Next, I sewed a bit of clear plastic table cloth to the bottom edge and finished it with our mop bucket handle. There was no need for ventilation holes, as the bottom was completely open.

Materials:

– Felt: $4.99/meter Fabricland

– Thread

– Scissors

– Printer

– Paper

– Computer

– Cushion foam 1-2″ thick

– Clear plastic table cloth Home Hardware

– Mop bucket handle

– Fleece: $6.99/meter Fabricland

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One Comment Post a comment
  1. liesbeth #

    Brilliant Janet. Absolutely brilliant.

    October 10, 2013

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