Peacock Costume for dreamy girls
This was the first year (in four years) that my daughter didn’t ask to be a princess. Where did her mind go next? A peacock of course! Challenge accepted. The problem: Design a costume that allows the flexibility to sit down all day in class, play freely at recess and be warm enough for night time trick-or-treating. The solution: Design tights and a body suit that allowed for another layer underneath, create a hood on the body suit for extra warmth.
Be forewarned that I don’t have a pattern for this costume, but some common sense and half decent sewing skills should get you through. I purchased my material, felt, tulle and elastic from Fabricland, feathered mask from Amazing Party and Costume Store and the peacock feathers from Mid0co Art & Office Supplies.
Gold stretch material
Blue stretch material
4-5 peacock colours of tulle (light green to dark green, and light blue to dark blue)
1 inch elastic
4-5 colours of felt (tan, green, white, light blue & dark blue)
3 real peacock feathers
Blue feathered mask
3 sets of velcro tabs
Needle and thread
A gymnastic or dance suit that fits (to make pattern from)
A pair of tights that fit (to make pattern from)
TIP: Make sure when you purchase your stretchy material that it won’t fray once cut, this saves on having to sew up edges later.
BODY SUIT PATTERN
To start, lay your dance suit on top of the blue fabric and cut the pieces (leaving at least 1″ extra all the way around for seam allowance and extra clothing underneath allowance). You will need a front (usually lower at the front of the neck than the back), a back, two arms, a turtle neck (fold fabric once and cut a long rectangle (needs to be longer than the neck you have cut for your body suit) and a hood. The hood was made up of two pieces and I eyeballed how large it would need to be. Place right sides together and sew the seam at the top of the shoulders, leaving sides open.
Pin the center top of your arm onto the shoulder seem, and continue pinning all the way along. Sew armholes. Next sew the sides up, right along to the end of the sleeves.
Front sides together, sew up the back (where it would sit at the base of the neck) to the top (where it ends at the forehead).
Next, keeping the neck piece folded, pin center of neck (not the folded side) to center of front, finish pinning to center of back. Then take your hood and find the center seam at the base of the neck and pin this between the suit and neck pieces (this will require unpinning and repinning) keep doing this until the base of the neck is pinned in place. Base of hood should not be as wide as the neck of suit, should finish just in front of the front shoulder seams. Finally sew neck and hood to suit. Finish by sewing the back seam of the neck.
Sew the three velcro tabs to each side of the crotch (similar to those ’80s body suits we used to wear)
Place your tights on top of the gold fabric and cut the 4 pieces, 2 front and 2 back (leaving at least 1″ extra inch all the way around), you will need two front pieces and two back pieces. Make sure you leave 2.5″ extra on the waist to sew in an elastic waistband. 1) Right sides together, sew the two front centers together from waist to crotch, then repeat with the back pieces. 2) Pin right sides together and sew the inside seam all the way around. 3) Finally sew the outside seams all the way up. Finish by sewing in the elastic for the waistband.
Fold the stretch blue fabric and cut the length of your waistband, leaving 5/8″ seam allowance. Sew the outside seam of the band, turn outside in, and thread your elastic through.
Cut your tulle into varying lengths. I cut them 3 inches wide and twice as long as I needed them. I put shorter ones to the front and longer ones to the back. I put the shorter light greens on the bottom and towards the front and then blended back to darker longer colours at the back. Using a needle and thread, pleat the pieces together keeping it tightly sewn. I made it long enough to wrap around my daughters bum, and just a little up the sides so it was more tail like. Once done, sew to elastic waistband.
Cut varying sizes of ovals from the felt, lay them on top of each other with the top edge of one side of the ovals aligned. Sew to tulle. I made 5 in total.
Place the three peacock feathers around the back of the tail and sew to waistband.