30 October, 2013

Halloween Costume Shop - 2013

Since I was a little girl I have always loved coming up with unusual costumes to wear on that one night of the year when dressing a little crazy is not only acceptable but expected -- Halloween!

Actually this image is from the Graphics Fairy.

I wish I had photos to share with you.  Unfortunately I, and even my children, grew up before the age of digital photography.  Scanning all those years of printed photos into the computer is a daunting task that remains near the bottom of my 'to-do' list.

However I can share with you what this grandmom's 'Halloween Costume Shop' has created for 2013.
For Baby Taylor - the Littlest Princess!
The baby princess costume started with a purchased onesie to which I attached two layers of pretty netting carefully shirred and applied in a scalloped design all the way around the waist.   (An episode of Martha Pullen's program on PBS provided the inspiration for this one.)  The top edge of the netting is trimmed with an elastic ruffled ribbon and embellished with pink bows.  The 'Princess' embroidery design on the front of the dress (by Dakota Collectibles via EmbroideryDesigns.com) was stitched out on a piece of craft felt and appliqued onto the onesie.  For my project I stitched it out in dark pink, purple and lavender threads.

Princess dresses have to be pretty on the backside too!
Because every princess needs a tiara, even if she is only a few weeks old, I had to figure out a way for Taylor to have one of her very own.  For softness and safety I created her tiara by making a pretty baby headband with ribbons used in her princess dress.  I then embroidered a tiara design (by King Graphics via EmbroideryDesigns.com) onto pink felt.  I sewed pink ribbon to the bottom edge of the tiara and tacked it onto the headband in such a way that it can be removed if Taylor ever wants to be a princess incognito.  :-)

I liked the tiara so well I made a second one for my friend Scully to wear. . . !

The costume shop's oldest employee.

Not quite as royal were the costumes I made for Hannah and Alayna.  They will be dressed this year as "wicked witches with sparkles."  Little girls must have sparkles you know!

Hannah (age 7) chose the hat with black polka dotted purple ribbon.  The crown is covered with sparkly stars.
 Their costumes are the same but different, starting with their hats.  

Alayna (age 5) chose the one with the black ribbon.  The crown of this one is covered with spiderweb flocked netting and orange sparkles.
I purchased nylon hats initially intending to decorate them but ended up covering them completely with felt using the original purchased hat as a frame and lining.  The top of the hat was cut into a cone shape that is taller than the original hat.  I then covered it with decorated netting - one is sparkly stars the other is flocked spider webs with orange sparkles.  

To give the hats character I scrunched the tall felt cone down and tacked it to the shorter nylon one inside.  I then covered the brims with felt on the top and the bottom and stitched around and around in a spiral until I got to the center.  I embellished both hats with sparkly spiders and the ribbons.

Both dresses are basically the same - but different sizes.
Their dresses are the same in every way except length.  Both have jagged hems intended to let the girls' striped witch stockings be seen.  One pair of stockings is orange and black while the other is purple and black to coordinate with the differing netting designs.  Like I said - the same but different.  The embroidery at the neckline of the dresses is from UrbanThreads.com.  The 'Gothic Gala' bow appears to have a beaded necklace and spiders which I thought would be fun to dress up the plain black dresses.  The design is stitched in a very dark charcoal thread on black cotton fabric which gives a subtle effect.  It seems the flash on my camera helps it pop a bit more which is great for sharing here.

This cape has the star netting lining the hood.
The capes' hoods are lined with the same netting that decorates the two hats.  Again, the same but different.

The embroidery is subtle but there just to add a little something special!

At one point the oldest, Hannah, inquired about the capes.  I explained that they are made like most witches capes of bat fur (in modern terms referred to as a synthetic faux crushed velvet).  Even with the sparkles inside the hood I wanted to give the capes a little something special and once again UrbanThreads.com had just what I needed.- a wonderful gothic 'Trick or Treat' embroidery!  Here again I stitched the design in the same dark charcoal grey on the black textured bat fur. 

Witch sisters!

Last, but not least, is the costume made for Hannah and Alayna's mom - also know to us as our daughter Meagen.  It has been a while since I have sewn anything for her, however, this year she put in a request for a Renaissance wench costume.  The chemise is made of white cotton muslin with ruffles and ribbons to make it pretty. The apron is cut from a leftover piece of white cloth - left over from what I don't know.  The skirt is a large floral print cotton.  The maroon velveteen vest belonged to my mother.  I modified it several years ago with buttonholes in place of buttons so the the front could be laced up to suit a costume I made for me.  It has now been officially handed down to my daughter and I hope will continue to be enjoyed for years to come.
Meagen in her costume

I am thankful that my family allows me to create costumes for them to my specifications.  I am never sure they will like what I create, but they always tell me they love them.  They even wear them! 

My little costume shop is one of my many 'not-for-profit' ventures.  It doesn't make a lot of money, though I have been told it could.  In fact, it makes none!  I am paid in something far more valuable than currency . . . because our girls and grands live far away my reward comes in the form of photos of everyone having a good time in costumes made with love.  The best part is hearing about their Halloween adventures.

Now, that the costume shop has closed for this year I need to get started carving pumpkins...

Best wishes to all for a very happy and safe Halloween!