Wednesday, 6 March 2013

In Which I Avoid Being A 'Bad Mummy™'

If you are the kind of person (let's say, for instance, a librarian, or a mum with kids who have been in school for several years) you may be aware that it's World Book Day tomorrow, and that this now includes dressing up. When I was in school (and I only left school ten years ago, so not exactly the mists of time) you got a £1 book token and that was that. Now, though, you have to dress up as your favourite character, and seeing as my sons are only in their second year of their school career, I was completely unprepared. Just like last year, really. Last year though, they already had green dragon costumes and I managed to convince them that Zog the Dragon really was their favourite book (we fudged the bit about Zog being an orange dragon.) This year, I've been a bit bogged down in wedding planning, and wasn't prepared to pay a fortune for Gruffalo costumes, but luckily, their Dad has been reading the first Harry Potter book to them at bedtime, and I had a plan. And a sewing machine.

I started with two black men's t-shirts from the basics range in Tesco, which set me back £2.50 each. I cut them down the middle front, seamed the edges quickly, and checked if they needed taking up. Then I found an image of the Hogwarts crest online (I actually used a photo of an embroidered patch and used that, to give my cheat versions a realistic look) and printed it onto some iron on transfer paper we had lying around the house. Then I simply ironed it onto the t-shirt robes. I also picked up a pair of reading glasses with a roundish frame from Poundland, and popped out the glass for Jake (on the left) who doesn't wear glasses.

As for the wands, I had some coloured construction paper left over from wedding crafting, but alas! Only one sheet of brown! I used one brown and one orange, rolled them tightly and secured with a little bit of tape. The kids don't seem to mind, and they're safer than them using actual sticks from the garden. A bit of eyeliner for the scar, and we're all set!

They seem really chuffed with their costumes. Last time I made them costumes, for their first Halloween party in nursery (they went as Thor) I felt that I'd somehow let them down, since they were the only homemade costumes in an entire class full of shop bought Spidermen and Disney princesses. I have to learn to step up and be proud of my little costumes. After all, I only had 24 hours notice!

So in total, it cost me £6 to make two costumes in next to no time. This could possibly be my bargain make of the year!

PS: I have previous form in the area of ad hoc Harry Potter costumes. Back in the day, when I was about 17 and my brothers were 10ish, they had no costumes for Halloween. I made them Harry Potter costumes out of artfully cut bin bags (this was when it was still acceptable to wear bin bags at Halloween), our collection of Harry Potter stickers (for the crests) and cardboard glasses. If you ever meet my brother Daniel, you should ask him about them - he still thinks it was the most awesome thing ever. If only I had a photo :(


  1. Those costumes are great!!!! They'll be very popular at school. Good for you - very quick innovation! A boy at our local school goes as saucepan man from The Magic Faraway Tree every year! It's so funny and he loves banging and clanging around all day.

  2. I take my hat off to you ....this is all so clever ...and they look so amazing. xx

  3. Hope you dont mind me blogging the photo too, on Friday Smile ...say if you do? xx

  4. Genius and these look great! I've not yet made a costume for my son as he generally refuses to wear them once he gets to nursery!

    I like your green zog. Our green dragon costume was Puff! :)