Friday, October 31, 2014

Goblins and Grandkids!!!

It's that time of year when my grandchildren begin to anticipate Halloween and trick-or-treating...visions of plastic pumpkins full of hyper-ness float through their heads and they can hardly wait to hit the streets in search of all that sugar!!

I've been busy the last few weeks working on costumes for three of them. I don't normally do their costumes as their parents take care of that, but this year the youngest granddaughter wanted the costume of all costumes...the costume that probably every little girl in an age range from 2 to 10 will be wearing all across the nation...yes, it's Elsa from the movie Frozen!! It wasn't a costume her mother thought she could pull off and after checking the prices to purchase one, well, that wasn't happening either! :) And sure, she could of just bought one at Walmart, but let's face it...there's a lot to be desired in Walmart costuming!

After watching the movie back over last Spring, Shelby immediately hit me up to make her an Elsa dress, complete with train that flows down the back. I told her that probably wasn't going to happen and tried to convince her that she already had something similar to Elsa in the "winter princess" dress I'd made for her this past Christmas...not in Shel's book!! Yes, that one was blue, and yes, it had even had a tiny snowman top hat for a hair brett that could of possibly passed for Olaf, it  had a blue satin cape, but it wasn't long and it didn't have a train, the snowman did NOT look like Olaf, and there was no sign of snowflakes anywhere...{Ga sighs}! I knew I couldn't win the argument so I gave up and let months pass in the hopes the new would wear off and the idea forgotten...nope!!

So as October began to approach I started looking at all the "Elsa stuff" that was appearing on the internet, checking others ideas of what they had done and how they had done it, looking and searching ideas for a close facsimile that would pass her expectations without costing us the bank. I still had leftover tulle from the previous outfit that I knew I could incorporate into a tutu version, I just had to come up with the rest of it. Luckily, some other ingenious person posted a crochet hat idea to replicate Elsa's hair and I was off! I didn't let one word slip to the granddaughter that I was even considering the idea of making this outfit because I still wasn't sure I could pull it off and I wasn't about to have her disappointed.

As time passed, Shel began going into more detail as to how Elsa's outfit looks...including this fitted skirt part that had a slit in the side up to her knee...I was in trouble!! My plan was to do a simple tutu dress, throw a train on it and call it good...apparently Shel had other grandiose ideas that I was going to have to try and replicate! In the meantime, two of the grandsons also ask me if I'd make their costumes this year and I tentatively ask what they wanted to be. One wanted a pirate and the other the grim reaper...those I was pretty sure I could handle!

So with all these thoughts and ideas in my head I started on my search for possibilities and for me that meant...thrift store hunting! In the process a friend of mine had a few things she donated to the cause. One was a grim reaper mask, a purchased pirate costume, and some gray cheesecloth...those three things got me started and then I just ran with the rest of it!

I was able to find a ready made adult grim reaper at the thrift which I brought home and cut down to an eight year old's size! I added some of that gray cheesecloth as rags hanging from the outfit, put the hooded mask with it and presto!! Perfect costume!

I had the other grandson try on the ready made and he was happy with it, but this is my grandchild that would seriously be happy with a rag or a box of rocks. He's my happy-go-lucky child, never complains, whines, or any of that and well, Ga just couldn't quite relegate him to the ready made pile when the others were getting more homemade stuff, so I dug through the material pile and found enough white taffeta to make a balloon sleeve pirate shirt, cut up a black t-shirt for his vest, cut up another red t-shirt for his skullcap and sash, and then made him a neat little painter's cloth and leather scabbard to house his sword!! We used the pirate pants from the costume and borrowed one of Pa's leather belts to hold the scabbard...he was absolutely thrilled with the outcome!! Two on to that Elsa costume!

Since the top of Elsa's dress has long sleeves, but sheer, I went with a long sleeved white leotard for the top..after all it's going to be cool out there on the streets and MY Elsa can't very well end up "frozen"!! ;) I found an extra large tutu band at Etsy in the exact color I needed for $2 and ordered it. Once it got here I began to start adding the tulle strips to the bottom. During my search of thrift stores I had ran across a pair of big girl leggings, that luckily also matched the color of aqua/teal I was using. I brought those home, cut the seams from the legs and then sewed it back together for the perfect "underskirt"....yes, it's form fitting and yes, it has a slit in the side up to the knee!! :) My "not very crafty" daughter (her words not mine!) suggests I flip the leggings around and the use the band at the bottom of the legs as the waist band for the top which also gave the slight flare for the bottom...PERFECT!!!! After getting those things all together, the daughter then suggested I take out some of the tulle in the front which leaves the skirt more visible, so that's what I did and it just made the outfit. Luckily our Walmart finally got in the sheer blue snowflake material so for $4.44 and one yard, I got the long and flowing train to hang off the back. I'm sure the train will not survive the sidewalks and streets and hopefully the granddaughter can be convinced to remove it for most of the trick or treating, but if not we can always make a new train after she's done! It was then time to "reveal" the outfit and oh my goodness...what a revealing it was!!

The granddaughter was very happy with the outcome...we've done a couple of dress rehearsals, and of course, she's adorable in it! Her only complaint was the "hair". I worked and worked trying to get a crochet hat size to fit and for some reason they just kept turning out too big, but after the third try I managed to get one that actually fits and fits well, so I untangled the original yarn hair and attached it back to the new cap and I shortened the braid...because I was informed that Elsa's braid was NOT that long! :) Mom found a sparkly Frozen tiara to top it off and now I do believe "Elsa" is finally ready to go!

I have to admit it was pretty fun putting those costumes together, and while they are a long way from perfect (do NOT look at the seams of  the grandson's pirate shirt!!), they will fulfill their purpose...and that was to make three kids ready and happy to dress up for Halloween. From the sounds of our weather for the evening there may be several little children that end up "frozen", but such as kids are, they won't notice that nip in the air one bit with all the excitement of the haul awaiting them! Have a safe and happy Halloween everyone!