Do you want to take on a challenging yet fun way to dress up your kid to a Halloween trick or treat? How about an aquatic animal that’s surely cute and adorable for a toddler/child to wear? This outfit cum-Halloween project is made of pliable and easy-to-find materials. So let’s put on that creative hat and give this a go.
- Things to gather up. 5 meters of orange felt paper or more of it (depending on the size of the child and how big you want the costume to be), 2-3 meters white felt paper, scissors, sewing machine, or, a needle and spool of thread, 2-3 meters of garter/elastic band, a pencil, black electric tape, white pompoms, 16”x16” cardboard, tracing paper, tape measure, black ink marker or a small piece of black felt paper, a hot glue gun, an orange shirt and a belt.
- Measure with ease. First, have your kid stand up straight to get the correct measurements. With your handy tape measure, measure the child’s head circumference going by the widest part and like in a shape of a headband take the length from one ear to the other as well, ¾ of the arms where the fins will glide along, the length of nape to waist for a dorsal fin, and waist to lowest part of the hip for the tail size. Take note of these on a piece of paper.
- Draw it out. On a flat stable surface, such as a table, spread your tracing paper. For each pattern you draw, remember to place a 1-1 ½ inch allowance. Trace or get from the Internet a pattern to print the dorsal, pectoral fins and tail of any fish. It’s better though and more fitting to get the actual shape of the clownfish fins. These have the characteristic wavy look that goes up and down the back of the fish and sides. If you visualize it, the fins will be in place and attached to the person’s back and arms. Let’s start with the headgear. Fold a rectangular tracing paper in half, measure out and trace half of the head circumference. Make a half circle and adjust the drawing to length to appear more oblong or pointed at the top. In this instance there is no need to make a perfect shape/circle. Cut this pattern in half. These serve as the two parts of the headgear. The effect will be to achieve an almost fishbowl shape once pieced together. Now the hard part is over,
- Cutting to size. Prepare your orange and white felt paper and lay out on your work surface. With your pencil, trace the cut-out patterns onto the felt for the fins, head and tail. Just make sure that you provide the needed allowance for the garter for fins. Now with needle and thread/sewing machine place the two half moons on top of each other for the headgear, wrong side out. Sew along the round edges and stop around one inch to have an open flap. Take up your elastic band, making sure to leave an inch hanging out and fold in the open edges still with wrong side showing. Sandwich the band in between the felt, run this along neatly with your sewing machine or thread and needle with a running stitch making sure not to sew in the band. You can use bobby pins so the band stays in place and for proper alignment. Before closing up, cut elastic band and tie together where the two ends should meet. Turn right side out and fit to kid’s head to see if comfortable enough. Once adjusted, you can stitch up the flap. For the eyes, use white pompom balls and stick to head with a hot glue gun. Place adjacent to each other on headgear. With a black marker, draw half moons on each or cut the same shape in black felt paper and hot glue.
- Fins and tail. Use orange felt paper for the fin and tail. With the tracing paper, cut out the pattern for fins and trace again on felt paper. Make 4 pieces and hot glue wrong side of one to another to make two pairs of pectoral fins. For the dorsal fin, cut two and do the same. The tail needs some support so a piece of cardboard approximately 16” in width and in length will do. Make a hole or two where the belt can be inserted to attach to the wearer. With the felt paper trace out and hot glue to cover the whole tail. For the belt, hot glue orange felt paper as well. Use electric tape to define the tail’s shape. On the pectoral fins, place two holes three inches apart and thread through elastic band/garter to tie up to child’s arms. Make sure it is not constricting. For the dorsal fin, hot glue this to the shirt with the unglued sides. You may also make another pattern for a mini dorsal fin and glue the same way to the head gear.
- Designing your stripes. Cut out lengths of white felt paper and place the stripes where you want them. Border these with electric tape where orange and white colors meet.
Now you can say you can tackle any costume out there. Your kid is all
set then and ready for that Halloween party. This unique style will
surely tickle one’s fancy.