Friday, November 2, 2012

Preparing Halloween Costumes

Our friends, the Flake’s, invited us to go trick-or-treating with them at the embassy again this year. We were determined that the children’s Halloween costumes would be better this year and not so hodgepodge, so I began working on their costumes about a month ago.

I am not na├»ve, and I don’t think that Halloween costumes have to be purchased from the store, but, man, is it so much easier! I decided to do a combination of homemade and store bought costumes this year. Since it’s so cold and the children would have to be all bundled up anyway, I figured only partial costumes would be necessary.

Kate really wanted to be Rapunzel for Halloween. My incredibly talented aunt had made a Rapunzel wig for her granddaughter a while back that I loved.  I was inspired and I figured I could make something similar. Apparently, Kate had just thought about being Rapunzel after her hair was cut by Flynn/Eugene, and she’d use her own hair, so she was utterly thrilled when I showed her a picture online of the wig I was planning to make out of yarn for her!

I used the top of an old pair of tights to attach around Kate's head. Jon found yellow yarn with gold sparkles in it--perfect! The tutorial I found online used a sewing machine, but I do not have my sewing machine here, so I improvised. I was proud that I did all the sewing by hand. Unfortunately, I had to wait for Kate to get home from school before I could braid the wig, and of course the boys got to it first. I was really annoyed that I had to detangle the long strands of yarn, but I got it done.

Rapunzel or Cousin It?

The hair turned out pretty good, but last minute we thought it might be best to pull the hair back in a tight ponytail at the top of the braid (which ended up being a bad idea). Then, we found some flowers (there was a very limited selection) and Kate and I glued them on. It turned out really fun and Kate couldn’t wait to wear it!

I had William try the wig on after it dried.  He didn't appreciate it much.

We had some friends visit Utah for couple weeks at the beginning of October and they offered to bring us back some stuff. We ordered a nice Rapunzel nightgown from the Disney store to complete Kate’s costume, and then after Halloween she could wear the nightgown at nights. Woo-hoo! That’s multipurpose for ya, baby!

James loves Disney’s Zorro. I had ordered a couple small things from, and I discovered that if I purchased a Zorro set that included a hat, eye mask, and sword that I could reach free shipping. James already had a black cape at home, so that worked out perfectly.

Bruce, our little forever Batman, also had a cape, although it was red and yellow, but I figured he could borrow William’s blue cape (that he has not worn yet) and he could be his favorite superhero. I thought I could buy some yellow and black felt and make the Batman symbol to sew on the back of William’s blue cape for Bruce. Then, I found a simple, inexpensive Batman hood on Amazon. The Batman hood reversed into a Spiderman hood and we thought it would be perfect for James and Bruce to share after Halloween. 

Everything would have worked out for Bruce, except when our friends returned from the States, the Batman hood was not with the luggage. We looked it up and discovered that the hood had not even been shipped yet! We ordered it at the beginning of October and is said it could be shipped through mid November. What? Did they hand-make the hoods after you ordered them? Good grief! Bruce already had his hopes up to be Batman for Halloween, so I found a crochet pattern online to make a Batman hat.

I was a little concerned to crochet the Batman hat because of the tendinitis that I still suffer with, but I thought if I took it slowly I would be okay. Unfortunately, I only had four days to make it before we went trick-or-treating. I took it slowly at first, but I wasn’t getting the hat done fast enough, so I started working hard and long on it. I think something was off with the pattern from the beginning. It just didn’t look right. It ended up being way too small, even after I had added a couple more rows! I was really annoyed and ready to be done with a hat. My wrists were already hurting! Jon and I don’t think that Bruce has a particularly large head, it seems pretty average to us, so I had to start improvising and making my own pattern for the rest. After I started crocheting things the way I thought they should be, I was much happier with how the hat was looking. It definitely DID NOT turn out perfectly, but it would do.

Again, William had a coat (a different one than last year’s) that had bear ears on it, and we thought we’d save money and have him be a bear this year.

Our bear eating gingerbread cookies on an outing

It was really fun to make Kate’s Rapunzel wig and Bruce’s Batman hat and Batman symbol. My wrists are screaming at me and seem to hate me now, but I have really, really missed sewing, crocheting, and creating things for my children. I hope that someday the tendinitis can heal completely so that I can return to these activities (and typing by myself without using voice dictation) that I love so much. I can't voice dictate sewing or crocheting, ya know?  I don’t particularly like making things for myself, but I love, love, love making them for my children!

I’ll have a post and pictures of the children in their costumes, our trick-or-treating with the Flakes, and our small Halloween day celebration soon…

I hope you had a great Halloween!!

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