Thursday, October 30, 2014

A Bookish Halloween (Or, I Love Coordinating Costumes)

Okay, so confession. Halloween is not my favorite holiday. However, I can't deny that I love dressing up. Especially when we have a stroke of brilliance for an absolutely adorable coordinating family theme and pull off four homemade DIY costumes for under $5.

Coordinating costumes are just the best, aren't they? They just tickle me to death. And ours turned out so cute this year I can't help but sharing.

So I'm really hoping the readership of this blog is savvy enough to discern not just the theme, but also the identity of each costume from the picture alone. But just for the sake of spelling it out, here we go: I am dressed as Miss Frizzle from The Magic School Bus. Our 2 year-old is dressed as the coconut tree from Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, the wee babe is dressed as The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and my husband is channeling Harold and the Purple Crayon (his costume really needed a light blue footie onesie to complete the look, but my husband has his limits, and I settled for just the blue shirt).

I'm sure no one really cares, but here's the story behind these costumes. Back at the beginning of October, we tried to take our 2-year-old to the zoo dressed as a cowboy for an early Halloween trick-or-treating experience, but he was having none of that costume. He wouldn't wear the hat or the bandanna, and we didn't have boots anyway, so the costume was a total flop. So we sat around asking ourselves what kind of costume he actually would wear. Most kids want to wear costumes based on what they are currently interested in; trains or cars or princesses or whatever Disney movie is hot at the moment. My kid is a bit weird. His current obsession is the alphabet (this is a post for another day), and so I said something like, "If only we could figure out a way to dress him up as letters, he would totally love that." My brilliant sister, who was visiting at the time, made the suggestion that we dress him up as the coconut tree, because he is OBSESSED with that book. As in, he has it memorized and recites it over and over again all day long. As soon as she suggested it, I knew we'd struck gold.

So the idea was hatched and we devised a costume made entirely out of construction paper and foam sticker letters. It was brilliant, but I really wanted the family to have coordinating costumes, because like I said, coordinating costumes are the best. So the question became, what to do for the babe? My lovely sister came to rescue again, as her little boy had been the Hungry Caterpillar the year before, so she generously sent me the hat, we had the green onesie on hand, and the theme of Classic Children's Literature was set. I chose Miss Frizzle because somehow I thought sewing paper cutouts of stars and planets on a dress would be easier than any other costume and our only expense there was a three dollar wig of red hair. My husband's costume was by far the easiest, once we figured out what he was going to be. He spent an hour crafting his crayon out of construction paper, threw on the shirt, and off we headed to the ward trunk-or-treat.

So here are my take-aways from our costume experience this year:

  • It's a bit tricky to breastfeed in a dress, especially one that has construction paper bits sewed all over it.
  • It's totally exciting to have a child old enough to "get" Halloween, and to be super excited about his costume. Seriously, he loved being that coconut tree so much he wanted to sleep with his costume (there was a total meltdown when we told him no).
  • About 70% of people have never read Harold and the Purple Crayon. Seriously people? Why are so many people clueless about this classic? Maybe we just really needed that adult footie pajama.
  • Classic Children's Literature is just about the most adorable costume theme ever. And the possibilities for costuming are endless. I have a feeling I'll be using this theme again in future years.

Happy Halloween!

1 comment:

  1. Love it!!! I'm happy to report, I figured out the theme AND identified all the picture books before reading your post. We always do themed costumes, too, but I've yet to base them off a book (I know! what's wrong with me?!). I have to say, it's getting a little tricky now that our oldest is six and has definite opinions. This year, we're all going as pirates.