Carnival Costumes

As the new year begins I have to start thinking about the kids’ carnival costumes. This has been like this ever since our oldest son started kindergarten which was three four carnivals ago (was it really four years ago? I can’t believe how time flies!). Some of you might remember his first costume: the frog. He had a stuffed frog back then (he still has it but the dragon took its first place about a year ago…); he started in the Frog Group in the kindergarten and in general, he was crazy about frogs. It was an easy choice for the costume.

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Then came the “firefighter phase” which still comes back from time to time. It was again quiet obvious what costume I had to make that year.

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Last year was the year of the knight costume. What I love about creating his costumes that he still plays with them (at least with those that still fit). He enjoys dressing up very much and he has a wonderful imagination.

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This year was a bit difficult in terms of decision making. Our oldest is caught up in the Star Wars world thanks to the other kids from his kindergarten group (and his father). He has not seen the movie(s) and if it’s up to me he will not watch it for a couple of more years. We are very strict about television watching: our kids are allowed to watch only ten minutes a day and 30 minutes if they are ill and have to stay at home. Anyway my son wanted to be Darth Vader but we said no. I offered him an astronaut costume as a compromise and he gladly accepted it.

Then I only had to create it. To be honest I wasn’t very thrilled about the idea to spend so much time with a costume and I checked out a couple of stores in the city center but once again I faced the same problem: all the costumes are made from polyester which my son is sensitive to. Not to even mention that in his size a full costume would have cost about 38-40 Euros…

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Finally I faced my newest challenge and started working. First I made the helm using a balloon as a base, old news paper and wall paper glue. It took five layers to make it sturdy enough. Then I cut the hole for the face and painted it.

Next I sewed the pants and finally the top. But I started with a store bought T-Shirt: I cut it up in the middle and added some velcro and a belt to the sides. I put a Hungarian flag on one sleeve and a very high collar (also with velcro). My son wanted to have white booths as well but instead I gave him my white socks and he loved them because then he was allowed to be in socks in the kindergarten for a whole day!

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One day before carnival a decision was made: let’s have rockets too! I wanted to just duct tape two bottles together and attach it to some strings but we ran out of tape. Of course something like this happens at the last minute. I had to came up with an other solution because he was standing beside me and waiting for his rockets to put on. You can imagine how excited he was the night before carnival! I couldn’t let him down! So I went through my stash and found a piece of fabric from last years knight costume: I taped the bottles with regular tape together, added shoulder straps from an old belt, then I covered the whole thing with that fabric and hand stitched it. The flames were made from paper- that was the easy part.

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My oldest son is very happy with his costume although the helmet will give up soon. But at least I made the costume itself one size bigger hoping that he can play dress up for a few more months.

But the story does not end here because our little one joined kindergarten this school year as well and he needed a costume too! Luckily it was also an easy choice because he goes to the mice group and he is crazy about them. So my Husband decided and I made the Mickey Mouse costume!

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For that I used an existing pair of black leggings. I bought a black and a red T-Shirt and used their fabric to make a smaller T-Shirt (because it is impossible to find a plane black T-Shirt in this small size!) and for the red shorts. I sewed two felt ears onto a cheap black hat and a felt tail onto the shorts. This costume was done quiet quickly and again, our little one loves it! Although he is just two years old and can only say “Micka Mouse” he got the idea and was very happy to wear the costume!

And for me it was a whole lot easier then his dragon costume last year! Do you remember it?

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Fortunately I had no time to sew a costume for myself and I came up with a better idea. I asked a friend if she could lend me her saree because she is from India and has many wonderful sarees. She was very kind and gave me this amazing dress:

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She also brought the matching accessories with her and gave me instructions how to put on this red beauty. It has been a dream for me for years to try on an original Indian saree and last week this dream has come true. Unfortunately the kids got sick (again) and we couldn’t make it to the party where we were invited to but I decided to have fun anyway so we put on our costumes with the kids and had a party at home.
What was your favorite carnival/Halloween costume so far? Mine definitely is this one. I might have to borrow it next year again!

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2 thoughts on “Carnival Costumes

  1. Rita, that sari is sumptuous, and you look very elegant in it. Your boys’ costumes are amazing. No wonder they like to play in them for ages afterwards ~ and your littlest one will have a treasure trove of dress~ups for many years.
    I am not a great one for dressing up. I think I got it out of my system as a child, when I would come home and change into my fairy costume! I do remember one dress~up parade. My little brother and I dressed up as Indians (=Native Americans, how very unPC it was then). I was disappointed that we didn’t win the prize. We lost to Brenda and her little brother Trevor who came dressed as hot dogs! Each was wrapped in red crepe paper, with a baguette cut in half and tied around their necks so that they dangled down. Fancy being pipped at the post by a hot dog!

  2. Hey Anne, thank you for your kind words!
    Do you think of this story each time when you eat a hot dog? 😀
    In Germany (at least in a couple of towns) people take carnival as seriously as their jobs, so they go out and party hard but only until it is officially over! They are kind of funny this way but I love how generations party together for a couple of days and they go crazy together.

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