My 3 year old daughter Mazie was very specific and unwavering in what she wanted our costumes to be this year: jellyfish for her, octopus for baby brother Julian, sting ray for mom and shark for daddy. No one can establish their opinion quite as firmly as a 3 year old. Perhaps we’ve been spending too much time at the National Aquarium.
Being the queen of time management, I wisely decided to start costume construction three days before Halloween. My evenings and nap times were conailed by chiffon, lamé, and only the occasional curse word.
Mazie’s Jellyfish required the most effort and time. I covered my straw hat with fabric, stuffed it with batting and then hot glued all the fabric and ribbon tentacles. My burnt and raw fingertips were glad that the rest of the costumes only required sewing, including her jelly fish pants and arm bands. The octopus legs were made from mismatched dress socks that have long since lost their companions, sewn with felt dots, stuffed, and sewn onto an elastic band. The hat is an Obama inauguration beanie flipped inside out, with the felt eyes sewn on.
The shark was made from an old hoodie with the felt tummy, teeth and eyes sewn on. The felt fin was stuffed with batting and hand sewn. The sting ray was sewn from warm fleece and felt gills and eyes. Greatfully, it also turned out to be the perfect breastfeeding poncho, with a tail.
We won our church costume contest. Neighbors were genuinely surprised to see homemade costumes. Everyone loved the costumes, especially my daughter who didn’t even trip on the tentacles once. And my mom who raised me in the truth that Halloween is the most important holiday of the year, and homemade costumes are the best way to show your family you care.