Welcome to Day 1 of Spooktastic September! All month, I and lots of fantastic bloggers are sharing projects and ideas to get you ready for Halloween. Let's start the week off with a fast and frugal Indian costume from yours truly.
Normally, when something gets left to the last minute, I can blame it on my kids, but, not this time. Wind the clock back to last October -- less than two hours before our church Halloween party. My daughter's Indian maiden costume (the one she'd been asking about for weeks) was a flop. An absolute fail. I spent all week trying to make it out of a sheet, and it was a disaster! (Don't worry. It all worked out in the end!)
How do you DIY an Indian costume in less than two hours? Actually, I found out that it's really easy, inexpensive, and takes very little sewing. If you don't count time spent shopping for a few materials, it took less than an hour!
You'll never guess what this adorable costume is made from. Look closely. Can you guess?
It's two t-shirts. That's it! Seriously. No other materials. Let's get started!
Super Simple DIY Indian Costume
Head to your local thrift store and find a brown or tan women's t-shirt with a neck that will go over your child's waist. Be sure to take your child with you, because she will need to try it on. The neck will become the waistband for the skirt, so it should fit without falling down. My daughter is quite tiny, so a size small round necked t-shirt worked perfectly for her. (For a toddler, try a child-sized t-shirt.)
Once you find the perfect t-shirt, head to the men's section. Look for a long-sleeved t-shirt that will fit your child like a tunic -- long enough to cover her hips. The t-shirt does not have to be exactly the same color. Go with the closest match you can find, or pick something completely different for a nice contrast. (ie-Dark brown and tan.)
Head home and get ready to make the quickest costume ever. Here we go!
Turn the t-shirt inside out and draw a diagonal line from the edge of the neck to the bottom edge of the t-shirt on both sides (see image above).
Pin the shirt together along both lines, and stitch down the lines with a sewing machine. Trim off the access fabric along the seams you just created.
The sides of the skirt will be the shortest part, so put the skirt on your child and mark the length you want on the sides. (When we originally made the costume, the sides were knee length. My daughter has grown quite a bit since last year, so now the skirt is a lot shorter.) Find the middle of the front of the skirt, and draw a line from the marks you made on the sides to the bottom middle of the skirt. (See image above.) Cut through both layers of the skirt along the lines.
Now fringe the ends of the skirt (both layers at the same time). Start from the middle and move out toward the sides. Turn the skirt right-side out, and you're done!
Put the long-sleeved shirt on your child and mark the length you would like for sleeve fringe. Cut the sleeves off along your line.
Fringe the sleeves, and cut a v-shape out of the front neckline.
*Optional - Partially stitch closed the arm holes to make them fit your child's arms. If your child plans to wear another shirt underneath, you may be able to skip that step. Important! When you stitch, the shirt should be right-side out. If you turn the shirt inside-out, you'll trap some of the fringe inside the shirt. (I don't know that from experience or anything! Hee, hee.)
Using the same method you used on the skirt, cut the bottom of the tunic to a point and fringe it.
(The headband is made from a ribbon and two loose feathers I had in my craft stash. We just tied a knot at the back and stuck in the feathers.)
Now, really. Wasn't that easy? I was really pleased with the final look, and Bear loved it! I call that a successful experiment.
*I've had a few comments on this post accusing me of being racist for posting this costume idea, and I am a little bit confused. Of course, I don't wish to offend anyone. I understand if the costume were something sexy or immodest that it would be offensive, but this is a tasteful and modest costume, so I don't get it. (I'm not trying to be ignorant or disrespectful. I just want to understand.) My kids like to dress as people from history. My daughter is dressed in this costume because she thinks the history and culture are interesting, not because she's trying to make fun of it. I have some costumes from ancient China that they like to wear as well. If you'd like to contribute to a respectful discussion about this, I welcome your comments.
Thanks for stopping by today. Keep coming back for more great Halloween ideas all month long! Visit the posts below by clicking on the images.