Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Dress up days

I'm a bit late with this post I know, World Book Day was last week, but it got me thinking about all the outfits I seem to have to put together. I've said before I'm not a very crafty person (not in the sticking and glueing sense of the word anyway!) but I have tried hard when the children have come home needing a costume for book day/valentine party/nativity play/themed party 
- usually at short notice.

I can have some great ideas but assembling said costume leaves me lacking a little something!

World book days in past years have seen me put together Mr Bump (only required a lot of bandages), a Twit, a pirate (complete with parrot stitched to the shoulder - thank you McDonald Happy Meal toys!) and many more.

Nativity plays have seen me staple a child into a shepherd outfit, with obligatory tea towel, a Victorian maid (prompting teacher to send a message home that she may be able to find something more suitable!) and a gymnast (in the nativity??!)

I have created a King & Queen of Hearts (with jam tarts) and cupid (son dressed in a sheet, too embarrassed to go to school!) for a Valentine disco.

We made a lion costume and strongman for a circus themed party - both boys stapled into costumes again!

But I feel we surpassed ourselves for this years World Book Day costume -
can you tell what it is yet?? (In a Rolf Harris stylee voice)
note the photo copied bank notes - this is illegal apparently!

No it's not The Little Gingerbread Man, nor a Gingerbread Zombie as some of the reception children shouted as they ran away screaming!
She wouldn't wear the balaclava that came with it (thank you ebay)
as she thought it looked scary -
hmmm only slightly less scary than the face paint!!
Guess again....
She is in fact Alan Taylor of course! Alan Taylor the biscuit billionaire from the Mister Gum books by Andy Stanton. And she was very happy that very-best-friend-George went as Mr Gum!
We're reading one of the books at the moment and son number 2 enjoyed it a couple of years ago too. It always makes me giggle as we had a slightly flashy Insurance salesman
called Alan Taylor some years ago.
The photo also puts me in mind of this character from The League of Gentlemen

All this talk of dressing up reminded me of a fancy dress outfit I hired many years ago, I went to the hire shop unsure what to get; it was the mid 1980's and I was sporting some big curly red hair at the time. The shop owner said he had the perfect costume for me; he knew it was the one for me when I walked through the door apparently. I was flattered when he held up the white and green "wench" dress, I quite liked it. But who is the character, who did I remind him of I asked. "Moll Flanders" he replied, "she was an old trollop...."

A vision in green satin, with matching eye shadow!

But Friday is Red Nose Day so it's dress up again at Primary School, luckily it's pirates and fairy day; Little Miss with her aversion to all things pink and glittery is going as a pirate (luckily we still have the costume) and her very-best-friend-George is going as a fairy!


  1. What a lovely post Jay! It took me back to the days (a long, long time ago!) when I used to try to think of something 'different but not difficult' for my children to dress up in! In those days 'He-man' and 'Shera' were the heroes of the day!
    And I remember making some lovely Fred & Wilma Flintstone costumes for MR B and I for some do we went to - when I look back now they were rather skimpy and daring - but then we were a lot younger and slimmer!!!!

  2. Hi there you old trollop you!
    I think your costumes are wonderful (especially for a so-called non crafter!)
    I honestly thought I was following you Jay, and wondered why your blog hadn't popped up on my list - sorry. I am a bona fide follower now though, and I look forward to reading more of your posts. x

    1. He he, now I've been called an old trollop twice in my life!!
      I'm hopeless at "following" I regularly read some I'm not following and follow ones I never find again!

  3. Ah this did make me laugh. Some great memories here and I think you are a fantastic costume-maker. My efforts have been pretty woeful in the past. We did a Mr Man one year - Mr Strong who is square and red. Couldn't quite manage the square bit so my son just wore red T shirt and trousers.
    Intrigued by the nativity gymnast!

    1. Can't throw much light on the gymnast I'm afraid, they have very alternative Christmas plays at our school, 3 gangnam style ghosts last year!

  4. Old trollop indeed - I'd have bopped him on the nose!
    I used to dread making costumes for our daughter...I seen to recall a red Indian one that was probably the most successful one.
    The Queen of Hearts is SO sweet :o)

    Thank you for your lovely comments, I was warm working away though - and even got to remove a couple of layers!

    Have a lovely weekend.
    Rose H

  5. Love all of your costumes! We have to dress in red on Friday.....
    Our school always gives very little notice of these things which is very annoying! X

  6. Love the Moll Flanders costume! I think I had some eye shadow the same colour once :)

  7. I bet your children's costumes are among the best ones there. That Queen of Hearts dress would make a great pirate or Spanish senorita. And the thought of you stapling you boys into sheets and tea towels is cracking me up!

  8. I dug the children's old dressing up trunk out of the garage the other day - the memories! Daughter is refusing to allow me to throw any of it away, despite the musty stink!

  9. I am so impressed with your creativity, it puts some of my efforts to shame! I love your Moll Flanders costume too!
    Sarah x

  10. Some brilliant creations here. The Moll Flanders costume looks great. Your anecdote about the shopkeeper made me laugh.

  11. Some great costumes there,I like the Queen of Hearts best.
    Biddy's Tea Room is half way down Lower Goat Lane.

    1. I'll be in Biddy's this week I feel a trip coming on!

  12. I'm dreading this aspect of when my little boy starts school. He hates dressing up and I'm not very creative, so lord knows what will happen!

    1. A good one is to get him to write a short story with him as the main character, then go as himself! His teacher should be impressed because he's written it himself and shown initiative!

  13. Oh these are GREAT!!! You've done a very impressive job with the kids outfits (although I initially thought she was a gingerbread man too :-)) and I love the last one of you :-D Mel x

  14. Easy mistake Mel, Alan Taylor wouldn't be the first thing that springs to mind!! (they're good fun kids books by the way). Glad you like the last pic, despite me being dressed as a trollop!!

  15. wow!! you rock the costumes! ours are usually from a box. My sister is the crafty creative sewer and she would often give me gorgeous handmade outfits that my kids would wear...everyone thought I could just do it all..hahaha!

  16. This post really made me smile. My son had his first world book day this year and went as a dragon courtesy of TK MAXX (said outfit had been kicking around for ages.) I can't sew at all and I felt guilty sending him off without having made any effort. Now I know what I need to a stapler!

    Some fab outfits here. Loved the cupid one, and the Queen of Hearts.

  17. Your daughter looks such a cutie pie as Queen of Hearts - did you bake those tarts too - you get double points for that - and I did not know that about banknotes. You look fabulous in green, really saucy and spicy in your wench dress. I get it - I thought she was Gingerbread Man (as in the money is the "bread")

  18. Ooooh you saucy wench!! Love the costumes xx