Introduction: Flying Dragon Costume for Kids!
This costume has a few different elements: tail, wings, hood...but I think it can still be filed under 'easy'. It's also a cozy costume, with room for layers underneath, perfect for cold-weather trick or treating.
Step 1: Collect Some Flashy Components
I found a shimmery green skirt, a cozy, bright orange sweater, a crinkly, satin shirt (dragon scales) and an umbrella. It all came from the thrift store.
I also used pliers and scissors to take the umbrella apart. You will also need some basic sewing skills as well as a sewing machine, thread, stuffing for the tail and a spot of velcro to hold the hood shut.
Step 2: I Took in the Sides of the 'scaly' Shirt
I took my son's shirt and sized up the dragon scale shirt. I took it in several inches down the side using my sewing machine.
Step 3: Sew Fins Down the Back
Ok, they probably aren't called fins. Some know-it-all can point it out to me, please, what they are called! This is a dragon/dinosaur hybrid by the way. My 3 1/2 year old doesn't know they aren't the same thing.
I hand stitched triangles down the back using pieces cut from the sweater. I didn't use my machine because I didn't want them to lay flat once they were sewn on.
Step 4: Make a Dragon Tail
Using a side piece from the body of the sweater, I cut a diagonal line across. I loosely measured how many inches between my son's behind and the floor. This is how I decided on the tail-length.
I cut more of those fins, gradually going smaller as I got closer to the end of the tail.
I tucked the fins inside and pinned where my seam would be. I stitched it on my machine, turned it right-side-out, then used poly-fil to stuff it. Looks great!
Step 5: Adding Tail to Pants
I still had the sleeves left from my gaudy sweater that were conducive to pants.
Once I laid the sleeves out, there ended up being a 'V'-shaped area over the crotch with no sweater on it. This was fine, as the tail covered the back and I just sewed a 'V'-shaped sweater-piece over the front. This took a bit of fiddling, but the wool was stretchy and forgiving, and it looks great!
I pinned the 'right' side of the tail to the pant-legs and sewed on my machine. Be sure to use matching thread and no one will know it isn't perfect. I basted the top waist of the pants to the red sweatpants. It will be good enough for a party or two, then can come off easily later.
Step 6: Making a Dragon Head
Now if I wasn't a Halloween costume purist (or, idiot, if you prefer) I'd have just picked up an orange hoodie, sewn my stalactites (or whatever they're called) up the back, and called it a day. But I didn't think of that until, like, yesterday, so here I am instructing you on making a hood with fins.
I used some of the shimmery skirt for the hood and turned inside out, pinned the fins in place before I sewed a seam up the back. I top-stitched it so that they'd be spiky and stick out. I added a spot of velcro just under my boy's chin on either side of the hood so that it will stay on snugly.
Step 7: The Wings!
I saved the best for last. I was really relishing how awesome the wings would look, so I did all the more mundane tasks first.
Get your umbrella and using pliers, snip the bars that keep it from flipping out in the wind.
I used scissors to slice the umbrella in half. I left the spines in place that hold the umbrella fabric in place. These were the 'webbed' wings!
Step 8: Secure the Wings
Now that the umbrella is all apart, I used wire to twist around through the loops on the tines or long spiky parts, to keep them together.
Spread out, they are starting to really look wing-like!
Step 9: Embellish the Wings
This is what I bought the skirt for. It was a shimmery, reptilian green, perfect for dragon wings. I lay the wing over the skirt and pinned in place.
I popped it under my sewing machine and stitched it on. It was a little tricky, what with the umbrella framework still in place, but I managed! I went all around the outside edge, then went up the middle of each webbed section.
Step 10: Add Arm Bands
I added some soft and stretchy armbands made from the sweater onto two of the tines of the wings. He will slip his arm into these and they will sit at around his bicep, so his hands are free. I used the sewing machine to put these on. In this step, I also used duct tape to cover the rough and scratchy edges of the wires where they met at the base of the wings. Hard to explain...see the duct tape in the middle of the picture? There.
I didn't want anyone getting poked in the eye at the daycare Halloween party, so these wings won't extend past his hands.
Step 11: Put It All On!
Put it all on and see what needs trick or tweaking, ha, ha! I've safety-pinned the wings through the duct tape to the middle of the back of his shirt. They will move a bit with the shirt, so that's good.
Capturing the shimmery green wasn't easy, so I may take more shots between now and the 31st, out of direct sunlight and if I can catch him in a willing mood!
I hope you've enjoyed my costume instructable and if not a dragon, it inspires you to do a bat or butterfly, or some other winged creature! Happy Halloween!