Introduction: Mother Nature Halloween Costume

Hi Everyone. For Halloween this year I wanted to do something that I've never done before. A while ago I thought it might be fun to make a mother nature costume. Keep in mind that I've never sewed anything in my life so I wasn't quite sure how I was going to tackle this idea. 
When I was shopping in a thrift store one day I found a dress that looked like WINTER to me so I bought it and that's how it started. 

Step 1: Materials

1. Dress (thrift store)
2. Extra Material (used to lengthen the dress)
3. Scissors
4. Needle and Thread (various colours)
5. Artificial flowers and leaves (dollar store)
6. Snowflakes (christmas decorations from the dollar store)
7. Quilters polyester batting (WalMart)

Step 2: Design

After I bought the dress from the thrift store I had a better idea of what I wanted to make.
I sketched out my idea. I wanted to somehow combine the 4 seasons.
Now it it was time to start shopping around for flowers and leaves.

Step 3: Lengthening the Dress

I bought a curtain at the thrift store that I used to lengthen the dress. I doubled up the material and sewed it to the dress. At this point I was not sure if I was going to glue or sew the flowers to the dress, either way I wanted to make sure it was a durable material because I had a feeling the finished product was going to be heavy.

Step 4: Selecting Materials

After several trips to the dollar store I found a variety of flowers and leaves that I thought might be suitable.

I had to trim all the stems and figure out how to fasted them to the dress. I thought a glue gun might be easiest but my Mom had a pretty decent sewing kit so I decided to sew everything on the dress. Sewing is probably a lot more time consuming than using a glue gun but I was able to move and reposition stuff (without damaging the dress) by sewing so I'm happy I went with it.

Step 5: Leaves

I had started sewing flowers on first. It didn't look like I had pictured it so I decided to add a good base of green leaves first.

Step 6: Day 1

This was what I accomplished on day 1 of sewing. It was starting to come together but I didn't really know where it was going at this point :)

Step 7: Flowers

Smaller flowers were a little difficult to work with. It was best to cluster smaller flowers together then sew them to the dress as a bunch. Time saver ;)

Step 8: Spring & Summer Almost Done

By the time I had almost completed Spring and Summer I had only filled up the middle of the dress in the front. Originally I thought I had enough flowers to do the back too. I didn't want to go over my budget so now I had to re-think things.

Step 9: Fall

I started to sew fall leaves to the bottom of the dress. 
I had to layer leaves as a background then bunch up strings of leaves and sew them on in a way that added volume to the dress.
This part was fun and it didn't take nearly as much time as Spring and Summer.

Step 10:

I had completed the front of the dress. One problem: The back was still bare and I didn't have much left in my budget to complete the it with the detail that was in the front. hmmmmmmm, time to re-think things.

Step 11: Winter

I decided my best bet was to turn the whole back of the dress into winter. At this point I didn't know what material to use. I went to the dollar store to look at the snow skirts that you put at the base of the christmas tree. I thought it might work but it was too delicate. I went to WalMart and found Polyester Batting for quilting. Even the thin product was thick but you can rip it in half and bunch it up to make it look light and fluffy. There was a lot of volume at the front of the dress so I had to make sure I had the same effect in the back.

Step 12: Snowflakes

Finally it was time to sew on some snowflakes.

Step 13: Finished!

My Mom is a school teacher so I really wanted her to wear this to class for Halloween. Here she is taking the costume for a test drive the weekend before the 31st. I think she looks amazing. Feedback from her students was great, they all want to make homemade costumes next year.
Happy Halloween!

I wore the dress out for a party. It was fun, lots of compliments, everyone knew I was mother nature (bonus) and it was pretty comfortable believe it or not. 
I had fun making this costume and I'm already looking forward to next years project ;)

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