This is a super-fast and cute owl costume that would be good for any aged child, but looks especially charming on a toddler.
Step 1: Gather Your Materials.
You will need:
A cozy fleece or sweatshirt that you don't mind glueing feathers on!
Coordinating felt pieces
one or two feather dusters (one would be enough feathers, but I wanted two colours)
fabric for owl hat; jersey/t-shirt material fits best, as it has some stretch. I used velvet & was a bit finicky, but I made it work
(*also pictured are some stretchy onion bags that I didn't end up using as well as a sequined purse that ended up being a dismal and disappointing failure, but that led to the felt and that ended up better in the long run! So please disregard those items, lol)
sewing machine (and some basic sewing skills)
hot glue gun
scissors & thread
tape measure and/or your child's head measurements
I spent 69cents each on four colours of felt and the feather dusters were $3.79 each. Everything else was stuff I already had. This is a very inexpensive costume and went together very quickly.
Step 2: Make Your Owl Hat.
Using the measurements from your child's head (mine was 20"), fold your fabric in half and measure across, cutting out two pointy ears. I don't know just how deep the hat is, but it is close to being square, so that it comes down over his forehead.
In the second photo, I've cut out some felt for the eyes. I like the anime look. It's kind of stylized, but then, it is a royal blue and orange owl. You aren't going to find this owl in any field guide, so I wasn't too concerned with realism!
I've also cut out a triangle for the beak.
Step 3: Sew on the Eyes.
It's easier to sew the eyes on before sewing the hat closed, so don't get ahead of yourself here.
I started with the whites, then the iris, then the little white Pac-man in the centre. I did one eye completely before starting the other one. I didn't have to cut the thread in between, just pop the next eye part on and keep sewing.
Sew on the beak. Cute, no?
Step 4: Finish the Hat.
Hem the bottom edge of the hat. Fold your hat over, right sides together, and sew up the side and the ear tufts and across the top. Before turning right side out, snip the excess off the ear tips so that you will get a really pointy point when you turn them out. I also stuffed a bit of batting in each ear so they would stick up.
I added a touch of elastic at the back of the hat to keep it snug around the little one's head. You can skip this step. I could have too, as this hat fit him like a second skin.
Wrangle your kid into the hat to be sure it doesn't need any tweaking. You may need some goldfish crackers to successfully complete this step.
Step 5: Cut Out Your Felt Feathers.
I used a tear-drop shape and cut out 'feathers' for the shirt. I placed them randomly, but you could do a solid, one colour owl, or stripes or rows if you want it looking a little more orderly. I couldn't decide on helter-skelter or willy nilly, but after thinking about my toddler, felt that willy nilly would be best.
Step 6: Create Some Dimension.
I love love love this step! Randomly choose some feathers and slice down each side with sharp scissors. Don't cut too close down the middle. Then, gently strrrrrrretch the feather out. Did I say I love this step? I think you will too.
Step 7: Glue Those Bad Boys Down.
Plug in your glue gun, and starting from the bottom row, put a strip of hot glue up the back of the feather, and working in rows, begin to move up towards the neck. Tweak it a bit around the neckline to finish it off evenly. I ended up cutting my last row of feathers into smaller teardrops so they would fit. I was really loving the 70's vibe of this costume at this point!
Step 8: Break Apart Your Feather Duster(s)
Carefully, pull apart your feather duster. I counted mine and separated the blue and orange into equal piles so that I'd have the same amount on each sleeve. (I know, anal, right? I'm a Virgo.) I ended up not even using 1/4 of the feathers from the two dusters I bought. I have lots of orange and blue feathers for my next project. Good thing, because his big brother saw this costume and wants one too.
Step 9: Start Feathering Your Sleeves.
I rolled up a magazine and put it up the sleeve so it would not be laying flat on my table. I was able to work my way around the sleeve without having to move it around with a glue gun in one hand.
I started at the cuff and hot-glued feathers on one at a time, alternating colours. I left the area under his arm free of feathers, as they'd just get agitated and start to molt.
This went very quickly. Finish one sleeve & do the other.
Step 10: Try This Cute Costume on Your Little One!
Try it on and see how it looks. I don't know who-whoo-who could be cuter! He's got some orange shorts and leggings and he's ready to trick or treat. Happy Halloween!
Third Prize in the
Halloween Easy Costumes Challenge