I have not written a tutorial before, but I figured I would try to give it a go after I recently made a quick and easy angel costume for my eldest daughter’s school’s Christmas play. To be honest, my first reaction upon hearing that she needed a costume was that I would go and buy one, because I had a knitting deadline and was quite busy in general. But I did have all the materials I could use for a costume sitting on the shelf and they were all staring at me accusingly with their fabric and ribbon-y little eyes, so in the end I decided I would make the costume myself, but it would have to be a quick job. I cheated, too, and actually bought the wings, so this tutorial is for an angel costume dress and halo only. If you google “angel wings tutorial”, though, you will find plenty of homemade options. Enjoy!
Anyway, here is our girls’ costume:
These are the materials you will need:
- White cotton fabric, approximately large enough a piece that you can wrap it around your child three times.
- two types of gold ribbon, one about 2-3 inches wide and one about 1/2 an inch wide.
- lace trim, one or several types (you can go as wild with this as you like)
- sewing thread
- plastic hair band
- thin metal wire
And the tools you will need:
- sewing needle or sewing machine (and really, this will be so much easier with a sewing machine!)
- glue and/or good scotch tape
- darning needle.
Step 1: First you take a dress that fits your daughter well (or for a boy angel, a t-shirt that fits him well). Fold the white fabric over once and place the dress or the t-shirt on top of the fabric fold, with the center of the dress or t-shirt on the fold-line. Using the width of the dress / t-shirt as a guide, draw the outline of a dress with plenty of extra width around the skirt section and with a very wide neckline.
Step 2: Next, cut out this shape, making sure not to cut along the fold line. Fold open your cut out and pin it to the other half of the white fabric. Cut out the same shape once more. Pin these two with the wrong side together and sew along the sides, taking care to leave an opening for the armholes, and sew along the shoulders, leaving the wide neckline open, then turn the dress inside out.
Step 3: Hem the bottom and armholes (alternatively, to keep things super simple, you could also use pinking scissors to pink the edges and not sew these at all). Fold over and pin in place about 3/4 inches at the neckline, sew this hem very close to the inside edge of the folded bit so you will have space to thread the elastic through. Using the darning needle, thread elastic through the neckline hem, pull this as tight as you would like it to be and so it will still be comfortable for your kid and sew the ends of the elastic together.
Step 4: You’re almost done with the dress! Which is the big part, so yay. Now you take the trim(s) you have and sew these to the skirt of the dress. I used a cotton lace on the hem and a golden lace above that. You could use your sewing machine to attach the lace, but with very delicate lace I prefer to hand-stitch it.
Step 5: cut two 2-inch pieces of the thinner ribbon. Attach these to the side seams of the dress. These are your belt loops. Thread the wider ribbon through the belt loops and tie a big bow at the back.
Step 6: Wrap the thinner ribbon around the plastic hair band and secure with glue or a little piece of tape. Cut a piece of the metal wire and make a circle with this. Fold the end so it points down and wrap several times around the hair band. Next, wrap the remainder of the thinner ribbon around the metal wire circle and voilà, a halo!
That’s it, you’re all done! I hope you might like this tutorial; in the end (as it often goes with crafting of any kind) I really enjoyed making this costume for my girl’s school play. I was just thinking that I would like to try to make her costume myself every year when I heard a friend’s son is a camel in the play. Some might like the challenge but that is one for which I would head to the shops! Enjoy!