MAKE: easy DIY princess costumes.
Do you have a toddler with a budding imagination?
It’s amazing to watch them grow and create stories and narratives in their heads. Sometimes, it means talking them down to reality. This challenge can range from, “No, there are no monsters under your bed,” to “Sorry, honey, your plane can’t really fly.” But it’s fun to encourage simple and sweet pretend play… and dress-up is perfect for that!
You may remember that last fall I made an interchangeable animal costume for my daughter. Well, it’s that time of year and I recently made my daughter some more dress up clothes. It’s fun to have these items around for play time but they will also serve double duty on Halloween. She can pick from any of her costumes and go out as one of them that evening.
I decided to make costumes with aprons this year. Aprons are easy for my daughter to put on and will slip over a coat if it’s chilly on Halloween! I purchased a cheap pack of seven toddler aprons on Amazon (link below) and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with them. I saw a few cute Disney princess apron costume ideas here, here and here and thought that approach would be fun with half of the aprons in the pack.
Side note: I’m not crazy about how princess-ified stuff geared towards toddler girls is these days. I love pink and glitter and sparkles… but princess culture can be a little much for me. While my daughter does chat about princesses, she also loves pretending to be a firefighter, pirate, pilot, astronaut or superhero, etc. I’m not sure how, but the remaining 3 aprons I have left will NOT be princesses. More on those costumes soon! Stay tuned.
I grabbed some felt, ribbon, trim and other sparkly do-dads to turn four aprons into no-sew princess costumes. I also bit off probably more than should have and made matching hair headbands. Because… why not?
Watch my rudimentary braiding skills (and crafting skills, for that matter!) in this week’s video. (and there’s more details and a printable list of supplies and instructions below for each princess)
If you wanted a quick overview and shopping list, check out the (printable!) instructions below. Please watch the video for more examples and instructions.
It’s been fun to play with these outfits with my daughter and I’m excited to see what she’s going to be for Halloween! Curious? Follow me on Instagram, I will probably share pics that night in my stories.
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General supply list:
- Toddler aprons
- Craft felt (various colors, depending on which princess)
- Ribbon (various colors, depending on which princess)
- Fabric glue (like OK to Wash It or Jewel-It, see notes below)
- Mod Podge Fabric formula
- Glue gun + sticks
- Optional: fabric paint OR craft paint + fabric medium
- Puffy paint
- Wide headbands
- Yarn (one skein per hairpiece)
Note about the glues I used: You may not need all of them! I’ve used Jewel-it or Gem-Tac in the past to glue rhinestones or sequins to projects. They work great because they dried crystal clear. (check out this sequined bag and rhinestone collar I made in the past.) The Ok to Wash It glue I used this time was fine for ribbon, trim and the rhinestones, but it did not seem to dry crystal clear for me when dry. I would use Jewel-It if I had to do this over. Fabric Mod Podge worked well for adhering glitter but I’m not sure if it would be ideal for attaching trim and fabric since it creates (for me) a stiffer feel when fabrics are dry, almost like oil cloth. You can see what I mean in this fabric covered clutch I made in the past.
- Toddler aprons
- Craft felt, (8" x 11" in various colors, depending on which princess)
- Ribbon, various colors
- Sequins, various colors
- Fabric glue, like Ok to Wash It
- Mod Podge Fabric formula
- Glue gun + sticks
- Gold glitter
- Fabric headbands
- Skeins of yarn, one per hair band
- SNOW WHITE (yellow apron) Cut blue craft felt to create a blue 'top' for dress. Cut that in half and create an angled V with the two blue panels. In the center of the top, brush on Mod Podge decoupage and liberally sprinkle on glitter. Shake off excess and once dry, apply another coat of glue. Using fabric glue and hot glue, attach the blue panels over the gold center. As desired, decorate around the blue fabric with red and white ribbon. (See video for example.) Tip: Create a corset look with criss-cross strings down the center. Attach red ribbon to the headband with glue.
- ARIEL THE MERMAID (green apron) Cut out a sweetheart shaped top from purple felt for a top. Adhere with glue to apron. Attach blue sequins down the center with glue. Using two sheets of green felt, cut out the lower half of her body from one sheet. Cut a tail out of the other one. Glue those down and decorate as needed with sequins. Wrap red yarn around a foam board. Tie off and braid several inches for the 'top' of Ariel's hair. Tie the braid at both ends. Braid smaller sections randomly, leaving other areas loose. Glue braid to head band with hot glue. Add embellishments as needed.
- QUEEN ELSA (pale blue apron) Glue white ribbon across the apron to define her waistline. Decorate with scattered sequins, rhinestones and white puffy paint. (You can try, but I did not have success with craft paint, watch the video for more.) Wrap white yarn around a foam board. Tie off one end and braid one long braid (I tried a fishtail version). Glue the braid down to the headband to create a side-swept braid. Decorate the hair and glue on rhinestones or a small crown.
- PRINCESS ANNA (dark blue apron) Cut black craft felt to create a black 'top' for dress. Cut that in half and cut each half to fit the top area. Decorate the center (open) area with green and red ribbon (a floral or Scandinavian print ribbon, if you can find one). Glue down red, green and gold ribbons to the black top as desired (see video for examples). Wrap red-brown yarn around a foam board. Tie off the center and braid two braids. Glue the braid down to the headband.