Toddlers all dressed up for Halloween might be one of the cutest sights at Halloween time, but all that cuteness comes with a price. Toddlers are notoriously difficult to dress for Halloween because they don’t have a concept of “costume”, and they are unwilling to keep things like masks, headbands or even sunglasses on. Here are a few ideas for dressing your toddler up that will make both you and your child happy.
Store-bought costumes Normally, I like to make my own costumes but when it comes to the little kids, I think it is just as easy to buy a costume pre-made. Most costumes that are custom made for toddlers are age appropriate, meaning no little parts that might find their ways into little mouths, and no headgear that you will have to fight to keep on. There are plenty of places to find costumes made for toddlers. Doing an Internet search for “toddler Halloween costumes” will result in plenty of web sites that specialize in toddler costumes. You might also check at your local department store. The lion’share of the costumes found at department stores are made for school age children but there are always some in little sizes for toddlers and in big sizes for adults. You can also check online. One year my little girl just had to be Simba from the Lion King. I found a size four costume for less than ten dollars.
If you are going to make your own costume for your toddler, you will probably want to stick to costumes that you can build out of little footie pajamas. If your child is used to wearing pajamas, he or she will not complain if all you do is glue a bunch of stuff to the pajamas. Fortunately, there are plenty of cute costumes that you can make using footie pajamas as a base. You can accessorize to make just about any type of animal costume out of pajamas; just add an appropriate tail, and use makeup to paint whiskers or funny noses onto your child. If your child doesn’t mind wearing a hat, you can add whatever type of ears or antennae that make sense for the costume. You can use a glue gun to add spots or stripes to the pajamas. Use your creativity and add whatever touches you can think of when building the costume.
You can also make stuffable toddler costumes by sewing elastic drawstrings onto a large piece of material. Fold the material so that it fits over your child’head like a poncho. Sew an elastic drawstring onto the bottom of the costume and sew up the sides (leaving armholes.) You can now stuff the inside of the poncho with pillows, newspaper, batting, or whatever you have around the house. This is a great pattern for changing your toddler into a pumpkin, a ladybug, a bumblebee, or a bunny this Halloween. Making a stuffable costume will require more work than buying a costume or even making one out of a pair of pajamas, but if you are fairly handy with the sewing machine and the glue gun, you should be able to come up with a cute costume without spending too much time or too much money.
When taking your child out for Halloween, remember that toddlers are not yet able to tell reality from fantasy. They are going to be very easy to scare and just taking off a mask will not help them recover from encounters with spooks and goblins. Be sure that the costumes that your toddler sees when out trick-or-treating are not threatening and that they are reassured by your presence the entire time. Often trick-or-treating is more fun for parents and older children than it is for toddlers.