Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Stretching Dollars: Beef up your Dress-ups

As my girls have gotten more and more into dressing up, I've discovered how expensive this activity can actually be. Dress-ups aren't cheap, especially when you venture into the realm of Disney Princesses. Anyway, being on the budget that we are on, buying dress-ups just hasn't been an option, so here are some cheap or free dress-up ideas for all the other mothers who can't spend $40 on an Ariel costume either!

If your kids are into animal dress-ups, headbands are the way to go. For Christmas I dressed Lily like a sheep by putting her in white tights, a white onesie, black gloves and shoes, and then gluing cotton balls to the top of a headband and adding black felt ears! Super easy and I think she looks VERY sheepish.

My sister-in-law Janna also dressed up her daughter like a sheep (we were making a nativity for Grandma) but she used black ribbons on her daughter's wrists and a white beanie with cotton balls glued to it and black felt ears instead of a head band. Oh! And don't forget the little black nose. So CUTE!

For Halloween, my other sister-in-law Natalie was asked by her son to turn him into a dog-banana-split! What a character! Anyway, I thought it was very clever of her to use men's dress socks glued to a headband for the dog ears. Definitely a cheap, easy, and effective solution.

If your kids just want to be fairies, princesses, and ballerinas like mine do, then delve into their existing wardrobes and you'll be surprised what you can find. Brooklyn was the angel for our Christmas Nativity and all we did was put her in her own white dress, drape my white scarf over her shoulders, and braid a necklace into her hair.

For Christmas last year Brooklyn asked for an Ariel costume. When I finally found one and discovered that it was $40 I wanted to cry. She didn't ask for much for Christmas, but I still couldn't afford it. Then I found this wonderful mermaid tail tutorial on Filth Wizardry and I was saved! I made the tail out of a pajama pant leg and some extra shiny material I had laying around. Then I cut flower shapes into some pink fabric I had and sewed them on to an old tank top. She loved it so much and even wore it to her princess birthday party the next month.

Here she is with a long sleeved shirt under her costume for her cold January birthday party. Can't you tell how happy she is? I love it!

If its ballerina's that toot your horn, then you're in luck. We were lucky enough to get this ballet top hand-me-down from our good friend Amy, but if you don't have one around all you need is a pair of tights and a swimsuit. put them together and then add a tutu and you're set!

Last but not least, if you don't have a tutu, you can make one for really cheap. My sister-in-law Janna made the red tutu that Brooklyn is wearing by simply tying tulle and ribbon to an elastic band. Fast, easy, and effective!

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