DIY Toddler Costumes

Clearly, my child didn’t come running up to me asking, ‘mama! Mama! I want to be Edgar Allan Poe for Hallowe’en!’ We’re only just wading into a love and appreciation for Hallowe’en over here with my guy.

His sister on the other hand, plays dress-up every chance she can get.

At nearly four, Wyndham gets his inspiration from some of his favourite shows, and now of more recent; what he hears other kids talking about at school. Yesterday he came home begging me to make him into a Zombie. (Doesn’t he know he’s already there!? Doesn’t he know that as a toddler he reserves the sole right to drain my brain?)

So yes, it was all me. I showed him some pictures of the Poe, I read him some poems and we watched a couple of videos together. That’s all he needed to be al about it. So that’s me, living precariously through my child. Wyndham was especially a fan of the coat with the Ravens attached to it and wore it for hours after our little photo shoot. Now he’s not sure he wants to be Batman on Hallowe’en anymore, he definitely want to be Poe for his school-day costume. (You’re welcome teachers.)

I’m not sure what I love most about this costume. How easy and cheap it was to make, how much fun we had pulling it off together or how darling and adorable my boy was in really getting into the ‘Poe’ character…

What You’ll Need:

  • Black suit coat, pants and boots (I went thrifting, wasn’t about to pay full-price! The jacket I ended up finding is a bit big, but still works!)
  • Face paint (white) and chalk pastels (black and white)
  • White fabric for the ascot, I just used some scrap bamboo jersey (I have a fabric stash, you can cut an old white t-shirt or dollar-store tea-towel or scour a scrap bin at your local fabric store)
  • Faux black glittery rose, (because I think Poe would have worn one had I given it to him), 3 black ravens (all dollar store finds)
  • Small amount of black felt for the moustache
  • Eyeshadow and paint brush
  • Peice of cardstock weight paper
  • Brush and hairspray
  • Skull cane (optional…we had one, so obviously, we used it!)
  • Scissors
It is key that you find the ravens with wire attached to their feet so that you can feed the wires through the seam of shoulder on the suit jacket. Wrap the wire as shown below, nice and snug. Next place the rose in the pocket…so easy!

STEP TWO: Hair & Make-up
I tried out the hair chalking I’ve seen done on-line as I didn’t want to mess around with coloured hair-spray. (Mainly to avoid the clean-up). The end result wasn’t as dark as I was hoping for – but it worked and washed out like a dream, one rinse. This is key with toddlers. We all know they hate having their washed. All you do is scribble ferociously on the card-stock paper to produce some black chalk dust and paint you child’s hair with it! Keep adding until you get the dulled out, greyish black tone you want.

Get busy with that make-up! I used a small amount of white face paint and and quickly applied that with a bit of left-over black chalk dust to accentuate some rings under his eyes. (Please note, this is Wyndham full-on acting out and practicing his Poe-ness. Appreciate.)

Make that mustachio! Cut a piece of felt to resemble a moustache sized to fit under your child’s lip and use some double-side fabric tape as an adhesive. No way my kid was going to let me use spirit gum! Either way – Wyndham wasn’t down with the moustache and only wore it for a short while. I didn’t force because, hello! The whole point of this was to have fun!

Dress your kid! That’s it! You’re done! Happy Hallowe’en!

RIGHT?!?! I Know!



 “Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things that escape those who dream only at night.”
Edgar Allan Poe 


  1. Reply
    AJ Robles Novella 25/10/2013

    Super Kudos to you! that is the most awesome thing I’ve ever seen and your little one is the cutest Poe ever, mustache or no! Happy Halloween :)

    • Reply
      Selena 29/10/2013

      I’m just glad he was such a willing subject…I’m creating creatives over here!

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