Want a cheap, easy, no-sew costume for your little girl this year? Think Tink! This is costume is great for Halloween and/or to add to her dress up wardrobe. For bonus “awesome mama points” you can make her favorite doll a matching Tinkerbell dress too! Since Halloween is Hubby’s favorite holiday, I really wanted to make our Halloween costumes this year. Something simple, easy and cheap. After some looking around online for inspiration i found a new-sew Tutu dress that could easily transform my little pixie into Tinkerbell – just add wings. As luck would have it I already bought a set of purple wings at the dollar store for a photo session that has yet to happen. I also had a 20 Yard spool of light purple 1.5” ribbon I bought a year ago on clearance. DIY Halloween Costumes Tinkerbell under $10! Looks like I am getting out easy this year! Hubby was good with dressing as Captain Hook (what guy wouldn’t want to brandish a sword and hook on Halloween?!?). I had a dress that was in my pile of clothes to donate that was perfect match for Wendy, it just needed a bit of blue dye. DYI Halloween costumes here we go!
DIY Halloween Costumes : Tinkerbell
I found the photo of this Etsy listing posted on Pinterest and followed the link but the seller didn’t have the dress available any longer. It looked easy enough to attempt to make on my own and I had made no-sew tutus in the past so this should be simple.
Here is the list of supplies and steps to making an adorable Tinkerbell Dress for your little one:
- 4-5 spools of 6” wide tulle in bright green (I used 60 yards in total)
- 3/4” no-roll elastic
- Min 10 yards of 1” -1.5” ribbon
- Fairy Wings (found mine for $1 at the Dollar Store)
- Circular container to use as dress form
- Dryer sheets for removing static from tulle
Grab your fabric tape measure or simply a string and ruler or standard tape measure. Now measure around your child’s chest, right under their armpits. Subract 1.5”. Cut elastic to this size. Next, glue (or sew) the elastic ends together by overlapping about 1/2”, to form a circle.
Find a somewhat round container to stretch your elastic around. This will be your dress form. I used a 1 gallon plastic water jug.
Measure your child for the length of the dress. Start at their armpit and stop just below the knee or mid-calf. Take that measurement and add 4 inches. Example: Bug’s length measurement was 18” + 4” is 22”.
Find a photo frame or cut a piece of cardboard to that length measurement. Grab your tulle and start at one end of the frame or board and wrap the tulle around it until you run out (don’t pull the tulle too tight or your measurement will be off). Example: I had a photo frame that was 22” across and the frame was relatively thin. Once you’ve wrapped your spool of tulle, cut only one end of the tulle, so that your strips are double the length measurement.
Fold the tulle in half length-wise. In this example the strip would now be 3″x44. Now, cut from the creased corner up at a 45 degree angle, repeat on the other end (effectively cutting off triangles from both ends). This will give it a pixie look, with pointed tips.
Now, take one strip at a time, fold in half width-wise and grab the middle of the tule. Grab a dryer sheet and run it over the strip of tulle once or twice to remove the static if necessary. Check to make sure the ends are even. Next push the middle of the tulle upwards between the elastic band and the dress form. You should have a loop sticking up out of the top of your elastic band.
Note: it is important to push middle of the tulle UPWARD through the elastic band and not from the top down. I made this mistake and the knots were waaaaayyy to poofy to wrap with ribbon, which forced me to undo all of my knot work and start over, oy!
Take the two loose ends of tulle and shove them through the loop and pull down/tight. Make sure that you don’t pull so tight that your elastic band curls up. Repeat with all the tulle strips. Periodically you will need to squish (technical term) the knotted tulle together along the elastic band, so that the band is covered well by the tulle.
Once you’ve looped tulle all the way around your elastic band, you will grab your ribbon. Choose a starting point and push your ribbon up between the elastic and your dress form, between two strips of tulle. Leave a few inches hanging out so you can tie it when you are done. Wrap the ribbon around every two knots. Take care to make sure the ribbon doesn’t bunch up at the top. Also tuck in the ribbon for the smallest footprint at the bottom of the elastic, this will ensure your dress doesn’t have too big of gaps between the tulle. Continue until you’ve wrapped the entire band. Here is a quick, thorough video tutorial by Sandy Bell on how to wrap the ribbon.
Grab your wings. Cut off any unnecessary elastic (mine came with elastic loops to put your arms through). Take the ends of the ribbon that you used to wrap the elastic band with and singe the ends with a lighter briefly to keep them from fraying. Then wrap them around the center of the wings, securing them to the top of the dress.Tie a knot in the ribbon.
Finally, we will shape the dress. Tinkerbell’s dress was slightly shorter on the sides than in the front and back. Looking on from the front, Start at the right side and trim so that it is a few inches higher than the lowest point on the front middle of the dress. Repeat with the left side.
Once the dress is on your little one, then use the same ribbon to tie around their waist, finishing in the back with a bow.
Step back and take in all the cuteness you can stand. DIY Halloween Costumes Tinkerbell for under $10, done!
What DIY Halloween Costumes have you made? Share your experiences in the comments below!
- Shop around for the rolls of tulle.The first store I went to sold the same tulle for $4 a roll (JoAnn’s). I found some at Michael’s for $2 and at at Walmart for $1.79 . Walmart’s rolls of tulle were 2.5 times as long as the more expensive rolls.
- Add a wand to your child’s costume. Hobby Lobby carries wooden dowels with various toppers attached for $1.79. Grab one and wrap it in the same ribbon you used on her dress. Cover the topper in glitter puff paint (the glitter won’t wear off that way). Or buy a small piece of dowel and create two small pom poms to affix to the ends (less likely to injure self or others with pom poms on either end).
- Create two small pom poms from leftover tulle and affix them to your little one’s shoes.
- Glitter tulle is evil. it sheds everywhere, and for the next 6+ months of your life people may think you moonlight as a stripper, because you’ll have that much glitter on you everywhere you go. But hey, what is a pixie without her fairy dust?
- If you do go with Glitter tulle, make your project outside, away from your doors and major traffic paths. Better yet, go to the park and make this. Share the glitter love with fellow park goers and shake it out on the grass.
Parting thought from a dear friend: glitter is the herpes of the arts & crafts world. Eeeewwww!