Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The No-Spend Costumes

We didn't spend a penny on Halloween costumes this year, but the catch is that Genevieve's outfit was a present from Granny and Grandpa's trip to Spain.

A flamenco dancer.  Complete with jewelry, please note.

And then we have a black-capped chickadee. The bird was entirely Ben's idea. When I asked Ben what kind of bird he wanted to be, I expected him to pick his favorite color or Big Bird; but out he comes with "chickadee." Well, I couldn't resist that sweetness. 

I made the wings following this tutorial, only a little messier;  I also added a backpack-like tie and 2 forearm ties because the chickadee was prodigiously vigorous.  It took a lot more feathers to cover those wings than I expected, so it was more of a time investment than I planned, but I was so pleased with the whole effect.

Chickadees have black caps (we borrowed Daddy's dark-gray beanie), yellow bellies (a piece of yellow flannel from my stash pinned to his belly), and then the black wings with some white speckled in.  Daddy made the paper beak just before we ran out the door.

We stopped by friends' and family's houses, and met some new neighbors along the way.  Coming home at bedtime, we stopped to light our jack o' lanterns on the front porch. 

And now the  chickadee wings are in the dress-up bin, the ruffly dress is hung carefully in the closet, and there are buckets of candy waiting for me in the kitchen.  Hoo boy.  I could like Halloween.


  1. The chickadee... adorable! And, that flamenco dress... beautiful! Enjoy the chocolate.

  2. Adorable costumes and adorable kids.. The bucket of candy sounds like a good end to the day.. Have fun and enjoy.

  3. Stunningly adorable, both of them.

    Enjoy the candy!

  4. This sounds like Halloween as it should be. Homemade costumes and jack o lanterns and happy children. I, bird lover than I am, smiled so at Ben's idea and costume. How wonderful! Boy after my bird-loving heart. And I really like the wings you made. My sister actually sent me that exact tutorial because she thought it looked like me. She thought maybe I'd make a set for Halloween or music festivals. I still just might! Though I bet adult sized would be all the more time consuming. Maybe I could get it done by next Halloween.

  5. A lot of work in your son's bird costume - but so worth the result. Your daughter's dress is beautiful too. I miss having young ones being excited over Halloween :)

  6. How cute! I used to that too with my kids- get together clothing, etc., and repurpose for costumes...

  7. Love the costumes! My girls would die for BOTH the chickadee wings and the flamenco dress. What a fabulous present - actual ethnic clothes from a real country (as opposed to the planet Krypton). Lucky Genevieve!

    P.S. Forgot to reply to your earlier comment -this was weeks ago. I'm not following anyone's blogs or pinterest accounts because I'm a scardeycat! I mean, I am already swamped with what I see without following anyone - can't imagine having even more wonderful stuff notified to me on a regular basis. I would NEVER leave the computer chair! And my family would starve!

  8. Oh, that chickadee is just too, too...

  9. I love the costumes. You did a fabulous job on the wings. Our costumes were almost free, but I ended up having to buy a bottle of silver spray paint. So close!

  10. We did not spend a dime either, and I had so much fun making Stephen's costume.

    The chickadee is an awesome idea. Both my kids are bird-obsessed. Maybe we can be chickadees next year.


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