How to Create a Shirley Temple Costume

Updated March 23, 2017

Shirley Temple was a legend in her own time. She was the star of early cinema. Breaking onto the screen during the Great Depression, she brought fun and laughs to the lives of many who were struck by hard times. Going to the movies and being entertained by Shirley was a fun escape. She could sing, dance and act like a dream.

Gather some material to watch about Shirley Temple. Most people have seen her movies and know of this star. However, it's important to get the evidence if you don't already have it. Shirley Temple's official website (listed in Resources) hosts a treasure trove of films you can view and enjoy.

Put on a short, curly golden blond wig. There should be ringlets in the wig; or you can make some yourself with a curling iron. (Make sure it's safe to use on the wig.) Use a generous amount of hairspray so that your Shirley Temple hairdo stays in place all night.

Go to a vintage shop and look at children's dresses. You have to choose something that's fancy, adorable and sticks out. Polka dots or sailor patterns are reminiscent of roles that made Shirley famous and will be instantly recognisable. She wore little dresses that were fluffy and fun.

Put on bloomers. A little dress demands proper coverage. Bloomers are the way to go for a Shirley Temple costume.

Add a bow to your hair that perfectly matches your dress.

Put on some white socks and some tap shoes. Shirley loved to tap dance. The click of your heels will remind you how to move like Shirley Temple while in costume.

Grab on oversized lollipop. This is a great prop for your costume, and it will remind people instantly of Shirley Temple's hit song "Good Ship Lollipop" from her film "Bright Eyes."


Listen to Shirley Temple CDs as you get into your costume. She had a lot of catchy tunes, many of which you already know.

Things You'll Need

  • Short, curly golden blond wig
  • Bow
  • Socks
  • Tap shoes
  • Vintage baby doll dress
  • Bloomers
  • Over-sized lollipop
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About the Author

Robin Raven was first published in 1998. She has contributed to newspapers, magazines and online publications, including "The Malibu Times," "Act'ionLine" for Friends of Animals, USA Today Travel Tips and the official Melissa Gilbert website. Raven specializes in travel, health, beauty, culture, vegan nutrition, joyful living, arts and entertainment. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in writing.