Many children's costumes are made from a basic pattern that is adapted to fit several different characters. This structure makes converting a costume from one character to another a matter of making small changes to colour, fabric, or structure of the dress. Changing a Sleeping Beauty costume into a Princess Peach costume takes only basic sewing skills and less than three yards of satin, but will save you from having to spend a larger amount of money buying a completely new costume.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Dark pink satin (1 to 3 yards, depending on size of costume)
- Pink thread
- Sewing machine
- Seam ripper
- Straight pins
- Yellow felt crown
- White elbow length gloves
Separate the bodice of the dress from the skirt using a seam ripper to pull out or cut the stitching. Set the bodice aside.
Remove the bustle (gathered silk portion at the top of the skirt) if present on your costume, using the seam ripper. If there is a sheer overskirt on the dress, remove the overskirt as well. Set skirt aside.
Cut away the sheer or satin section of fabric that surrounds the shoulders and gives the dress an "off-the-shoulder" look. Remove the sleeves from the bodice using the seam ripper (optional). Save the sleeves to use as a pattern. If you choose not to remove the sleeves, skip step 7.
Measure the waist of the skirt from the middle of the skirt front to the middle of the skirt back. Mark the length on the dark pink satin. Measure from the waist to the bottom of the hip. Double this measurement and mark it as the width on the dark pink satin. Cut two pieces for the bustles.
Fold the bustle pieces lengthwise. Sew a gathered stitch (set your machine's stitch length selector to 4) along the two shorter ends of the bustle pieces (not the folded end or top edge). Gather the ends of the bustle by pulling one of the threads and pushing the fabric together so you have a ruffled edge.
Pin the bustles in place with each piece stretching from the middle of the skirt front to the middle of the skirt back. The gathered ends should be above the stitch line so they will not show when sewn. Sew the bustles to the skirt. Trim any extra fabric from the seam.
Cut the old sleeves down from a long sleeve to a short sleeve. Use the person who will wear the costume as a guide for how short to cut the sleeves. Sleeves should hit 2 to 3 inches below the armpit. Cut out new sleeves from the dark pink satin using the old sleeves as a pattern. Sew the sleeves together just as the original sleeves were sewn, including a hem along the bottom of the sleeve. Attach the sleeves to the dress.
Pin the bodice to the skirt with right sides facing each other. All stitch lines on the skirt should be above the new stitch line so they will not show below the seam. Sew skirt and bodice together. Turn dress right side out.
Tips and warnings
- Add yellow felt crown and white elbow length gloves to complete the costume.
- If you want to have puffy sleeves on the costume, cut the pattern sleeve in half and add 2 to 3 inches between the pieces. Trace the new design onto the fabric, cut out, and gather the top of the sleeve so it will fit into the existing sleeve hole.
- Fit the dress to the person who will wear it several times as you make the new costume to ensure a good fit.
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