How to Make a Free Detective Costume

Written by grace covelli
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How to Make a Free Detective Costume
Use a wooden pipe to add credibility to your detective look. (smoking pipe isolated on white image by alma_sacra from

So you want to be a detective and solve a mystery by unravelling the details of a crime. Although you never did pursue this type of a career, there is still a chance you can be another Sherlock Holmes -- at least for a day. Start by looking through your closet and drawers for items that will help you put together a free detective costume. If you find you do not have everything you need, ask a family member or a friend if they have the items you need. This way you don't have to spend a single penny on your detective costume.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 1 black baseball cap
  • ¼ yard of white felt fabric or 4 sheets of white copy paper
  • Fabric glue for the felt or regular glue if using copy paper
  • Ruler
  • White dress shirt
  • Black dress trousers
  • Black dress shoes, not patent leather
  • Black or tan raincoat
  • Pipe or handheld magnifying glass

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  1. 1

    Write the letters in the word "Detective" in block form on the white felt or white copy paper. Make each letter about 1 inch tall and ½ inch wide. Cut each letter out with scissors.

  2. 2

    Glue each letter to the front of the baseball cap, making sure to space the letters evenly apart. Use the fabric glue if your letters are cut out of felt, and use regular glue if your letters are cut out of paper.

  3. 3

    Pull a clean white dress shirt and a pair of clean black dress trousers out of your closet and lay them on your bed. Choose a pair of dress trousers that are not too tight or too baggy.

  4. 4

    Take a pair of black dress shoes.

  5. 5

    Take your black or tan raincoat out of the closet. Wear a plain long black or tan coat if you don't have a raincoat.

  6. 6

    Find a pipe you can pretend to be smoking. If you do not have a pipe and you do not know anyone who can lend you a pipe, another detective accessory to have is a magnifying glass. A detective needs a magnifying glass to examine fine details that could help him solve a crime.

  7. 7

    Put on the shirt, trousers, shoes and raincoat. Place your detective hat on your head. Hold your pipe to your mouth, or the magnifying glass in one hand, and give your best detective look.

Tips and warnings

  • If the black baseball cap you have already has something printed or embroidered on it, cover the area with a piece of black material before adhering the white felt letters to the hat. Neatly glue the material to the hat with fabric glue, or sew the material in place with small, temporary stitches if the hat is borrowed.

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