Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Gnome Halloween Costume: DIY

Turn your baby into a gnome.  It's the right thing to do.

We have children for the purpose of amusing ourselves...right?  

The gnome costume is easy and inexpensive to make, and comfortable for your baby to wear.  Three cheers for gnomes!

Oh- and if you haven't yet chosen a husband, please do yourself a favor.  Select someone who would do this.

You need a man who will wear a cowboy hat as he measures and cuts a gnome hat.  Trust me on this.  Because only that guy could talk you down from The Cliff of Overwhelmed.  And only that guy could help you make sense of a costume that exists... mostly in your head.

Following some instructions found here, your beloved will patiently measure, mark and cut.  This is a better method than yours, which involves wildly hacking and guessing, then growling at bad results.

 If you picked a really good one he'll try on the hat.  And let you take pictures for your blog.

So matchmaking and husband-selecting aside, let's talk about gnome costumes.

Square piece of red felt about 18 inches square
Tape measure
Glue gun
12 inch square of white fake fur
24 inches white elastic
Small treat bag plus felt scraps
Blue longsleeved shirt
Dark leggings
Belt with large buckle (or a piece of wide black elastic and a piece of yellow craft foam)

Assemble your supplies in full view of a jack-o-lantern.

Measure around your child's head, just above the ears where the hat will sit.  Ours measured about 16 inches. 

Then, hold one end of themeasuring  tape in one corner of the felt, and pivot the tape to measure and mark 16 inches (or whatever your measurement is).

Then cut along your arc.  Then run a bead of hot glue along one of the straight sides and glue it to the other straight side.  Turn inside out and place on husband.

Try on self.

So the gnome hat is officially done, but I thought it needed a little more gnome flavah.  I pictured a little gnome-ish crinkle at the top, so I slipped my left hand inside and positioned the tip in a foldy little zigzag.

...And glued at the creases.


Now on to the beard.  Fold your white fur in half, and cut a shaggy/zigzagging arrow shape (see below).  Be sure to move the fur around so you don't trim the long hairs when cutting.  Just eyeball the size and shape- it doesn't need to be exact, because 1. gnomes are imperfect by their very nature (I know this, yes I do) and 2. those long hairs you so carefully avoided trimming will hide any imperfections.

Then, cut sort of a gentle half circle at the top to allow the beard to fit under your gnome's chin.

Next, cut three 1-inch slots perpendicular to the top.  One in the middle of the top, and one on either side.  These slots help the beard lie flat during the next step.

Place elastic along base of slots, fold beard over elastic, and glue in place.  Trim sides to get rid of overlap if necessary.


If you're making your gnome's belt, just measure her waist, and cut a piece of wide black elastic about 2 inches shorter.  Cut a hollow square from your foam craft, then glue the ends of the black elastic to each side of the hollow square. I have no pictures of the belt-making process.  I'm lame.  But you can wing it, trust me.  The belt will end up looking like this. (Rubble family not included)

Finally, if you still have the time and interest, make a small felt bag  into the perfect treat sack.  I found this bag at Target for $1, and covered the snowflakes by gluing on mushrooms... which I fashioned from felt scraps left over from last year's costume.

Finally, enjoy your little gnome!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Katie,
    My name is Chelsea, and I am content manager of FairyRoom, an online magazine dedicated to folklore and the arts as it pertains to the sci-fi/fantasy subculture of fairies. We were very excited to include your wonderful costume in our article about last minute Halloween costumes!

    If you would, please take a moment to leave a comment on the post, and feel free to share the link with your friends!



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