Whether you purchase a ready made fancy dress costume or if you make your own, there are hundreds of different characters to choose from. A survey of 800 mums found that the two most popular characters for children in the UK to dress up as on World Book Day are the Gruffalo and Harry Potter*. Harry Potter costumes are relatively easy to do, but the Gruffalo would be more of a challenge and definitely not something I'll be trying!
This year Kizzy's class are dressing up as characters from classical fiction and she is planning on going as 20's socialite Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby. She has a twenties style dress accessorised with a hairband, brooch and 20's hair and make-up. She is currently reading the book in preparation. She reads way above her age and loves fashion, so Daisy is an ideal (if not a little unconventional) choice for my 11 year old.
Freddy has decided that he wants to be a knight like King Arthur or Mike the Knight! He has a costume already so this is an easy one. I like having a few outfits in the dressing up box that we can use for parties or events. He will undoubtedly change his mind several times before the big day and so the Iron Man costume will be on stand by.
Over the years I have made lots of different costumes for my children to wear. One of my favourites is the Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz. To make it, I took an old jacket that my mum had chucked out and customised it to make it a bit raggedy by ripping the lining and fraying the seams. I sewed on clumps of straw and toy mice to give a scarecrow-like feel to the outfit then tied some string around the waist. I added a straw hat, topped with a stuck on straw bird's nest and toy chick and added a spider dangling from the rim. The outfit was worn over old clothes with the trouser hems cut into zigzags This outfit has been used time and time again over the last 15 years for the kids for fancy dress parties and Book Days! Here's a picture of my eldest son Joe (who is now 25) wearing it.
Fast forward to 2010 and Kizzy is wearing the Scarecrow jacket for her World Book day costume! Reusing and recycling at its very best!
Another outfit from when when Kizzy was even littler, I made her a Caveman Dave's 'braver sister Ava' costume. I butchered a furry cushion cover to make a tabard and accessorised it with cardboard bones in her bunches and a shell necklace. We cut the bottom of some old leggings to give them a jagged, pre-historic look! She looked very cute and it was a very easy costume to make.
We have had a lot of fun over the years dressing up for World Book Day. As a Teaching Assistant I made my class laugh when I dressed up as James and the Giant Peach, using my rather large pregnant belly clad in a bright orange t-shirt as the peach!
Whatever your kids decide to dress up in this year, I hope you all have fun and celebrate the joy of reading!
*Survey results brought to you by fancydressball.co.uk