Christmas plays and school programs, not to mention Halloween, sometimes require a specific costume. Armed with the knowledge of how to make a Christmas tree costume, the project need not be a drain on your creative energies. Just gather the materials you need, follow these steps and get going.
You need: newspaper, green felt material at least twice as long as you want the tree’s height to be plus six inches, yellow felt measuring 12×24 inches, felt scraps in various colors, glitter, glue, tinsel boa or other featherweight tree ornaments, a pencil, meter stick or ruler, dressmaker’s pins, scissors, tape measure and sewing machine. You will also need a side dish as big as the wearer’s face, and cups.
Make your pattern.
a) Find out how tall you will need your tree to be by measuring from the top of the wearer’s head down to his knees. Add three inches to the height. Glue together as many newspaper sheets as you need to cover the length and width of the tree (the width could be one foot less than the height).
b) Lay the paper down on the floor. Fold it in half lengthwise, with the fold to your left.
c) Measure six inches down from the top; this is the face hole spot. Measure 18 inches down from the top and draw a horizontal line across. This is the shoulder line.
d) Find the wearer’s shoulder width by measuring from one end to the other, and divide the number by two. Mark the spot on the horizontal line you just drew.
e) Fold a diagonal line starting from the top of the fold on your left down to the bottom right side of the paper, making sure to hit the spot where you marked the shoulder width to be. The shoulder width will determine how wide your tree is going to be. The diagonal line should go straight to the bottom right side of your pattern, forming a triangle.
f) Draw the tree’s side. You could add curves or sharp angles, or leave the diagonal line as is. Be aware that the more curves and angles you make, the more difficult it will be to sew.
g) With the paper still folded, cut along the line you just drew and open up the pattern. You should now have a tree shape.
h) Size it up against the wearer and check to see if you need to make adjustments in the width and length in case it’s too narrow or short. Also, check the face hole spot, the shoulder area and mark where you leave armholes open.
i) Cut out a star pattern proportional to the size of the tree.
Cut the green felt material in half crosswise so that you have two lengths equivalent to the height of the tree plus three inches. Lay your pattern on top of the double thickness of felt and cut. Before removing the pattern, mark the face hole line and the shoulder line on the top layer of felt. Use the star pattern to cut out two star shapes from the yellow felt. Also, cut small circles from your felt scraps using the edge of the cup as guide; these will make the ornaments for your tree. You may want to embellish the ornaments further with glitter, puffy glue, sequins, etc.; just be careful not to weigh down the costume too much.
Separate the two layers of green felt. On the face hole line that you marked, center the side dish plate and trace around its outline, making sure there is enough material left around the plate to hold the costume together. If the plate is too big, find a smaller one; it should be just big enough for the face to show through. Cut out the circle to make the face hole. Align the two green felt layers again so that the edges line up. Pin the sides together. Mark where the armholes should go. Sew the sides together from top to bottom, half an inch in from the edge. Sew up to the shoulder line, skip the armhole, and resume sewing six inches down from that spot. Do not sew the bottom.
Glue the balls and ornaments to the front and back of the tree, holding the ornaments in place until the glue takes hold. You may also embellish with a tinsel boa or other decorations. Attach the star to the top of the tree.
With these tip on how to make a Christmas tree costume, you should be able whip up one quickly and still have time and energy to enjoy the occasion.