Octopus Outfit

posted in: Childrenswear | 16

My daughter is organising a party for four year olds with an Under-the-Sea theme. Her son had decided he wanted to be an Octopus. I had already felt a bit unsure about this, but Esme had suggested we stuff four pairs of grey tights.

I was pondering what sort of size of tights would work, and if I might use buttons for suckers when this email and photograph arrived.

I would like to make this outfit, can you help please? I think its an adorned bib over matching colour clothing.  How much fabric and what type will I need? Does it have wire in the tentacles?

Boy dress as octopus
Carnival outfit


Suddenly my “dressing up outfit” concept was looking a bit lame. This was lamé! Silver, shiny, blingy. I thought back to Demented Fairy’s ten posts about making a steam punk outfit. I suffered some mental paralysis.  I couldn’t even answer the question – how much fabric do I need? The next day Esme told me she had bought 2 metres of this, from John Lewis. I hope this will do.

Silver Fabric from John Lewis
Silver Fabric from John Lewis

And some silver leggings. And some stuffing. Last night she cut out and stitched the tentacles, giving me half a yard to make the yoke.

Once you look at the picture it is not so very complicated. There are around 8 tentacles, stuffed, attached to a  yoke-bib which is also padded, and arranged (rather than wired, I think) so they don’t drag along the pavement. Then there is a mask or hat. In my first notion I had a hood in mind.


Let’s see how we get on.


16 Responses

  1. PatMc

    This reminded me of the film “Love Actually” and the line “The octopus costume’s taken me months. Eight is a lot of legs, David.” Hope it won’t take you quite as long.

  2. Demented Fairy

    Love it! [I think there were 15 posts in the end, and a few in-betweeners lol] I remember having to make a pancake costume for my son one year. Don’t ask. I’ve actually got a blog post half written about costume making exploits…
    I think a hood is a great idea, I used to use a hood pattern for lots of kids’ costumes once upon a time. You could have economised by only making four tentacles of course, and just let arms and legs do duty…

  3. Catherine Daze

    Good luck! Sounds like you’ve got it sussed, but just popping in to say Burda actually had a pattern for an octopus costume a few years back. Theirs was a bit nightmare fuelish though – the silver one is much nicer.

  4. Maggie

    When my younger son was litttle, he was all about comfort. So all of the costumes I made for him were based on sweatshirts and sweatpants. He was an awesome little Elvis one year. A 70s elvis with a silver metallic cape and a sequined applique on his chest.

    Good luck with your octopus!

  5. Sew2pro

    I too would have chosen to be an octopus!
    But I’d caution against spending too much time on this if you’re a bit rushed (i.e. sewing the suckers); kids just want to play and often discard the costume after 5 minutes while any attempts at high standards are resented by other parents who feel it shows up their usually last-minute efforts. 🙂

  6. Stephanie

    This is one of the cutest things I’ve ever seen! I liked to dress up as a skunk for many years, because of the big, swishy tail with the white stripe. I don’t know why I never thought of an octopus! Good luck, K.

  7. ceci

    I’m fascinated with Stephanie’s liking to dress up as a skunk for many years…..I do so hope this was as an adult as well as when a child? And of course the silver octopus is fantastic, who WOULDN”T want to dress like that?


  8. Mary

    I love making costumes. It would thrill me if one of my kids wanted to be an octopus. When I make costumes for the school plays the children think I have super powers. Of course my daughter is totally unimpressed by my sewing but her friends are amazed.

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