The Challenge: To make a no-sew Elmo costume for my toddler son who LOVES Elmo.
My Inspiration: I mentioned this in my previous post, but I had found a random image on Pinterest of a toddler in an Elmo Costume. I couldn’t find its blog of origin nor any step-by-step guidance, but I figured I could manage it.
What I Need:
- 2″ Round Foam Balls (2 of them.. but in my case I needed 6 because I could not paint the eyes properly.. see previous post)
- Egg-Shaped Foam Ball (1)
- Red hoodie jacket that you don’t mind ruining with hot glue
- Red Pants
- Hot Glue Gun, Glue Sticks
- Toothpicks (I used toothpicks to spear the foam balls and then I shoved the toothpicks into the Random Piece of Foam so I could paint the foam balls without having to hold them)
- Random Piece of Foam (see above)
What it Cost:
- Foam Balls: $8.78 (they only came in packs of 6- $3.99 for 2″ balls, $4.79 egg-shaped)
- Acrylic Paint (White, Black, Orange) – $0.54, $0.60, $0.60 respectively – ON SALE!
- Hoodie (Free)- It was a gift. Size 24 months and on its way to the old clothes bin.
- Red Pants – technically $16.99 but let me explain:
- I had a very difficult time finding the perfect red pants to match the color of his hoodie. I ended up finding a set of pajamas that had red pants in them that matched okay.. not perfect.. but not awful. Since the pants came in a pajama set that had 2 pairs of pajamas in it (2 shirts, 2 pants) I guess you could say the pants alone cost me $4.24.
- Hot Glue Gun/Glue sticks- I had previously bought the gun and the sticks for another craft project, so I can’t really count this towards the cost of this project.
- Toothpicks, Random Piece of Foam: I had these things lying around
Total Cost Factoring in Technicalities: $14.76
Who is Helping Me: Elmo.
Who is NOT Helping Me: Target and Walmart- Why don’t they sell red sweatpants?!?!
How I Did It:
- I bought my supplies.
- I first attempted to paint the balls by holding them in my hand. It was a disaster! My hands were covered in paint and smudging up the ball terribly. This is when I came up with the toothpick spearing/jamming into a foam piece concept.
- I almost gouged my own eyes out trying to paint Elmo’s eyes. I discuss this in great detail in my previous post, but in short, I had a heck of a time trying to get his eyes centered, appropriately sized and not wonky.
- I doused the egg-shaped foam ball in orange paint creating an unintentional textured look.
- After 24 hours of drying time (I’m sure it dried faster, but this was how long took me to recover fully from the frustration of painting Elmo’s Eyes), I fired up my hot glue gun and sloppily glued the balls onto the hoodie. After evaluating my hot glue skills, I sat down to write down a post called:I don’t know if it was the sweet, encouraging look on the doll Elmo’s face that softened me or the fact that I didn’t want to confess that I did yet another aspect of this project poorly, but I decided against a self-deprecating post dedicated solely to how much hot gluing seems to elude me.
- I finally found suitable pants and I finally found 5 minutes to set up a photoshoot with my son and his Elmo doll.
- The final step of this project will be trying to keep my son from finding the costume and ripping the eyes and nose off the hoodie before Trick or Treating next week. Lord knows my hot gluing abilities cannot be tried anymore than they already have.
Would I Do This Again?: Yes! Now that I am 3 weeks into this blog endeavor, I can reflect on my past weekly challenges and see that slapping some painted balls onto a sweatshirt was insanely easy compared to.. I dunno.. making an entire wood toy bin shelf from scratch?
Halloween costumes for toddlers are very expensive when you consider that they will likely only wear them one time. This 2T Elmo Costume on Amazon is listed for $70.50!! Unless it is hand-stitched from the finest of silk by a 98 year old grandma-lady expert seamstress on her deathbed, I’m not willing to pay $70.50. Anyone who knows me knows that I’d even have a hard time paying $7.50. I can stomach paying $14.76 for this endeavor because my son looks adorable in his costume, he loves it and I will happily throw it away guilt-free when he’s done wearing it because I didn’t spend $70.50. And we all know that you really can’t put a price on the feeling you get when you throw something away without buyer’s remorse.*
*After I finished typing this, I thought more about this statement and googled “does fabric biodegrade” and I considered heavily the environmental impact of throwing away a hoodie. The hoodie is 55% cotton and 45% Polyester so only 55% of it will biodegrade relatively quickly and the other 45% will not. I will take this into consideration when ascertaining my guilt level when I actually throw the hoodie away. I guess there is always a price for throwing stuff away, but it is just so very, very gratifying for me. I’m more than likely going to save the hoodie for a repeat costume for Baby #2 and postponing my guilt feelings until at least 2019.