I made these costumes a few months ago for a “Superhero/Princess Party” a friend was having… and I, not being super girly, couldn’t bring myself to dress them up as princesses. Don’t get me wrong– I do let them dress up girly and crazy and they are always cute, even sometimes as the occasional princess, but its not something I encourage (we make an exception for Ariel!). I thought that superhero costumes would be more interesting, not to mention hopefully a small way for me to start instilling the strong, independent-yet-still-feminine spirit I hope they are able to cultivate during the few years I have to guide them to adulthood.
I was excited last week when G’s gymnastics spot hosted a Superhero Community Night– giving us a chance to re-use the costumes! And what a perfect opportunity for me to post this tutorial, since my sewing machine is still in storage (in fact, until I spotted it today while trying to dig out these costumes, I discovered it serving as a main support structure under Husbands kayak- yikes!!) and I’m not likely to be starting any big projects any time soon. On the plus side, we found the costumes (yay!!) and they still fit (double yay!!).
Here’s what you’ll need:
For both: sewing machine, cutting mat, rotary cutter, acrylic ruler, needle (for a few by-hand-stitches)
5 yards royal blue tulle
1/2 in wide elastic (preferably black)
1 foam sheet
3/4 yard red satin
3/4 yard blue lining for cape (I chose some that has silver stars on a blue background)
1/2 yard lightweight gold lame (I don’t know how to make the accent mark yet…) fabric
velcro strips (get the kind with sticky backs, not the “sew only” kind)
1 pkg pre cut stars (I got a pkg that includes red, white, blue, and white with little blue stars; but you will only need red and white)
crafters super glue (I like E 6000, but just make sure it’s fabric safe)
gold plastic notions- for belt (we used 12 inches, but get a little extra so you can trim it to fit)
1 yard woven cord/piping
gold paint (I went with Martha Stewart multi-surface Metallic acrylic craft paint)
1. Fold the foam in half and, using the acrylic ruler as a guide, cutting towards the fold, cut a strip 2in wide, 3.5 in long, and when you get to the fold, cut it into a point (you’ll have to cheat a bit, cutting away from the ruler). Now do this step again. These will become the arm bands. Do this one more time, but leave each side 7in long. This longer one will become the headpiece.
2. Cut strips from the gold fabric, enough to cover the front of each foam piece with a little left over to fold over the backside. Thoroughly, evenly coat one side of each of the cut foam pieces with craft glue. Place the gold fabric face down, and place the foam (glue side down) onto it. Smooth the fabric lightly and set aside for glue to cure.
3. I have a Silhouette Cameo which is a-maz-ing, and I used it for this project, but if you don’t have one, scissors will do. I pulled the Wonder Woman logo off google and put it into the Silhouette Studio and did the “auto trace” method to get a really clean cut. I copied the pattern I made, feel free copy and paste to use it for your personal use (you might have to adjust the size):
Cut the “WW” symbol out of the gold fabric, and you will need one for the front of the leotard and one for the back of the cape. Place the logo pieces *exactly* where you want them to go on the front of the leotard. Carefully lift up the ends just enough to apply craft glue and press them lightly into place. The glue will not allow much room for repositioning, so be careful to put them right where you want them. I like to start gluing at each end and alternate sides, working my way in little by little.
4. For the cape- measure the size you want for your little one- I went
with a 20x16in rectangle (including 1/2 in on each side for the hem) and cut that size out of both the red satin and
the blue star (lining) fabric. Put the back sides of each fabric rectangle together. Fold top and bottom edges over 1/4 in, then do it again; pin and sew each closed. The repeat this step along the sides. Follow step 3 for the logo pieces on the back of the cape. When the glue is dry, hand sew each of the top 2 corners of the cape to the leotard shoulder straps.
5. Cut the plastic belt piece to fit across the front of the leotard where you want the belt to be situated. Hand sew each side to the leotard, then work your way to the middle, repositioning as you go to make sure it stays straight.
6. Paint the rope gold. You could buy rope that is already gold, but the ones I found were cheap looking and I didn’t care for them, so this extra step really seemed worth it to me. After it’s dry, loop it around the belt a few times and tack it into place with needle and thread. Now Wonder Woman has her lasso!
7. Check to see if the foam wristbands and head piece are dry. Tuck and glue any loose edges. Cut small slits on the fabric if needed to help it lay flat, especially around curves. Cut velcro to fit the end of each arm piece and arrange so that the ends overlap when velcro is attached to each other (put one piece on the front right side, put the opposite piece on the underside of the left side) For the headpiece, cut a 5 in. piece of elastic and glue it onto the inside each end. Add a red star to each and you are almost done!
8. There are HEAPS of tutu tutorials out there already, so I won’t litter the internet with my version… but if you’ve never made one before, this is a good one. After you have the tutu finished, stick the white stars on and the skirt is finished!
Care instructions: leotard and cape is hand wash only, hang to dry; tutu is spot clean only, and if your little one is anything like mine, she’s going to leave her tutu in a crumpled mess on the floor– but no worries, just hang it up in the bathroom and let it steam while the shower is going, then lightly fluff with fingertips– good as new! I also occasionally spray it with starch to maintain the shape.
1/2 yard black satin fabric
1/2 yard golden yellow cotton fabric
1/4 yard double bonding interfacing like this one (also available at Joanns by-the-yard)
2 sheets yellow felt
2 sheets black felt
6 in black elastic
black onesie (I ordered this one)
black lace leggings
1. Follow the same instructions for the cape in step 4 of the wonder woman tutorial, using the yellow fabric for the cape lining; hand sew the corners to the shoulders of the onesie.
2. Use the pattern above for the batman logo- you will only need the large symbol and the medium one (the little one is just a bonus!). Cut them out of the yellow felt and the interfacing, careful to match the corners. Place the cape on ironing board, then put the interfacing, then the large yellow felt batman shape. Follow interfacing ironing instructions, careful not to touch the iron to the satin.
3. Cut the medium batman shape out of the interfacing and the yellow felt. Place interfacing and felt on the chest of the onesie and follow interfacing ironing instructions.
4. Cut 2 of the mask patterns out of the black felt. Heres the pattern I made so you can copy, paste, and print it (you may have to adjust the size).
5. Cut a 12 in. piece of the black elastic and pin 1/4 in. of each end in between the 2 pieces of the felt mask, a little higher than eye level.
6. With the back thread, sew around each eye hole and the outer edge. This keeps the mask together and makes the edges look finished, not to mention keeps the ever important elastic in place. After it’s sewn in place, go back and trim the edges slightly so they match each other.
Care instructions: hand wash only, no fabric softener; hang to dry