Halloween is at the end of this month! Eek!!! I. Am. SO EXCITED! Halloween has been my favorite holiday since I was a kid, and now with kids of my own, it continues to be so. My husband thinks its ironic because I can’t stand scary movies and anything that spooks me, really. But I love the cute parts of Halloween. The cutesy spiders and ghosts, the creative Jack-O-Lanterns, and oh the costumes! I’ve always associated dressing up only with Halloween, but especially with this blog as a creative outlet I realized I can really make costumes all year long. Maybe one a month even! Would you like that? I know I would. 😀
This year’s costumes are featuring the ever popular Star Wars characters. BB-8, or “Baby-8” as I am affectionately calling him, is coming out to play today, and you’ll see the rest of the gang appear over the next month. BB-8 is appearing here as part of the Magnificent Wizards Blog Tour (make sure to stay around until the end of the post to see more entries on the tour). Doesn’t Baby-8 look so soft, squishy, and ready to roll? Mr. L still isn’t quite sitting up on his own yet, so this costume is perfect for letting him practice falling over! And I can just see him rolling over on his belly and back trying to keep up with Rey and Poe on their latest mission.
I opted for a soft version of this baby BB-8 costume instead of giving it a hard, solid structure. If Mr. L were older and wasn’t apt to fall over constantly, we might have done that, but I wanted something for him to feel comfortable in all around, even if that meant not having a perfect sphere.
It’s confession time. I… am not superwoman. Say wha?? I am quite proud of this costume that I made, and I even went all out and made a pattern for it thinking I would share it with all of you. Yet here I am, staring at the paper pattern I have made, and I just can’t motivate myself to scan it in, make the slight adjustments I know it needs, and format it for you to download. Forgive me, but with three young kiddos and trying to enjoy every minute of Halloween celebrations that I can, it’s just not happening!
So what I am going to do for you is explain how I did this, and if you like my methods, feel free to copy them. And I’ll throw in my cut files for the BB-8 symbols for you, too. Sound good? Okay, here we go!
How to recreate Baby-8 (or make any sphere costume)
There are two parts to the body of this costume: the inside, which is essentially an oversized onesie, and the outside, which is the sphere.
Inside: The Onesie
You can go the lazy (and probably smarter) route and buy a ready-to-wear (RTW) onesie to go on the inside, or you can make your own onesie based off of an existing pattern. I actually did a combination of this pattern (for knit fabric) and this pattern (for woven fabric) to get a general bodice front and back that could be used for woven fabric, since I made this out of flannel. Why these patterns? Because I had them on hand and didn’t want to spend more than I had to. 🙂
What I focused on in creating my draft was the shoulders, the neckline, and the bottom having elastic openings for the legs (no snaps down there). It needs to be roomy, since you’ll probably be putting your little one in there already clothed (therefore with extra bulk). Add an extra inch on the back shoulder piece so it can overlap with the front shoulder for snaps. This way the costume can be opened completely on top, baby can slide in, and be snapped in place.
Outside: The Sphere
Go here and make yourself a generic sphere pattern in the dimensions you need. Your sphere would cover over the shoulders to under the bum, so figure out how tall that is from your onesie and use that measurement.
You will create a pattern piece that if sewn 6 times will create a perfect sphere. However since we’ll be fitting this ball onto a body, you’ll need to make some slight modifications. First, based off of your onesie pattern, figure out how wide the neckline will be (take into account seam allowance and overlap from the snaps at the top). Take this measurement, divide by 6, add seam allowance to this number, and this is how wide each neckline piece on your sphere needs to be. So chop it off at the top of your sphere/6 pattern piece like shown below.
Now take this new pattern piece you made, and make three copies of it. The first you will leave as is – this will be the front and back (so 2 cuts). The other two will be the (1) left and right front (2 mirrored cuts), and (2) left and right back (2 mirrored cuts).
All you need to do now is match up the onesie pattern pieces you made before to these front and back sphere pieces. You need to cut out the same armscye and leg opening out of the front sphere piece that are in the onesie piece, and same with the back pieces. When you sew the onesie and the sphere together, all that will be aligned are the armscyes and leg pieces, so it’s important that these are the same.
Here’s a rough draft of what my different pieces look like if the fabric was all cut and lined up where it would go (note that I forgot to put the extra room on the back shoulder pieces for the snaps):
Putting it all together
Sew up the left and right sides of the onesie, along with the bottom part between the leg holes. Now stitch all of the sphere pieces together at the sides and the bottoms. Don’t touch the shoulders and leg holes yet!
Now, with the sphere inside out and right sides together, sew the onesie and sphere together at the armholes and neckline. Turn it right side out, so the onesie is nesting inside the sphere. Install some snaps at the top. Now the only part that isn’t sewn together is the leg holes, and we won’t get to that until it’s properly stuffed! So, go ahead and fill the ball up with Poly-fil. Make sure to try putting your baby in it so you get the right amount of filling. Once you’ve filled it up enough, measure how much elastic you need for your baby’s legs, sew it onto the inner and outer leg holes with a zig-zag stitch, and fold it under and stitch again to make it nice and clean.
Phew! Now that the body shape is out of the way, you can add the BB-8 symbols and work on the hat. I made cut files for you based off of something themodelmaker.net created. You can cut into HTV, fabric with Heat n’ Bond, or attempt to use your Cricut Explore 2 to cut felt out (and fail miserably and end up cutting it out by hand anyway! I could really use a Maker…). However you want to do it, these stencil/cut files will for sure save you time! They’re in my resource library, available when you sign up for my email list. Go ahead and get them from the button below:
As for the hat, I cut a styrofoam ball in half and used hot glue to cover it in fabric and in felt rectangles and circles, matching images of BB-8 that I found online. I added a little elastic and voila, a cute little BB-8 hat for Mr. L!
So there you go. That ended up being a bit longer than I planned on, but I hope it was at least a little useful to you! It’s so fun to discover how to make your own costumes from scratch, and I hope you find ways to have the same enjoyment I do.
Don’t forget to check out the rest of the tour below!
See what other bloggers are making boys for Halloween by following along on our Magnificent Wizards Blog Tour! Each link will be available the day of or after as posted below.
Fri. Sept. 28 | Made for Little Gents (Intro to Magnificent Wizards Blog Tour)
Mon. Oct. 1 | Angel Child Clothing
Tues. Oct. 2 | Made for Little Gents
Wed. Oct. 3 | Big Fly Notion
Thurs. Oct. 4 | Tenille’s Thread
Fri. Oct. 5 | Sewing Novice
Mon. Oct. 8 | Paisley Roots
Tues. Oct. 9 | Custom Made by Laura
Wed. Oct. 10 | Fée bricolo
Thurs. Oct. 17 | The Sewing Goatherd
Fri. Oct. 12 | Manning the Machine
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