Free Tutorial Owl Costume Body

I have been working on creating costumes for my two daughters for Halloween.  I know it's a little early, but if I don't start on it now, I know I will be in panic mode trying to cram it in later!  I was showing my three year old pictures of costumes and I was hoping she would pick something easy for me to make like a ghost, lol!  But sure enough, she wanted to be something that I would have to put some thought into...she picked an owl!  So after drawing out my designs, then thinking of how I was going to make this owl, I finally got to work.   This is what I did to make the body.  You will have to forgive me for the pictures, I did this at night when my girls went to bed.

I ordered about 1/2 yard of the pink fleece, 1/2 yard of white fleece, 1 yard of tan fleece and 1 1/2 yards of the dark brown fleece from, love them.  I don't think you have to prewash fleece before sewing but I did anyways.  I am sewing two costumes, one for a three year old and one for an 18 month old, so depending on the size of your child, you will probably not need as much fleece as I ordered.

If you haven't tried sewing with fleece you should definitely try it because it is so much fun!  Fleece doesn't fray, so you don't need to finish your edges.  It is forgiving and sews amazingly around curves.  Some things to note: It is sometimes difficult to tell which is the "right" and "wrong" side of fabric, but it you tug on the stretchy side, it will curl towards the "wrong" side of fabric.  Also, it is pretty plush, so it is easier to see your pins if you use the ones with a colored ball on the end and using a "baste" stitch is preferred.

First, I folded my dark brown fleece in half and picked a dress of my daughters to use as my pattern, then I cut around the dress, leaving about an 1" extra around a little extra room in the costume.
Next, I folded one of the body pieces in half to cut out the center.  I cut it out similar to what a pear would look like cut in half.  I used that cut portion as a template to cut out the tan fleece that I wanted for the center of the body, leaving about 1/2" extra around for seam allowance. Make sure that the tan "belly" fabric is also folded in half.

The next step was to sew them together, so I placed the right sides of fleece together as pictured below and placed a pin in the center, then I pulled the dark brown part up to pin around the tan belly piece because it is easier to pin them together that way.  Sew them together using a 1/4" seam allowance. 

On the back of the body piece, I cut a slit down the center around 5" long, then placed the two body pieces right sides together and pinned the sides and sewed the sides only using a 1/4" seam allowance.  DO NOT SEW the armholes.  You will have to sew across the top of the body where the shoulders will be as well.

 You can leave your costume body like this is you choose, that is the beauty of fleece!  I chose to sew around the armholes, neckline, bottom opening and add ribbon to the back to tie with.  Fleece is great because I just folded the amount I wanted on the inside of the armholes and pinned, then sewed around them.

 For the neckline I folded the 5" slit a little towards the wrong side of fabric and pinned, then I sewed around that curve.  Then I folded the neckline in about 1/2" in towards the wrong side and placed my ribbons in on the open ends and pinned.  I sewed the neckline and backstitched over the ribbon a few times.

To finish the costume body, I folded the bottom up about 1" towards the wrong side and sewed around the edge, leaving about a 1" opening to thread my elastic through.  I used a piece about 20" long for my 3 year old. 

I think it turned out pretty cute!  I'll post pics of my girls wearing their costumes when they are completed!  Next post: wings! 


  1. Hello! Newest follower from Monday Monkey Blog Hop... would love for you to consider following me back. XO Malia

  2. Gotta love someone who knows how to sew! I used to a long time ago but don't anymore. Stopping by from the blog hop and followed you thru GFC. I would love a follow back when you get the chance. Thanks so much and have a great week!


  3. They are looking great! Looking forward to seeing the completed costumes :)

    Stopping by from the Monkey Hop Monday! Already a GFC follower but following you on Facebook now too from :)

  4. Very cute! Hi from Handmade Wednesday Blog Hop!


Comments are always welcome, thank you!